Paul Hopper’s first-ever visit to a Yorkshire day-ticket water produced the venue’s largest common at over 48lb.
The Stockton-on-Tees angler caught the fish, unsurprisingly known as the Big Common, as well as a 34lb 12oz mirror from Eric’s Willows Lake near Leeds.
The common, which topped 50lb last month, came in at 48lb 4oz to give Paul, who was on a weekend social and had come last in the draw for swims, a new personal best.
He said: “With a choice of two swims, I opted for peg 15 which was middle of the lake.
“After a plumbing around the swim I found a nice sandy spot at the back of a long weedbed around 60yds out.”
After a quiet opening 24 hours, Paul got a 6am bite on the Saturday and landed an old mirror of 34lb 12oz.
“My confidence now was at a high,” said Paul, who reeled in at noon and rested his swim for four hours after adding 2kg of boilies.
Having recast at about 4.30pm, he didn’t have to wait long for another bite.
“Within half an hour the right rod was off. As soon as I lifted into it I knew it was one of the bigger residents and my heart was pounding, with the fish taking me from one weedbed to another.
“After a 20-minute battle I finally got it in front of me and saw it was the Big Common, the biggest in the lake at the moment.
“To say I was excited was an understatement, but I kept my cool and finally slipped her in the net and banked myself a new pb. A very memorable moment indeed.”
RIG AND BAIT
- Ronnie rig
- Hook: Size 6 Korda Kurv
- Hooklink: 20lb Korda N-Trap Soft
- Hookbait: Proper Carp Baits Nutmix pop-up
- Loosefeed: 2kg of Proper Carp Baits Nutmix boilies, plus pellets soaked in salmon oil and chilli powder