Paul Wilkinson gained rich reward for putting in the hours at a tough Cornish reservoir when he slipped the net under this 40lb 1oz mirror.
The impressive fish, known as the Secret, was landed from the 65-acre Argal Reservoir, near Penryn, and smashed the 51-year-old’s personal best in the process.
It sets a new lake record at the South West Lakes Trust-run day-ticket water, and is also believed to be one of the biggest carp in the county.
Paul, who is a fieldtester for Mainline Baits and has been fishing the venue for the past 19 years, told Carpfeed: “It’s not an easy water by any means, and the bottom is littered with features and other obstacles from when the valley used to be inhabited (before it was flooded).
“I often walk around in low-water conditions and make a mental note of the locations of all the gravel bars and channels that the carp like to use.
“On this occasion I was fishing to one of these channels about 50 yards out from the bank.
“The bite came at 4.10am, and when I called my mate to tell him what I had caught and to ask him to come and take a photo, he thought it was an April Fools’ joke!
“I can’t really repeat what he said when he arrived a short while later and looked in the retention sling!”
Paul used a snowman presentation made from a Mainline Cell boilie topped with a white Milky Toffee pop-up from the same company.
He presented this on a helicopter rig made from a Kryston Mantis Gold hooklink, a size 8 Korda hook and a 3oz lead from West Country Leads.
Argal is one of 10 lakes in Devon and Cornwall under the control of the South West Lakes Trust.
They vary in size from two acres to over 80, and all contain carp along with various other coarse species.
Located not far from near Penryn, Argal is around 65 acres, and holds plenty of stunning 20lb and 30lb carp.
It can be fished on a day ticket costing £8 (self-service permit hut on site), with 24-hour tickets costing £18.
A season ticket for days only costs £125, while a full season ticket allowing night fishing is £200. Other waters in the portfolio can be added for an extra £40.
For further details of all of the waters in the SW Lakes Trust portfolio visit www.swlakestrust.org.uk