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Lac De Premiere


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#1
cobleyn

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As some of you may know I had a weekend away...I've got a bit of a write up to do- Hopefully you may find it interesting.

I was fortunate enough to receive an invitation to go and fish ‘lac de premier’, a new carp water in France. It was a rare treat as it hasn’t been opened to customers yet. Its jointly owned and run by Tony Hibbert (Everton FC) and Keith Gladden (ex canary Carpin’). I’ve known Keith since the Canary Carpin’ days, so I was chomping at the bit to get down and take a look at the place as I know he’s been searching for that ‘just right’ location for 18 months.
I was scheduled to go a couple of weeks back with Deano- but work was ridiculous and I took the view that I had to put my livelihood first- and with it being November it could be a long way to go for a weekend when I could potentially blank.
Duuuuuhhhh!!!! What a frikkin donut.
I was sat at home seeing pictures of fish after fish coming out topped with an absolute chunk of a PB common of 51lbs to Deans rods. Kick myself- I nearly kicked myself into next year.
A quick few messages with Keith and I got a new date sorted out.
So Friday morning, 12:45AM- the alarm went off and I sprang out of bed like an excited spaniel. Now, I don’t spring anywhere- especially out of bed. But do you know what- It felt like a proper little adventure- 2 days in France, on my own...back at work Monday morning. As a fat old bloke- I don’t get excited at much – But 10 mins later the car was charging out of the drive.
Now I looked at the route down to Dover on Google map and without going into too much detail, male pride took over and I severely underestimated the time needed to get down there and the start of my road trip that should have been an early morning cruise was an enforced rally through torrential rain to get to the coast in time; Only to find the ferries were running late because of the force 8 blowing. Anyway- onto the ferry, found a bench, got my hood up and got some kip as lilly livered travellers around me made “woooo” noises as we went over waves and complained that they were a bit sick. I’m not being funny but its the sea- it is a bit lumpy...if you don’t like it- go on the flippin train- don’t disturb me!!!
So the ship docked and I blasted through customs out onto the open road, nothing was going to stop me now. Except- the petrol light...really...a full tank gone already...with all of my excitement to get to the coast I had blown through a tank that had returned 18 MPG..oops. So I pulled in off the A26 into a trucker stop...to look at the stanav. Again- long story short- what should have been a 120 mile blast along the A26 in an hour and a bit, had an hour added to it as I detoured into a town at rush hour on a Friday morning. As all of you know who’ve driven in France- its a pleasure. The highways and motorways are long and straight and the towns have light traffic and are quaint. However, on a Friday morning, on 3 hours sleep when you want to go fishing I was pleading for Germany to invade again and get everyone out of my way at their rush to surrender.

I arrived at the lake at 11:00ish with a bit of light drizzle on the water to a very pleasant surprise. I wasn’t prepared for the facilities that the water had. Its fair to say that the lake itself is a cracker- and I’ve probably seen it at its wintery worst. 30 odd acres, with nice deep , tree lined margins. There’s sixteen permanent pegs and each one is big enough to get two bivvies/ anglers on with ease. At the entrance to the lake there’s a shower and toilet block, a cafe, a 50 table seater restaurant (that's actually a nice restaurant with tables set and wine on the tables- not a skanky carper’s hut) and an outdoor area with 40 tables that overlooks the lake to eat at during the summer. I could see why Keith had settled on this place.

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The shot below is one of Keith's (trust me my visit was bit wetter LOL)

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I'll post some more in a bit...
Everything is better with bacon.

#2
cobleyn

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We went for a mooch around the lake and chatted about the best pegs to fish and I narrowed it down to 2 pegs. Both at the other end of the lake. It looked a big push with the barrow. Especially when you consider I had everything with me- Food, water, beer, 20 KGs of bait and all my tackle. I didn’t intend moving for 2 days so it all had to go on one barrow and that was me done. But if the fish were at the top end...That’s what I had to do. Now the swim I chose, was one that Keith has earmarked for a lot of work. Just about every peg is immaculate...either barked or grassed and are very comfortable. Apart from ‘My peg’... lets refer to it as ‘the bog’. “look its proper muddy” said Keith- “sure you sure you want this one? “Again- if that’s where the fish are- I can suck it up for a day or two. I’d made my mind up, I looked over my shoulder and started to trudge back to the car saying “I’ll get my barrow loaded then”. Keith replied- “What the heck are you doing that for- just come round this way in your car!!!”. Proper result- unknown to me there was a service road that went around the other side of lake. Top drawer- fishing out the back of the car-!

