Nashbait fan Andy Walsh has claimed the biggest known carp in Devon at a new top weight, landing a stunning 50 lb 12 oz mirror.
Tackling the six acre Syndicate venue at Emperor Lakes near Lodiswell the 53-year-old electrician braved extreme storm conditions to bag the first 50 from the venue in recent years, a fish called Number 8.
The Devon record stands at over 54 lb, held by the late, great mirror known as Smirk that lived in the same venue. Number 8 is now the biggest living carp in the county.
‘It was horrendous, even though I was tucked down the bank the winds were over 70 miles per hour with hailstones and rain and it was a case of batten down the hatches and hope you survived,’ admitted Andy from Torquay.
The mighty mirror came on a snowman rig with TG Active, the hookbait presented off bottom but the size 7 Fang X sat on the lake bed with an 18 inch combi link of 25 lb Chod Link with three inches of supple braid at the hook.
Andy scored using the same tactics that bagged another giant mirror The Moth at 49 lb 2 oz from the venue last November: ‘I fished The Point swim but fished well short of the island, around 30 yards back in open water rather than fish the pressured spots,’ he explained. ‘Last year I had 18 carp from Emperor and 14 were from open water which says to you that they know those islands are a danger area.’
Baiting very lightly and really spreading 60-70 15mm free offerings with a throwing stick completed Andy’s tactics. ‘When people talk about carp just finding the odd bait on its own, that is exactly what I do. I just want an odd boilie here and there that a carp might dip down and take as they pass over them.
‘When I moved the fish from the net to the sling I saw the two apple scales, and knew which one it was. It’s a stunning fish. I contacted Dave Lidstone the owner and he came down to do the photographs,’ recounted Andy. ‘He was over the moon, it is the first 50 from the lake for years and it’s nice to bring the record home again.’
When Andy bagged his last giant Emperor carp at 49 lb four months ago, Dave predicted the Syndicate Lake at Emperor could produce three different 50s in 2016. Watch this space!