H S NA • SPRIN ISSUE 16
G • APRIL
THE BIG PICTURE TIM PAISLEY FILLS US IN ON THE P.A.G
IT'S BACK! LIFE AT NASH
SIMON CROW MONSTER SQUID BLACK
RIG TALK ALL NEW EXCITING PRODUCTS FROM NASH!
NASH E-ZINE 1 FACEBOOK.COM/KEVINNASHCARPANGLER | WWW.NASHTACKLE.CO.UK | WWW.NASHTV.CO.UK | FACEBOOK.COM/OFFICIALNASHTACKLE
Fish without limits Perform to extremes
SPRING // APRIL 2014
NASH E-ZINECONTENTS ISSUE 16
In the Mix 04 Early Season Floaters
Winter Work & Spring Success 12
Life At Nash
The Big Picture 44 Rig Talk
Itâ€™s A Monster 50
From The Lakebed 54
Bait Talk 22
Mark Watson 60
Monster Squid Black Peg One
Editor: Keith Jones Creative Design: Dan Maslanka Web: Kevin Tucker Photography: Oli Davies, Dan Maslanka & the respectable article names
With thanks to: Nash Consultants & The Nash Tackle HQ Team.
ello again and welcome to our Spring E-Zine! There’s been so much intensive development work going on at Nash HQ over the last year or so and as a result, there are lots of new and exciting items of tackle and bait hitting the tackle shop shelves at the moment. There are a few things that have particularly impressed me over the winter, the new and ever expanding range of terminal tackle for example, will I’m sure help us all to bank extra fish this year – if you haven’t already done so, you really need to check this out.
BUG LIFE I’ve also been experimenting with the new Bug Life ground bait, I’m a big fan of ground bait for carp fishing and this stuff is definitely the best I’ve ever used. Not only does the Bug Life Mix attract carp like a magnet it also pulls all the bugs and creepy crawlies that form the basis of the carp’s natural diet onto your baited spots. This adds a completely new level of attraction and has so many applications for the thinking angler.
SCOPE AND DWARF 3.5 AND 4.5 TC RODS For many years I’ve used a pair of old Nash 9ft Jungle Sticks for my stealthy marker and spod set up, they are lightweight and take up very little room on the barrow so they are always to hand when I need them. This year I’ve swopped over to the new higher test curve Scopes and Dwarfs, the new blanks are in a different league to those old Jungle Sticks so I can now cast further and the information transmitted back to the rod tip is much easier to read.
IN THE MIX
CYBERSHOT STEALTH This is my favourite new toy, it’s a kind of ‘sawn off’ Cybershot, but even so this amazing tool is capable of launching a range of different sized boilies a surprisingly long way. The Cybershot Stealth really is a stealthy tool and fits nicely into my Scope-everything stripped down the bare minimum type approach and I wouldn’t want to go fishing without it.
BUTT LOCKS I’ve been using the Butt Locks since they were first released which must be the best part of ten years ago, maybe longer? I’m on the bank pretty much every week throughout the year and despite many years of abuse, not one of my original set has ever broken or malfunctioned in any way. The new slightly redesigned Butt Locks are now available in two different sizes which means they will snuggly fit and securely grip just about any size or design rod butt or handle out there. I’ve only been using mine for a few months but they are so well made I’m sure they will perform just like the old set, again I’m well impressed.
NEW REELS! Another addition to my set up is the new BP 10 reels, these are probably best described as mini big pits. I find it amazing how we can sell a reel of this quality for under £50, the line lay and clutch are both superb which is one aspect that does let some similar priced reels down and they really are a joy to use. I’ve used Diawa SS 2600 reels since I first got my hands on some prototype Scopes, I’ve had the little SS reels for many years but I’ve noticed in more recent times they’ve become quite trendy. They are good reels but combining the new BP10’s with the Scopes I’ve found that I can cast much further and the set up just feels somehow better balanced. The BP 10’s don’t have the same cult status as the Diawa’s but one of the advantages of being old and being ‘off trend’ is that I can live with that!
GET OUT THERE AND CATCH SOME! Carp have often been credited with a super level of intelligence, it certainly makes a convenient excuse when we fail to catch, but in reality, although we all love them, carp are little more than mobile eating machines. And I don’t believe they have the benefit of a memory or at least not in the way we understand it. Yes they do have finely tuned survival instincts and they do learn by association and as angling pressure builds through the warmer months, carp tend to become a lot harder to catch. But during the spring or even early summer, there seems to be a short window of opportunity when the fish seem to throw caution to the wind and become extremely vulnerable to a decent bit of angling. If you are fishing a busy water, it could well be that by the time you read this, the opportunity may already be missed! But even so, now is the time to get out there, enjoy the sunshine and hopefully catch a few – good luck!
I’ve got lots of targets and specific fish to bank this year, will I achieve any of them? Who knows? But I’m going to have a lot of fun trying. The one thing that I do want to focus on and hopefully master this year is zig fishing. I’ve mucked around with them for years and caught the odd fish but never really got to grips with the watercraft side of fishing for mid water cruisers. But I’m convinced if I can, there will be a lot less blanks this year, and like floaters, close range zigging is a selective tactic that might just help to bank me one or two special fish.
EARLY SEASON FLOATERS C
arp are vulnerable to surface tactics during the spring. Even if they’ve been hammered on floaters the previous year, there’s always a short early season window when the fish seem to throw caution to the wind and go mad for any kind of surface food. But as the weeks pass and angling pressure builds, those same fish can soon become incredibly tricky to tempt with a floating hook bait. Drawing from several life times worth of hard earned knowledge and experience gained on the bank, over a number of years we’ve developed a comprehensive range of tackle and bait purpose designed to combat the problems associated with fishing for pressured difficult to tempt surface carp – use with confidence!
BOLT MACHINES Cautious finicky feeders can be difficult to hook on the top, really big carp can be particularly clumsy surface feeders and tricky to nail with a floating hook bait. In most situations providing you have first got the fish feeding confidently and competitively, fishing with a Bolt Machine will completely eliminate any surface hooking issues. The resistance created by these unique surface controllers will effectively nail any fish that makes the mistake of sucking in a hook bait. Compared to conventional controllers, the hooked to landed ratio of the Bolt Machine is very impressive indeed. A long range version also allows safe areas that are normally unreachable with floaters to be explored with ease, this is another deadly tactic!
MISSED OPPORTUNITIES The Sun’s out, the carp are lazily drifting around and slurping down food from the surface scum. As the day passes, the chance of a bite on the bottom looks more and more unlikely. Time for a change of tactics, but wait a minute, the floater gear is at home in the garage – we’ve all been there I’m sure! At this time of the year it’s always worth carrying a bag of Riser Pellets and a selection of ready to go Critical Hook Baits, Hookable Floaters and Zig Bugs. That way, you can always monopolise on any window of opportunity that might present itself. Often just a few handfuls of the Risers will be enough to get early season fish feeding hard off the top.
FLOATER HOOK CHOICE The short shank, wide gape of the Fang Gaper most definitely makes it a very grabby hook. The long straight dangerously sharp point, straight shank and down turned eye of the Twister is another deadly combination. The curved shank Fang X has a reputation for going in deep and staying in and creating ultra reliable hook holds particularly when fishery rules require barbless patterns to be used. The beak pointed Uni is another popular barbless pattern, the ultra strong and dependable Uni is also the first choice for some very successful big fish specialists.
BREAD BOMB There’s something very special about bread, it seems that no carp can resist! The problem is, bread has a habit of dissolving or completely disintegrating just at the wrong time making it one of the most difficult baits to fish effectively on the hook. The Bread Bomb fits securely on the hook it can then be loaded with the deadly white stuff which significantly increases the effective life of the hook bait.
ZIG BUG FLOATER HOOK BAITS Using proven fly fishing techniques and durable materials such as deer hair and marabou, we’ve also developed a range of reliable artificial surface baits that retain consistent buoyancy at all times, they can be repeatedly cast with confidence even at extreme range.
Forget having to tie, thread, drill or glue a fresh hook bait with fumbling fingers when the action hots up, tied with sticky sharp Fang hooks, once tried there’s no going back – there are Riser Pellet, Dog Biscuit and Bread hook bait options available to cover all situations likely to be encountered. All three have been thoroughly tested and have proven capable of tripping up the wariest of surface feeders. These are ‘must have’ items for anyone serious about their floater fishing.
CRITICAL FLOATERS 10mm pop ups are a popular choice as a durable hook bait to fish amongst floating freebies. The problem is they tend to sit high in the water which makes them a far from reliable hooker. Although at first glance Critical Floaters might look like just another pop up, the buoyancy has been specifically fine tuned so they sit lower in the water just like a soaked biscuit or floating pellet. When fished alongside ordinary pop ups, Critical Floaters converted more takes into banked fish.
RISER PELLETS The biggest edge in surface fishing bar none! The Risers have been designed to drift across the surface of the lake with a percentage of the pellets falling and rising in the water column. Just like a hatch of natural food, this unique action seems to trigger the carp’s natural instinct to investigate and feed.
CATCH MORE. CATCH FASTER. GET INSTANT ACTION!