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So ½ an hour later I was in situ. I’d found a clay spot that ran from around 60 yards out to about 120 yards and conveniently I could use the restaurant and buildings as the markers for the three rods. Most of the fish had been coming from range and I knew it could be a hungry water, so I didn’t want to overstretch my range as I thought I would need to get quite a bit of bait out. 100 yards is a comfortable range for me and leaves me a bit in the locker if a head wind gets up. I set all of my rods and spod to 25 turns around some banks sticks ( 12 feet apart). By this time it was absolutely tipping it down. However I had the tailgate of the car open with the bit of gear I needed in the boot and it was keeping it dry.
Not the same could be said for me though. As I only had 48 hours – I got out in it and started to plan my attack. I had a lot of questions swirling in my mind and I was trying to get some clarity in my thought process. I think as anglers when we know a lake- it makes life a bit easier as we can answer some of the questions based on our experiences on previous sessions. On a new lake though, there is always conjecture based on others fishing it and what we can guess based on previous experiences

To bait or not to bait?

My gut feeling was that there was already fish in the area. At home I would have fished for 1 fish at a time. But in France on a well stocked lake...my greed took over and I wanted to catch as many fish as I could muster. Out came the spod...and over the next hour I put out 5KG of boilies and 3KG of particles.

I took a mixture of boilies with me, as I didn’t know what the fish would fancy. I’m a bit of a nutrabaits fan- so no surprises that’s what I took. I had 5 Kilo’s of the new Blue Oyster bait, 2 Kilo’s of Big fish mix with Caviar, salmon and Black pepper and a kilo of my winter mix- a good old school recipe Enervite gold, Strawberry and cream EA with Bergamot. My little twist with my winter bait is to mix half up in orange and half up in white and then roll them together to give a marbled effect. I think sometimes the fish can get picky and fancy a particular colour in winter based on light conditions. The way I see it- I’m fishing two colours at once and Orange and White seem to work best for me in Winter.

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It has to be said, I was very happy with the way all the bait and rods went out. Sometimes things don’t go according to plan and on a very wet day in France it would have been par for the course to crack off the spod, kick my bucket of bait into the margins, fall short of the mark with every spod and then fall in etc etc. But...everything went well- the bait went out in tight cluster, my rods went out and hit their spots with a pleasingly dull thunk as they hit the clay.
By the time I got the Armo up Everything was soaked. My coat had given up the ghost and my t-shirt was soaked...inside of the bivvy was dripping and the bank was three inches deep in mud. I put the bedchair in quickly...stripped, changed and got my head down. An hour later I woke to see it was getting dark outside and the rain was coming heavier than ever. I checked all my rigs- all fine. Re baited and slung them back out.
It wasn’t long before I was back in the bag fast asleep.
Beep...Beep...Beep. That’s an odd bite I thought. I did suspect that the fish may give weird bites as they were relatively unfished for- so would still be on the first stages of the learning curve of how to deal with hooks.
Out of the bag...would down...tightened the line lay off the bottom...struck...Bream. Great!
Unceremoniously I jiggled the snotty off the hook in the margins and got back into the sack. The rain was still pelting down. As I got back into the bag it was about 11:00. No carp. I was wet through and starting to feel a bit down. Being overly tired can do funny things to your mind and my mood was low. I sat up- had a word with myself in some very uncertain terms and opened the bivvy to survey the lake.
I must have dosed back off as the next thing it was light and I’d had a good 6 hours kip. The rain had stopped and I couldn’t believe I’d not had a fish.
The rods were checked, re baited and put back out. Now this wasn’t a decision I took lightly. I knew there had to be fish out there and re-casting three rods onto feeding fish isn’t the best idea. But- I felt like I should have had a fish or two- so I was suspecting something must be amiss. Sure enough one rod had a snotty on the end of it...but the other were in top shape...not tangled and the baits looked and smelled good. The leads had a bit of clay on- so I was happy that I had done all of the right things.

