French lumps on limited timePallatrax Angling
We arrived in France for the fourth time this year knowing it wasn’t going to be easy to put fish on the bank. We were scheduled for a lot of work on the lake, with the removal of some very large popular trees that were becoming unsafe so they had to come down and be logged.
Upon arriving we walked the lake with the owner and discussed a plan, then it was up to the house for a fantastic meal and several glasses of wine. Another day of socialising and recovering from the night before saw us setting up early evening, getting a bit of bait out then heads down to start fishing Sunday morning. The weather was not what we expected with temperatures up to 20 degrees and not dropping a lot at night, south westerly winds and with a few fish showing our confidence was gaining even though only one small fish had been out in the last three months. We both got off to a great start banking a mid forty and a mid fifty, however work started early Monday morning and went through till dark. For the next week, it was a pattern of work, shower, up to the house for a nice meal with a few glasses of wine which only really left us with just four days to try and bank some big kippers.
The next week brought with it a huge change in weather, and what a change it was! North/ North Westerly winds and torrential rain, with it saw me move to a swim I call winter corner. Soaked through I got organised quickly and got the rods on their spots, no more than two hours later a 40lb+ was in the back of the net and shortly after dark another thirty. In all I moved around five times, however this final move was paying off which just proved that location is one of the most important tactics you have and has to be used. Too many anglers set up home and expect fish to find them, but if you stay mobile it will certainly help to bank more fish.
Fish continued to grace our nets right up to the end of the session, with more 40’s and 30’s being landed; but it was the last night that was my highlight of the trip. I have caught a large number of fish just scraping the fifty pound mark from this lake, but finally I had a real lump in the net. It was a fish I recognised from the trip we had in May where my son caught it at 56lb, at this point it was starting to hold a fair amount of spawn. Drenched through, thanks to the twenty minute battle in heavy rain, I was shaking with adrenaline and quickly set about getting the mat and scales ready. I radioed my good mate Stu to let him know I had a big fish, having very kindly reeled in to come and help me deal with the fish we put her on the scales to see how she was fairing six months after first seeing it. Was I a happy chappy or what, the scales were reading 57lb 8oz which brought with in a new PB for this lake and only 5oz’s short of my all round PB.
All my fish were taken on a combination of an inline 2oz Stonze, fished the system with four inches of 15lb Steamlink with a long hair and size 6 ‘The hook’. The chosen bait for this trip was 14mm frozen Crave and Multiworm boilies, which I critically balanced over the Maggot and Bloodworm Crush method mix. To the method mix I added some additional chopped boilie, small Hidra snails and the complete dried Natural range and for extra attraction. Before casting, I wrapped some frozen Paste around my Stonze weight which also had the Natural range worked into it.
All in all this was a very difficult trip, not only due to the limited rod hours we had available but the fishing hasn’t been easy on this lake for some months now. I managed to stay mobile which certainly helped keep on top of the fish, location is such an important aspect of fishing along with being able to present high quality baits from Pallatrax which they couldn’t resist.
Tight lines and stay safe on the bank.