Nine week wait for ice to thaw leads to near 30lb Fenland pike

After having to wait nine weeks for the ice on his chosen lake to finally thaw, John McKie didn’t even have time to set up a second rod before he hit into his first big pike of 2011 - this specimen of 29lb 6oz.

Arriving at the private Cambridgeshire stillwater early morning, John had just cast out his mackerel deadbait to 70 yards and was busy setting up his second rod when his alarm signalled a screaming run.

“I’d just turned round to tackle up another rod when the buzzer went off on the first one,” John told AT. “As soon as I struck into it it felt good and made a really powerful run. And when I got it to the net I could see it was a good fish, in great condition too.”

John landed his big pike using size 3 Fox XS carbon semi barbless hooks on 25lb wire to 30 braid.