If you wanted to catch 100lb-plus bags of roach and bream it used to require a trip across the sea to Ireland, but Essex bagging haven Lake John is fast emerging as a silverfish venue capable of rivalling the best the Emerald Isle was ever able to offer.
Over the last few weeks the water has regularly produced more than 1,000lb of silvers in matches, with treble-figure bags heading a host of amazing catches.
One man to have taken full advantage of the venue’s rich vein of form is Gary Miller, who has had winning nets of 112lb and 110lb in consecutive recent events.
The Maver Image Van Den Eynde ace, who holds the venue record with 157lb of silvers, took the mammoth weights on polefished meat.
He said: “During the week you can easily catch 50lb of tench and bream from any peg - it really is that good. A lot of top anglers have started to turn up, and they seem to really enjoy it because it’s something different from your usual commercial venue.”
This view is shared by Lake John boss Colin Bartlett, who believes it’s just a matter of time before the match record is shattered.
“Some of the leading match anglers in the area are coming here because it’s not a carp-dominated venue. You can catch 50lb of silvers an hour at times, and I reckon a 200lb matchweight is on the cards in 2009,” said Colin.
It’s not just Lake John where silverfish anglers are raking in the winnings, with numerous other venues hitting top form this week, among them North Devon’s Stafford Moor.
During a match last week, Thatcher’s Tackle rod John Green pocketed the silverfish prize after amassing 74lb 12oz of skimmers on short pole and pellet tactics. Elsewhere, M5 Angling-backed Paul Greenwood enhanced his bank balance after he took 56lb 8oz from Somerset’s Viaduct Fishery.