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Last Updated: 4th July 2013

Springtime was a bit of a struggle this year for me. I had two heavy trips to the south of France in April and May, which made my home, Belgian, fishing not quit sharp as it should be. 
The trips to France were not that bad though, I had a great time and caught some nice carp 47lb 5oz (21.5kg).
But with lots of work at home and things to do lately it\'s difficult to get on the rails in my own region.

Worse still, the small pit where I had planned to continue my quest from last year after a couple big ones has gone into private hands and became a syndicate, so I needed to change my plans dramatically. I decided to spend most of my time on the only syndicate I have a ticket for this year. One of the most beautiful lakes, which is around 100ha and more important, a relaxing to fish. It\'s not loaded with big lumps, but it\'s got a good stock of nice commons and mirrors, with a handful forties and the biggest going up to about 55lb.
Besides the large pit, the members of the lake got the opportunity to fish a virgin water near the big main lake. We\'ve stocked it ourselves with small mirrors, weighing now up to 24lbs, but it has one particular specimen reaching well above those stockies. An old, character mirror that was once banked at nearly 60lb.

The idea was to fish the main lake, but give that new lake a try once in a while as well. You never know, with a bit of luck the old mirror might just pay me a visit.

Last week it was a bit crowded on the main lake on the pegs I had in mind, so I decided to give the other lake a try. Bear in mind that most of the nights where I can get to the bank is every 2 weeks at late at night once I finished work.
As usual, I arrived about 11pm and as quick as I could I inflated the zodiac and dropped the rigs. It\'s pitch black on this venue late at night, so finding a satisfying spot is not easy.

When I almost reached the bank after I dropped the second rod I heard the clutch on the reel from the first rod spinning! I couldn’t believe it, I hadn’t even set up the landing net, which I remembered as I played the fish was still in the car.

After a struggle, I finally had the fish twisting and turning underneath the zodiac. With a depth of 10m underneath the boat, the fish was quite strong, a bit too strong for those stockies I thought... could it be?.. No way, srely not.

When the light from the Petzl head torch shone on the flank of the fish for the first time I couldn’t resist laughing out loud. It was the old mirror!

It just took 15 minutes of fishing on the new lake and the target was already mine.
It had clearly spawned a couple days before, weighing just 44lb (20.2kg). But that was the last thing on mind, I can tell you that! 
While packing up in the morning, I got another take, but lost the stockie just in front of the landing net. I was using the new Pineapple Secret bait, and after that success I have absolute confidence in it, it might just be better than the original secret!