Keith came around for a chat and his face hit the floor when I said I ‘d blanked. Its like he couldn’t comprehend that I hadn’t had a fish. To be fair we both knew it was odd. The only thing we thought was that the fish had sloped off to deeper water with the heavy influx of rain.
“you’d better get on your toes mate!” Said Keith “If they’re not here you’ve got to go and find ‘em”. Now this was potentially the tipping point for the whole trip. A mistake here could lead to a full on blank. I sat and pondered it for a while and pushed the potential scenarios back and forth. My biggest concern was taking 2 or 3 hours to up sticks, move and either miss the fish or balls up my new swim. If I was in the UK on my own water (and under a brolley)- I would have done the off. But I guess that the difference between fishing for a big hit (let’s face it- that why I had done a 800 mile round trip for two days fishing) and that one special fish back home.
So I settled down into the swim to make the best of the day. During the day I chopped and changed rigs (long boilies rigs, short braid bag rigs, KD rigs with a whittled down pop-up), changed baits- all boilie combo’s, half a dozen different pop-ups and fan casted my rods trying to pick up the first fish.
The day came and went with a few Bream. With hindsight the particle was a mistake. I spread a kilo of Blue oyster around the swim with the stick through the day. I could get around 5 baits out before the seagulls flocked in...which meant I was doing a real ‘little and often approach’. I kept the spod against a tree, I didn’t want to disturb any fish that were coming back in.
I sat until about 2 hours into dark outside the bivvy trying to spot for signs of fish. The restaurant was at the far end of the lake from where I was fishing and the refection of its lights gave me just enough light to see any fish movement. At 10 o clock I called it a day and went and got into the bivvy...
I’d not been in there 5 mins and the buzzer melted into life...I almost ripped a hole in the bivvy to get out, legged it across my swim...hit a mud patch and fell on the deck...legs underneath me and my knee making a loud pop. Before I’d had chance to register I’d hit the deck- somehow I was back on my feet with the rod in my hand. “thank god- I’m not going blank”. The fish kited hard to my right...plink...and the line went slack.

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Now as a mod I can’t very well repeat my language without an immediate ban. But trust me... I was pretty flipping upset. I checked my line and it was a straight break- no little curly tail to suggest my knot was to blame. But it wasn’t all bad- the fish might be starting to feed, so I could be in with a chance of another before I need to get off on my journey to the ferry. I grabbed the throwing stick and put around 20 baits out at around 100 yards. I tied a new PVA bag up and sent it back out. I wound in my middle rod, changed that from a long boilie rig to a solid PVA bag and attached a whittled down Blue oyster boilie (it looked more like a cube than sphere). I changed from the crushed boilies I had been using to micro bloodworm sticky pellets and fired it out into the darkness. Having had the run from my right hand rod I placed my middle rod 10 yards further over towards my right hand rod. If the fish were moving in from the right hand bank I wanted to make sure I had both rods in position ready for them.
Everything is better with bacon.

#3
leggs007

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looking forward to pics and the rest of the tale 8)

#4
iambunn

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Hurry up with the rest of this! Really wanna read more! :lol:
It's like that and that's the way it is!

#5
chillfactor

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Hurry up with the rest of this! Really wanna read more! :lol:

Dito :lol:

#6
snowmanstevo

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Well done mate 8)

#7
rosstheangler

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I love a cliffhanger but, get on with it!

#8
iberiancarpa

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Come on Neil, hurry up with the next installment, I wanna go to bed :D

#9
cobleyn

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Sorry Chaps- In the North East on Business at the moment- I will get it finished ASAP!
Everything is better with bacon.

#10
travisbickle

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Rather you than me...classy women :shock: :shock: :shock: :lol:

#11
cobleyn

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I got back into the sack a bit jittery and thoroughly woke up and debated whether to have a beer or not. Whilst I hadn’t got to get up for work in the morning it seemed an odd choice to start drinking at 11:00ish (my god I sound old saying that), so I settled back in the sack and put a bit of music on, to go back to sleep with. It can’t have been much after 12:00 when I was woken again by a proper screamer. Out of the bivvy and onto the rods- avoiding hitting the deck this time. There was a solid tug on the end of the rod and a broad smile came across my face.
It was a really pleasant evening there was a really bright moon and I could see the line even at distance carving through the water. After the last episode I was keen to keep it out of the snags to my right and in no time it was in the net. It didn’t look a big fish, until I tried to lift it out....hmm...maybe a bit bigger than I thought. I unhooked it and put it on the scales and it went a tad over 30lbs...a good start. I sacked it and started to re-bait the rod. I’d just finished the PVA Bag and was in my knees in the bivvy. BEEEEEEEPPPPPPP. The right hand rod was off to a flier. A repeat of the last fight and a upper 20 was on the mat. I cast the rod out that was already bagged up and set to work bagging up the rod that was out. BEEEEEEeeeeppppp....you’ve got to be kidding me. 36 hours of nothing and then three on the bounce. This fish didn’t want to slow down and was powering off down the lake. I ran left and right several time before I slipped it into the net. I could see the hook in its bottom lip and flicked it out whilst the fish was in situ in the net. As I got down on the bank I could see this was a better stamp of fish. The hooked came out very easily and I lifted the fish onto its flank in the water. It was an absolute minter and looked a real decent fish. Minutes later I lifted the scales and they pinged around to 40lb1. Proper result- three fish on the bounce and a 40 in there as well. I now had an issue, I’d only took 2 retaining sacks- and they were full. I left the forty in the net and slipped back the 20 I had just had; putting the 40 into the retaining sling.

