Croix Blanche Lakes – The Commencing of a French Carp Fishery

At any time because I was a child, eagerly devouring the operates of such anglers as Jack Hilton and Chris Yates, studying each article penned by Rod Hutchinson and knowing off by coronary heart the account by Richard Walker of his famous report, I have been obsessed with catching carp and all that goes with it. The mystic, the cloak that seemed to protect carp fishing for all of my formative several years was like a magnet.

With the passion for angling I often nurtured the concept of obtaining my personal lake, my own Redmire with leviathan carp. Till January of 1999 this remained, as for most folks, a pot of gold at the conclude of the rainbow. Right up until, through a fellow photojournalist, I arrived to hear about a group of lakes up for sale. It began as a little bit of a joke, but the much more I considered about it the greater the thought appeared to me. This revelation had my brain in a whirl, possibly , just probably this was my Redmire pool.

On a chilly, rainy January early morning I pulled up outdoors the fence that surrounds the “Etangs” which have been buffeted by the wind and coated in a layer of mist and drizzle – they didn’t, in all honesty, seem way too inspiring. A couple of minutes later on the operator confirmed up in a huge top-of-the-range Peugeot. He showed me all around the house. I uncovered two huge waters of about 7-eight acres every single, and a more compact pond as effectively.

A modest chalet had been erected in close proximity to the entrance on top of a concrete bunker that housed an kitchen area, shower and bathroom. This was in reality, the Peugeot man’s weekend backyard, his possess little Eden, exactly where he could occur and relax, swim and entertain, in his leisure time. But he no longer came listed here, and wished to promote up.

A few minutes handed and a next auto pulled in by means of the gate. A youthful male descended keeping a photo album. He then proceeded to show me some of his carp captures from the final two several years, and explain to me about the waters and their fish. What fish they have been, large wide mirrors, which even from the mediocre photography looked huge. The greatest in excess of 40 kilos.

I parted business with these individuals confident that I had stumbled on a jewel in the French countryside, fished only by a handful of people considering that it was excavated and already generating huge fish. I just experienced to have them. This could be my possibility to get out of the rat-race that Paris and journalism had turn out to be, and do one thing I’d usually wished to do. So we did certainly purchase the lakes, my spouse as enthusiastic as myself.

The perform concerned only became evident as we obtained into it. Only one proper swim existed, the place the youthful guy and his buddies utilized to fish. I established about cutting pitches out of the willow jungle that surrounded the edges of each h2o. The waters by themselves just received far more and much more gorgeous as the seasons progressed, the drinking water aqua environmentally friendly, tinted with blue, typical of chalk pits, and the environmentally friendly foliage of willows and birches that surrounded it.

The urge to fish was great though, and I started normal classes, to begin with commencing on the only swim. A single of my first a few-day stints saw me pulverize my private ideal, three occasions in a few fish, every one receiving greater. The very best more than 36 lbs .. By way of the Net I was slowly and gradually getting term around about my lakes and a handful of individuals needed to arrive to fish. The very first of these arrived at my swim on the customary “stroll round the lake” and my appropriate hand rod tore off. A nicely scaled 27-pounder arrived to the web, my friends experienced been at the h2o for less than fifteen minutes and have been amazed. That evening, much better was in keep. As darkness descended my proper hand rod was off once more and soon after a tough, arm aching combat, a mint forty pound mirror lay on the unhooking mat. I was, useless to say, over the moon, PB smashed to smithereens once more!

And so issues progressed, swims were reduce, a couple of eager beavers came to “field check” my waters, some went house possessing blanked, some with big fish underneath their belts. But which is carp fishing, even in France. Then a chap from Hemel knocks out a 43 and a fifty percent, following a hard week. Wow!!!

In all so much, 30 fish have been caught, 11 thirties to 37lb 8oz (10 of which I have been lucky enough to capture) and two forty pounders. The rest have been very good twenties, with just 6 doubles the smallest 16lb 8oz. This presents an average of almost 28lb. I think you are going to concur the fish are quite fantastic.

I strategy to stock a lot more fish in November, not hundreds of doubles (some indeed) but largely great twenties and thirties and some huge catfish to spice factors up a bit. If these fish do half as properly as the original fish in a pair of several years the regular will be excellent.

I would been advised the “Croix Blanche” lake by itself held the most fish, but that the “Tortue” had most likely the greatest. Observation of this water confirmed that there ended up in fact some true whackers swimming around in the distinct, limpid water. But the lure of bigger numbers to try for noticed me choose for the “Croix Blanche”, to start with at the very least.

