Tom Nixon-Taylor with a 40-08 Mirror

Tom Nixon-Taylor bags Cherry Lake's 4th forty of the year

40-08 Mirror is the second 'new' forty of the year for Cherry Lake.
Monday 1 May 2023

It is at last starting to warm up, although in truth the fishing still feels like early Spring rather than being in the last month of meteorological Spring!

I was not surprised to hear last week that this has been the coldest Spring in England since 1986 (37 years!). It has certainly felt like it! Judging by the Daffodils (which have only just finished and now we have the job of dead-heading hundreds of them!), Tulips and the leaves on the trees, I would say we are around 3 weeks behind on a normal Spring. Fishing over during March and April has been more difficult than we would normally expect at this time of the year.

Despite the weather and in particular a difficult March and April, we are now up to 34 different Carp over 30lb, including 4 different forties, from Cherry Lake so far this year .

Regular Tom Nixon Taylor chose to come earlier this year (he normally visits in July), because last year's visit in the heat was a challenge. I think he definitely missed the heat this year! Whilst Tom found it a struggle, it was most certainly worthwhile. Fishing from Osprey Lodge, on his last night he managed a 31-08 Mirror (sorry no photos), the second big Carp in under 24 hours. Early on Sunday morning Tom landed a Mirror Carp of 40-08. I think small pop-ups over pellets did the trick for Tom. Tom has now caught a Mirror and a Common over 40lb+ from Cherry Lake.

I am always pleased to get a call from anglers when they have caught a big Carp, and I certainly don't mind getting up early for a new forty! This chunky Mirror, which looked like it was carrying some spawn, was last caught by Aaron Williams last September at 38-08. It looked in great shape.

So far this year we have had 4 different Carp over 40lb caught from Cherry Lake. Of these 2 are new forties for us. So far none of the really big Carp have been caught. Over the last 16 months we have now weighed and photographed properly 12 different Carp over 40lb. My feeling is, particularly in the run up to spawning in June, that we have at least 15 different Carp over 40lb and possibly 3 over 50lb. Time will tell!

John Haddingham. 30-01 L
John Haddingham with a stunning fully scaled Mirror of 30-01

Last year brothers Richard and James Haddingham stayed in the Cottage and had a great trip. So this year, it was the turn of the third of the Carp fishing brothers, John to visit Cherry Lake. The Haddingham's are obviously good Carp anglers and John was no exception. During a very slow four days, he worked very hard and was comfortably top rod with, from memory 5 Carp.

On the last morning (Friday), I stood with John watching the Carp feeding no more than 8-12 wraps out from Hereon Lodge. The Carp were both fizzing and occasionally rolling and yet John could not get a pick up. I know just how frustrating it is when this happens (much more so than when the water appears dead). I was therefore delighted when John, literally just before the reel-in deadline of 09.00, got a run and landed this lovely fully scaled Mirror of 30-01, pictured above.

Harvey Chamberlain was on his first trip to Cherry Lake this weekend staying in Grebe Lodge. His trip started with a bang as he landed a 20lb Common within the first few hours. He then had to wait until mid-night on Sunday for his second run. This lovely Mirror of 35lb, pictured below, picked up his bait fished close to the reeds in the shallows. Very nice on his first visit!

Harvey Chamberlain. 35lb L
Harvey Chamberlain with a 35lb Mirror from Grebe Lodge

Gary Blackwell returned to Cherry Lakes this weekend bringing along his brother Mark and nephew Callum. The guys had a great trip landing some 16 Carp to 24-10, including this cracking 22-10 Ghost Common below.

Mark Blackwell with a 22-10 Ghost common from Cherry Mere
Mark Blackwell with a 22-10 Ghost common from Cherry Mere

I wish all anglers took photo's like the Blackwell brothers do. I wanted to include at least 4 of the photos that they sent to me of some really attractive Carp around the 20lb mark. I am sorry but I had to restrict myself to two. So sorry Gary you missed out this time, as I have chosen the photo of Mark and Callum with a 19-14 fully scaled Mirror, as my second shot!

Well done to everyone mentioned here and (hopefully) roll on a proper Spring!

mark and Son 19-14
Mark and Callum Blackwell with a very honest 19-14 fully scaled Mirror from Pochard Lodge
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