Unfortunately, due to the easterly wind, the area where the carp had been the week before in the calm of a westerly breeze was now rippled and cool and I could see no further than a couple of inches into the water. As I walked around the lake the male swan made his way towards me in an aggressive way. His mate was still on her nest in one of the swims, the hatching time could not be far away. I will be glad when the cygnets are hatched as, despite there being more swans then, at least the male will go off and do his own thing leaving the far more placid female and shy young on the lake, leaving us anglers in relative peace.

I walked slowly around the whole lake looking for some inspiration, the calm area up the other end of the lake looked appealing but the green water revealed no sign of life. Finally though I saw some fish near a fallen tree so I settled for that swim, around halfway up the lake. Waiting until the swan was not looking I put some pellets, corn and hemp out to the edge of the fallen tree and the other rod I dropped just beyond the emergent weed in the extreme margin.

When the sun was out it was quite warm, but as soon as it dipped in behind cloud, the wind got up and the temperature dropped back to winter levels. For a while I sat out by the rods looking for inspiration. A fish rolled out in the middle of the lake over where I knew a big bed of lilies were, however as everything is a month behind there is still no sign of the pads emerging yet. Then a fish rolled by the tree and my attention was heightened.

Typically, when I turned my back I had a take on the rod by the tree, a fast run up and then the indicator dropped back laying on the ground, showing it was not a liner as something must have moved the lead for the indicator to fall back to a lower position. I quickly struck. I felt nothing but found the bait came back from a position much further out in the lake. I recast and a few minutes later I had a repeat performance but this time the strike met with resistance. The line cut out, away from the tree as a fish charged away out in to the lake. The rod was bent well over and the fish, identity unknown, fought well in the deep water. Suddenly for no reason the line fell slack and it was gone. On retrieving the tackle I found the small boilie bait still in perfect condition.

I changed the bait and put out some more pellets before recasting inches from the branches. Again the wait was short but this time there was no mistake. The rod bent around in the rest and line was torn off the reel. The strike was sure and the rod bent over as a fish fought for the branches of the tree. After a few moments the fish changed its mind and was fighting in open water. As it came closer I could see the olive green torpedo twisting and turning to rid itself of the hook. Still no carp but a good looking tench.

Soon in the net I could see it was another fit-looking female, they were at least beginning to fill out a bit rather than the thin, long creatures I was catching in March. This time the tench almost made 6lb falling just two ounces short. I made the most of the novelty of catching it in daylight to have a good look at it before watching it swim off fast through the green tinged water, which was at last beginning to clear.

After the commotion of the tench all went a little quiet and I sat watching the sunset and glimpsing the odd fish roll heavily as the evening light faded. Darkness had just descended when the rod by the tree was away again. Another good take resulted in another fish thudding away just off the branches of the tree. Certainly not a carp again but it was fighting like a decent tench. At the net it turned into a bream! Not though one of the lumpy scaled ones I had been catching but a nice proper bronze bream, but still not big enough to get too excited about, 6lb 9oz. At least the bream in the lake are not slimy creatures so the nets were not decimated and it soon swam off strongly. The best hours were still to come but the cold wind continued and despite carp crashing out a few times during the early hours the indicators remained silent.

A couple of days later I returned in exactly the same conditions, the north easterly wind still making conditions cold despite the sun. I returned to the same swim hoping for a carp but when dusk fell without even a line bite I knew I had made the wrong decision. In fact hardly any fish had moved at all and I had a feeling that it was going to be one of those sessions.

Sure enough the night remained quiet with just one line bite on the rod in the extreme margin. Then out of the blue the rod by the tree was away with a screaming take. I was off the bedchair in a flash and struck into a hard pulling fish, it was right under the tree and I could feel the line straining as I held on with the rod tip plunged under water. I managed to get it back under control my side of the tree when with a large roll the hook pulled out!

I was not best pleased as for sure I had lost a carp and, despite what I had thought before moving on to this lake, the carp were not easy to catch, hence my scaling down to enjoy the decent tench and bream fishing. However in the back of my mind I wanted the carp and to lose one despite them not being that big was no different to loosing a thirty at a different lake.

Still, it spurred me on and with the hope of some sunny weather soon I look forward to the next session.

Have fun!