This was a trip I'd been looking forward to for a good while, a few of us from the specimen hunting UK group on Facebook had organised a get together fishing for predators on the mighty Rutland water.
Having grown up in the nearby town of MeltonMowbray I had often visited Rutland on school trips and the like and I remember always wondering what it's vast and mysterious depths might contain. Little snippets in the angling press over the years told of huge Pike and Perch but more recently Zander seem to have come to the fore with large catches commonplace.
I've mentioned several times on this blog over the years that I really wanted to catch a Zed on a lure and with Rutlands pedigree I couldn't think of a place which would give me a better chance. Fishing such a huge expanse of freshwater would take me completely out of my comfort zone and I realised that I would have to learn fast. Boat control, fishing on the drift with a drogue and Techniques like vertical jigging are completely new to me so much research ensued.
I watched videos on youtube, read articles and asked for advice from anybody with previous experience of the place. I even went out and purchased a fishfinder and drogue especially for the occasion. Lurewise, i planned to use shads and another type of lure called a Kogut which comes from Poland and is basically a kind of jighead with feathers whipped onto it. Koguts are used very successfully on the continent to catch Zander and arnt available commercially in this country, fortunately I managed to acquire some through a Polish friend who knows a guy that makes them.