One year on with Harris Sportsmail (carp article and videos, entry 486)

Doesn’t time fly? That’s a rhetorical question really as it’s a statement I find myself using on a regular basis to do with all sorts of things. And I can’t believe it’s now just over 12 months since I had a chat on the phone with Steve Collett that led to me setting up social media sites for Harris Sportsmail. And not only birthing them but also running the facebook page and twitter account. Being involved in angling in this way is not like work in the conventional sense; I don’t exactly get the Monday morning blues. A labour of love comes to mind. But that doesn’t mean to say that no effort is involved.

The HSM facebook page

I post updates pretty much around the clock in terms of when they may appear, thus ensuring a steady trickle of new products and special offers are always high in people’s news feeds. And during the course of the year I got to help out on the company stand at the Cudmore show, which I really enjoyed. So all in all, a good 12 months.

It all sounds utopian you may think? Surely working somewhere for a whole year, regardless of involvement, must have some issues. Well, one thing is for sure, you won’t hear anything from me. I cringe when I see people criticising their employers and moaning on the internet. So even if I did have anything negative – and that is not to say I have! – then the last thing I’m going to do is plaster it all over the internet in general or Ragebook in particular!

HSM on twitter as well

I had some good news in the week on a personal level. My eldest daughter had her second scan so my grandchild now has gender. All I can say is I can’t wait to take her fishing! So with that for the future I set off in the present to hopefully do business with a lump of my own.

Home for the day

With just a day session planned I decided to visit a pool across the county border (I live in Staffordshire) in Shropshire. It was a very misty autumnal day as I set up but within minutes the rising sun had burnt it away.

I fished one rod off an overhanging tree with double tutti frutti pellet shaped boilies on the deck. The other one was a 14mm lobworm pop-up. Both baits were dipped and fished over a mix of betaine and corn steep liquor pellets as well as several loose boilies.

The set-up that did the trick

It was a really quiet day and the number of fish (of any size) that broke the surface could have been counted on one hand. But I was confident and trickled bait in on a reasonably regular basis. My confidence was rewarded after 5 hours of waiting when I had a screamer on the tutti frutti.

After a focused fight it finally yielded although I did have a minor scare which you may pick up on in the video. As I brought it to the net I was aware the mesh had tangled on something under the surface. Fortunately it pulled free and I netted the fish. And shut the laughing black headed gulls up that were perched in a nearby tree. You can hear those in the video.

A great start to the week

Although a 20lb plus carp isn’t considered special from many venues from this one it is a definite cracker! That’s the thing with fish weights; you can’t take them as stand-alone figures, they have to be interpreted in accordance with where you are fishing (check out the accompanying video). And on that, I was over the moon!

I only had the one fish but it was good to fall on the right side of the line that separates success and failure. But on the nature front I was truly entertained by a feeding noctule bat that was out in bright sunshine in the middle of the day. At one stage its path took it within inches of a pair of ravens in flight. That would have made a good photograph eh!

Lobworm method mix ready to go

Really inspired by my carp I put my working head on so that I was able to clear a daytime spot a couple of days later. Everything was the same apart from putting out some lobworm method mix. One boilie was lobworm after all. Oh, and the umbrella was up as it was a wet and overcast day.

Unfortunately though I had no action at all. The alarms were totally silent and I blanked. I did see another noctule bat late afternoon though and one became two before I packed away. With my rods made up in the holdall and my gear in the rucksack I decided to continue on the carp trail two days later.

Sort of a new venue

I opted to fish a pool that I last visited more than 10 years ago. So in effect it was a sort of new venue. With five feet of water in the margins I decided to fish both rods less than a length out. I kept the double tutti frutti on one and fished two corn poppers on the other.

Corn poppers

Fished over a combination of corn groundbait/ground wheat/boilies/corn steep liquor pellets I had a lot of plucks from small fish. I’m a great believer that a crowd attracts a crowd and in particular small fish on a feeding frenzy will get the attention of something bigger. And in spite of the cold and damp conditions that proved to be the case.

I had to wait until right at the end though. The hanger on the corn rod danced up and down as opposed to hitting the rod and line going off on a screamer. That’s why I thought it was a roach or something similar. But as I lifted I felt something bigger. It put up a brave fight but I was always in the driving seat. It wasn’t anywhere near the size of the previous fish but when the going is tough you have to be thankful for small mercies.

A small common on session three

I started this piece on the general subject of social media and I finish on it as well. My YouTube channel has just passed 850,000 video views, and again referring to the comment that time flies, I can remember posting that I had just hit the 800,000 mark and that only seemed like last week. But with over 700 individual video views per day it certainly motors on quietly in the background and before I know it I’ll be mentioning the big one – the million!

I never cease to be amazed really at the figures connected with my Angling Journal. Whether it be YouTube, my facebook page or whatever, when you consider that I deliberately choose to focus on my own site which isn’t advertised or promoted in any other way than being on the internet the statistics are pretty impressive in that sense. I’ve turned down several invitations to speak at angling events and other such things that would definitely help to ‘promote’. The reason being quite simple – they would be instead of going fishing and for me that’s what it’s all about. I don’t mind talking, writing or whatever but no way will it ever come in the way of bank time. Never! (article published November 3 2012)

My angling site, updated every week since July 2003 HERE

This week’s videos:

Don’t become obsessed by fish weights HERE

Catching a 20lb carp HERE

Hit ‘Follow’ to keep up to date with my angling adventures on twitter

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