23rd July, Mineral lakes ,Bedworth
On a recent trip to Weston lawns fishery in Bedworth I hear a few story’s of a Pool holding some monster sturgeon. Stories of 75lb+ specimens and people catching 30lbers on float fished luncheon meat. Now these were tales I couldn’t possibly ignore so I organised a day session on mineral lakes for me and another fishing companion Marv.
We arrive early not really knowing what to expect. With a name like Mineral lakes I had images of crystal clear blue water and exotic trees along the bank. The lake was quite large with two islands. The water was far from crystal clear but non the less the pool looked great, and very fishy.
I set up directly between the two island and Marv chose a swim a few pegs away. I was told luncheon meat and smoked salmon are both excellent baits for sturgeon so I started off free lining on both rods with a chunk of each, both baits are lay over a bed of mixed feeder pellets tight to the margin. After just 20 minutes my arms cover in goosebumps as I watch the slack line slowly rise from the water s my bait is carried away. I tighten my clutch and strike. A short but acrobatic fight with tale walks and leaps. My first mineral lakes sturgeon is on the bank.
Bit of an old warrior by the looks of him. 19lb 10oz. Not a bad start.
Lines back in the water and and about 30 minutes later the left hand rod twitches again. A much faster take the rod is practically pulled into the pool. This feels like a good carp. Water boiling and the drag on my reel groaning as the fish runs this feels like a beauty.
My first 20, a new pb at 21lb9oz.
Happy with the results so far I go for a wander to Marv’s peg. Before I even get close I can hear him snoring in his bivvy. I’ll leave him to it. I lap the lake watching a few carp feeding in the rushes and spot a few sturgeon tails breaking the surface. What an amazing place.
And hour or so after arriving back at my peg I get a slow bite on the salmon, I strike and it is solid….. No movement at all. ” bloody fish has snagged me on the bottom” wait… No it hasn’t I can feel movement, it’s moving away from me, I don’t think it knows it’s hooked. I drop the rod and gain some line back on the reel, tightening back up the fish suddenly realises what going on and darts for the gap between the two islands. 10,20,30,40 yards of line ripped off my spool. Wow this fish has some power. Still hugging the bottom tightly So I still haven’t seen it. I gain some line back gradually inching the fish back towards the bank. It breaks the surface and my heart leaps. This is by far the biggest fish I have ever hooked. I shout Marv and he appears from his bivvy wiping his eyes. Seeing the bend in my rod he runs to my aid. Marv gets the net as I guide the massive head towards him. It’s a tight squeeze but he’s in. It takes two of us to lift this fish onto the matt. What an absolute monster
44lb 7oz what a beaut, and if today couldn’t get any better as I was releasing this fish my other rod starts beeping. This is amazing.
I strike…. Nothing, I knew this was too good to be true. I recast to exactly the same spot and before the bait even hits bottom another bite… Missed it again, ” what the hells going on” same again recast the to same spot. Another bite… I’m not going to strike,I wait, the bait runners clicking now as lines being taken, 2,4,6,8,10 yards of line slowly leaving my spool. I can’t wait any longer, I strike and I’m in. This fish new it was hooked instantly and made a dash for the gap between the islands again. This one feels even bigger!!! Run after run this fish will not give up. I gain a foot of line and the fish takes 6, this is a strong fish. 45 minutes later and I’m sat on my chair, the butt of the rod between my legs and Marv holding my shoulders to stop me being pulled in, I’m exhausted. This fish will not give up. 10 minutes later he breaks the surface…..
He’s in the net, perfectly handled by Marv then lifted by us both onto the matt.
What a day. Broke my personal best 3 times in one session. Sadly Marv didn’t catch but I’m sure we’ll be coming back very soon.
I though 58lb would take me years to beat. A fish like that is on every anglers bucket list. Little did I know that on my next visit I was catch the fish of a lifetime…….