CRAB AND KRILL BOILIES
BALL MAKER METHOD PELLET
HIGH ATTRACT PELLET
BALL MAKER METHOD MIX
www.nashtackle.co.uk NASH E-ZINE
WINTER WORK EQUALS SPRING SUCCESS JULIAN CUNDIFF
lthough we thankfully haven’t had the terrible floods that have decimated many southern counties I think its fair to say that this winter was very wet and windy and took a lot of getting motivated to fish in at times if I am honest. Getting up everyday at 6am to go to work didn’t exactly make me feel wild about getting up at 5am at the weekend to do a day session !! Most of my winter waters are day only ones so to ensure I am first there, the earlier I get up the better. Thankfully the winter has been my best ever and more importantly the lessons I have learnt this winter can be utilised this spring and summer in pursuit of my bigger target fish. So for this edition of our E-Zine I am going to reveal my seven top edges that I found in winter that I hope will bring both me and you success this spring. 1. Larger Hooks - For years I have tended to use size 8 and 10 hooks in the winter believing that their smaller size and sharpness got me more bites. However at the start of winter on one 14
water, the bulk of the fish were around/ in one weedbed and having bumped a fish off on an 8 I tried a 6 instead. Not only did I not lose anymore I got more takes !! I am convinced that the wider gape was catching more often and virtually all my winter fish have come on size 6 Fangs be it in weed or in clearer areas. The quality of the Fangs and Twisters now is such that even ‘larger’ hooks are pin sharp and other than the odd polish, are good as they come. This spring I will start on 6’s and move to 5’s when the weed kicks off... 2. Longer Hook Lengths...Most of my winter carp have come to the trusty Multi-Rig and between counterweight and loop knot my usual starting point has been 6-8”. However on one of my waters there was a great deal of dead weed and fallen leaves so to ensure my hookbait was sat proud I increased this to 12-16”. Immediately the amount of takes I got increased and be it the smaller doubles or twenty pounders, that Siren kept sounding! The rigidity of a steamed hooklength kicks the hooklength straight out and as soon as
the carp sucks at it, in it goes and then the loop pricks it home. So another tip for spring. 3. Hot Mush - I am a big fan of ‘groundbait’ in the winter and avoid using solid baits to fish over like the plague. My usual tactic once I have found fish / or put myself where I think they are is to use a kilo of crumbed Amber Strawberry baits, a tin of hemp and 2 or 3 tins of liquidised sweetcorn. This is mixed and left to soak overnight. When at the lake I boil a kettle of water and add it to form the consistency I required. Flat calm and shallow and I make it very soup like for that suspended cloud effect. For deeper windy conditions I make it thicker so it does not drift away. The addition of warm water seems to boost this attraction and this spring I will be simply replacing the Amber Strawberry with my Scopex Squid spring - autumn bait of choice and adding a handful of 10mm baits to keep larger fish grubbing longer....
4. Mobility- Having worked hard all day there is always a temptation once I am at the lake to make the best decision I can and then stick with it swim wise. Often the swim choice has been right to start with but as the day has gone on and I have exhausted the potential of the swim in all honesty sometimes it has been better to move than to wait for a second feeding spell which may or may not happen. So I have kept my gear to the minimum and when its not happening in front of me have moved.....and usually to good effect. This is something I am going to try more in the spring even if it means just taking one rod and fishing with the rest of the gear on a barrow...which leads me nicely to.... 5. Fishing Off The Barrow - Unless it’s not feasible due to stiles and terrain virtually all my fishing involves a barrow to push my gear to the appropriate swim. What I have found is that with careful organisation I can keep ALL my gear in two barrow bags and literally keep everything bar my rod setup, nets
and unhooking mat on that barrow. The more that is left on the barrow the easier it is to move swims if you need to move. This winter I have sometimes moved three times in a day and by having it on the barrow it’s so easy. Come the spring/summer even on overnighters the Groundhog won’t be coming out until the last moment. 6. Alternative Hookbaits. I must admit that ‘colours’ seem to come and go ‘trend’ wise and be it yellow, pink or white its get on the bandwagon !! However this winter I really have tried to avoid falling into ‘favourite colours’ and work the colour range as often as I can. Starting with white if I don’t get a bite and think I should have I soon swap to pink, yellow, brown etc. Amazingly a change of colour can make all the difference and I have found that for the rest of the day that’s the only colour I can get a bite on. This spring even when using the light brown Scopex Squid for my main feed I will definitely be ringing the changes come what may -Don’t get stuck in a rut colour wise!
7. Get On Top. With the escalating popularity and effectiveness of Zig fishing, pure surface fishing seems to have been forgotten about although it is such an effective carp catcher. This winter I have had almost 40 carp off the surface and that is simply because I have tried the tactic when conditions have been right. Fishing a combination of Riser Pellets and mixers at dawn, dusk or whenever it’s been calm I have fired them out. Sometimes it can take an hour and sometimes minutes but having refused zigs and bottom baits all day the surface baits have had them taking like crazy. No matter what this spring you will ALWAYS see me with a floater rod sleeved up and ready to go and a tub full of pellets and mixers will ensure that I am never without. Believe me if I can catch them on the surface YOU CAN !! Give them a try and have a great spring and early summer!
MONSTER SQUID BLACK “You need to get on the Monster Squid Black Crowy”
Woldviews stumpy mirror
Last year I joined a lake right out in the sticks of the North Lincolnshire Wolds named Woldview. To long-time carpers the water needs no introduction as it is run by legendary angler Rod Hutchinson, a water he has been associated with for more than thirty years. At ten acres in size it is a stunning water surrounded by lush reed beds and overhanging trees, with gin clear water and lots of weed. Being out in the countryside and fished by an exclusive syndicate of only twenty members, it understandably attracts its fair share of birdlife. Add to that a uniform depth averaging only 4ft, and you can imagine that any angler trying to establish a bait will come into difficulties. It didn’t take long for me to discover the frustrations of diving coots and swans picking up my hookbaits, most of the time happening right on bite time first thing in a morning. It was driving me mad being woken at first light by the sight of a tufted friend popping up right over my baits when I was woken by the sound of a Siren. Of course I’d encountered the problems
with shallow waters and birds before in my career, but usually a switch to a dark brown bait like a Scopex Squid worked a treat. Woldview was a sandpit though and the bottom was different to anywhere else I’d fished in recent times. So I had no other alternative than to ring the main man Gary Bayes and ask him if he had anything up his sleeve that would sort it. “You need to get on the Monster Squid Black Crowy” was his reply. Having never used a completely black coloured bait before I wasn’t overly confident it was for me. However, next trip down I followed his advice and went in on the Black. Up until that point I’d only caught two carp from the lake (one was stalked) but within two days of moving onto it I was impressed to see my tally double. No longer was I getting woken
up by a two-inch drop back from a coot or bird, but instead I was hearing that sound that all carp anglers like, an active Siren triggered by a carp! The Monster Squid Black had well and truly put the diving birds at bay and allowed me to get on with my fishing in the way I wanted to. It was great watching the frustrations of the birds as I baited up with the stick or catty. They knew there was bait about but they just couldn’t find it! This was none more evident than when the swans moved into an area I was fishing, seeing their reaction to The Black was a victory in itself. I stuck with The Black throughout the spring and most of the summer on Woldview, accounting for some wonderful carp along the way. It most definitely did the job I wanted it to, until the weed thickened up and I was able to switch to my preferred Scopex Squid which eventually tracked me down the venue’s most sought-after resident Floppy Tail at 40lb 10oz. It wasn’t just at Woldview where The Black proved its worth either. I also used it at the nearby Mesters syndicate where I had to contend with coots and swans as well as diving terns! The latter were an absolute pain as they flew overhead and then dive bombed a swim, picking up hookbaits in 4ft of water. The Black sorted them out though and it went on to produce some lovely old carp from there too. I’m not going to lie by saying Monster Squid is my number one bait just for the sake of this feature. Having been one of the first field-testers of Scopex Squid back in the early 1990s, it will take something special to top that legendary bait. However, Monster Squid Black is my fall back bait within the Nashbait range. It has a fantastic track record with the big fish and if ever I am confronted with the problems that birds and wildlife can bring, then The Black is where I turn to. If you haven’t yet got some in your armoury, then be sure to get yourself armed as you won’t be disappointed.
The stunning Woldview in the summ Above: A Linear from Wolldview. 18
It was great watching the frustrations of the birds as I baited up with the stick or catty. They knew there was bait about but they just couldnâ€™t find it! NASH E-ZINE
ROUND-UP The mild winter has certainly kept the fish feeding much harder than usual this winter and the Nash Peg One team have been making the most of the brilliant conditions and getting out on the bank as much as possible. The barbel fishing has been badly affected this winter by the level of flooding on many rivers, but good fish have been there to be caught when the conditions have come right. North West team member Dave Pimlott has made brilliant use of the small breaks in the conditions to bag some stunning barbel from his local River Ribble, including fish to over 12lb. Dave has been using the 20mm Ball Maker to feed small balls of Crab & Krill groundbait laced with feed pellets little-and-often to entice the barbel. Pellet hookbaits wrapped in matching paste have been his winning winter combination. Elsewhere on the rivers it wasnâ€™t until the last few weeks of the season that many of the southern rivers became fishable, but when they did the fish certainly went on the feed. The ever-consistent Ted Bryan made the most of the conditions and headed for the River Lea in Hertfordshire in search of chub. Using the new Instant Action Tandoori Spice boilies Ted caught a new PB chub of 7lb 10oz, along with several back-up fish to 6lb 12oz. Tedâ€™s rigs consisted of size 8 Fang X hooks to Hard Core mono hooklinks and 1.5oz inline leads. Ted has also had a great start to his Stillwater fishing for the spring with bream to over 12lb along with some nice tench. After catapulting out a bed of Instant Action Ballmaker Method Mix in Coconut Creme flavour, Ted settled in for a busy night, as his 10mm Tangerine Dream boilie hook baits accounted for 9 big bream in a single night.
