A weekend of high winds got the fish on the feed at a popular day-ticket water.
Orchid Lake in Oxfordshire produced three 30-pounders to weekend anglers, topped by a mirror known as Daisy at 37lb 14oz.
Captor Steven Harding told Angling Times: “My previous pb was a 28lb mirror also from Orchid Lake which I caught back in September, so at 37lb 14oz I smashed my personal best.”
The Bristol angler arrived on Friday morning and endured two uneventful days before spotting a fish. He said: “At around 6pm on Saturday I noticed a fish top just off the reed line and it looked big. I decided to reel in my middle rod and get it on the spot ASAP.
“Unfortunately, it was another night without any bites and by the morning the lake looked more like a river due to the high winds, and most of the anglers on the opposite side of the lake had decided to move or go home.
“At around 3pm my middle rod screamed off and as tightened up it felt big. Unfortunately it was only on for about 10 seconds! I was absolutely gutted and after lots and lots of swearing I decided to change the rig and get a rod back on the spot again.
“It was only on the spot for around 30 minutes before it screamed of again and once again as I tightened up I could tell it was a really good fish. It headed straight for the reeds and I managed to turn it on the edge of the reeds and get it back into open water. It held the bottom and continued to fight close in but when it finally surfaced my mate Josh was on hand with some awesome netting skills.”
Steven baited with boilies from Blake’s Baits and used a basic pop-up rig.