Thornbury Holiday Park near Holsworty have two fishing lakes 8 feet deep that have been established for approx 20 years. Both are fully stocked with a variety of healthy Carp, specimen Carp and other course fish.
The lakes are 1.25 and 1 acre in size and fishing is complimentary for guests staying in our lodges and cottages. A daily £8.00 fee applies to all other visitors.
Everyone can fish from dawn till dusk at our beautiful lakes.
We only have a few simple rules;
Barb-less hooks only
Keep nets only permitted when in a managed club competition
Above) Paul Baker recently took his son to Anglers Eldorado to show him what a real Catfish looked like up close and they caught this 30lb Wels Catfish from the Bottom Cat and Carp Lake 2 caught on double halibut pellets.
Lovely to see Families on the bank sharing their passion of fishing with siblings – what it’s all about!
*PB CATFISH FROM NIRVANA**
David Poolman fished Nirvana’s Day Ticket Specimen Cat Lake and managed to catch a personal best 56lb 8oz Catfish in the early hours.
David caught his PB on a soaked halibut pellet/squid pop up combination.
(Above)Angling Guide Julian Chidgey organised a Cat and Carp Camp weekend at Nirvana. The conditions were tough to say the least, they lost a few but Morgan Lloyd from Oxfordshire saved the weekend by catching his 1st ever Catfish at a whopping 60lbs 3oz and a 15lb Common both from the Specimen Cat Lake.
Julian shared –
‘Well what a weekend that was! Winds that threatened to launch bivvies into the lake, and rain that had me contemplating building an ark! The anglers who attended the Carp and Cat Camp stuck at it despite the weather, knowing that it would only take 1 bite to make the session a success. Morgan Lloyd had the first breakthrough after we spotted a 30-40lb carp top between the waves and a single hookbait cast close by soon gave a bite. Unfortunately the fish dropped off before we got to see it.
Richard and Tony also both had big fish top in front of them and the tension was clear as it felt a bite was on the cards. Morgan was the lucky one again as a single hookbait (Tor baits Squido pop up) produced a bite as darkness fell. A modest mid double common was the result but with the temperature falling and the wind having turned to a bitter North-Easterly it was good to see a fish on the bank. As first light came this morning the keen anglers stood over the rods counting down the final minutes of the session. An alarm sounded and Morgan was again the lucky angler, from the outset it was clear this was a special fish and I soon paddling out with my landing net to scoop up a very long catfish.
It was great to see the teamwork and camaraderie as we weighed and photographed the 60lb 3oz monster. As we packed away our wet gear and headed our separate ways it was great to think of the new friendships formed through a great weekend. I will definitely be organising another event for next Spring so please get in touch to reserve your place for a shot at the fish of a lifetime.’
Ben Moore 11 from Dorchester, fished Nirvana’s Day Ticket Specimen Catfish Lake with his Dad and caught a massive Wels Catfish of 60lbs beating his previous PB by 30lbs!!! The Fish was longer than him!! It took him 15 minutes to land it in wet and windy conditions, but that didn’t faze Ben!!
Ben caught the Monster Cat using 3 x 25 mm glugged Halibut pellets, long hair rig, popped up 12 inches using a size 2, debarbed eagle claw catfish hook on a 3lb test curve ‘Free Spirit Pike Tamer’ rod, 18lb monofilament line with 24 inches of 40lb ‘shock leader’ monofilament end tackle.
Zyg at Anglers Paradise sent North Devon Angling News this latest story……
Here is a photo of the winning Carp from+ the monthly 5’C’S (The Crazy, Crafty, Cunning Carp Catchers) match I am very proud to say that I caught it wearing the same T Shirt I took to Cape Verde and managed to catch a thousand pound plus Blue Marlin which straightened the hook and came off. As the fish was going to be released and the leader was touched according to IGFA rules it counts.
The interesting thing is that the match before we went to Cape Verde I wore the same T Shirt and won the match with a different 20lb Carp. It looks like it works for catching fish. Enclosed is a picture of the straightened hook.
Some stunning fish from the Anglers Paradise Complex if you want a big cat now is the time to target the species before the autumn arrives.