Who says rudd do not feed in winter? Not Duncan Charman that’s for sure, as over the winter he has taken numerous specimens to well over the 2lb mark from a Surrey lake. Simple feeder tactics have proven a winner for Duncan, and even Nash Director Alan Blair managed a brace of cracking rudd on a short evening trip with Duncan.
Paul Garner has become hooked on his Scope rods and now uses them almost exclusively for his winter pike fishing. A recent session at Chew Valley Lake near Bristol resulted in just one bite for Paul, but what a cracker it turned out to be. After an epic fight from the boat Paul netted this awesome looking pike weighing 30lb 4oz. Paul says “The Scopes are just such a pleasure to use either from the bank or the boat, they make my old pike rods obsolete”.
Paul has also been making inroads into the roach stocks of a Midlands reservoir. Using maggots flavoured with Instant Action Coconut Creme, Paul has been hot on the trail of the lakes specimens with several two's topped by this cracker of 2lb 7oz. Simple feeder tactics proving the winning combination for Paul.
When you buy a bag of your favourite Nash Bait boilies in many ways you are buying confidence, fish well and the chances are you will catch well. But have you ever stopped and wondered how that bait came into existence?
got it right. We also have test ponds holding carp that can be used to evaluate new baits under development. You can learn a lot from watching the way fish react and it’s an important part of the process. The attractor recipe is another aspect we spend a lot of time perfecting.
Using the highest quality ingredients and staying with the original supplier is vitally important to ensure consistent quality. Nash baits also provide carp with a high quality food source. So when you fish with our frozen boilies, shelf life baits or one of the peripheral products like the Monster Carp Pellets you are putting something back. It’s so important to source our ingredients carefully to guarantee both the quality and also the consistency of the products.
One thing I’m often asked by anglers and customers is how important is an artificial flavour and do you really need it in a bait? That initial attraction created by a flavour is really important and one thing I’ve proven to myself over and over again is that combining natural and synthetic attractors rather than using one or the other is always more effective.
This is vitally important when you are making bait commercially, when we receive a new batch of a particular product we need to know how it absorbs moisture, binds, has the correct nutritional specification etc, as each tiny part of a bait must synergise with the other components. A lot of the ingredients are natural products so there will be seasonal variations from time to time which can lead to slight variations in the finished bait. There are ways to get around this, for example if a new batch of ingredients comes in we might make a small test batch of bait and then if necessary, slightly adjust the ratio of ingredients or some other part of the process to guarantee the quality and consistency of the finished bait. When we design and develop a new bait, a huge amount of field testing is involved. I’ve got a dedicated team of anglers fishing many different types of waters throughout the twelve months of the year. They might be asked to test variations of a bait one against the other until we are confident that we’ve
Our Scopex No1 is an awesome attractor, it’s a totally synthetic product and combining it with other natural or semi natural products will make it even more effective. Scopex and our Pure Liver Extract for example is a very potent combination, it’s a very effective fish catcher. Most flavours work better with a sweetener, you can incorporate a certain amount of sweetness with some base mix ingredients but we also tend to include products like Intense Sweetener or Protaste. Used at the correct levels or ratios, we’ve proven it many times over the years, if you include them in the recipe they catch more fish. We also design and develop specialist products in our bait laboratory, I don’t think many companies have these kind of facilities, being able to develop attractors, feeding stimulants and other products that have been specifically designed to appeal to carp does provide us with an edge. The attractor recipe used in Scopex Squid is a good example of how effective combining ingredients can be and again it’s the ratios that are crucial as well as the overall levels used. 3ml Scopex No1, 5ml Red Liver Oil and 1ml Intense Sweetener is an incredibly effective combination that has
BAIT TALK NASH E-ZINE
been catching huge numbers of fish for many years and it just goes on working. We developed the Monster Squid from the original Scopex Squid by combining elements of the original Monster Pursuit recipe which over the years has caught huge numbers of big carp from some really challenging venues. We further fine-tuned the recipe with other ingredients such as Robin Red and GLM, Banana Oil also boosted the ‘all seasons appeal’ which created a new bait with a more complex nutritional profile that is catching lots of fish. We make bait in extremely large quantities, we have three specialist boilie machines that have the capacity to produce up to three ton of bait each day. The boilie base mixes are preformulated by mixing the dry ingredients at the correct ratios, we pretty much do this as we need them, we may store small amounts for a short
period, but generally speaking we like to have a quick turnover to ensure freshness. Next the dry ingredients and liquids are blended with eggs in the mixer to produce an easy to roll paste. We use around about a 1000 eggs per mix and that produces about 220 kilos of bait per mix depending on the ingredients used and liquid content of the attractor system. The next stage is to cook the baits, this is done in purpose designed boiling machines, cooking times are crucial. After boiling, the frozen baits are allowed to cool for a while, the baits then go into the driers for a day, they are then quickly frozen in large walk in freezers which freeze the baits down very quickly. Shelf life boilies are dried for two days and then packed ready for despatch to the shops. There’s a certain amount of finishing work to be done, we receive plenty of praise as our bags don’t contain bits, these are picked out by hand to ensure the customer receives a bag of quality bait as intended. When the shelf life boilies come out of the driers we spin a little bit more flavour onto them, before packing ready for despatch.
There’s a common misconception that shelf life’s are somehow inferior to their frozen counterparts, yes there are some cheap horrible shelf life’s available but our baits are different. They have a high nutritional content similar to that of the freezer baits and they don’t contain any nasty preservatives. They are just different to the frozen baits not inferior. Having frozen and shelf life versions of the same bait provides a real edge. For example frozen Nash baits are designed to float to the surface after a few days if in the unlikely event the baits don’t get eaten, they don’t sit on the bottom, fester and ruin a previously productive spot. The shelf life’s stay on the bottom a few days longer which is handy if you are pre baiting between sessions, it’s also handy to have extra bait in your car for when the fish really go on the feed. The recently released Instant Action range of baits which are already catching huge numbers of fish and the new Bug Life ground bait are typical examples of what can be achieved by our relentless programme of testing and developing new products. An awful lot of time effort and care goes into making a bag of Nash Bait boilies – use with confidence!
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THE LOST LAKE KEITH JONES
I guess at one time or another we’ve all dreamed of discovering the perfect lake, but does it really exist and how many of us will ever find it? Over many years I’ve spent a huge amount of time searching out and exploring wild jungly waters and investigating stories of uncaught monster carp. Often these stories have proven to be little more than exaggerated rumours with little or no substance, with hindsight I’ve probably spent time fishing for a number of mythical monsters that didn’t even exist! But on the plus side, my obsession for the unknown and the uncaught has led me to some very special places. And I’ve been lucky enough to land a few memorable fish along the way too. In the less densely populated areas of southern England there are still plenty of untapped waters yet to be discovered and explored. One such place that springs to mind I first visited around twelve years ago, the lake in question is an old flooded stone quarry of around seven acres in size with depths ranging from just a few feet down to an unfathomable 250 ft in places. In the distant past the venue has been used for some kind of secret experiments by the military and as a result of that, the surrounding woodland is still enclosed by a substantial and virtually un-scalable 30ft high security fence. And when I first visited the lake there were also plenty of old and barely legible danger signs warning of the consequences of any form of attempted entry. The lake doesn’t appear on any maps which is strange so initially it took a lot of time and research to discover the exact location. To be honest I 26
was on the point of giving up then unexpectedly on a pleasant warm spring evening I finally found it! I vividly remember cruising along a deserted country lane in my old Land Rover, I dipped down into a misty hollow and suddenly hit a pocket of surprisingly cold damp air. I was sure I could smell ‘old water’ more to the point I thought I could smell carp! I pulled off the road, drove down a bumpy pot holed track into some old woodland and there it was, a huge prison like fence and main gate. I’d long had an idea in my head of how I thought the approach to the lake would look and rather spookily it was just how I’d imagined. I walked the perimeter fence from start to finish looking for a way in, eventually I managed to squeeze myself under a small pedestrian gate fifty yards or so from the main entrance. After forcing my way through an almost impenetrable jungly forest of brambles I walked out onto a cracked and subsiding concreted roadway and passed several semi derelict single story red brick buildings. Inside there were rusty bits of machinery and old partly dismantled military vehicles. In one of the buildings, a faded wall calendar displayed the date, 25 August 1968! There were cups, knives, forks and plates on a table and some dusty old coats hanging on the back of a door. Whoever worked or lived here, they seemed to have left in a hurry – even more spooky! Following a path back into the jungle, finally I could see water, after one final jacket ripping lunge through
the undergrowth I suddenly found myself standing on the edge of a huge circular cliff face literally inches from a sheer 100ft drop down to the water. I distinctly remember a heron which looked like some kind of prehistoric creature, as it circled above me. But the one image that is still as vivid now as it was on that first day is the dark shadowy shapes drifting just below the surface, these were big carp and one or two were undoubtedly fish of immense proportions! Eventually I followed a steep crumbly path down to the waters edge and I was already starting to formulate a plan, in fact my head was buzzing! How do you catch carp in 250ft of water? What depth do they feed at? What do they feed on? Floaters or zigs seemed like the obvious starting point, there was also what looked like an access road around the perimeter that spiralled down and disappeared into the murky depths. This seemed like an ideal location to introduce some bait. Despite a constant and slightly uncomfortable feeling of being watched I couldn’t wait to return early summer which was only a few weeks away. The lake would be even more wild and jungly by then so I could build myself a secret base camp using an old oval brolley and camo netting and spend the summer hunting down and catching those monsters.
