With the arrival of the proto type CQ™ I changed my set up completely.

The trusty NG Pluses and SS3000′s were placed in the carp cupboard and out of the dark depths came my favourite SS2600′s.

I mounted these onto the carbon reel seats and threaded the line through the rings and attached my snag leaders and rigs. I was all set!

Since catching the commons in February I had fished through March with no success at all, which is I guess canal fishing in the winter.

Arriving at the new swim in the early hours of a chilly April morning I placed one bait along the near side margin and the other was carefully lowered underneath the overhanging bandstand. I scattered some 6mm baits around the hook baits and settled down. The left hand Delkim sounded as the slack line tightened up. A quick strike and the rod hooped over and an angry carp soon had me giving line as it took off down the canal. As this was my first carp on the prototype short CQ’s I was a little nervous but despite the lower than usual test curve the increased power of the butt section soon subdued the carp and I slid the landing net under a good sized canal mirror.

I returned the following morning as I was not due to start work until 10:00 AM and placed both baits back on the same spots as the previous day.

Once again I settled down with a cup of tea and at 05:54 which was six minutes later than the previous day the same alarm sounded and the rod hooped round. I lifted the rod and this time decided not to give the fish on the end any line at all as I wanted to see how the rod performed in a hook and hold situation. The rod followed the carps movement and simply absorbed every lunge that the fish made and at no point of the fight did I feel that my hook would pull out as the rod bent through to the reel seat. As the fight progressed I felt confident to exert some of the extra power within the butt section to lift the fish to the surface and into the waiting landing net. I removed the bottom section of the landing net which made the for far easier manoeuvring as the steep banks make a using a six foot pole something of a pain.

I unhooked the carp and to my joy saw that this one was bigger than the carp I had caught from the same spot the day before.

For the record I was using Kryston 20lb Super Silk hook lengths coated in Drop Em attached to a Kamasan B175 size 8 hook. Bait was Mad Baits Nutz and Winter Zing.