Hi guys a little introduction about myself and what I do, my name is Ian Lewis, I’m a family man, I run a small decorating business, I’m part of the Gardner tackle team uk, I’ve been angling since the age of 8 (I’m 36 next month), a lot of my carping has been done in and around Yateley (15 minutes from home). Because of work and family commitments I generally get 1 sometimes 2 nights if I’m lucky a week, so time is precious and I try to use it wisely, trying to capitalise on any opportunity that presents itself, I always try to stay positive and pro-active, will always give maximum effort and I’m always keen to learn new ideas/ skills(everyday’s a school day after all).
I’ve been fortunate enough to have caught a number of big carp from the UK, with my current UK PB being 46-4.
So……. The name Geoff Bowers was mentioned a lot when I was a youngster I would hear many a good thing about Premier baits and in particular Geoff for his ability to put together a very good, consistent bait through years of knowledge and experience and I knew many a good angler who swore by their products. Many years later I was introduced to Active Bait Solutions in the March of 2015 by my good friend and his son- Gary and Brandon Butler, this was to be a very positive and inspired move getting involved with the guys at ABS, their wealth of knowledge and range of ingredients is very impressive, and nothing is too much trouble.
In fact my first ABS carp came within 5 minutes of casting out after finding some fish after a good look, on this occasion I was using the MC Nut in 15mm which I was given by my mate Gary while I waited for mine to be rolled and sent out. From that day forward I had the upmost confidence in their bait- the texture, the smell, the consistency all seemed spot on.
As we approached the better part of Spring I tested a Duo Enzyme fishmeal along with the i- bait, both were super effective and produced lots of Carp to over 40lb, along with other specimen sized species that also took a liking.
As summer approached Geoff sent me out a few bait samples to try and see what I thought and I ended up mixing the lot up with a helping of hemp and other particle to create a real banquet of flavours, smells, tastes, textures etc to keep the carp guessing and stimulated. Over the course of a couple of nights I managed 7 bites, 5 carp and a Tench and lost one, 3 of them being 30’s. I ended up getting a ticket elsewhere by chance later that year and decided I’d go in with 10mm MC Nut and a little hemp to be a little different to the usual 18mm’s they see. Well Lady Luck was looking down on me as I went on to catch the lakes jewel on just my 2nd trip/night, a Common that was perfect in every way, which was part of a 3 fish session, the spot I’d found coupled with different bait application and decent presentation was the winning combination.
I fished up to the middle of winter catching my share on limited time.
The following year (2016) was a slow burner to start but once I got things going I went on to catch a few including a pair of 30+ commons.The weather was getting better and I fancied having a go on the ‘Rock Lobster’, I had black pepper added to the mix and on my first trip the conditions were spot on, it didn’t take long to locate the carp and I didn’t have to wait long for my first bite, a 36+ mirror, followed by a low 20 then a 36 common. Confidence was sky high with the ‘Rock lob’, my results continued and my angling was nice and consistent, having good hits over bait.
Later in the year the weather was starting to cool off and on Geoff’s advice I gave the MGM a go, and once again the bites kept coming and I used it on a variety of waters right up until this Spring catching well.
A friend of mine I met at a local lake named Josh (Parky’), together came up with the idea that from late winter early spring we’d come up with an idea for a custom mix, something a little different, something we and a few close friends could get on. After many an evening discussing this, we had a few ideas and I put these ideas to the bait guru himself (Geoff Bowers), he instantly took a keen interest in helping us out putting together the custom mix and after a couple of conversations over the phone with him and Paul we bounced ideas off one another, and finally the bait was born and the Mk1 version was sent out to me. Both Josh and I are Chelsea boys and we tried thinking of a fitting name, that’s when Josh came up with ‘Super Frank’ partly because of one of the ingredients- Frankfurter and secondly because we had high hopes it would be super successful much like Frank Lampard himself!….
Well I was like a kid at X-mas when I saw the bait for the first time, it had a lovely consistency not too hard not too soft, a lovely brown colour complete with a great attractor package containing a host of ingredients, with a very apparent garlic/ frankfurter presence, a decent HNV digestible fishmeal.
Well on my first trip out using the new Mk1 SF8, I went on to catch 3 carp with the largest being a stunning mirror still in its winter colours at a weight of 37-14, backed up with two other 20’s and it was my sons first night out fishing that trip, so smiles all round!…..
The run of success continued with only the odd blank. I was well pleased with the bait but felt there was something we could tweak slightly, something I love in a bait, good old ‘Robin Red’.
After chatting with Paul, he was convinced this would work and would be a good addition to the bait we discussed one other ingredient but he felt this wouldn’t improve the bait, so I took his knowledge and advice and stuck to just the one change.
The MK2 SF8 was then born.
A week later I received the bait and my expectations were surpassed, this looked and smelt better than the MK1 SF8.
Initially I mixed what MK1 I had left with the MK2 and the bites kept coming, down on my local busy syndicate, so confidence was high!…
I got an invite recently to a private lake along with my 5yr old son Stanley, for a bit of course fishing, BBQ and socialising with friends.
I was also told to bring my carping gear as there were some nice carp in there too.
Well upon arriving, I was met with a little slice of paradise……. Gin clear water, deep margins, weed and secluded tranquility.
This was to be a real ‘Acid Test’ for the bait, a water I’d never seen before let alone fished, the bait had never been introduced before either, and boy did they enjoy the boilie I fed em, in 40 odd hours angling I went on to receive 21 bites from a lake with around 70 carp in residence landing 17 carp and a tench to 32+ and most of the time I only fished one rod on a hard spot in the weed at 7.5 wraps. From what I understand 1 or 2carp in a session is the norm.
What’s more these carp were stunning, darkly coloured mirrors and commons with a couple being seriously special fish. I think in all I went through around 9-10 kg. They were clearly up for a feed but what’s more whenever I topped up the swim the bites would come thick and fast, I made sure I had a rod baited and clipped up at all times, to make the most out of these feeding spells. Through both afternoons I baited fairly heavy and rested the spot, leaving the lines out and went and sat with my son Stanley coarse fishing, gaining the confidence of the carp getting a real feeding frenzy going. What’s more I had a dedicated boilie only approach due to the tench and bream in residence, so a true test.
Since that ‘Red letter session’ I’ve only done one night, and my syndicate is now closed for spawning which luckily coincided with a weekend away on a stag do, party time!!!
Well I’m looking forward to the lake reopen l and letting the fish have a blooming good feed hopefully in return for a few carp. I’m currently chasing a mid 40 common,I’ve come close but the chase still continues, fingers crossed my names on that one!…..
In an overview of ABS, it’s passion, experience, knowledge that you buy into, a product that works, that will continue to work and one that is in reach for even people on a budget, you’re buying a quality bait, not a media hyped, overpriced fandango packaged product that contains sub standard ingredients. What’s more you can talk to the Team at ABS and have something customised for you and your mates perhaps if you’re off overseas or on a baiting campaign or if you just want something personal put together that’s a little exclusive or different, the World’s your oyster.
Getting involved with the guys at ABS has been brilliant, they’re friendly ,helpful and you know you’re getting a quality product, I’ve also been very impressed with their matching corkball pop ups and matching glugs.
Something I love to do is add a capful of glug to a kg of bait the night before, give the bait a lovely glaze adding pulling power in my opinion.
I’d also like to say their ‘shelf life’ bait is no different in performance to the frozen through my own testing and observation, only you have the convenience of storage and I have to say, they soften and break down just the same thanks to the quality human grade preserver they implement within the mix.
Tight lines guys……