Peter Mohan and haunted pools

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Gary Bills
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Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by Gary Bills » Wed Sep 21, 2011 8:07 pm

Several suggestions here! For the famous anglers site, could I suggest Peter Mohan? - Author; founder of the CAA etc, the captor of 6,000 carp.. one of the first anglers to fish Beechmere (before BB!)..the list goes on.
And I'm just reading, and very much enjoying his latest book, "Carp Stories and Other Tales" (The Little Egret Press), - featuring fictional tales and also true accounts of Beechmere, Woldale and Ashlea etc.
All this brings me to a third suggestion - I love ghost stories associated with old lakes, and there's a superb account of his encounter with a ghost at Beechmere...

"...I could not only hear, but clearly see, footmarks appearing in the thick carpet of dead leaves which covered the ground...above the visible and audible footsteps, there was - nothing..."

Great stuff! Well, we all know that Redmire is, not only a wonderful lake, it is a mine of ghostly tales; but I wonder, are there other tales still to be told?

GloucesterOldSpot

Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by GloucesterOldSpot » Wed Sep 21, 2011 8:44 pm

Never saw anything spooky at Beechmere (and had my biggest carp on 31st October at about 10pm, so if they won't show then, they never will) but have had a few odd experiences elsewhere. Two that spring to mind were:

1) The phantom stroller at a Sussex carp lake.

I was lying in the sleeping bag one autumnal (or was it early spring?) night when I heard someone walking towards me up the lakeside path. It was quite late - past nine pm - and had been dark for a few hours. The sound of cautious footsteps in the dry leaves was unmistakeable. The lake is day ticket, but nights are syndicate members only, and I was the only one 'on' that night. I thought it could be another member coming to bait up, or the lake owner coming to see me; anyone else had no business being there. If they were friendly they'd stop for a chat so I waited to see if they'd pop their head around the brolly, but they didn't. OK, so it was someone up to no good. I got out and looked up the path. Nothing. No sign of anyone. I could see fifty yards in either direction. I walked up as far as the gate, and back down to my pitch, and sat on the bedchair listening. No sounds, no lights, nothing. Odd.

It happened again a fortnight later, in the same swim. Same footsteps, going in the same direction. This time I was quicker off the mark and was out with the torch in no time, but there was no sign of anyone. Some time later I was talking to another member and mentioned the strange night walker, half expecting some sarcastic comment about badgers, or earnest advice to take more water with it; instead he confirmed that he too had heard it, and so had his friend. Later still another person who'd fished as a guest of the owner also said they'd heard it on more than one occasion. I've quizzed the owner about it (I wanted to check he wasn't playing tricks on us) but he was genuinely unaware of the story. I'm planning a night there in the next month or so, and if I can secure a pitch in the right area I shall string a line across the path at knee height, attached to a spare alarm. If I hear it again and the line is not tripped it will at least rule out a physical cause, though where that'll leave us is perhaps even more mysterious.

2) The Yateley thing.

When I was a member of the North Lake syndicate a couple of years ago I fished almost every Thursday night all through the summer and autumn. If possible I used to fish the same pitch, on the 'point'. I liked the aspect, and caught my first North Lake carp from there a couple of years before. It also commanded the deepest channel on the lake, as well as having a lovely big gravel bar across the front of the swim, giving a range of options for presenting a bait. Lastly, it was pretty secure, as no-one could approach it save from one direction - back down the path. By facing the bivvy that way I not only had a good view of the water around the islands, but could also observe anyone coming.

One night I was fast asleep when suddenly, and for no accountable reason, I awoke. Anyone who knows me will confirm I'm not easily parted from sleep - save when the buzzer sounds - so this was unusual. The night was still and there was no sound, but for some reason I was on the alert. I wondered if it was a case of the sixth sense kicking in, and half expected a run any moment, though the productive time for the swim was normally an hour before dawn to late morning. I was lying on the bedchair, half on my left side, looking out over the water, when I felt a shove in my back. Instinctively I looked round, even though I knew there was nothing in the bivvy with me. I immediately thought something or someone was behind the bivvy, though how it/they had got there was beyond me. I got out and looked anyway, but there was nothing. I got back in, sat down and rolled a cigarette with shaky hands.

It then occurred to me that, even if the culprit had been outside, they couldn't possibly have pushed me through the wall of the bivvy, which was a clear two feet behind my back at the time, without either ripping a hole in it or moving the entire unit forwards. As it was pegged down all round it couldn't move, and there was no hole, nor even a dent. I cannot offer an explanation, but I can and will swear to the truth of it.

Tony1964

Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by Tony1964 » Wed Sep 21, 2011 9:46 pm

I've stayed in the Evening Pitch at Redmire and my bivvi collapsed. Probably as it is old and I am crap at the boy scout thing :chuckle:

I love all of these stories although I know that Snape has a far more scientific explanation for the weird experiences.

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Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by StalkingLuke » Wed Sep 21, 2011 11:31 pm

Thanks for the ghostly tales.

I've had a few strange occurrences when I've been present at the death of close relations but always put that down to the extreme emotions felt at the time.

