Now my normal carp fishing takes the form of short sessions that are usually 5 hours or less, so when I was offered a chance to fish with a friend on a Private Essex lake for the weekend I thought what a change it would provide.

Now the lake in question is really well hidden away with in a large industrial park of warehouses and plant machinery, and if you didn’t know it was there then you really would never ever be aware of its existence. But once found the mature lake is a really lovely and despite its industrial location is peaceful.

So after a brief look round I settled on a swim that had a very over grown left hand margin and deep open water to the front. I set about organising myself and it was at this point that I started to feel a little under equipped as some of the other anglers had the latest bivvies, bait boats, big pit reels and even marker rods equipped with electronic spy cams wow I felt quite undergunned.

To be honest my kit has become even more reduced since fishing the canal and I am always looking to reduce the amount of gear I take and this transposes right through my fishing even down to the terminal tackle!

Well it didn’t take long to assemble my 3 piece 9’ Century CQ’s and I cast out two Zigs into the very deep water that I had in front of me. One of CQ’s was 2.75lb T/C model and this rod was set up with my usual Oh So Simple rig that was baited with a Citruz snowman and a PVA bag of some new dissolving baits from Syndicate Tackle. I gently flicked the rig down the overgrown margin and felt it down.

I fished through the night and during the dark hours I was visited by Imogen, now this was not some 6 foot blonde Swedish lady with a big chest. In fact it was storm that came complete with rain, high winds that were also bitterly cold. I dealt with all this commotion by lowering my already battered old brolly and pulling my sleeping bag up over my head. At least the high winds would drown out my snoring and I was sure that those other anglers would have their bivvy doors firmly zipped down.

I awoke to a somewhat sunny sight but the wind was still evident. After my ever so healthy breakfast of an apple and mint tea and lay there wandering like you do about things when out of the blue the margin rods Delkim sounded. I pulled the rod round and what proceeded was a very dogged fight as the hooked carp took me through the weed and the over hanging foliage. I was balanced somewhat precariously on the very edge of the bank trying to untangle the mainline from the brambles whilst trying to apply pressure to the troublesome fish that was attached. After what seemed an age the line came free and the carp headed to the deep water and the new rod took on a typical Century battlecurve. The fish was a pure power machine and the rod absorbed every lunge and although 2.75lb was a lot softer than the other 9’ 3.50lb CQ’s – the rod had a reserve power that allowed me to exert and apply pressure which slowed the carp down and even in the deep margins I was able to control the fight.

I eventually brought the carp to the surface and netted the carp on my third attempt! I pulled the net to the bank and slackened the line and secured everything so I could sort out the unhooking mat camera etc.

With everything organised I took some self pics of what was a pristine common in all its winter glory. I then returned the common to its watery home and tidied everything up. I recast the Zigs and started to slowly pack away.

My friend looked at the pictures of the carp and here’s the thing. The carp is an unknown Common and possibly has never been caught before! It is certainly one of the bigger Commons that lives in the lake.

So an uncommon session with a bait presented in an uncommon area using an uncommon rod and I catch an uncaught Common. Sometime common is not common at all is it?

Ken South using Century CQ


Ken South - Essex Water - Unknown Common

Ken South – Essex Water – Unknown Common