But you know what they say about the best laid plans! Unfortunately shortly after my first visit, a bunch of ‘new age’ travellers broke into the site and one of them bashed his head and drowned after jumping from one of the lower cliff ledges. Security was tightened and the site was also regularly visited and patrolled by military police with ferocious looking guard dogs. It seemed at the time that the chance was gone and all I could do was dream of one day returning and fishing the lost lake, but that all happened a few years ago and the lake and surrounding woods are now in private ownership. The perimeter fences have been badly damaged by the winter storms we’ve had to endure in recent times and literally just one freak gust of wind would be enough to blow that old pedestrian gate wide open! The new landowner apparently has no interest in the site, he’s a bit of a recluse and lives in a huge semi tumbled down country mansion on a very private estate that borders the lake and woods to the south. This estate also holds a lake in need of exploration, but that’s maybe a story for another time.
the venue has been used for some kind of secret experiments by the military and as a result of that, the surrounding woodland is still enclosed by a substantial and virtually un-scalable 30ft high security fence
Despite my best efforts, my requests to approach the owner and gain permission to fish have been fruitless which is just so frustrating. But then again no one has actually said I can’t! The sun is out today and I’ve once again been torturing myself with thoughts of those monster carp cruising on the surface. It wouldn’t do any harm to have a quick peak would it?
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AVA I L A B L E F R O M
life at NASH NASH E-ZINE
ad few months, the weather has been bliss, business is booming and life is all round as hectic as ever – but I’m still loving it!!
I’ve been working hard, playing hard, fishing hard, going hard – so much so that I haven’t a huge amount of time to write you a nice piece for you guys and instead will opt for the cop out solution of lots of pictures that sum up what I have been up to of late. In between developing LOTS of exciting New tackle and bait (including popping over to the Far East a couple of times), marketing the awesome new gear we have dropped (if you 30
haven’t seen or got your hands on the following then get to know – (Bug Life, Spot On Liquid, Armourlink, Chod Twisters, 6’ Scope Sawn off Rods and of course Tungsten Cling On Liquid), planning future marketing concepts (including 2015 DVD and of course some Epic Urban Banx material) and generally trying to make sure everything is tickety boo - I have caught some nice fish, met some great people along the way and generally had a lovely time all-round. • I have either been at a Public Show or Shop day every weekend since the start of the year. Highlights so far have been Fosters Of Birmingham and Fatty’s Angling – great shops, great staff, great customers – I’m sure I enjoy doing it
as much as the people who come along to check it out. Keep an eye out near a tackle shop near you as over the coming weeks I will be hitting up the following locations – Shelton’s of Peterborough, Gone Fishing Canvey Island, Total Angling Shrewsbury, Bristol Angling Centre, Fat Fish in Kent to name but a few . . . . . . No rest for the wicked hey!! • • I have managed to get out and do some predator fishing whilst the water temperature was still low – had some lovely snappers from all manner of spots, lure fishing, sea dead’s, live baits – didn’t get the mid 20 I was after but there is always next year. As always – remove that resistance from the setup and its bites a plenty. • • End of the river Season is always a sad time as I have so
long to wait to get back on it however I didn’t waste the last few days and although most of the country was seriously flooded I did spend a lovely afternoon on the upper Lea Chub and Barbel fishing with Oli as well as two sneaky overnighters on the River Chelmer where in less than 10 hours in total I had half a dozen fish of which three were over 20lbs – RESULT • • With the river Season done it was time to flit about on the Grand Union canal. I have to say that the areas I used to fish are really not that productive anymore – the carp’s home’s have been removed, areas dredged and possibly too many fish eaten or moved elsewhere – whatever the cause, the ‘good old spots’ are just not that good anymore. With allot of effort (including long drives and walks to pre-bait) I did catch a few fish however for next year I will be looking elsewhere and thank the Tring, Leighton Buzzard, Bletchley areas for good memories – onto pastures new as they say. • • The multi-species fishing never stops (keeps me sane and content) and the highlight over the last couple of months would be this beautiful brace of Rudd that both topped the scales at 1lb 15oz a piece. Short helicopter rigs with maggot feeders and a good squirt of Nectar Bug Juice. My time is
so limited and they are another species receptive to a bit of short session dangling. • • As well as lots of shows and open days in shops in the UK, I’ve also been across the channel a few times to see the guys over there. One of this year’s challenges was to start to learn to speak Dutch. I’ll be honest; I’m really struggling with it however the chap in the photo (opposite page) is a big inspiration. He is Dutch, and has learnt to speak pretty bloody good English by simply watching ‘Carp TV’ . . . . So . . . . . . I’m in the process of collating a load of Dutch fishing films to see if this will make my life any easier. • • First Floater Caught carp of the year – I’ve had probably 20 odd fish off the top now but the first one of the year is always special. Bread bomb with a bit of crust jammed inside, he certainly didn’t expect a size 6 Uni when we cautiously slurped that mouthful down. • • The Groundhog Brolly . . . . . .I don’t really get up for telling
you it’s the best brolly on the market because, because, because!! BUT I’ve got to say something because it literally is my second home - if you want a brolly with NO thrills and spills, that looks the part, lightweight and very stable – Check it out - A proper Brolly for the proper angler. • • Urban Banx is coming along nicely . . . . . .You will have probably already seen ‘Euro Banx’ that has now had an incredible number of hits – over 75,000. We have some MEGA plans for this year allot of which I cannot release into the public domain yet and sum which are so EPIC if we do pull them off I will be amazed but to get you thinking . . . . . . . . .Banksy, Snoop Dog, The Pope and Kellogg’s Corn Flakes are all part of conversation of late. Watch this space . . . . . . • • Back on the Pit, this is Kev and my escape from the world, it’s time to reflect, time to develop, time to evaluate and along the way, get amongst some fish that mean something when they slip over a net cord. We have done five sessions so far in 2014 for 8 bites – four birds, two eels and two carp. Not amazing but its progress!! Sometimes you need somewhere to escape from reality and unwind – for us it’s in amongst the Norfolk reeds in ‘no man’s land’ – I’ll keep you up to date with this as I think we are starting to crack this bit of water and with the chance of fish mid-40 and beyond, things are looking good for the fourth coming months. • • Golf Club Carping – can’t hit a ball to save my life but there’s more to golf courses than upping your handicap.
Caught this absolute belter from somewhere in Bedfordshire – simple free lined maggots and thus selecting the one I really wanted. There were fish over 20lb amongst the group but sometimes size isn’t everything. • • Was lucky enough to have the opportunity to jump up on the main stage at the Carpin On Show with the request being – talk about Urban Banx! So that’s what I did – it was fast paced, unpractised, unpredictable and slightly unorganised however it seemed to go own well and I certainly enjoyed doing it. If you didn’t get to the show in person and think you might be interested in hearing my super charged waffle then check out the video –
• I had this absolute BELTER only last week – again, size isn’t everything but can you imagine this fish at 20lbs, or 30lbs or 40lbs WOW. Also smashed our Instagram ‘like’ count into oblivion with this fish – not always about 50lbers to keep the crowd happy! I sadly just don’t have the time for the likes of Facebook or Twitter but I am ‘experimenting’ with this Instagram lark . . . . . If you want to keep tabs on what I am up to more regularly then follow us on Instagram at @officialnashtackle • • Spent the weekend just gone in Devon trying to catch mullet of EPIC proportions!! Epic fail and I blanked . . . . . . This is what I love about fishing so much, so many places to explore, so many species to target, so much to learn AND frankly speaking – I’ll NEVER learn it all. The mullet beat me badly and it has made me want to go back even more, I’ve evaluated, formulated a new plan and can’t wait to get back down there. To drown my sorrows I found a stunning mountain steam and went ‘way back when’ and caught myself some proper wild brownies to put a smile back on my face. • Enjoy your fishing guys, get out of the box, go somewhere different, meet new people, set new challenges, be happy, Hopefully see you about. 34
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o, it’s E-zine time again! The brief for the this little piece was ‘Life at Nash’ but rather than bore you with my day to day office routine I’ll just sum up the office talk in a few brief sentences before I get onto the real important stuff, carp! Basically since Christmas we have been rushed off our feet here at HQ and this is because we have some seriously exciting, and BIG product launches coming your way! I can’t give you too much detail but if you snoop around enough and keep your ear to the ground I’m sure you will be able to find out a thing or two in due course! If you haven’t managed to get along to one of the shop open days yet to see Mr Blair and pals in action then you really should! It’s a great day, lots of laughs, some sneak peeks at new product and of course the guys at Nash unloading some of their carpy knowledge. It really is worth a look! Like I said I can’t give you too much information on what product is dropping but get clearing some room in that tackle box that’s for sure! Some (actually quite a lot!!) really hot Terminal Tackle bits dropping soon along with some clothing, some luggage items, and, if you’ve been really sharp, you may have spotted Mr Blair testing a new addition to the Scope range! Very cool stuff indeed!
