Katie Watkinson banks two thirties in a session!

Staying mobile and being prepared to move paid off for Katie Watkinson when she tackled a Lea Valley pit for a brace of thirties, including a new personal best common of 32lb 8oz.

Having made the decision to set up on the end of a cold wind, Katie then spent most of the night sitting up listening for signs of showing fish. Having heard carp showing closer to the opposite bank, she made the decision to move at first light, and it soon paid off.

She revealed: “When I arrived with my partner, James, darkness was fast approaching, but I didn’t want to rush and wanted to try and make sure that I was on fish. So we loaded up our barrows and stood watching and waiting, but with no signs of anything showing we had to rely on a tip-off from another angler that they’d been showing on the eastern bank the previous night.

“The night passed with no bites and I’d sat up with a cold wind in my face, but by dawn we’d seen a dozen show between us and it was clear that we weren’t on them, so we quickly packed up and dashed round to where they were.

“I soon found a large clear area about 45 yards out which was close to where the carp had been showing, and I decided to bait up quite heavily with 10mm and 15mm CC Moore Live System boilies, which I’d prepared in advance and soaked in Roasted Nut Extract.

“I fished both rods on an area the size of a table tennis table, with 14mm Dairy Supreme pop-ups presented on 360 spinner rigs, tied using size 4 Kurv Shank hooks to five inches of N-Trap Semi-Stiff, and fished Heli-Safe style with a 3oz lead and a Kable leadcore leader.

“I got an early night and was awoken by a screaming take, and as I got out of bed I quickly realised that it was the first cold night of the year, it was freezing! The fish managed to pick up a huge amount of weed, plus my other line, and it was a real struggle to get it in, so I was relieved when it went in the net.

“I pulled back some weed and looked in the net, and shouted to James to come and help, as it turned out to be a new PB common of 32lb 8oz, and it was a classic Lea Valley fish. The session continued to be a success, with James capturing a beautiful common, and I managed another one over 30lb - a chunky mirror with a heart-shape tail.

“It just goes to show that the sleepless nights and uncomfortable moves do help you to get on fish and pay off,” she concluded.