24lb 08oz.

25lb 06oz.

29lb 06oz.

The Dinosaur at 31lb.

The Big Tail Common weighing 32lb 14oz.

31 October 2011


I’d never fished Hardwick/Smiths before, but having seen the beautiful carp which it is home to I was eager to give it a go. It was early June and I had 48hours to catch one of its stunning residents. It was rather busy and not having ever seen the lake before and knowing very little about the place I decided to follow the wind blowing into the road bank of Hardwick. After an unsuccessful night it was time to move which was to be into the Smiths side.
My new swim looked hopeful with a few fish crashing out. The bottom was silk weed ever where so I used Cell popups fished on The Hinge Stiff Rig and spread 18mm Cell over a wide area which i placed all 3 rods on. The day soon turned to night and it was time to hit the sack. I was woken at 03:20 with my middle rod tearing off at a rapid rate. Soon the culprit was netted. A nice common of 25.1 safely returned and the rod re-positioned with some more Cell spread over the area via the eazi stick.
It was now mid afternoon and a very hot day. There were plenty of carp cruising about in front of me and I wasn’t really expecting another bite. Next thing I know the trusty middle rod was off again. I bent into what felt like I’d been weeded up. I slowly pumped it back and I then saw another good common turn about 10 yards out. Soon she slipped over the net cord and we recognised it as ‘The Big Tail Common’. On the scales she went 32.14, Delighted-my new PB Common. Soon we hit the motor way for the long drive back to Stockport and I was certain I would be back.
The next chance I had to get back to Linear was August. I turned up to an empty Hardwick/Smiths with only one other person on the lake. With there being no wind and the fish being hard to locate I setup on the same peg as my previous session. I approached it the same as the previous time and after the first night being quiet I was discussing with my Dad and Brother where to move to just as one of my rods interrupted us with a steady run. The lovely 25.6 Linear made the decision for us to stay put another night.

It was then the same situation the next day. Debating whether to move as my rods signaled a take which was the result of a 29.6 Mirror. With it returned to its watery home it was shower time. On my return I put all the rods back out and spread another kilo of 18mm Cell onto the area.
Soon after the rods going out the right Delkim burst into life which resulted in a 19lb Common. After its return I repositioned the rod, picked up a hand full of Cell and the throwing stick and before the line had had chance to sink it was off again producing a fully scaled 19lb mirror. This time I got the rod back out before dealing with the fish. Straight away it was off again with Common of 24lb. With the rod back out as the Common was resting in the net the spot was replenished with some more balls of goodness.

The action slowed up for about 30 minutes before my swinger twitched on my right rod. I was quick to hit the rod and feel the weight of a decent carp. It kited to my right straight away forcing me to wade into the edge to keep the line out of the trees at my side. I eased her back slowly. As I thought I had almost won the battle it striped me of line again. Closer and closer she came… before bolting off. This was one I thought I’d never land. After about 5 minutes of tug and pull I teased her into the edge praying to the Carp Gods she would stay. Soon enough an Old, Wise, Dark head popped up followed by its broad, thick shoulders and Deep, Solid body. Its old rubber lips kissed the spreader block and she was engulfed by the waiting net. I jumped forward to view my prize. Surely it was the prehistoric ‘Dinosaur’ the one I really wanted. Of course it was. We hoisted her up and, looking massive; much bigger than ‘The Big Tail Common’, surely 35lb+. On the scales she went 31lb dead, my new PB mirror. A few piccys and back to the depths of Hardwick she went.

The action continued that session and over both sessions I had done 6 nights and had banked 20 carp with 11 being over 20 pound, 6 over 25 and 2 being above the magical 30 pound mark

I'd really enjoyed my time on Hardwick and I can’t wait to get back on there. Until next time thank you.

Danny Lonsdale.