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A great family holiday in very hot weather with carp to 41lbs and catfish to 107lbs!

This week we had the pleasure of welcoming David and wife Joyce along with son Luke and girlfriend Sarah. They have been fishing in France for many years and fancied the challenge that Beausoleil provides. Dave, Luke and Sarah are all keen anglers but (like so many) only get the chance to go when on holiday in France. Mum Joyce was looking forward to a very quiet week of reading and lounging on the sun bed. And with temperatures over 30o every day, that was not a problem!

What a way to start!

Tired from the journey, the guys recharged their batteries the first night and got started on Sunday. Luke was first to see some bent carbon and bend it did! He’d only gone and hooked a monster catfish from open water on his first evening. As it steamed for the end of the island, he held on for dear life, trusting his gear and his bucket-tested knots and managed to steer it away from danger.

Dad David stepped up to the mat to glove the beast while Sarah was in charge of the camera. It was all over in under 20 minutes which is very quick considering it weighed in at a massive 107lbs… not many venues where you can bank one of them first chuck!

Hooks take a beating

At the other venues they’d fished, the lake bottom was generally soft with very little in the way of obstacles. Unused to fishing over rocks and gravel, the guys didn’t realise the damage they can do to hook points and when I saw them on Monday most were ruined. This is why they’d had some missed takes. After a quick demo of how to inspect hook points and how to re-sharpen them I left them to it.

Slack lines and tight clutches

Before his trip, Luke had done his prep and read all our tips on how to fish Beausoleil and was paying close attention to his line lay. However, to me, his lines were far too tight. When you’ve never fished with slack lines and tight clutches, it can seem a bit extreme doing it the first time, but have faith, it’ll work like magic here!

Dave with Dink at 41lbs mirror carp in france
Dave with Dink at 41lbs

As soon as everyone’s rods were re-set, Dave caught his first fish – ok only a small kitten but he got the take before the bobbin was clipped on!

Later that evening, Dave hit the jackpot and broke his carp PB three times: 31lbs, 36lbs, and 41lbs. Luke also banked a new PB mirror of 31lbs. Excellent work guys!

Dave with Lily at 36lbs mirror carp in france

To see all the fish caught this week, click here

Building the swim

Sarah was still waiting for her first bite by mid-week and with fish coming out from both ends of the lake, there were bites to be had. On Wednesday lunchtime, the guys were heading out for lunch so this was a perfect opportunity to smash some bait into the margin she was fishing and start to build the carp’s confidence. We put in about 1kg of boilie and pellets over each spot.

I recommended applying more bait when the rigs went it and rather than rush to get them out, hold off until two hours before they were likely to get a take (8pm to 10pm has been the earliest evening bite this week). As Sarah hadn’t been applying much bait to the spots, it took 24hrs for the carp to find it but find it they did and she banked a new PB mirror of 30lbs which brought big smiles to her face!

Sarah with Claws at 30lbs mirror carp in france

Despite her enthusiasm and determination and leaving the rods in until the very last second of the very last minute, the carp gods decided that that was it for her for this year. Actually, I think it just made her hungrier for more next trip, and the elusive big commons will still be there for her!

Cleaned out

A quick note on bait: with oxygen levels hovering around 80% at the moment, the fish have been smashing through everything they can find. Science says that our fish can eat 30kg of bait per day in these conditions. This might seem an extraordinary amount of food but this is how much our carp and cats can eat.

I’m not suggesting that you need that amount of bait to catch fish but whatever you bring with you, they will eat. These fish are experts at cleaning you out and it’s essential that you keep bait going into the spots at least every day unless you want to be fishing with singles. It’s difficult sometimes to have the confidence to apply bait when you’re not catching but if the conditions are right and you don’t apply bait then you certainly won’t catch. I check oxygen levels three times a week and will always be able to advise how much they are getting through at any particular time.

Jogging to the finish

Luke with a 26lb common carp

Luke kept the bait going into the snake bank margin and open water all week long and with that came the rewards. He banked another monster catfish of 96lbs a small one of 58lbs and three nice carp from 26 to 31lbs.

He and Sarah fished hard right through the last night and he slipped back his last carp just a couple hours before the final wind in. They were gutted that the holiday was over already and really didn’t want to leave. It’s wonderful to know that they’ll have another crack next year!

Catch report & Feedback from:

Luke, Sarah, Dave & Joyce
Dates at Beausoleil: 23rd to the 30th of June 2018
Number of anglers: 3

Brief details of your catches:

14 fish in total
8 x Mirror Carp: 41lbs, 36lbs, 31lbs, 31lbs, 30lbs, 27lbs, 26lbs, 21lbs
1 x Common Carp: 26lbs
3 x Catfish: 107lbs, 96lbs, 58lbs
2 x Sturgeon: 21lbs (same one twice)
1 x baby carp
5 x kittens (removed)

One big cat lost on the point of the island. Several hook pulls and plenty of missed takes…. Keep those hooks sharp!!!!

What did you find were the best swims/tactics/baits?

Points swims, the Big Double and the channel swim. All fish fell to Beausoleil baits and Matt’s double bottom bait rigs.

How was the weather?

Very warm and dry

How did you find the accommodation?

Very clean & tidy. Had everything we needed.

What could we do to improve your holiday?

Nothing, was all fab!

Would you recommend our venue to a friend?


General comments

Great house which was very clean. Lake was fab to fish. Nice big fish to catch  You were both very helpful and went the extra mile to help us catch! Thanks again. We look forward to our return!

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