It was clear they were having it. I grabbed the stick and put around 40 baits out. I baited the rods and got them back out.
Within the next hour I’d banked another 3 fish...all mint conditioned and all over 25lb. After every fish I put another 20-40 baits in and continued to fish bags at around 100 yards. I can remember thinking at around 01:00 “there is literally no-where else I would rather be at the minute. I have the lake to myself- there’s probably no-one else in 5 miles of here...the conditions are perfect and the fish are having it”...the baits were flying out of the stick long and straight and I knew there was a hungry swarm of carp ripping my peg to bits out in the darkness.
I got in the sack at around 2:30 and I was starting to feel a bit concerned. It had been a really pleasant night and the temp was very mild- at one stage I’d noticed I’d got a few dabs of sweat on my forehead- and I was literally in some combats and a hoody.
The weather had changed though. It was still mild but a real strong wind had picked up. By 03:00 I was getting very concerned. Bearing in mind I’d left a force 8 in the channel I started to suspect that the wind was getting a bit too much. I’m sure we’ve all been there when you hear the whooshing of the wind hundreds of metres away- rushing towards you and then the bivvy is rattled around with you in it.
The bonus for me I guess was that the car was right at the side of me. I decided that it was time to bring in a wind break. I got out of the bivvy –threw a handful of leaves up to determine to direction of the wind and then jumped in the car and manoeuvred it between the bivvy and the prevailing wind. My other thought was that if any trees came down- at least they’d hit the car first.
I Climbed back into the sack feeling a lot happier that the bivvy would be safe. BEEEEEeeeeePPP. You’ve got to be kidding....
Out again, hit into the fish...the wind (and now rain) was lashing in from behind me. After a solid 5 minute fight I pulled another 30 over the drawstring. Now I don’t mind telling you that I’d kind of made my mind up that I wasn’t enjoying this anymore. It was gone 03:00 AM and I’d had virtually no sleep. All macho thoughts of ‘fish till you drop’ were being replaced with ‘it’s horrible out here’. I unhooked the fish in the water and put a bank stick through the net. It would be light in a couple of hours and I could deal with the fish then. As it happened all of the fish had come from one rod over the last few takes. My plan was clear- leave that rod out and as I had fish on the other rods- leave them out until first light.
I climbed back in the sack and pulled the sleeping bag over me.

Before I knew it- it was dawn. The wind had abated and I quickly rang Keith- “Can you come and do some photos mate”. ...” Course I can “ , I could tell he was grinning as he put the phone down.
I banged out another kilo of bait via the stick and re-cast your rods. I was sat having my first cuppa and keiths pick up pulled up behind my swim. BEEEEEeeeeepppp. I jogged to my rods and lifted into another fish.
“You got your rods in then”, Keith chuckled.
“Did you expect anything else”.
5 minutes later Keith was netting a cracking little fat fish of just over 30 pounds. Beautiful apple slice scales on its tail. Just the kind of fish that looks like it’ll be 50+ one day. We left it in the net (I only had one net left now) and I put my waders on to do get some shots.,

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A proper result, 8 fish through the night and although the form was most fish to come at night I suspected I might get a couple more.

How right I was....
Everything is better with bacon.

#12
dougmoon

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cracking write up and lovely fish. wel done mate
always chasing that extra bite

#13
leggs007

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well in mate 8)

#14
chillfactor

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Cracking stuff mate , fantastic write up 8) :D

#15
cobleyn

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Cheers Lads...There's a bit left yet... :wink:
Everything is better with bacon.

#16
travisbickle

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crackin read so far mate :wink:

#17
peteblount

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Loved the right up sounds like you had a great time mate
a fish in the hand is worth five in the bush

PETE

#18
iberiancarpa

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A brilliant read and a fantastic session.

#19
chris71

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Good write up cob...look forward to the rest! :D

#20
onehandedcarper

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that peg 3 is a blinder isnt it?? i was there about 4 weeks ago, in 3 1/2 days and 2 nights i had 29, 17 x 20, 11 x 30, a 43lb 12oz and a 50lb 8oz. New pb mirror and a new pb common (33lb). you are spot on about 'im only here a few days, fish till i drop' turns into 'make this tiredness stop' lol it got to the stage a few times when i was physically and mentally exhuasted. What a place Lac de Premiere is, and its only going to get better.




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