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  1. I have lived in France for two years now, really enjoy the Lot valley east of Cahors. The last two summers have seen heatwave conditions and far less than usual rainfall. Hence it's been a struggle to get fish in gin clear water and when I have hooked up the better fish have broken me running through the heavy weed This last trip started that way, a fish on in the first 5 minutes. It instantly torpedoed 10 yds into a huge weed bed, even a tight drag was not going to stop it! Trace then parted under the weight of weed and the fish still motoring! I was targeting barbel, but this fish might easily have been a decent carp. Anyway, back to the fishing! Fishing buddy Alistair had a string of small barbel on sweetcorn. He also caught what I think is a bleak, if it is..... ......what a specimen! I persevered with a 20mm boilie and managed four fish between 3lb and 5.5lb. Good afternoons sport, hopefully the slightly cooler weather (30c) will be appreciated by the fish!
  2. Sounds like you have had some fun on your travels! Biggest fish I have lost was from an anchored RN frigate off Belize. A tarpon in the 200 lb class took my livebait and gave me the run-around for about 40 minutes. It jumped many times and, in the ships floodlights, was an awesome sight! Plenty of noise as well as they seem to rattle their gills when they jump. I was using the tip from a Conoflex Cod 5 that Nigel Forrest had cut and spigoted for me, a Fuji snaplock whipped on so I could use the tip as an uptider or add the glass butt to make a beach rod. An ABU 7000 and 20 lb line completed the outfit. Looking back I honestly think that the tarpon kept forgetting he was hooked. After short runs with several jumps he would return to the ship, most likely to continue feeding on the baitfish attracted by the lights and gash from the galley. Eventually he went under the ships shadow and my trace frayed through! Now I have a Conoflex Safari 45 3-piece as my travel rod and do not go anywhere! Where I live in France satisfies my "fishing soul" quite well! I brought a few decent carp rods to France - but they are too long for the river! So many trees, the banks are a jungle! A ten foot rod seems optimum, often less is best. Anyway, enjoying the barbel and chub whilst I learn about this wonderful river. Eventually I will get serious about a carp attack - probably!
  3. I know the uptide technique very well, was there off the Suffolk/Essex coasts when it was being developed. Your idea looks sound to me and I will give it a try soon. Sorted through the gear I have stored in the garage and found a spool for my Shimano Ultegra 5500 xtb that is loaded with 20lb P line. It's hard and wiry but not too bad casting off a largish diameter spool, don't like using thick line but even more I hate leaving a fish with a hook, trace, swivel and a couple of feet of mainline to tow around! Also found some Seaguar hard fluorocarbon trace line in 19lb. Hope this does not spook these fish! Plan on trying a semi-fixed lead (with your uptide mod), more like a carp rig but a slightly longer hook length. It is just possible the fish I hooked last night was a carp as they can turn up anywhere. If it was a barbel it must have been a good one! My Shimano 50-100gr travel rod was bent as much as I have ever seen it, that rod has had plenty of barracuda, stingrays and small sharks in Florida waters.
  4. .......over rocky ground. Fished a couple of different swims on the river Lot, France recently for barbel. One was clearly a bouldery swim, the other looked quite clear apart from light streamer weed. River is low and clear, normal summer conditions here. The barbel spooky and keeping out of sight - but will venture out for a smelly bait! I have found cooked, peeled crevettes great baits, preferably a few days past their best! Both swims I could only approach the barbel by casting upstream. Anyway, good barbel lost in both swims. One to a cut trace, the second to the mainline being cut. Trace in both cases 15lb fluorocarbon, not sure of the brand. Mainline just 10lb Shimano mono, it has been adequate most places as the barbel seem to top around 6 lb. I have tried coated braid hook lengths but the barbel seem very wary of these. When the barbel here finally decide to take a bait they run off with the bait like pike. Missed one 10 metre "run"when I was having a pee! The next bite I hammered and bullied the fish downstream to keep out of the weed. It kited towards the opposite bank and cut my mainline on an unseen rock edge! Clean cut, not dragged and roughened. I only fish short sessions and two or three fish is enough for me. Blew my chances these last two trips on new swims, want to be better prepared when I go back! Normally I get my fish to the bank, but these swims need a re-think of my terminal gear and mainline. Maybe my fishing tactics need refined as well. Any suggestions?
  5. Cavagnac lake, I have not fished this lake but had a look at it a couple of months ago - very impressed! They have a Facebook page Fly to Toulouse, get picked up and then all inclusive. Looked a good deal, but i have done nothing to compare it with.
  6. Thanks for the reply. Montluçon is an almost 4 hour drive north for me, interesting maybe? Yes, the B word might be considered "swearing" on some forums! Not trying to dwell on the politics, just gets me depressed! I first read of the Lot fishing in the '70's I think. Somehow seem to have found my way here almost by accident! Anyway, it's a good place to be and glad to be into some fishing which is new to me. Just what I needed!
  7. My local water, the river Lot (next big river south of the Dordogne), has some decent barbel fishing. There is also the river Cele which is much smaller, not fished it yet but have been told it is a good barbel river. Apparently there are two types of barbel in these rivers, seems I have only caught the smaller variety so far! Between July - September it is the holiday season. Many of the shallow barbel areas will have bathers on them well into the evening. The Cele has a lot of canoes during the holiday season!!! Early mornings or a couple of hours into darkness (if night fishing allowed!) is your best bet.
  8. Carpepecheur, I shall follow your threads with interest! My wife and I moved to France two years ago and are near the river Lot. We have had some good fish but only a couple of tiny carp, still have a lot to learn!
  9. Just found carp.com and looks a good site, hope to pick up some tips. I had a few years coarse fishing as a youngster but then I got into sea angling. Now moved to inland France near Cahors and have the wonderful river Lot a 10 minute drive from my home. This last year has been a great refresher course in river fishing, I could never have imagined a more wonderful river! Only had two "petite carpe" of a couple of pounds so far. Plenty of other fish with barbel, chub and bream to good sizes. Bream to 3 kg, chub and barbel to 2.5 kg. Swimfeeder and boilies seem to work well, but crevettes and worms can catch as well. Anyone else on this forum living in my area?
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