The South African duo Jono and Lee update us with their results from a summer campaign on the local syndicate
3rd March 2020
Lewis Hannaford went through 40kg of boilies on a weeklong session at Gigantica, to bank 43-fish!
Gigantica seems to be fishing its head off at the moment, with consistent reports coming in week by week! This week, Lewis Hannaford got in touch, after he landed 43-fish from the famous French holiday venue. The new and old stock clearly still have a taste for our bait, as just a couple of days in, Lewis thought he would run out! Thankfully, this wasn’t the case, and he consistently caught throughout his weeklong session.
Upon his return, Lewis told us:
“Back in May last year, a couple of friends were talking about Gigantica and the possibility of fishing it during the winter months as it can be rather productive if the conditions allow. Having fished in France during the summer months many times, I jumped at the chance and joined in, fully expecting a hard weeks fishing. I said to the guys; ‘One bite between us and we have had a result’, but how wrong was I!
“After the usual excited drive down, we arrived at the lake and I was instantly taken back by the size of it and felt a little on the back foot to be honest. We said our hellos and went for our first ever walk around Gigantica with Steve the bailiff. Steve gave us the lowdown on the previous weeks fishing and the likely areas for the time of year (valuable information I must add).
“I came out third in the draw and chose Co’s Point, a swim that had done a few bites consistently throughout the winter. On the bailiff’s advice I clipped up at 28 wraps, having never fished that far out before and in a harsh cross wind, I admit I struggled, but a few casting tips from Steve had me hitting the clip nicely and more important confidently.
“I decided to keep things simple and went with running lead clips, a 4oz lead and a simple blowback rig. Hookbait wise I used dumbell wafters in three flavours; Peach & Pepper, Pineapple & N’Butyric and Manilla which were all soaked in the matching Bait Sprays for a few months. For my spod mix, I went for a 50 / 50 mix of 12mm Manilla and Krill freezer baits, with corn added, soaked in Cloudy Manila Liquid and lake water.
“With all three rods on the spot and 30 spombs of the mix over the top, I was fishing and happy with my approach. It didn’t take long for the first bite, by 7pm on my first night and the alarm was singing. I played the fish in and within no time I had a stockie in the net. Buzzing to have caught one so quickly, I quickly unhooked the fish and got the rod back out with a top up of five spombs over the top.
“The next morning, I was up early after having three in the early hours which was just madness; I was hopeful for just a few bites over the week. Due to this, I hadn’t got any spare rigs tied so I spent the morning tying rigs and spodding out bait ready for the evening and night ahead. By the Sunday night I had caught seven fish to 42lb, and I just couldn’t believe how the trip had started.
“The daily procedure was 30 spombs in the morning and again 30 spombs in the evening before tea, with a further five spombs after every bite. It was hard work at 28 wraps in a cross wind, but I wasn’t complaining.
“After a couple of days and plenty of bites, I decided to move the left-hand rod slightly off the spot and just fish a single Manilla wafter on its own, hoping to trip up one of the real big ones. This clearly worked a treat, as not long after casting out (I was putting the bobbin on) that rod was away.
‘Instantly it felt like a better fish, my heart was racing and after a lengthy battle, a huge common was sulking in the depths of the marginal shelf. The cheer went up and the boys gathered in my swim. Weighing in at 54lb and ounces, I finally managed to break my common carp PB and I couldn’t believe the session it was turning into.
As the week went on the bites just kept coming; double takes, bites on the drop, bites while spodding it was all happening! At one point I had seven fish in the margins. I just couldn’t put a foot wrong and in total I went through over 40kg of bait, which for February just shows how much the Gigantica giants were feeding. I’m sure if I’d had more, I’d have caught more without a doubt. I ended the week with 43 carp from 44 takes, which truly was a session of a lifetime.”