I've only had one experience when fishing, close to home as a kid growing up in West London was a park that made up the grounds of a large Georgian house within the park was a large lake that I would often fish alone, usually arriving there at dawn for the great tench fishing. One particular summers morning I was setting up in the early dawn light when an overpowering smell of cigar smoke wafted around my reed lined swim. I looked up and around and in the gloom of the woodland behind me could just make out a figure dressed in a long black cape striding through the woods!
I can remember feeling shocked and uneasy and for a while frozen to my seat, but being naturally inquisitive I somehow forced myself up and headed in the direction of the figure. I could see him, her or it! some way ahead and followed from a safe distance until they reached an open area and some early daylight.
It became immediately obvious that it was no spectre but just a living, breathing man dressed in a long dark coat probably on his way to work! Had I not followed him I would have been telling the tale of a ghostly encounter so sorry I'm not a believer.
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Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by Mark » Thu Sep 22, 2011 12:51 am

I'm lost here chaps, this is a 'Suggestions for Improving the Forum' and your talking about ghosts. :confused:

Would you like me to set up a ghost story section, :wink: and apart from that I have just had to wake the wife up to take me to the toilet. :shock: I'm not scared though :sarcasm:
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Gary Bills
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Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by Gary Bills » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:03 am

Wonderful tales - and yes, please let's have a ghostly fishing tales section!

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Gary Bills
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Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by Gary Bills » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:07 am

farliesbirthday wrote:Wonderful tales - and yes, please let's have a ghostly fishing tales section!
..Oh, and Peter Mohan in the Hall of Fame and his new book in the book section - it's a great read from a man who was fishing Beechmere oin 1944, went on to catch the first 30 from Ashlea, and is still with us!

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Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by The Sweetcorn Kid » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:19 am

Agreed on the Peter Mohan Thread.

I once wrote an article about a session at a Linear Fisheries water (I believe Peter was president of Linear?) and sent it to them for possible publication on their website. Well somehow it made its way to Peter who read it, made countless corrections all over it and sent it back to me with a lovely letter and a signed copy of his book. The letter, book and the amended article are all things I treasure very much.
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Gary Bills
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Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by Gary Bills » Thu Sep 22, 2011 9:48 am

If we do get a ghost/strange happenings at carp pools section, perhaps all stories already submitted can be moved over?
Here's my contribution...

The late Seventies; and I was a fishing mad youngster, aged 13, with permission from my parents to attempt my first night session after carp. I would not be fishing alone. My schoolfriend, Martin, was a year younger but just as keen to fish after dark. We arrived shortly before sunset at a rural stretch of the Stourbridge Canal, near Stewponey. In fact, technically we should not have been there at all, because the local club which owned the stretch did not allow night fishing. But we were sure that it was the only way to catch a big one; not that large fish existed in the canal in those days. We had caught a few small carp previously from "the winding hole," a spot when the canal had been widened out for the turning of commercial barges, in the old days. It was a slightly eerie spot, with old willows and poplars leaning to the water on the far bank and, above them, a full moon sliding into cloud.
We were ledgering worms, but all we managed between us was one small eel. Midnight came and went, then 1am...and Martin said suddenly, "Look, somebody's walking towards us, down the bank."
Sure enough, a tall dark figure was approaching; a figure with a burning cigarette in one hand. No other features could be discerned. It looked like a shadow with a Woodbine.
Five yards from us, the figure stopped.
"Who's there? Who is it?"
No reply.
Again, "Who's there?" - and still no reply.
The figure stepped back, into a hollow in the hawthorn hedgrow. We could still see the burning cigarette.
We were terrified by now, so I clicked my artery forceps shut and yelled, in dulcet tones, "I've got a flick-knife!"
The figure simply turned and glided into the field behind us.
We could still see the red point of light, his cigarette, bobbing its way through the darkness as he strode away.
A poacher? -well, possibly.
But in the morning, when we examined the spot where the figure had stood and turned, we noticed the dense hawthorn hedge and the barbed wire fence that separated the towpath from the field; and yet our visitor had passed from the canal to the farmland soundlessly and smoothly - an impossible feat, especially on such a dark night.
Last edited by Gary Bills on Thu Sep 22, 2011 2:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Peter Mohan and haunted pools

Post by St.John » Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:23 am

The peg at the bottom of my mother in laws garden is the best barbel peg on the wye. The house is the old coach house for the barge that used to run across the wye. I always get a really uncomfortable feeling about an hour into dark... And usually call it a night. I was chatting to Jane about it, and she told me a story. About 25 years ago a woman was found dead face down in the water. Apparently she had committed suicide by drowning (at least that was the official verdict). Thing is, according to the officials she walked to the river (it's was only about six inches deep) and lay face down until she drowned. It was pointed out that that is almost impossible to do as panic, spasms would make you roll over/put your head up. I put my chair on the exact spot she would have passed away on..Janes house is also haunted, all of the family have seen the ghost. The priory at the top of my beat, as well as the river bank is famous for hauntings, many people I know are convinced of seeing something. I'll try to find some of the stories. (cold shiver down back...)
"Be patient and calm-for no man can catch fish in anger."

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