So, enough shop talk. Down to business. Fishing! As I write this my winter ticket on the syndicate has just about expired. I may get one more night in if I’m sharp but I’ve been lucky enough to have a few nice ones throughout the winter and close to home too so I can’t complain! Most of my fishing is mid-week overnighters and so I made a real concerted effort to keep at it throughout the winter and after picking my spots along some snag lines I kept trickling the bait in when I wasn’t fishing. It was cold, bleak, dark and miserable out there but I just kept at it and the bites began to come. Some carp, some pesky tench and plenty of bloody bream, with a couple of good fish lost too. The winning method for me was fishing hinged stiff rigs in holes in the far snaggy margins with a handful of Amber strawberry baits spread around the area of each rod, creating a trail of treats for the fish to seek out as they made their way along the snag line. It was all coming together very nicely, and I was very confident. Eventually the biggun came out from one of my spots one weekend but unfortunately not to my rods!! I was unable to fish that weekend and just knew that the biggun would 36
be out any day, I was desperate to get down there on the Monday but the killer news came that morning. To say I was gutted is an understatement as I knew it was due any day and was itching to get down there, but fair play to the bloke, he saw fish in the swim and got on them, good angling! So all in all it was an ‘up’s and downs’ winter campaign but I have walked away with some nice fish for the album and with plenty of unfinished business! I’ll be back in October to settle some scores that’s for sure! One fantastic session I have had recently came about quite unexpectedly when one day at work Alan mentioned joining
LAURENCE SMART project manager
him on a little river mission that night. It was the last full nights fishing of the season so it would have been rude to not fish! As soon as we finished work I grabbed the scope gear and a bedchair, stuffed it all in the van and we were off. First port of call involved some serious baiting up at a lake and after sticking out 6/7kg of boilies quicktime I was ready for some fishing and very grateful to have a Cybershot, it made life a lot easier on the arm! We got to the first river spot at around 11pm and flicked the rods out, planning to move on up to another area after an hour or so to try and locate the fish as they can be very nomadic on this stretch and youâ€™re either on them or youâ€™re not.
About half an hour after casting out, I began to hear fish boshing further up and they got closer, and closer, until inevitably my right hand rod tore off as they arrived on the scene. A spirited fight resulted in a lovely 20lb common. The rod went back out as fish were clearly still in the area but it didn’t take long before the group of fish moved further down the river. I made the call to pack up and chase after them while Alan waited it out on the spot for a bit longer. I found the fish about 150yards further up and they were having it!! Fish were showing every 30seconds and I was frantically getting the rods ready! I flicked the first one out to about 30 yards on what seemed like a busy area. I sank the line, got the rod on the rests and before I could even clip the indicator up the line whipped tight and I was in! The bait must have only been on the deck for a minute, tops! I got the fish in the net and the whole time I was playing it, carp were still topping all over the place. I secured the net in the margins and flicked my second rod onto the same spot, this time I sank the line and thought I would chance my luck. I just held the rod and line in my hand, like I was touch ledgering, and again, after about a minute on the bottom the rod was away! I couldn’t believe it! Prolific sport or what! This fish was a brute and it gave me the right run around, stripping line in long epic runs! I was having a great time! Eventually I slipped this one over the net cord too and was over the moon to see it was a mirror, quite rare for that stretch. As I re-tied some rigs the shows became less and less and it was clear that the fish were moving away, further back down the river towards Alan in the original spot. As this had all happened so quickly I decided to stay put, sort the fish out and get myself sorted for the night and wait for their return. I managed to do everything that night by moonlight, there was a fantastic full moon and I didn’t need the headtorch once, not even for tying rigs!! By this time it was the
early hours of the morning and I got my head down for some sleep. I awoke to an excited Alan who was keen to see how I had got on. I had told him what had happened and he went on to tell me that he had caught 2 and lost 1. Presumably the group of fish had moved back towards Alan who had some hectic sport also, before they moved off further down the river. We waited it out at first light to see if they would return, conscious of the fact that we had to be back in the office soon! Just as we were packing up, the shows began coming again from the right and it was clear the fish were moving into the area again but unfortunately we had to be off. We had a great session with 5 fish between us, 4 20’s to 23.5lb and a 19, pretty good average for the river eh! It was great fun and some hectic sport. It was fascinating to watch such a big group of fish moving so nomadically and really working the river, definitely a session I won’t forget! Roll on June 16th!! Anyway, spring is here and its time to crack on! New tickets and new adventures! I’ve found myself a lovely little club ticket with some ancient beautiful scaly ones to chase after which will do me quite nicely, no monsters but plenty of stunners for the album which should keep me busy! Some of the fish were even caught by the boss man Kev back in the day, so I’m going to go and pester him for some tips right now I think! I hope you also find yourself a lovely piece of water to spend those spring and summer evenings whiling away the hours, and of course, plenty of great carp to chase too! Whatever your targets are this spring I hope you have a successful one!
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ell I suppose as this is the First E-Zine I have contributed to this year I will start off by saying Happy New Year! I have had a bit of a slow start this year in terms of actually being able to get the rods out with work being busy and also attending the majority of the shows in the UK and a couple overseas in France and Holland.
will be at Linear on the 10th and 11th of May for a Fishery Road Show with Alan Blair and Matt Downing. And then at the end of May I am back up to Oxfordshire for a spot of coaching at the Junior Carp Camp at Horseshoe Lake. But the most exciting one will be in the autumn when I will travel to Belgium to fish on the canals with Gio from Monkey Climber for a few nights.
The last couple of years I have been on a small syndicate water which is only about 10 miles from Nash HQ. This year after speaking to Kev, I have decided to leave it alone and maybe come back to it in a few years. My plan for this year is to target a water in Chelmsford, Essex which holds an absolute brute of a common which last came out at just over 47lb back in September. The first time I saw the picture of this fish I knew I just had to go and catch it and that’s what I am going to go and have a good crack at this year. I know it is going to be a challenge due to the amount of anglers that are on the water but getting down to the lake two nights a week and giving them the right bait, I reckon I’m in with a pretty good chance.
I’ve been working as a Design/ Development engineer here at Nash for nearly two years now and being heavily involved in the relentless ongoing development program feels like a real privilege. There are two soon to be released products in particular that I believe will be taking the market by storm. These being the new Cling-On range featuring some great little cutting edge products such as Tungsten Clingers and the new ground breaking Tungsten Liquid. The other being the awesome 6ft Scope ‘Sawn off’ rod, if you are going to be stalking carp in the margins this summer this is the tool to use! Whatever you are up to this spring and summer, good luck and maybe I’ll catch you on the bank some time.
I have also got a few other trips planned which I am really looking forward to. The first is in May when I
pring is most definitely in the air, and we are approaching my favourite couple of months of the year. It’s a time when the carp become much more visible after their winter disappearing act, creeping into the edge and bobbing up on the surface in the spring sunshine. I love the angling opportunities that arise, leaving behind the rather impersonal sitting behind rods approach and searching out and making chances. All you have to do is get off your bum, don a pair of polarised glasses, strip the kit down to bare essentials and get walking! I’ve got a new tool for this year’s margin assault in the shape of the 6ft Scope Sawn Off. It’s perfect for fishing in the very tightest of poke holes, where longer rods are clumsy and unsuitable. This will allow me to really target areas that other anglers ignore, something that has been a massive edge for me in the past. I’ll let you know how I get on! The year started really well for me, banking a mid 30 common in January. That set the bar high and since then action has been a little lean for me. One highlight however was a trip to the Church Pool, my first for nearly two years, with my friend and long time fishing buddy John. He has two young children and his fishing time has been severely limited over the last few years as result. Very generously, the boss allowed us to fish for a couple of nights and I was really hoping that my good
friend would bag a couple. Luckily, the pressure was off just a few hours into the session when he hooked and landed one of the Church Pool giants, a fish known as Penny Scale at a new PB weight of 47lb 8oz. It was a brutal battle, and I know both of us went weak at the knees when we saw the sheer size of the carp, especially as it was hooked on a tiny size 10 Twister. We needn’t have worried, as the hook hold was excellent, and the same hook actually accounted for another 31lb mirror later in the session. In spite of the relatively mild winter it was clear that the fish had only just woken up, being covered in leeches and lice. Perhaps the reduced light levels have as much of an influence as water temperature alone when it comes to the fish shutting up shop for the winter? We didn’t go overboard with the bait, fishing for a bite at a time and ended up bagging two each. John went away a very happy angler, and I’ll never forget his face as he cradled that giant mirror. Truly it is those moments shared with friends that make our pastime so special and I was pleased to be able to do him justice with the camera.
Workwise, we have already begun preparations for the Nash 2015 promo DVD. The 2014 DVD was incredibly well received, something that I am very proud of. I genuinely believe that a DVD showcasing the company and the products doesn’t have to be like watching the QVC channel, and that ethos meant that the widest possible audience found something of interest to them. We have set the bar high – lets hope that we can exceed expectations for the next one! We are also entering the next chapter of the Urban Banx series, which again proved to be very popular with anglers of all ages and abilities. Following the incredible success of Euro Banx there are big plans for this year, with UB spreading its wings and visiting some fantastic urban venues. Keep your eyes peeled for Alan’s adventures on the Nash TV Youtube channel. Finally, by the time you read this or very shortly after the new Nash website will be live. Myself, Tom and the whole team have been working hard to make it the best out there, jampacked full of fantastic content, visuals and photography. Make sure you check it out, and have a great spring!!