(Below) Richard Craig who caught a 35lb 12oz Mirror from Nirvana’s Kracking Carp Lake which completely knocked his previous PB of 17lbs off the scale!!
(Below) Tyler Nightingill with a personal best 58lb Wels Catfish from the Main Carp Lake
(Below)Michael Pallett who caught his 1st ever Catfish at a whopping 67lbs from the Main Carp Lake which is pretty awesome for your first ever Catfish!!
(Below)Andy Nettleton joined us for his 1st ever Anglers Paradise Holiday and couldn’t wait to fish the Famous Koi Lake! It wasn’t long before he started catching plenty including this beauty and Andy’s new personal best at 10lbs 6oz!!
(Below)Ben Hazell with a new UK PB at 27.2llb Linear mirror carp. Caught on a 20mm Baitworks Royal Marine hard hook bait which was backleaded and cast close to the lilies. .
(Above)Gillian Lowrie, 39 from Scotland decided to give Anglers Eldorado a go in search of a UK personal best and that she certainly did!! She only went and caught the biggest Cat of the year from the Bottom Cat and Carp Lake recorded this year at 40lbs 13oz!
Gillian caught the Wels Catfish on double 21mm halibut pellets.
PERSONAL BEST KOI MAKES 1 HAPPY HAPPY ANGLER!!
Andy Nettleton joined us for his 1st ever Anglers Paradise Holiday and couldn’t wait to fish the Famous Koi Lake!
It wasn’t long before he started catching plenty including this beauty and Andy’s new personal best at 10lbs 6oz!!
Andy Shared –
‘I was surface fishing on the Koi Lake. I had a great take which lead me a song and dance around my peg. When it finally submitted and went in the net i was surprised. After weighing the Koi the scales went 10lb 6oz a new PB Koi for me!!’
Congratulations go to Bideford angling Club for organising a series of Junior Angling Matches on their home water Tarka Swims. The future of angling rests with these young people who will hopefully embrace a pastime that will bring a lifetime of enjoyment. Many thanks to Martin Turner for the report.
Results @ Junior match/coaching session No.3
1st Ruari Hewitt 8lb 2oz
2nd Will Richards 6lb 6oz
3rd Brooke Copp 3lb 9oz
4th Adam Wheeler 2lb 14oz
Ruari has fished with maggots on peg P for a nice bag of bream. Will, on the next peg, fished with a ledgered pellet and caught a lovely mirror carp for second place. Brooke fished with a feeder and landed a fine bream for third on peg R. 11 different young anglers have fished the, closely contested, 3 match series and Adam Wheeler has come out winner of the Junior Cup,with a points total of 30 ,in 2nd spot Tyler Scott on 29, 3rd Brooke Copp on 28, 4th Ruari Hewitt 24 5th Tomas Scott 22. Thank you all ,helpers and fishers, and Summerlands Tackle for your support.
A great start to the summer holidays for Jensen Bowden who fished at Horwood Lakes. First time coarse fishing and he managed to land 75 carp and tench altogether with the best mirror carp of just under 10lb, Jensen caught well on corn and waggler from the top lake. Cracking day.
I caught my first coarse fish from Mill Park Pond near Berrynarbor whilst in my early teens a tiny perch with bristling spiky fins and bold stripes. It took a worm suspended beneath an orange tipped quill float in a scene that could have been lifted direct from the pages of Crabtree that evocative book that inspired many young anglers in that age long before computer games and mobile phones. I spent many hours fishing at Mill Pond as a youngster fascinated by the mysterious quality of its tree shaded waters.
Roach, perch, bream and eels were our target as young anglers and it was generally simplistic fishing with float fished maggot or worms. As we grew older we sometimes tried for the carp that glided through the water on sunny days appearing almost blue as the shafts of sunlight penetrated the water. I caught my first carp from water on float-fished sweetcorn in 1981 a fish that took close to an hour to bring to the net on just 3lb b.s line. In the early eighties I went on to catch several carp from the lake to almost twenty pounds. The pond also produced several big perch during those years the biggest I heard of was found washed up dead and weighed 4lb 10oz a fish that was at the time very close to the British Record.
