“When I saw it I don’t know what stopped first – me, the fish, my breathing or my heart!”
That was Carl Humpage’s reaction as he realised he had hooked one of the country’s finest day-ticket commons at Baden Hall’s Quarry Pool.
The Walsall angler, who manages Fatty’s Bait and Tackle in Wolverhampton, had a magical 24 hours at the Staffordshire venue, topped by the big common at a spawned-out 40lb 2oz.
He said: “It was phenomenal. I’m still on Cloud Nine now. It’s a new personal-best common and one of the most stunning fish in the area.”
Having fed a marginal spot with mixed particles and chopped Mainline Cell boilies, Carl’s session began with a 25lb 12oz fish at 7pm. Another fish of 24lb 6oz followed at 5am before his other rod, fished with a pineapple pop-up close to an island, signalled a take at just before 9am.
He said: “I was fishing chod rigs and the up-and-down bite just told me the fish was shaking its head. I lifted into it and it didn’t go anywhere. I told myself to take my time and after a sold eight or nine-minute battle I saw it come up the marginal slope and we both just froze!
“I’d caught a 35lb common from the same swim a few weeks ago but I knew I’d beaten that. At 40lb 2oz it was well spawned-out but it was in immaculate condition.
“To cap it all off, just as we had done the photographs, one of the other rods tore off and I landed a 24lb 4oz mirror.”
All the fish fell to rigs constructed with Fox hooks and the firm’s new Trans Khaki components. The three twenties took 18mm Cell boilies tipped with Enterprise fake tiger nuts.