A great week’s carp and cat fishing for this family with carp to 40lbs, loads of mid/upper 30’s and a three figure catfish!
This week we welcomed back the wonderful Turner family who last visited us back in 2017. Shane is the keen angler of the family with his dad Frank happy to catch roach all week long. Wife Julie doesn’t fish but loves being part of the action and just being on the bank. She even sleeps out every night with the lads. Everyone was looking forward to a relaxing week and for Shane, catching is a bonus.
I called round on Monday to check the oxygen levels which are great right now, high and stable. Shane hadn’t connected with anything yet but Frank was very happy with the roach he’d had. Shane was not bothered in the slightest and had total confidence in his setup.
First bite and it’s a 40!
The action started monday night with the first take from the Point swims. If you’re a regular reader of our catch reports, you’ll have noticed a significant increase in the size of the carp that have been being caught this year. Now it was the Big Apple’s turn to shine as he broke the 40lb mark. This is the 6th different 40 Beausoleil has produced this year. It was also a new PB for Shane who was really buzzing!
The Big Apple is an original fish and had not yet been out this year so massive congrats to Shane for tripping him up at a new top weight!
Close encounters of the catfish kind
Now Shane might not be a dyed in the wool carper but he banked some very big fish when he visited Thailand last year so he’s got more experience of massive freshwater fish than I have. On the gear front, he was well equipped with big pit Shimano’s and good rods. Unfortunately, it was a reel jam that was to cost him his next fish. It’s so important to spool Big Game (or any mono) right and there are a few tricks to it. Do it right and it will behave beautifully, miss a step and it can come back to bite you. This is what I think happened to Shane when some line sprung off the spool and got behind the spindle… not what you need when doing battle with one of our beasts!
At one point he even tried handlining it in! As he soon found out, not such a good idea as the line was ripped through his hands! Julie and Frank did their best to help but it was carnage with Big Game all over the swim, burnt hands and a very angry catfish. Needless to say this fight was lost.
With the duck broken, the spot that Shane had chosen started to pay off big style and by Wednesday he’d had a 38 and a 34 from it. This place can be very spotty at times and now is one of those times! The only way to play the game is to move traps about until you get a pickup which is exactly what Shane did. Once you’ve had one pickup you can get another and this exactly what happened. I call it spot lottery and all you have to do is spin the wheel every 24hrs until you find a winner. Once you’ve found one, you can find another. In fact by Wednesday, he had three spots rocking.
PB catfish again! This place amazes me. Big thank you to Matt and Ren for this week’s holiday.
How to bank a monster
It doesn’t usually take long to realise: “it’s not a carp…” but after one smash up and one hook pull on the cats, Shane was determined that this one was coming in! He already knew that the harder you pull, the harder they pull. Playing a big catfish is a game of patience. The best place to target the cats is in open water and this is where one of Shane’s rods was positioned.
This time, Shane took his time and allowed the fish to tire itself out in open water. And with a big un, this can take some time! The cat made multiple laps of the deeper open water and when Shane sensed it was starting to tire, he carefully teased it back to the swim. Don’t for one minute think that the game is won as this is actually where many mistakes are made. Shane opted for the gloving approach as the fish was obviously absolutely huge!
Time and time again, the catfish spat Shane’s hand out and refused to let him get a grip of the all important lower jaw. In the end the catfish clamped down so hard on Shane’s hand that he decided to haul it up like that. It was only later that he realised the serious rasping he’d got right through the glove!
Battle won, it was a massive relief and moment of pure joy for the group. On the scales, it weighed in at 110lbs, a proper beast! Big congrats to the whole team on this one.
It’s party time!
Up until now Shane had been getting it right and picking up bites here and there but then Beausoleil switched into party mode! It all started with the massive catfish and then the runs just kept coming. Shane said it was carnage in the swim. After slipping one back another rod would go and it would be full on once again. He even had a take while we was rowing back from re-doing another rod! In one day he banked six big fish. Now that’s what I call a party!
Beausoleil was fishing at its very best but you’ll only get days like this if you get everything right, down to the very last detail. It was such a pleasure to witness and to chat to Shane about how he did it. Small, carefully laid traps, each rowed out by hand and dropped from the rowing boat. Job done!
Rigs & bait
Shane is a keen follower of our blog and YouTube channel and was using the Beausoleil rig and keeping his hooks ultra sharp. On the bait front, Shane went with 10kg of our 24mm boilies in both Shrimp and Cray and Nutty Banoffee flavours, and a bag of house pellet.
A wonderful family holiday
By the end of the week, it was obvious just what a fabulous holiday it had been. Dad Frank had had a wonderful time catching a whopping 50 roach (not that he was counting mind;). Julie absolutely loves the place and was very sad it was their last day already as she really didn’t want to leave! Shane was beaming from ear to ear of course and why the hell not… he’d smashed it!
Catch report & Feedback from:Shane, Julie and Frank
Dates at Beausoleil: 25th May to 1st June 2019
Number of anglers: 1
Brief details of your catches:8 x Mirror Carp: 40lbs, 39lbs, 38lbs, 38lbs, 33lbs, 29lbs, 26lbs, 26lbs
2 x Catfish: 110lbs, 61lbs