Whilst I always had affection for Mill Park or Mill Pond as we knew it then my visits dwindled as my fishing focus changed and the pond of my youth fell into decline with silting issues and dwindling stocks of fish. In recent seasons I was pleased to hear of good catches of roach, skimmer bream and carp.
I was recently delighted to receive an invitation to visit the lake once again and seized the opportunity to revisit my early memories of fishing. Knowing that the lake held good numbers of silver fish I decided to invite three match angling friends to fish the pond on a summers evening. I would tag along with my camera and attempt to capture some of the ponds magic. They would undoubtedly be far more able to show of the fantastic fishing available than myself.
I am always wary of revisiting childhood abodes as time and maturity can sometimes shatter those treasured memories. Fortunately Mill Park has retained its charm and many of the features from my youth remained unchanged whilst the addition of a few water lilies, sympathetic bank work and de-silting has if anything enhanced the water.
Martin Turner, Neilsen Jeffrey and John Forster are all keen match anglers and all enjoy regular success on the local circuit. On this summer evening in early July I joined them in the swims I had fished all those years ago. Sunlight streamed through the trees into the greenish opaque waters. Carp basked on the surface in the warm sunshine. The quaking of ducks echoed across the water. It was as if time had stood still for over forty years.
Martin and Neilsen had elected to fish side by side, Neilsen using feeder fishing tactics whilst Martin pole fishing with tares feeding hempseed. I was absorbed immediately watching the quiver tip as it shook and pulled round and the float as it sat optimistically before darting beneath the surface.
It was fascinating to watch these masters of their craft at work as they constantly made tiny adjustments to their set ups as the fickle fish appeared to constantly change in their willingness to take the bait. It was Martin whose tactics appeared to win over on this evening with quality roach responding to constant feeding with just a few grains of hemp every cast. At times the water seemed to shimmer silver sided roach fed in frenzy beneath the calm surface. Steady feeding seemed to be the key to consistent success with a few grains of hemp fed each cast with Martin getting into steady rhythm of feed, hook fish, unhook, feed and repeat.
Martin handed me the pole for five minutes and I swung a couple of roach to hand experiencing the sensation of pole elastic and a lack of running line.
A few yards along the bank John Forster was using pole tactics to winkle out roach from beside a lily pad. He also made brief contact with a carp that smashed the light tackle as it surged for freedom.
After close to three hours fishing it was time to check the total catch and take a couple of pictures. The owners had allowed us to use keep-nets for this friendly evening demonstration of fishing tactics. Martin, Neilsen and John caught well over thirty pounds, all four of us then retired to Mill Parks on site bar for a lengthy discussion on fishing over a well earned cool pint.
Mill Parks campsite is set in a stunning valley with modern well-maintained facilities. The lake is stocked with carp, roach, bream and chub. As a site for summer camping with excellent fishing it comes highly recommended. It is especially suited for young anglers who should be able to catch their first fish with ease and delight in the excitement of that unique contact with nature that can lead to a lifetime of joy.
Out of season Mill Park offers superb roach fishing with regular matches staged with some stunning nets of silver fish winning matches.
(Below)Michael Smith from Basildon won our Fish Of The Week Competition catching an amazing 3 personal bests!! Michael caught a PB 31lb Mirror, then a 32lb Mirror topped by catching Parrot at 46lbs 3oz!!! All caught from Nirvana’s Day Ticket Kracking Carp Lake. Michael’s said – “I’ve fished Anglers Paradise for over 12 years now and fished the Kracking Karp for the last 6 years without a bite until this year where I had 3 new personal bests of 31lbs, 32lbs topped off with a 46lb 3oz Mirror that is Parrot!! What a Fish it is, I’m over the moon!
As always, I caught them on a cog system with an Essex Bait firm called Baitlocker Baits SX. The 32lb Mirror was caught on 3 fake balanced Corns with a small PVA Bag. The 31lb and Parrot were caught on a bottom sx bait with 20 freebies on both.
What a session once again at Anglers Paradise, as always a top week!”
