High Summer arrived at Le Moulin de Graffeuil this week with it’s inevitable affect on the big catches of the previous sessions, the afternoon temperatures have been sizzling between 35 – 45 C, on Tuesday afternoon I recorded 48C on my patio in the full sun, at times it has been unbearable.
Those of you who have experience of carping during a french summer will appreciate that 17 big carp to 51lb is therefore a very respectable catch.
Geoff and Maddie are regulars who normally come during the early or late season in order to miss the heat but unfortunately COVID-19 has seen everybody’s arrangements change and like many of you their dates had to be moved forward.
The traffic congestion on the french roads at this time of year also had an impact and as a consequence Geoff did not get fishing until late on Saturday evening but even then we thought all was well.
Geoff set up camp on swim 5 and his first fish was in the bag at 0105 hrs Sunday morning and by 7 am he had recorded 5 stunners which included a John Angus fish called “Only-One” which looked magnificent at 51lb.
Geoff had to down-tools at that point as him and Maddie were due to go to the airport to collect son David who was coming to join them for a short 3 day break, he was going home again on Thursday.
They were back on the rods by tea-time and David was straight in to his first fish, it looked as though all was well but when I went for a wander around the lake on Monday morning the location of the fish was starting to change !!
The fish have been concentrated in the deep swims for the last few weeks, and usually, when the temperature rises that is where they stay, but it was obvious that many of them had made the move down to the shallow swims and were back on the blood-worm and any other naturals that were still on the menu, swim 1 was alive with hundreds of big carp and the silt was churning.
Geoff and David continued to pick up the odd fish so they stayed put in swim 5 in the hope that the big shoals would return at some point.
And they almost did !!
On Tuesday the shoal had grown in size and it had moved up to swim 2.
Wednesday it was ripping up the lake-bed in swim 3.
Thursday it had moved across in to the deeper basin between swims 3 and 4.
And by Friday it was all happening in front of swim 4.
Geoff packed in Friday evening and I did think that I would now be saying that on Saturday the shoal had at last arrived back in swim 5, but that was not the case, on Saturday every single one of them had returned to swim 1 and once again the silt was churning.
So much so that the 2 lads who are on the lake this week have settled in to swim 3.
David only had a couple of short easy sessions as he was here for a total break and a rest but even so he still managed to find 5 very nice fish.
David’s final fish of his session and so happened to be his new PB at 48lb 12oz, was Maddie, a Roger Bashford fish so named after his granddaughter Madison.
Maddie at 48lb 12oz :
Geoff has had some mega catches here but this time around he had to settle for 12, but some of them were absolute corkers :
17 big carp to 51lb, combined weight of 628lb, average weight 36lb 15oz, not bad for summer carping.
The final tally looks like this :
Zero Babies, Zero Doubles, 1 @ 21lb, 1 @ 22lb, 1 @ 23lb, 1 @ 27lb, 1 @ 28lb, 1 @ 33lb, 1 @ 35lb, 1 @ 36lb, 1 @ 37lb, 1 @ 39lb, 1 @ 42lb, 1 @ 43lb, 1 @ 46lb, 2 @ 48lb, 1 @ 49lb, and one at 51lb
Geoff and Maddie both suffered from the heat as it can be very draining but they soldiered on and made the best of difficult conditions, they both had a great holiday and are coming back for more in October.
Another summer-session catch report next weekend for Father and Son team Dan and Brad, it is their first visit to the lake so I look forward to letting you know how they got on, so far so good.