The South African duo Jono and Lee update us with their results from a summer campaign on the local syndicate
Church Lake Campaign Ends With The Woodcarving
3rd August 2018
Having initially joined RK Leisure’s Church Lake to catch The Woodcarving, Simon Kenny has finally put the last piece of the puzzle in place and takes his total tally to 54 fish banked in just 4 months, we’d say that’s mission accomplished!
When we spoke to Simon Kenny about his final session on the well-known big fish venue this is what he revealed: “I arrived at the Horton complex on Sunday and yet again it was set to be blisteringly hot throughout my stay. Once parked up I set off on a lap of the lake and sure enough the weedy bay had numbers of carp held up in the weed, as I’d caught 3 fish from here the previous week I thought it was a good starting point. I put my bucket down but decided to carry on my lap as I’ve been trying to regularly walk the church bay as it’s a known haunt of The Woodcarving.
I’d walked the bay numerous times before and only ever saw fish ghosting through, however this time was different. As soon as I peered into the bottom of the bay I saw 2 fish, they were feeding right up the shelf and at times their tails where right out the water, it was incredible to see. As I stood and watched them I realised one of them was The Woodcarving, I couldn’t ID the other fish at the time, but it turned out to be Blacktail. To see these two fish was rare and provided me with a very good opportunity, so I went and grabbed my bucket and decided the best swim to set a trap from would be Phil’s Corner.
As I was setting my gear up the fish where still there but not feeding, just milling about the general area. Not wanting to leave anything to chance, I tied new rigs, my main line was checked and new leader knots where tied, everything was perfect. I’d opted to present a 16mm Manilla Wafter on a Slip-D rig, this was to mimic the chopped 12mm and 16mm Manilla boilies that I was feeding. After a couple of hours the fish had drifted away and once I was sure they were clear of the area I put my rig in using a baiting pole. I didn’t put the rig exactly where they had been feeding, instead I chose to place it just down the shelf on a little polished area.
After cupping the rig in I went to check where it had landed, and I actually saw the rig foam break away from the hook and the rig lay down perfect. I baited with a small handful of chops but made sure to spread them out as I didn’t want a tight baiting pattern. That evening I kept checking the bay, but the fish didn’t return. I just kept thinking about that woodcarving and hoping he’d return, I’d done all I could and everything was perfect.
Despite struggling to sleep, I must have drifted off because just after first light I was awoken by a very slow take on the rod in the bay. The fight that ensued was fairly straight forward and saw the fish just wallowing around until I scooped it up. Although I hadn’t had a proper look at the fish during the fight I just knew it was The Woodcarving. My assumption was soon confirmed when I looked into the net and I saw a long black fish with linear scaling.
It was a true privilege to hold him up for the camera and although it wasn’t why I wanted to catch him, he weighed 38lb 1oz. All the remaining Longfield fish in Church are special but the woodcarving is the pick of the bunch for sure, so to have found him in the church bay and have carefully set a tailored trap made the capture just that bit sweeter!”
Simon then went on to tell us how this would be the end of his time on the Church, and we can see why. Although his campaign only lasted four months, he caught some incredible carp! He took a total of 54 fish including the lakes largest resident at over 50lb! Along with Fingers he also landed a crazy amount of 40’s, 16 of them to be exact! Other known residents Simon caught were Scar, The Cossack, Uno, Hercules, Guzzler, Chips, the Little Leather and many more. Simon is now moving onto a new lake with new targets and to say we’re excited to see how this next campaign pans out is an understatement.