Craig Edmunds has a great result last week winning the five day festival at Ivy House Lakes. Here’s Craig’s day-by-day run down of how he got on. 

Day 1 – Willow, peg 21. 

Spent the first couple of hours mugging as I had no indications short early. This resulted in four fish. It appeared that few people were catching, so it was nice to get off the mark.

I then noticed a bit of mud come up at 13 metres over a spot where I had been pinging a few pellets and had three carp on this. With two and a half hours to go I fed my edges and the carp immediately came in.

This led to what I can only describe as possibly the most hectic edge fishing I have ever ha. In the last hour and a quarter I filled two and a half nets to finish up with just shy of 300lb and the win. 

Big potting a mixture of maggots, micros and corn after every fish was the way to go, with a couple of worms on the hook. They were feeding so aggressively and mopping up the bait so quickly that I didn’t foul-hook a single fish. I went away thinking what might have happened if I had started feeding down the edge earlier! 

Day 2 – Peg 11 on Heron. 

I started short on pellets for 10 fish, but noticed a few swirls on the shallow line and spent the rest of the day at 11-metres on pellets for 150+ F1s for 194lb and another win. The fish were keen to come right up and 8-inches deep proved to be the right depth on the day.

Day 3 – Peg 10 on Old match lake. 

Spent most of the day at 16-metres to the island catching stockies on pellets and a few on the Method feeder, before a few better ones caught late down the edge on worms over casters and maggots. My 115lb was good enough for a section 2nd. 

Day 4 – Peg 46 on Kingfisher. 

The previous three days on this lake had all been won fishing shallow with casters, so that was the main plan of attack, however it didn’t quite go to plan. 

I have only fished this lake twice before and for some reason thought the stamp of fish were bigger, so spent too long trying to catch quality shallow when I should have caught quantity, as I could catch plenty of smaller ones on the deck under my shallow line on worm heads. 

I finished up with 93lb for 4th and with a 95lb and 101lb ahead of me I was kicking myself for being far too positive too early, instead of feeling my way in. I did the opposite of what I try to get across when coaching, so only had myself to blame. At this point I thought that was the end of my chances of winning. 

Day 5 – 22 on Heron. 

I had a dozen carp short on pellets before that dried up. Switching to my shallow line, again on pellets, didn’t bring any signs, so it was time to change again. Coming back short I change to feeding casters and this worked better. Would the same approach work on the shallow line? 

Going back out I spent the rest of the day at 11-metres catching on a banded caster for 146lb, which won the section. Jamie Read, who is a cracking angler, needed a third in section to win, but faired a similar fate to me the previous day on Kingfisher, and could only manage a 5th, which meant I won the festival. 

I felt for Jamie, and speaking to him after he also said that he couldn’t catch shallow, yet when he changed to fishing on the deck with worms he caught plenty of smaller fish, but when you are already behind you always feel you have to be positive to claw it back, so I completely understood his mindset. Decision making in fishing is everything.

A brilliantly run festival by Andy and Karen, with the complex fishing its head off all week; testimony to the hard work they have put in. A different approach is needed for each lake with F1s and stockie carp in Heron, big carp in Willow and a mixture of stockies and bigger carp on Kingfisher and the Match lake, with plenty of silvers to go at, which can make a big difference with natural baits being vital to score decent section points. It certainly is a fishery going from strength to strength! Well done to all the framers and all that took part in a lovely friendly atmosphere.

Craig ‘Trigg’ Edmunds