(Below)Sam Lancaster, 26 from Stevenage had a very productive week of fishing catching two 20lb Commons from Nirvana’s Xanadu Lake, a PB 43lb Cat from the Specimen Cat Lake, four Catfish from Eldorado’s Bottom Cat and Carp Lake weighing 33lb, 29lb, 24lb, and 19lb and a stunning 14lb Mirror. Sam caught the 20lb 4oz Common on a 10mm bucha berry pop up, and the 20lb Common on a 10mm milky toffee pop up on a kd rig. Sam caught the 43lb Catfish and 24lb Cat using a Sticky Baits the Krill bottom bait. The 33lb Catfish fell for a CC Moore Pacific Tuna 18mm. And lastly, the 29lb Catfish was caught using 18mm maple and cream boilies snowman with 10mm milky toffee pop up.
The latest news from Zenia at the prolific Anglers Paradise complex.. Don’t forget that many of the lakes are also open to day ticket anglers.
(Above)Bradley Bone from Clacton On Sea in Essex had a session on Nirvana’s Specimen Cat Lake in the hope of catching a big one, at 7.30pm that happened!! Bradley landed a personal best 54lb 6oz Wels Catfish on two 30mm halibut pellets fished in the margin.
FISH OF THE WEEK WINNER 6TH JULY IS… ( Above)
Caz Osborne from Stamford, Lincolnshire who after years of trying…finally beat her previous personal best 13lb Carp with a 18lb 3oz Mirror from Eldorado’s Bottom Cat and Carp Lake! Her partner Julian was green with envy!! She also had a 25lb Cat whilst the men had their tails between their legs!!
Caz’s Story –
“On the build up to our stay at Anglers Paradise, we had especially been looking forward to fishing the Bottom lake at Eldorado and planned to do 2 nights and days. However I have been ill with pneumonia since before Christmas, Jules (aka the King) and my friend Rob took my kit down for me and set up camp. This year I set no goals for fishing, but really hoped to better my long standing best carp weight of 13lb 13oz.
With the weather being as hot as it had been, the King set up running rigs to target the Cats and this resulted in a cat at 25lb same as my previous PB. However on Wednesday morning we had some rain and it was much cooler, so we hoped the Carp would show.
I was delighted when the alarm rang out and I caught a lovely Mirror Carp at 18lb 3ozs which broke my old PB by over 5lbs which stood for 4years!!
It was caught on my new h-gun Nash rod which was a present from Rob, using a Paradise bait Catastrophic main bait topped with a burton bait squid and octopus pop up, wrapped in the Kings magic paste all in a PVA bag with halibut pellets casted to the island.”
WELL DONE CAZ – ANOTHER FEMALE ANGLER WINNING!!!
**SPECIES & PB GALORE FOR ONE ANGLER!!**
Kevin Boxall from Grantham, Lincolnshire had a reel mixed bag of catches catching plenty of Carp including a personal best 26lb 13oz Linear from the Specimen Carp Lake, a personal best 37lb 10oz Cat from the Octopussy, a personal best 3lb 8oz Eel also from the Octopussy and a lovely Golden Tench from the Specimen Carp Lake.
Here’s his story –
“Sunday, I went to Octopussy, and caught a 37lb 10oz Catfish, using luncheon meat. This was a personal best. On Monday I went back to another area in Octopussy and caught a 18lb 10oz Catfish on halibut pellets and my biggest ever Eel at 3lb 8oz.
On Tuesday I went to the Main Carp Lake and landed a 17lb 6oz, with a number of smaller carp, using Live System boilies. I stayed overnight, but no action, however on Wednesday, after catching a number of small carp and losing two good sized ones I eventually ended the day with a 19lb 8oz Mirror Carp.
On Thursday, I decided to try Easy Access, landing 2 Catfish of 20lb 4ozs and 14lb 9ozs. On Friday I decided to try my luck on the Specimen Carp Lake, first of all I fished the split and caught many small Carp and a Golden Tench (not weighed, estimated about 2 1/2lb). I was getting fed up, so decided to move near the deeper water. After catching a few more little Carp, I eventually landed a 26lb 13oz Mirror Carp again using Live system boilies. I had fantastic week, have booked up our 4th holiday for next year before we left.”