Early in April I set up for a three-working day session with my eight year-previous son, William. I chose a swim 50 percent way alongside the “Croix Blanche” lake in which it narrows, and is about 5 ft deep, offering a good prospect to intercept fish. I baited with soaked maize, hemp and boilies in close proximity to the much lender trees, placing three lines, one particular balanced snowman design, a single popped up and one particular bottom bait in the location. Items have been searching excellent when I started out to see some extremely large swirls coming from the baited zone. As darkness fell I eagerly anticipated the night time. Up until finally midnight no will take were forthcoming so I climbed into my sleeping bag. All around 4:thirty am I was awoken by a fast run on my left-hand rod. Dashing previous my meticulously positioned boots I ran in stocking toes out to strike the run. The fish moved to my proper and right after many minutes I was in a position to gain enough line to deliver it into the margins, sadly the line snagged a branch hanging in the water to my correct, which I was not able to totally free. Pulling challenging simply lifted the fish’s head up toward the tree. I called for my son, who was asleep in the bivvy. Right after what seemed like ages he staggered out into the night. I requested him to grab the rod as I went in for the fish. On my command he heaved on the line to bring the fish back again up to the department and I scooped her up in the net, pulling tough to split the branch off. On the scales she went 33 lb 4oz. I was soaking soaked and chilly, but really happy in fact. A new personalized ideal.

The rest of the night time and early early morning was uneventful so I recast close to 10 am and sat again to reflect on the night’s motion. First fish a good 30 this definitely was promising. All was relaxed right up until mid-afternoon, when out of the blue the left rod dropped back. I struck into one more heavy bodyweight. This a single did really little as I pumped her in direction of me. Avoiding the dreaded tree, I netted her very easily and staggered up the bank with my prize. A fat mirror related in form to the first 1 was weighed in at 34lb 5oz. Two thirties for two fish – wow!

The weather was by now none too good, drizzly rain and really chilly. Standard April. aquarium tortue I baited yet again and recast my rods in preparing for my previous night time. As the rain arrived down I strike the hay early woke up by an massive swirl above my baited spot. The anticipation grew, I felt positive I would get a run. Certain ample at two:45 am the middle rod with the popped up bait took off and right away I felt a heavier more difficult preventing fish. The other people had provided instead disappointing accounts of them selves, this 1, even so, created up for that. After 10 minutes or so it was nonetheless cruising about the margins hesitant to appear up to the area. With aching arms I lastly slipped the internet underneath a beautiful fish. It was longer than the other folks with a massive hump on its shoulders and a significantly greater tail. It took the scales down to 36lb 6oz, a new personalized very best, for the 3rd time in 3 fish.

As the Spring gave way to Summer I ongoing to catch a great amount of the biggies in the water. 1 of the stars of the waters is a broad shouldered mirror. This fish was to grace my net for the 1st time in May possibly at 40lb and once again in August when it experienced acquired a few pounds in excess weight. It also retains the lake file at 43lb 8oz caught by a visiting angler, also in August.

My tally of thirties is at current up to eleven and the forty has fallen twice to my strains. To say that the waters have surpassed my expectations is an understatement!

And so I have turned my attentions to the “Tortue”. The h2o was starting to fascinate me, anyway. I had witnessed a true lump swimming close to on several situations. By considerably the biggest fish in the sophisticated. I for that reason made a decision to set my stall for the rest of the summer time for this fish.

1 day as I stood on the edge of the water considering on in which to commence. I named out loud “Carp the place are you? ” As if to answer my concern, a fish crashed out above a gravel bar in the centre of the h2o. This then was exactly where I put my marker. I baited with maize and boilies for ten times each other day. My 1st evening session passed quietly, but the second saw a fast operate on the middle rod. I was shortly searching at a pristine mirror a shade above 27lb. The subsequent evening at practically specifically the exact same hour, eleven:fifteen pm, the same rod roared off and I was privileged to be graced by yet another of the jewels of the “Croix Blanche” complex, a linear a tad below 36lb. A wonderful fish.

This delivers us to September and despite a pair of a few-working day classes I am still to consider one more fish. I’ve noticed the big’un several times in a extremely impressive team of 8 fish. All above 35lb, I’m sure. I hope with a bit of patience and very good fortune I shall shortly be in a position to recount the capture of this giant carp.


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