weather was perfect, it had been really hot for a while and the night
time temps where really hot and sticky, perfect for the cats. I arrived
at Churchwood early evening, unloaded my gear and went off in search of
Steve to say hello and see how things had been going, as usual I was made
to feel welcome and was offered a beer and a chat prior to getting the
few cats had been coming out but the carp action had been a bit slow due
to the hot weather so as i was after the cats and not the carp this did
not dampen my confidence but gave it a bigger boost. As it I had a few
hours before dark I decided to bait both rods with Leeches as the worms
would be devoured within minutes of placing the rig. Back at my chosen
swim i began to set the rods up, the Dumbbell rig as baited with a nice
big leech and boated out to the far bank. The second rod was also baited
with a Leech but disaster struck, as i pulled the line off the spool the
tip section of the new rod snapped like a match stick! Not impressed as
the rod was not even under any pressure. Luckily I had one of my carp
rods with me so this was soon setup and boated out to the far bank again.
light finally faded away and it was time to check the rigs and bait one
of the rods with the monster lob worms. Time to wait for the action to
start as the cats normally have a feed about an hour or so after dark.
I did not have to wait long and the Lobs had been attacked by the first
cat, the Delkim screamed off and line peeled off the reel, I grabbed the
spool, lifted the rod and bent into an aggressive cat. Seconds later the
fish shook its head and it was gone. I quickly reeled in and checked the
rig, all looked fine and the hook was perfectly sharp so two new lobs
on and out it went to the same spot.
an hour later and the leech rod was off at full speed, with the spool
spinning and shedding metres of line I was on it in a flash. As i was
using a circle hook i did not need to strike, only hold the spool firm
and bend into the fish. The power of the take was so powerful all i could
do was hold firm and walk back hoping I would be able to steer the catfish
away from the overhanging bushes on the far bank. The fight was very fierce
with loads of short powerful surging runs but eventually the catfish was
in the net. I lifted the net from the water and felt the weight of the
fish, 30lb for sure! The scales proved me correct as they where pulled
round to 33lb, minus the weight of the sling and I had a 31lb wels catfish,
well pleased! A few pics by Steve and the cat was returned.
shaking from the thrill of the first cat I rebaited and boated the rig
out to the same spot ready for another take. An hour later i heard a few
beeps on the lobs which made me jump as it does when you are not expecting
it. I stood by the rod patiently waiting for it to scream off, after five
minutes I returned back to my bedchair and poured a drink. A minute or
so later a few more beeps then a screaming run, the drink was thrown in
the air as i ran to the rod and pulled into another cat. Again I held
on and walked back to encourage the fish to move away from the snags on
the far bank, all worked as planned and the fish was in open water but
constantly trying to get back to the safety of the trees! Half way through
the fight as I was piling on the pressure I remembered what had happened
to the other Daiwa rod and panicked as I thought the rod would snap if
i pushed it too far! The rest of the fight was heart stopping stuff all
the way, every last surge i was watching the rod tip praying it wouldnt
break! finally the catfish was in the net and i could breath once more.
This time the cat looked even bigger than the last with a very wide head
and muscular body. the scales pulled round to over 36lb! After taking
off the weight of the sling the cat weighed in at just over 34lb, two
thirties and only a few hours into the session.
rebaited and waited for the next fish, unfortunately no more action was
had until 07.30 the next morning. The leech rod roared off waking me from
my sleep. I shot off the bedchair picked up the rod and felt nothing!
I reeled in and noticed the Leech had been bitten in half so the cat had
missed the hook completely. I rebaited both rods with Leeches as it was
now light and waited for another run.
hour later and the rod tip started to twich and the hanger lifted a few
inches, this happened three or four times so I decided to hit it and see
if a cat was on, a cat was definitely on! I reeled in a perfect miniature
cat of about 1lb!
sun was soon high in the sky and it was time to call it a day and head
for home to start on the new bathroom!
very impressive session and one i will not forget in a hurry!
sent the Daiwa rods back to Leslies of Luton and replaced them for a pair
of Century FS 2.75lb test curve models. The rods look and handle as you
would expect century rods to. I have since landed carp to nearly 20lb
and cats over 20lb on these rods and I can say they are well worth every