Small carp among the tench on the bread punch at Jeanes’s Pond

August 20, 2020 at 8:24 pm

Welcome overnight rain gave way to a windy, but sunny morning this week at Braybrooke Club’s Jeanes’s Pond, when I arrived for a few hour’s, hoping for tench on the bread punch. I was not sure how the pond would fish after the heatwave of late, which had been followed by cool temperatures and heavy rain.

In an attempt to avoid the small roach and rudd that occupy the upper layers of the pond, I intended to fish on, or just off the bottom of the 5 foot deep swim using a 2 gram antenna float, with the shot bulked within a foot of the size 16 hook. Not ideal for presentation, but a longer tail would have meant a slower sink of the bait and the chance of a bait robbing immature roach, or rudd getting to the punch bread.

Feed was a base of coarse liquidised bead, mixed with ground carp pellets, ground hemp and boiled hempseed, squeezed into small tight balls, that sank quickly. I fed a line of three balls out toward the lily bed and waited, the antenna sitting with a quarter of an inch showing, a single No 6 shot close to the hook acting as a tell tale. With the bait on, or just off the bottom, any lift of the bait will raise the shot and lift the antenna. Simples. The first challenge was to get a bite. I waited for ten minutes before the float gave a small lift and sank. Resistance and a roach was being drawn towards the landing net. It dropped off the hook. As tench were my target, I was using my heavier pole with thick 12 – 18 elastic.There is little give in the tip and the roach bounced off the barbless hook.

I withdrew the elastic bung from the pole and eased the tension by unrolling a coil of elastic.

Rebaiting with a 6 mm punch of bread I dropped the float in 8 metres out, followed by another ball of feed. Bubbles began to appear around the float. It wobbled, lifted and sank taking line. A firm lift and I was in. The elastic came out slowly at first, as if the fish was unaware of the hook, then it took off in the direction of the pads, the elastic stopping the run before the fish turned and came back in my direction, while I unshipped the pole down to the top three. At first I thought that it was a crucian carp, rolling from side to side, but I had sight of the dark green of a small tench and was ready with the landing net.

This is what I came for the hook falling out in the landing net. Bubbles were coming up all over the feed area now and dropped in again. The float lifted and sank and I lifted in anticipation, but a tap, tap fight as I raised the pole said roach and I quickly pulled back to the top three to net it.

Not a bad roach, but on this tackle no problem, good to see that I was at least avoiding the tiny fish. Next cast in the float wavered and sank and a more powerful fish was charging off against the elastic. It was a small carp, staying down until the last minute.

The a last time I fished the pond I had a few of these and this was no different, the next three fish being like peas in a pod.

A roach was next up, again quite a nice one, the float having sat motionless as bubble broke on the surface, before showing a rings of interest around the antenna, then sinking.

Another nice roach was followed by a burst of bubbles around the float, a lift of the whole antenna, which plopped down again sinking away. Woah! This was a much better fish, that ran out parallel with the pads, before turning in towards them, as I put on side strain to keep it out. The hook hold held and I played it on the top three, waiting for it to reduce the runs and come to the net.

This tough 2 lb male was too much of a handful to hold and with the hook just in the skin of the lip, the hook was soon out and the tench in the keepnet.

This was a much darker common, than the other three, they are built like barrels and fight all the way to the net. I mixed up some more feed to keep the fish coming, this one a better roach.

I was into another decent fish, that ran out toward the middle, staying down, until close to the bank, rolling and diving, a mystery fish until I netted it. A small mirror carp with pretty markings.

A string of roach, meant that they were over the feed now, possibly drawn to the hemp, not the clonkers that I have had in the past, but respectable.

The bubbles were still popping on the surface and a much smaller common carp was followed  next drop in by a much better one, that fought like a crucian.


The wind by now had turned to blow in my face, but the heavy float held station, but as the sun shone above the trees onto the water the bubbles reduced and I caught the only rudd of the morning.

This fish took on the drop, steady feed and lighter float would have caught more, but the heavy tactics were now only producing roach.

This was my last roach of the morning, soon the sun would be beating down and it was time to go home for lunch.

The punch had worked well again, varying between 6 and 8 mm had not selected better fish. I also missed a few bites and dropped several small roach on the stiff rig, but it had been another learning exercise, I’m sure that there were far more tench and carp in my swim than I caught.

Two tench, six small commons and one mirror, plus a net of roach between 9 am and lunchtime was OK by me.