A heart-stopping 30-minute battle on light tackle eventually ended in success for Dave Jones at Bluebell Lakes.
Surface fishing on Sandmartin at the popular Northamptonshire complex, Dave singled out this corking 33lb 6oz mirror with just a single mixer.
Having arrived at 7am with the plan to travel light and fish both Mallard and Sandmartin, Dave had to swerve the former lake due to spawning and concentrate on the trickier of the two waters.
He told Carpfeed: “There was a strengthening southerly wind sweeping across the lake, so I made off towards the back of the wind and quickly noticed a couple of fish, nothing massive, milling about just under the surface.
“I then noticed a very broad fish making its way in and out of a weedbed. I cast past the big mirror, which was only 20yds out from me, and gently pulled the mixer back and let the ripple on the water do the rest, gradually edging it towards the fish.
“I decided against putting any free offerings out as I didn’t want to spook what I was watching. All of a sudden it made a beeline for the mixer, rose gently and engulfed it.
“My legs were shaking before I hooked her and the battle that commenced was epic, lasting just over 30 minutes.
“I was up to my neck in the lake trying to manoeuvre it past a snag to my right before sliding the net under her. What greeted me was sheer beauty.”
Venue regular Gary Denniss was on hand to take pics and share the moment. Dave soaked a Pedigree dog mixer in Bait-Tech Halibut Oil and used a Guru bait band to attach it to a size 12 Korda Mixa hook and 10lb Fox Surface line.