• Posted: 16th August 2021
  • Author: Team DNA
It’s a good job Steve Haylett doesn’t have any superstitious tendencies, as if he did, he may well have never landed a forty as well as the most-sought-after fish in Monks Pit in the same session!
Moving swims on Friday the 13th might have looked like a disaster waiting to happen on paper, but it proved to be quite the opposite, as on consecutive mornings Steve went on to land a 42lb 4oz mirror known as Henry and the coveted mirror that goes by the name of the Special One at 36lb 2oz.
Steve takes up the story: “After arriving at the lake, there wasn’t really much to go on. I decided to pitch up in the Plateau, as the wind was hacking in there and the sun was coming out, and get myself mentally prepared to do battle with the infamous kelp weed, should I get a take.
“The first 24 hours came and went! Derek Richie was going home midday on the Friday and finally the fish started showing in two swims, one of them being Del’s, so I dropped in behind him. It was Friday the 13th, so I was wondering whether something bad was going to happen!
“After finding my three spots, I decided to bait up and just rest it until last light. Eight Spombs of a mixture of Secret 7 and both Crayfish Mini and Maxi Mix pellets, S7 crumb, chopped and mixed-sized boilies, as well as a good soaking of S7 Liquid Food, making the mix really heavy so it went straight down to my spot in 21ft of water.
“A 3.30am, I get what I thought was a tench bite. After winding down, it immediately felt good. A 15-minute battle ensued, before a fish called Henry went over the net cord at 42lb 4oz, which made it back-to-back forties for me in the past two trips. Here at Monks, they just can’t get enough of the S7!”

Henry at 42lb 4oz

Steve wasn’t finished there, as what was about to happen next was truly ‘special’.
He continued: “So, after failing on a couple of zigs the next day, I got the rods out for the last night with same baiting approach. This time I swapped all hookbaits to the same snowman combination of a Secret 7 bottom bait tipped with a trimmed pink 15mm S7 Half Tones pop-up.
“Later that night, the same rod as before ripped off, but unfortunately I lost it soon after. The disappointment didn’t last too long, though, as right on first light I had an absolute screamer, this time on the right-hand rod. After an epic battle it soon became clear I was attached to the most-sought-after fish in Monks Pit, a fish that doesn’t come out too often, the aptly named Special One – probably the nicest looking carp I’ve ever seen! On the scales it went 36lb 2oz.
“Perry Alabaster had just turned up as I was retaining the fish whilst I got sorted. He was blown away by it! It really is a carp on another level. Between Perry and the Darren, the bailiff, who was fishing just up from me, we sorted the shots and returned the fish to its home.
“With no more action to come, I packed up and went home, reflecting on an epic brace. I had moved swim on Friday 13th. If that’s bad luck, I want more of it!”