OLI DAVIES photographer & videographer
he more you look into the situation regarding the predation of our wildlife and its long-term effects, the more complex the situation becomes. The production, publication and distribution of The Big Picture represented a monumental voluntary effort by those of us involved in the Predation Action Group movement, currently represented by yours truly as chairman, Mike Heylin as secretary, Chris Burt, Rob Hughes, Tony Gibson, John Slader, Mark Holmes and Philippa Dean. The Big Picture has had some effect on the thinking in high places.
its misery). Cormorants and otters are protected by law.
fully aired, which will swallow up much of our accumulated funding.
There is another grey area. According to The Otter Survey, published by the EA in 2010, there have been no otter releases, other than rehabilitated injured or orphaned otters, this century. Put bluntly, there is a degree of scepticism about that stance! There is a strong suspicion, based on apparently reliable hearsay, that that is not the case. In some areas otters are both too numerous and, in many cases, too
There is one more area of serious concern to carp fishing which needs addressing sooner, rather than later. At one time we had the valued opinion of a fish farmer within the PAG movement, but he backed off because he felt he was being persecuted because of his involvement. The ‘persecution’ was by way of an objection to the stocking of carp on the grounds that they are a non native species!
‘tame’ not to have been released more recently than 1999. The grey area here is that no one can say for certain whether it is illegal to keep, rear and release otters without a licence!
Carp are actually referred to as ‘non native’ in the Otter Survey, 2010. Further research reveals that carp are listed in various official places as a ‘non native with invasive potential with climate change effects increasing average annual temperatures and their ability to breed successfully’. We believe that the Angling Trust has been fighting a rearguard action to keep this issue out of any headline campaigns, and has succeeded to date, but it will be an ongoing fight. What is surprising is that the trade, which is heavily dependent on carp fishing, is so sanguine about the situation.
The Angling Trust has taken some of its findings on board and has publicised its change of policy in acknowledging the damage predators, including otters, are doing to rivers, lakes, and the ecology as a whole, and the need to do something about it. In The Big Picture we included the results of a survey by Tackle and Guns, via the Angling Trade Association, which highlights the current value of carp fishing to the trade. The PAG gets some support from the trade, but it is going to need more if it is to take its battle against predation to a realistic level, and to some of us at least ‘realistic’ means the right to exercise a degree of control, where essential, against predators manifestly causing damage to livelihoods. Currently it is a grey area as to whether that right exists or not. Put simply, you can be prosecuted for the unlicensed killing of a protected predator under almost any circumstances (the only defence being to put an injured creature out of
What this is leading to is that the next step forward for the PAG is to take Counsel’s Opinion on both the rearing and controlling aspects. Counsel’s Opinion can cost up to £10,000, which just about represents the current bank balance of the PAG, accumulated through money raised at carp meetings. We are hoping to hold a Predation Seminar in November to have all aspects of predation and protection
A strong trade argument around jobs, trade, and taxes paid as a result of carp fishing sales and employment (as highlighted in The Big Picture) might just change the official view, especially if the trade has the foresight to recruit support from the treasury. Natural England uses one paper on the damage carp might inflict on fisheries to decide they are bad wherever they
Above: Members of the P.A.G at a recent angling trust meeting.
appear, especially in SSSI sites, even though those sites have held carp since before their declaration as SSSIs! EA are not acting against carp, because it realises that a huge number of licence sales, and therefore fisheries revenue, depends on carp fishing. They are playing the quiet game, but not defending carp to NE. Natural England is denying numbers of fisheries in sensitive sites the right to even replace carp lost to predation/disease and that has been the foundation of the work AT has been doing in this area. I am led to believe that ATA (Angling Trade Association) is pretty toothless on this aspect as no one from the carp trade appears to attend board meetings of ATA, so there is no drive for change from that direction. Anglers won't win it simply on the basis of wanting to fish for carp, a philosophy the PAG adopted early in its research into, and campaign against, some areas of predation. The non native aspect is particularly worrying because it is selective. History indicates that carp have been with us since the 15th century. The experts tell us that the species of cormorant (there are two species present, a non native one and a native one) which is most numerous and is causing so much 46
damage to the ecology (and, arguably, driving otters to predation extremes), has been with us for a little more than 20 years. The cormorants are protected by law; carp are being persecuted by NE. The income from fisheries is another area we attempted to cover in The Big Picture, although we struggled to come up with a realistic overall figure because it runs into telephone number dimensions! I have a vague recollection from my bygone days of studying that in law there is something called ‘a contract in restraint of trade’. I suspect that some of the stances being adopted by those who enforce the natural laws in this country need examining closely, another area for Counsel to advise on as Judicial Review of an authority’s decision/action is an option if they are acting Ultra Vires (beyond their powers), or incorrectly applying the law. Carp fishing needs support from the trade on two counts. The PAG needs funding to take Counsel’s Opinion on the points highlighted, and organise the projected Seminar in November, and carp fishing needs strong, politically aware, representation on the ATA board. Chris Burt, whose actions on behalf of the now defunct Specialist Anglers’ Alliance were invaluable to anglers
and the trade alike, will tell you that, with notable exceptions, the financial support from the trade for any sort of political representation is sad in the extreme. We suspect that this winter has heightened carp anglers’ awareness that the threat from predation is, nationwide, a realistic and highly damaging one, and that the need for the representation that is currently being offered by the PAG is a pressing one. The point of this piece is to increase awareness of all the threats we face, and to make a plea to the big hitters in the trade to send us a cheque, however large or small, in support of our efforts to stem, and even turn, the rising predation tide. The unselfish team which has worked hard to increase awareness of predation named at the beginning of this piece, has enjoyed a degree of success, and can be trusted and relied upon. For five years all the work of the PAG has been voluntary, and will continue to be so, but we need the increased financial support of those who stand to benefit from a healthy carp and specialist scene to take our efforts to a higher level.
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Advanced camouflage technology and an ultra supple silky weed like feel combine to make Armourlink the ultimate no spook hook link. We think Armourlink is the best and fastest sinking hook link yet, this material moulds itself to any lakebed contours and just seems to vanish. Abrasion resistance and knot strength is also second to none!
For most anglers, rig putty is a tackle box essential, but some of the products we’ve tested have been a real disappointment and have fallen well below the levels of performance expected. Some materials go rock hard and are difficult to manipulate in cold temperatures and then refuse to adhere to just about any surface when warm. Some products are just not sticky enough and are prone to dropping off when in use. When we received the first samples of Cling-On putty we immediately knew we were in possession of something special. Cling-On comes in three well researched low viz colour options, it’s user friendly, sticks like glue and stays put regardless of the conditions, we honestly believe you won’t find a better product anywhere.
CLING-ON LEADER - NOW AVAILABLE IN THREE COLOUR OPTIONS Cling-On Leader provides many advantages over lead core, it sinks very effectively but unlike lead core and other stiffer leader materials, Cling-On moulds itself to any lakebed contours and just melts away. Cling-On is now available in Silt, Weed and Gravel options, this allows the thinking angler to accurately colour match the material to a wide range of lakebed colours and shades. Cling-On is a proven ‘low spook’ material, many anglers have commented that although Cling-On is just about visible against some backgrounds, somehow it just looks as if it belongs there. Cling-On is also finding favour with many specimen anglers, for example several elusive monster size pike have been banked in recent months by anglers who have switched from lead core. Remember, what a carp can feel when rummaging around on a baited spot can be equally as important as what it can see or detect by other means. Ultra strong Cling- On provides an edge and has already proven itself on some of the toughest waters in the country.
NEW COMBILINK As far as coated hooklinks are concerned, Combilink is as good as it gets! Combilink is incredibly strong and abrasion resistant in relation to its diameter, it’s supple and sinks very effectively and hugs lakebed contours, our tests have proven that even the most spooky rig shy carp find it almost impossible to detect. The user friendly simple to remove coating can be stripped off with a thumb nail in seconds and allows for a wide range of combi type presentations to be quickly and easily constructed. Without exception, Combilink has been highly rated by everyone involved in the development program.
CLING-ON TUBING The new high density Cling-On rig tubing is tough, ultra supple and sinks like a brick. Some similar looking stiff wiry products that are available in the tackle shops may well have put many anglers off using Tungsten tubing, but Cling-On tubing is different and instantly moulds itself to any lakebed contours and undulations and just melts away.
SPOT ON Spot On has been specifically designed for marking main line. When spot fishing, or clipping up, accuracy is vitally important and the last thing you need is for that all important marker to move on the line or be lost which often happens with materials such as pole elastic or Tipex fluid. Spot On is available in four high viz colours, simply brush it onto a dry line and it sets in seconds and most importantly it stays put indefinitely. Spot On has a soft rubbery flexible texture allowing it to be easily removed with your thumb nail when needed. Another top product, that’s really user friendly and ultra reliable.
CLINGERS Clingers are micro engineered reusable Diffusion Camo rig stops, once you start using them you’ll wonder how you ever managed without them! Bait stops, float stops, naked chod, use them for setting up controllers, anchor points for rig putty, the list is endless. Clingers come in a range of sizes and there’s also a multifunctional tungsten loaded variation which can be used to balance or over weight hook baits, sink main line and add weight wherever it’s needed.
CHODLINK Some anglers consider the chod to be a ‘chuck it and catch’ tactic, but as is often the case, attention to detail can turn a mediocre method into an exceptional one. An aggressively curved chod hook link for example is a much more effective hooker than a straight or slightly angled one. Some chod materials that we’ve tested just don’t have enough memory to effectively hold a decent curve, others have poor abrasion resistance and knot strength. Diffusion Camo Chodlink has been specifically designed to overcome all of these issues, there are 0.45mm 20lb b/s and 0.50mm 25lb b/s variations available, both materials have an excellent memory and benefit from exceptional abrasion resistance and knot strength.
