🏆 A record breaking (if slightly wet!) week’s fishing with carp to 48lbs
This week we welcomed Tony, Jo and Joseph to the venue. This was Tony’s sixth visit to us, Jo has been 3 times and Joseph, their grandson, was on his first fishing trip to France. It was really great to see them again and catch up as it’s been a few years since we saw them last. During the lake tour, we got the chance for a quick catch up and Tony picked my brains for all the latest info.
And he’s off!
We knew that the weather was set to be a bit cool and damp but the low temperature was helping to keep the oxygen levels good so I was pretty confident that Tony would have a good session. As expected, he wasted absolutely no time in catching his first fish. We’ve been seeing a lot of the 20s come out (post spawning) and the first common gave Tony a good run around.
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An old favourite
Tony used to love the Nutty Banoffee that we rolled and he still has some of the cork ball pop ups that I used to make. I haven’t made these for years so I’m really surprised he has any left! I was even more surprised to learn that Tony still uses them (dipped in my glug) and they still do the business as that’s how he caught his next one!
First night under the stars
Joseph didn’t fish the first night after the long journey as he was a bit tuckered out. He did fish Sunday night though, alongside grandad. Tony had a job to wake him when his rod burst to life during the night! Joseph’s only been carp fishing a few times in the UK and he’d never done a night before so it was all very new. He struggled a bit but I’m not surprised as his first carp weighed 27lbs! That’s not a big carp for France of course but that is massive when you are only 12!
He’s a machine!
Tony’s session continued strongly with carp of 23, 31, 17 on Monday. He then hooked one of the ‘A’ team. The mighty Cut Tail at a whopping 48lbs 5oz. Tony was pleased as punch. This one fell for a peanut popup. The fishing slowed on Tuesday during the day with just one carp of 18lbs but when I checked my messages on Wednesday morning he’d hauled out another 3 carp! Oh yes, it really did slow down mate 🤣
Joseph also hooked one of the old characters of the lake named Charlie Brown. He did really well with this one and played it all the way by himself.
So Tony had a good start to the week but what happened on Wednesday, simply defied belief. His captures for the day were: Nicky at 38lbs 8oz, Red Dot at 27lbs 7oz, Jess at 40lbs 11oz, The Parrot at 35lbs 6oz and then Perla at 44lbs 3oz. He also had a double take with Perla and in the carnage the other carp fell off but he’s fishing solo with his grandson so I don’t think he could have done much more! Tony is a strong man but this was really was tiring work and he did admit to being in bits by mid afternoon!
To see all of Tony’s captures, click here
Rigs & Bait
On the rig front, most of Tony’s fish came on multi rigs. Some were a stiff hinge design, others made from a spliceable braid with a fluorocarbon insert. These are certainly not rigs that are easy to tie, taking 20 minutes to construct each one. But they are very effective and with a quick change hook functionality, they keep on catching.
On the bait front, Tony loves his popups and wafters and has a dozen pots or more at his disposal. The most effective baits this week were two tiger nuts critically balanced with a cork insert. Tony didn’t fish with bottom baits but he did use plenty of Scopex squid to bait along the margins ‘Pac-Man’ style. To find out about this technique, check out my video here: https://youtu.be/VcdYmbYbMl4?t=719
Over each rig he used plenty of house pellets and he got through a few jars of the Nash pre-prepared particles that have proved very effective this year.
🏆 A record breaking week
The record for the most specimens caught by one angler in one week has stood at 18 for a very long time. Tony came close to breaking this before with a total of 17 and Phillip also got to 17 earlier in the year (so close!) but such weeks are very rare.
When I called round on Friday, Tony was on 18 carp and he jokingly said that he’d really like to add Mr. Angry or Pepe to this score sheet. Low and behold, what did he catch later that afternoon? Pepe at 43lbs 6oz. Bloody brilliant!
There are many anglers that would have chosen to coast and soft pedal on the last day after such an amazing week, especially in the unrelenting rain. Tony is not one of those anglers. He fished hard to the last and packed up late on Friday night ready for a very early departure on Saturday morning. His final total for the week was 20 carp.
He did hook number 21 but decided to give Joseph one more buzz and handed him the rod. Unfortunately, the carp got the better of Joseph and fell off en route to the net. Ah well, better luck next time mate. Joseph didn’t catch any big catfish but he really enjoyed catching a few of the little ones throughout the week.
Couldn’t have done it with Jo
Behind every successful angler there is an understanding and supportive partner and they don’t come any more supportive than Jo. Not only did she look after the boys all week, she was also there taking some fantastic catch pics. She even got involved with the fishing by rowing the boat and baiting up for Tony! What a team effort. We can’t include all of Jo’s pics in this catch report so head over to the monthly catch gallery, you’ll find them all there!
What’s Tony’s secret?
Here’s what stands Tony apart. He uses the ‘textbook’ Beausoleil tactics. He works really hard at his fishing. He’s never sloppy with his prep. He doesn’t know the meaning of the phrase “that’ll do”. He just does everything right, all of the time and if he makes the right calls on rig placement he catches and if not, he doesn’t.
He doesn’t point the finger of blame at anything or anyone. He’s had tough sessions where he’s been one step behind the carp but when things click into place, he capitalises on the situation.
Tony and I differ on certain aspects. He loves his different flavour popups and wafters and changes hookbaits all the time. It’s the method he’s confident in and confidence is good. Being confident isn’t enough though. It’s no substitute for doing things right.
It’s anglers like Tony who have made me a better angler over the years. I know why Tony and others like him, catch what they do. It’s not rocket science, or black magic, it’s a thorough understanding of what actually matters.
Big congrats mate, bloody brilliant week 👊 So happy you got to share all these moments with Jo and Joseph.
Catch report & Feedback from:Tony, Jo and Joseph
Dates at Beausoleil: 29 July to 5 August 2023
Number of anglers: 2
Brief details of your catches:x15 Mirrors: 48lbs 5oz, 43lbs 10oz, 39lbs, 35lbs 6oz, 34lbs 7oz, 32lbs, 31lbs, 30lbs 6oz, 28lbs 9oz, 28lbs 5oz, 28lbs 3oz, 27lbs 7oz, 23lbs 1oz, 18lbs 3oz, 17lbs
x6 Commons: 43lbs 6oz, 40lbs 11oz, 38lbs 8oz, 35lbs 6oz, 27lbs 3oz, 26lbs 6oz
Grass carp: 44lbs 3oz
x18 Catfish (2 to 20lbs)
What did you find were the best swims/tactics/baits?Point C, on Scopex Squid boilies, wafters, pop ups and tiger nuts
How was the weather?Started and finished OK, very wet and windy in the morning
How did you find the accommodation?Excellent
What could we do to improve your holiday?Nothing, everything we need
Would you recommend our venue to a friend?Most definitely
General commentsTony: Excellent as always
Jo: Lovely to be back, see you again soon xx
Joseph: Loved the fishing, especially the catfish and the lizards