When my son was born two and a half years ago, I knew it was only going to be a matter of time before he took interest in fishing and followed in my footsteps.
His obsession with fish lately is laughable and anything related - rods, reels, line, boilies. I thought to myself...he's ready. The time had come. Let's go fishing.
We loaded the van up on a pleasant sunny morning, and headed up to my local day ticket fishery. I was accompanied by friend and fishing partner Joe who was going to be assisting in case things didn't go to plan.
We were lucky to have most of the lake to ourselves, so a quick scan in a couple of swims and it was an easy decision. The fish in front of the island didn't seem to be too shy. They were in large numbers, fizzing and "boshing."
Without wasting too much time, the rods were cast out with my usual set up - a 2oz lead, an 8 inch fluorocarbon hook link, a size 8 hook, with a 14mm Bait-Tech Poloni pop up. A few pouches of 14mm and 18mm Poloni Boilies were quickly fired on the spots, followed by a cup of warm tea that was brewing nicely in my flask.
To make things as cosy as possible for Emilio, I set up a bivvy, (he calls it a house), bedchair, and of course my iPad. To my amazement, he had no interest in watching it, all he wanted, was to try and catch fish. Loading the catapult with boilies was one of his favourite activities...until he heard the first screamer.
I quickly grabbed the rod and bent into a hard fighting fish. I was buzzing and he was jumping around with joy. Getting it in was another story though, it got weeded up a couple of times and I thought the inevitable was going to happen, but by luck or by skill, I managed to get it out and slide the net under our first victim of the day.
"Yes!" I shouted with relief. A common around 18lb. Pictures and video footage were taken for memories, before we let her go back. A fresh Poloni pop up was attached, and the same spot was hit first time. Catapult loaded by my "assistant" and another 50 or so boilies were fired. It was time to sit back and have some quality time. He had other ideas though; throwing boilies in the edge, like they were going out of fashion! Good job Bait-Tech had recently stocked my freezer. He also decided that the left hand rod was his and I had the right one...and I had no choice in the matter. Definitely a carp angler in the making!
Unfortunately for him, the right hand rod tore off a couple of times in the afternoon with a few small commons that were just unhooked and slipped back. Then a moment of madness. The left hand alarm bleeped once, then a full blooded one toner. I picked up the rod and within a flash, he was by my side virtually wrestling me for the rod. I handed it to him as much as I dared. He obviously had not quite got the hang of it as not only did I have an angry carp pulling the rod, he was pushing the rod down instead of pulling it. He soon piked it up and was doing a fine job. While all this was going on, my right rod bent round and that tore off. Joe grabbed hold of that one, but the hook came off soon after.
Back to this one and it was coming in close. A few tugs under the tip and then it was thrashing on the surface. Trying to get it in the net was a challenge but when it eventually did Emilio shouted "in the net!" It was funny from a two and a half year old.
It was a pristine common that weighted 20lb. I caught my first twenty when I was 18! He's already ahead of me. He was delighted and so was I.
More pictures and footage were taken, and the day was turning into something special...and we had not finished yet. A drop back on the left rod had another angry carp that turned out to be a mid double mirror for Emilio to finish the session off.
All fish were caught on 14mm Poloni pop-ups over about two kilos of 14mm and 18mm frozen Poloni boilies.
Anyone that has got kids or have been with kids when they catch their first fish, will know what a joy it is to see them beaming from excitement. That's what I got from this session. One to remember.
Until next time