Today I fished a pool that is new to me, one I shall call Hoveland, because of my love for inventing names for lakes - which is an old and honorable pastime, dating back to the days
of Walker and BB et al. I have been hearing good things about Hoveland, not least because it is said to contain fish of a high average size. The pool first appears on early Victorian maps, but the owners think it may be older than that: not least because the
house of the estate goes back to Tudor days. The pool is spring fed, and not very deep and not very large - I would say about one acre or so.
Still, it was with great excitement
that I took myself off to Hoveland today, using a mixture of the bus and my two legs. Did I fish well? No, not really!
I did pick an excellent ambush spot in the early morning,
where fin wash and bubbles soon confirmed it as a fine choice. I fished tight to the margins, just off a small point that led into a tiny bay. I missed at least three unmissable takes within the first hour, and the sizes of the bow-waves, coursing through
the shallows, left me in no doubt that here were some pretty decent fish. Perhaps I was not to blame for missing. The sight bob simply vanished, with the line 'travelling' after it - and I still missed 'em! I gave myself a good talking to and told myself to
count to three, slowly, after the disappearance of the sight bob. This worked, in that I soon found myself attached to a nice mid-double common, which was to be my only carp of the day. It fell to half a prawn on a wide gape, short-shanked Nash hook, size
8. My line strength was 10lbs - perfectly adequate for most situations, I find; but I was to regret that choice. At the close of play - I had to get back by 4.15pm - I saw two larger carp jump under the far bank. There was one thing to do, and that was
to move. Within 15 minutes I had a take, right under the side, on popped-up flake, fished in conjunction with a sight bob (serving as usual as the float, needless to say). The fish felt huge - far more powerful than the mid-double, and it was a lot
quicker too. There was a small sunken tree to my right, and it charged straight through it and the line was severed. Holding hard in that spot was, I think, was the only sensible option. But I would have needed heavier line...
I did manage a consolation roach, shortly afterwards, but it was small consulation for the loss of what was surely a very large carp.
on the way home, I consoled myself - on a day of mediocre angling, on my part - that a mid-double common is a fine way to begin on a new water; and I shall be back!
The picture above is of my mid-double from Hoveland.