NEW CHOD HOOK If you take a close look at our new super grabby chod hook it’s easy to see why it’s proven so popular with everyone involved in the development program. Long straight dangerously sharp point, aggressive Twister like bend, straight medium length shank and twenty degree out turned eye combine to create an impressive specification. As you’d expect, this is a dependably strong hook, used with the new Chodlink it’s an unbeatable combination!
CLING-ON TUNGSTEN LIQUID This stuff is special. Cling-On Tungsten Liquid can be applied by brush (supplied and mounted in the screw top pot) to a wide range of rig components and associated materials. This unique liquid adds weight and air cures or sets in around 30 to 90 seconds depending on weather conditions. Further applications can then be applied and built up in layers. Cling-On Tungsten Liquid can be used to add weight to hook links, leaders and mainline, it can also be applied to specific parts of a rig or even to the hook itself to fine tune the mechanics or turning effect improving hook holds and other hooking issues. An absolute tackle box essential.
RIGTALK The steady stream of new cutting edge rig components that have been hitting the tackle shop shelves just recently have been causing a real buzz on the carp fishing grapevine! But watch this space there’s lots more to come!
R E T S N O M its a
My introduction to the Monster Squid came before I’d joined the Nash team properly, it was my first visit to the Church Pool and of course only Nash boilies can be used. So I opted for the black Monster Squid and that night I caught a 30lb 4oz mirror. It was enough proof that not only did the bait work but it worked quickly, which is so important to the fishing I do as basically with all of the travelling my fishing ends up being one long procession of one-off sessions on different waters so I don’t have time for baiting programs or long campaigns. I must admit that I’m not particularly a fan of black baits and the red seemed far more appealing – to me at least, so that was the one I went with for the long term and although it normally takes a little time to build up confidence in a bait, the Monster Squid soon became a firm favorite and undoubtedly one of the best baits I’ve ever used. I guess that if anyone wants a bait testing to the max then I’m the ideal person to do it as my fishing is so varied. But I soon found out that wherever I took the Monster Squid, I quickly started catching. First real test was a tough German lake but I had the first fish in the net within 20 minutes and I went on to bank three nice 50’s and several 40’s. Next was Rainbow and again two 50’s was proof that the bait seemed to pick out the lumps better than most other baits I’ve used. However the icing on the cake was my trip to Cassien that winter in 2012, where after 26 years of fishing my most favourite of lakes I’d often struggled to get amongst the real big fish. Things finally came good and in
a couple of days – if it hadn’t gone before then. Add to all that, fish from a few different UK waters and it’s easy to see that the Monster Squid is a bait for all waters on all occasions and I can honestly say that it hasn’t failed wherever I’ve taken it.
the space of just over a week I was fortunate enough to land six fish over 50lb including my biggest common and biggest mirror from the lake – the Monster Squid had really come up trumps! The vast majority of those fish had all come on straight forward bottom baits straight out of the bag and that’s the way I like to do most of my fishing. The way I always see it is that if the bait you are putting out as freebies is good enough then why use anything else on the rig? On all of those sessions mentioned the baiting situations varied quite a bit, on the German lake I went through a lot of bait that week as the fish were moving in groups and they were mopping it up when they came across it. Cassien was totally different though as I was just using ten or twelve freebies around the hook bait and leaving it out there for
Then came a new addition to the range in the shape of the Purple Squid. I did wonder what a simple change of colour would make to the bait, but there was more to it than that and the subtle changes and the dropping of the Robin Red in the purple baits gave the bait a different edge. In particular I found the Purple Squid to be a very effective cold water bait. My first try out just happened to be in February and as before I’d soon landed a couple of nice mirrors. They came from a local water but it was a trip to a southern French lake, Iktus which really impressed me as the weather really took a turn for the worse and for the first time in over twenty years they had thick snow in the area. Everyone thought it would kill the fishing stone dead but the action continued and I finished with 15 carp up to 47lb 4oz. So there’s no doubt that within the Monster Squid range there really is a bait for all times of the year. If I’m not using straight bottom baits then it will invariably be snowmans and the Monster Squid pop ups work perfectly in conjunction with the bottom baits, they are also what I use mainly for surface fishing in the summer months. So the Monster Squid has worked for me in all its forms and I have 100% confidence in it wherever I have to take it – I just know the carp will eat it!
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© KEVIN NASH GROUP PLC. 2014 30 YEARS OF INNOVATION
Anglers have been catching carp as they cruise in the mid to upper layers on brightly coloured pop ups and pieces of rig foam for many years, thereâ€™s nothing new in that. A relatively small number of anglers who have really got their zig tactics sorted often catch carp in difficult 54
conditions when everyone around them is struggling fishing on the bottom. But the ground breaking Zig Bugs have taken the concept to a new level. Although we think of carp as bottom feeders, they actually spend a great deal of their time anywhere and everywhere but. Carp are inquisitive
creatures, their inbuilt survival instincts compel them to investigate any occurrence natural or otherwise that could potentially provide them with food. Zig Bugs have the proven ability to trigger this natural curiosity and during a lengthy development programme the
FROM THE LAKEBED TO THE SURFACE
Bugs often produced bites when all other tactics including conventional zig baits had failed. ZIG BUGS There is a comprehensive and ever expanding range of Zig Bugs to choose from. Although depth is always crucial, on a given day, a particular pattern
or colour will often provide the key to success. Getting in tune with the explosions of natural food, fly hatches and other events that regularly occur in the carp’s underwater world will be a new concept for many anglers. It’s a fascinating new skill to learn and a vital one too. Experimenting with
the Bugs and gradually gaining and utilising that knowledge allows a more proactive approach to be developed. Remember, carp spend much of their time cruising the mid to upper layers. Mastering the Bugs will maximise the chance of success when other more ‘one dimensional’ tactics are destined to fail.
BUG TYPES There is a wide range of Bugs that will trigger a response in many different light levels and angling situations Hi-Viz ‘Attractor Beatles’ are the first choice for many anglers looking to provoke a response from a mid water cruiser ‘The Naturals’ are more subtle, ‘The Critters’ in many ways closely mimic the natural creatures that carp often become so preoccupied with. As the name suggests, Glo Bugs are Zig Bugs that glow in the dark! They are proven to produce a quick response in low light conditions and are deadly at night. There’s also a comprehensive and equally effective range of hookless Zig Bugs that can be combined with alternative hook patterns to create your own unique carp trap. THE RIGHT STUFF Zig fishing is not a ‘chuck it and wait’ method, to get the best from the Zig Bugs you need to really angle for those carp. So we’ve developed a dedicated range of products to allow you to do just that. Depth is crucial, sometimes a few inches either way or using a specific colour on the day can make the difference between success and failure.
Everything you could need.
ZIG FLO One of the first things we found when testing the Bugs was that many popular zig hook link materials in common use fell well below our expectations. Abrasion resistance and knot strength were generally poor and with some materials you had to go really fine to get a bite, so we decided to develop something much better. Zig Flo is super buoyant, low viz/ low spook and is incredibly strong in relation to its diameter, for zigs and floaters we honestly believe there is no better floating hook link material available. ZIG LINKS
Combined with a Diffusion Weed Safe Bead, a tungsten Zig Link eliminates tangles on the cast and introduces an element of movement when a carp investigates and attempts to suck in the hookbait. Our tests have proven that Zig Links improve hook holds and put more carp on the bank. ADJUSTABLE ZIG FLOATS Our low viz adjustable Zig Floats will allow you to simply and easily search out the depths with adjustable Zig tactics. When baiting with the Giro Bug Mix and Risers, interchangeable orange and black sight rings also make
the float easy to spot on the surface even at range. BUG BOX The Bug Box can be stored in any Box Logic tackle box or Soft Box and holds up to twenty Zig Bugs. Crucial hook points are protected and the correct colour or Bug type can be quickly and easily selected. BUG JUICE This is much more than just an oil based attractor spray, the Bug Juice contains a unique blend of ingredients specifically designed to mimic the water born ‘eat me’ signals created by the carp’s natural food. GIRO BUG MIX This purpose designed ground bait contains a complex mix of highly soluble ingredients that give off potent water born
food signals. Tiny pellets, dried insects, larvae and other small semi buoyant particles also permeate the water creating a column of attraction from the lakebed to the surface. In many ways this incredibly attractive and reactive mix mimics a natural fly hatch, carp are drawn to the disturbance like a magnet and quickly become fascinated and completely preoccupied with the complex multi-layered attraction created by this unique ground bait mix. BALL MAKER The Ball Maker provides a quick and easy method of compressing the Giro Bug Mix. On the bank or at home prior to fishing, dense compacted ground bait balls that will stay intact even when catapulted long distances can be quickly and easily manufactured. RISER PELLETS This unique pellet mix is a ‘must have’ product for any serious angler fishing zigs and surface tactics. A complex mix of small to micro size pellets all with different levels of buoyancy creates a column of attractive particles that in many ways mimics a fly hatch. Spring carp are drawn to it like a magnet!
Sealed inner mesh capsule design. For those who donâ€™t enjoy all creatures great and small.
*Available in 1 and 2 man Includes all season wrap
FOR SERIOUS UNDERCOVER WORK
AIRFRAME SLEEP SYSTEM
Airframe Sleep System 3 Leg Airframe Sleep System 3 Leg Wideboy Airframe Sleep System 4 Leg Airframe Sleep System 4 Leg Wideboy Airframe Sleep System 4 Leg Emperor
Airframe Air Shield Underlay Airframe Air Shroud Airframe Luxury Pillow
www.nashtackle.co.uk NASH E-ZINE 59
am going to talk about a 48 hour spring session on a tricky Cambridgeshire pit which turned out in the end to be quite a successful one. Over the previous weeks I’d done three 48 hour sessions and was yet to have a take. This is not unusual for this pit which is one of the smaller lakes on the St Ives complex.
The lake used to hold very few carp, one of which was the famous Black Linear (Black Jack) which moved home into the Fjords/Meadows lake next door during some floods. The lake was ignored apart from the occasional tench or pike angler and its potential was going pretty much un-noticed. A number of carp were obtained from a nearby fishery which to be honest weren‘t in the best condition. They were placed into a small pond of less than an acre on the St Ives complex to see how they would fare. They went from pale, tatty looking things to darker, well conditioned carp and even started to grow a bit. They were then moved over into the Shallow Pit which is around 15 acres, and as rich as anywhere I have fished and they have thrived. Add to this a few carp from other stockings, the lake now boasts a stock of around 60 carp to 47lb with a good percentage of 30+ fish. I suppose I could tell you how I got it right during my stay and caught a few but instead I’m going to give you a bit of a test. There’s a lot more to carping than vegetating in a bivvy for days on end and there are also plenty of decisions to make which could well make the difference between a good catch and a blank. So let’s take a step by step look through the session, I’m going to give you multiple choice questions based on the decisions I had to make and then at the end we’ll see how you might have got on.
Q1. When arriving at the lake - do you A. Load the barrow and go straight to the swim that was baited up last week. B. Park up in the first swim (called lazy mans) and get set up quickly because it might rain.
C. Walk around the entire lake paying particular attention to the area baited last week.
Q2. After careful thought the swim is chosen and you are ready with all your gear so what is your initial plan of attack? A. Get the bivvy up in case it rains B. Get the rods out with choddies on light leads then set about getting the bivvy sorted.
C. Thrash the swim with the marker rod to find some good
spots to fish amongst the weed.
Q3. The bivvy is up and the rods are out, initially just on single hookbaits and a mate phones. While on the phone the middle rod roars off and a fish is hooked. It fights hard but the NXRD rod controls it well until it kites to the left and gets weeded up. Do you? A. Pull back as hard as you dare, as the weed can’t be that strong yet.
B. Give the fish some slack line in the hope it will swim out. C. Secure the rod back in the But Locks with a good amount .of tension on the line and wait.
Q4. You landed and returned a nice 24lb mirror which is a good start and you are now planning for the night. There are 2 fishable clear areas and a lot of weed around but it isn’t that high yet. Getting baiting levels right is part of the watercraft skills which can only be learned over time. The lake hasn’t been fishing that good, so do you? A. A carp has already been landed so they
must be feeding. Fill it in with all your bait over the two spots. A big hit is on the cards.
B. A single hookbait has already caught a
carp. Three singles must be the way forward.
C. Fish a rod on each of the spots over 5 spods of bait and a third on a single to cast at any showing fish.
Q6. The night has passed without event and you’re up at first light to
watch for signs of carp. All you see are Tuffties moving over your spot and occasionally diving. What action do you take, if any?
A. Launch a few 20mm boilies in their direction to scare them off. B. The spod rod is still clipped up so do you send a loaded spod out to the spot to frighten them off to the other end of the lake? C. Do nothing and just watch them and gauge their reactions as they surface. Q7. Eventually a bird picks up the hookbait and the rod has to be recast.
A. Check the hook point before casting it back out as the bird may have
B. The bait looks intact so just sling it straight back out. Q5. And what rigs would you use on each of your three rods? A. Chuck three choddies out because it’s fashionable.
B. Fish a choddy on a roving rod, a standard pop-up rig on one of the clear spots and a balanced bottom bait rig on the other. C. Flick through a magazine and tie up three of the very latest ‘wonder rig’.
C. Check the hook point and replace the hookbait with a black Monster Squid boilie to fool the birds.
Q8. The morning has gone well with
another good carp being caught and it is now late morning. The sun has broken through and it’s not looking as good for a bite now. You know the river has been flooding so you need to take a look to ensure you’re not going to get caught out. Do you?
A. Wind the rods in, check the river level
Q9. The river is not threatening to
flood the lake you’re fishing so you’re quickly back in the swim. The sun has disappeared and the weather feels a lot more carpy. You need to get the rods back out ASAP but do you change anything from last night, bearing in mind that only one spot has produced any action - do you?
then search out other anglers on the complex to plunder their tea reserves.
A. Keep everything the same as before because you are catching.
B. The river isn’t too far away and you
B. Fish two rods on the productive spot
can be back in about 15 minutes. You grab your receiver and set off, leaving the rods fishing unattended.
C. Prepare new rigs, stringers or sticks (whatever you prefer) before winding the rods in and setting off. You also top up the baited areas with five more spods of bait each.
and a third on a choddy a short distance off it to maximise its potential.
C. Move swims because the birds did
Q10. Another night has passed without
occurrence but early morning is bite time. There is only a couple of hours left before you have to be on your way home so what do you do to sneak out a last gasp fish? A couple of carp have shown off the baited areas but no fish has shown on them – what do you do?
A. Do absolutely nothing. The rods are
fine as they are.
B. Recast a choddy towards the showing fish but leave the other two as they are.
C. Top the swim up with another couple of spods of bait, inviting the carp in for breakfast.
your head in.
The session is now over and you’re on the way home. Check out the answers on the next page to see how you fared!
Q1. A - 2 B - 1 C - 3
A pretty obvious one to start with dropping into the first swim you come to is rarely the best option and more time should be taken. You only earn 1 point if you went into the lazy mans swim. I actually spent quite a bit of time looking but saw nothing so went into the swim I’d baited the week before.
Choddies are good but not for every circumstance. I used one on a roving rod but more conventional rigs on the clear spots. I had three carp through the session, two were on pop-ups and one on a snowman presentation. I do like to vary things until the carp begin to show distinctive preferences.
Q2. A - 1 B - 3 C - 1 You can’t catch a carp without a bait in the water. The bivvy can wait and thrashing the water with a marker float as soon as you get there is sure to send any fish already in the swim straight to the other end of the lake.
A-1 B-2 C-3
It is frustrating when a fish gets weeded up but pulling for all your worth is the easiest way to lose it, instead a bit of patience is called for. 2 points for giving it a bit of slack line, but it doesn’t always work. The carp is as likely to swim further into the weed as it is to swim out. 3 points if you opted to secure the rod in the But Locks under tension. Since I started doing this I’ve been amazed at how quickly they come free and not go any deeper into the weed.
A-1 B-2 C-3
An initial capture on a single is encouraging but it doesn’t always mean there’s a big hit on the cards. Filling it in would almost certainly be the kiss of death. Singles could well work again but the spots have already seen bait the week before. Five spods on each of the spots is exactly what I did and it worked.
A-2 B-3 C-1
A-2 B-1 C-3
Slinging a spod out there is likely to scare off any carp as well as the Tuffties so leave it alone. I watched them diving and they did so quite comfortably until I hooked one. I have, in the past, sent a couple of 20mm baits out with the throwing stick to scare them off. On many waters the sound of a throwing stick attracts seagulls and they certainly move the Tuffties on when they start chasing the flying boilies.
A-2 B-1 C-3
A blunt hook can cost you fish so always check them, especially after an encounter with a bird’s beak. A black Monster Squid hookbait really does fool the divers. Three points if you replaced the hookbait with a black one.
Q8. A - 2 B - -10 C - 3 It rained a lot during my session and the Great Ouse was very high and flooding into some lakes. Fortunately ‘The Shallow’ was not one of them. Being prepared with new rigs and baits makes things go so much smoother and the organised carper is often the successful one. I also enjoy a good carpy chat over a brew or three and information gained can be useful in the long run. Don’t forget to give a bit back though or the other anglers will soon clam up. If you left your rods unattended then shame on you! It’s not only dangerous for the fish but will get you an instant ban if a bailiff catches you. Don’t do it!
A-2 B-3 C-1
Keeping things the same while catching is always a good idea but you have to decide whether or not you can maximize your chances. Only one spot had produced so I fished two hookbaits close together on the spot and a choddy about a rod length off it. There was no point in moving off a productive swim.
Q10. A - 2 B - 3 C - 1 It’s bite time so the last thing I want to do is sling a spod at the spot. I know on some waters carp are attracted to the sound of a spod but this isn’t one of them. Leaving things as they are isn’t a bad option but I do like to keep one rod on a choddy to cast at showing fish. It’s daft not too. On the session I had a take while packing up on a balanced bait that I’d left alone on the clear area.
HOW DID YOU SCORE? 0 - 15
You ended your session frustrated because you missed chances and you know it. But hopefully you’ll learn from your mistakes and fare better next time.
15 - 25
You caught a couple of nice mid 20s which you are pleased with but missed out on the bigger fish.
25 - 30
Well done. You had the couple of mid 20s as well as a nice 32lb 6oz mirror which was one of the lakes characters. If you carry on fishing this well, with a small slice of luck you’ll soon have your photo taken with the lake’s biggie!
MONO | 12lb • 15lb • 18lb | 1000m
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NASH ISSUE 16 • SPRING • APRIL 2014