Richard Mason, 35 from Newquay joined us for a session on Nirvana’s Specimen Cat Lake and caught this stunner of a Mirror weighing 38lb 7oz making it a new UK Personal Best for him!
Richard shared –
“I was in peg one fishing for cats down each margin, during the day baiting up to the point of the island and at about 6pm lots of carp started topping so I changed one of my rigs to pallatrax stone leads simple snow man rig with mackerel Xt 15mm and sticky baits white pop up.”
Open match on Tanners and Woodpecker lakes with a continental payout. winner on the day Zac Newton who bagged himself an impressive 344lb 1oz from peg 16 on Tanners lake fishing shallow on the pole 8mm pellets . In second place was Paul Morris who had 269lb 15oz from peg 18 on Woodpecker lake fishing down the edge /deck on the pole. In third place was Dave Stockton who had 227lb 13oz from peg 5 on Tanners lake fishing the waggler.
Its mid summer the longest days are here now and it doesn’t get any better out at the waters edge. Over the next few days it be would great to share a few images of summer at the waters edge. So lets see some images of fish, water and fishing. Lets get away from those standard grip and pose shots of angler with fish and try to get a bit of atmosphere and the joys of angling. Please either email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org or just post on the North Devon Angling News Facebook page and I will transfer from there.
Next weekend I publish a picture special of North Devon Angling Views! Thanks for your response so far
Report and pictures below from Zenia at Anglers Paradise
Zenia Drury-Gregorek (myself) took her son Zaine, age 7 fishing for the day on the Specimen Tench and Orfe Lake and had a great day full of beautiful Tench! Zaine caught a personal best 4lb Golden Tench and Zenia caught her 1st ever Koi Tench and many Golden Tench up to 4lb+, all float fished off the bottom using strawberry soft hook pellets – Life is better with Fishing and it’s even better when you can share fishing moments with your son.
(Below)5C’s Member Maggot aka Mike Whitfield caught a Personal Best 64lb Wels Catfish from the Main Carp Lake, it gave him the fight of his life but he won the fight in the end! Maggot caught the Monster using Paradise Baits Castastrophic dumbells.
We had the lovely handsome actor that is Will Mellor of Hollyoaks fame come and stay with us bringing his wife, son and daughter. They had lots of fun fishing every day and caught some stunners along the way! Will said “Had a fantastic few days at Anglers Paradise with the family! Caught some great fish, had quality family time and met some lovely people.”
(Below) Julian Chidgey got in on the action too and caught a stunning 19lb Linear and mid double Grass Carp from the Main Lake and two 15lb Mirrors from the Octopussy. Julian used his favourite helicopter set up with short pop up rigs and Tor baits Squido.
(Below) Simon Winters tried to keep this catch quiet but his friend shared his catch for him! Si caught a personal best 42lb Mirror from Nirvana’s Kracking Carp Lake – we believe it’s the Parrot.
(Below) A COUPLE WIN♥ – The standard of fish of the week entries was so high that we had a draw, and what made it more special is that it was a tie between Ben Taylor AND his girlfriend Bex Nelson with 2 amazing catches! Bex caught this stunning 20lb 4oz fully scaled Mirror from the Main Carp Lake using Urban Baits Nutcracker and Ben caught the most beautiful personal best 8lb+ Koi Carp from the Koi Lake off the top on bread – amazing pictures too!
(Below)Ryan Owen had a fantastic week of fish, catching a 24lb Common, 20lb 8oz and 19lb 13oz fully scaled Mirrors from the Main Carp Lake, a 20lb Mirror from Nirvana’s day ticket Fat Boys Lake and a 20lb 2oz Fully scaled Mirror from the Specimen Carp Lake. Ryan was sing responsive baits, the code boilies on 8inch rigs fished snowman style on a white citrus pop-up.
(Below)Thomas Gibson caught a lovely looking 22lb 12oz Mirror from the Main Carp Lake at Anglers Paradise which is a new personal best for him using a white pop up!
(Below) Jacob Judges, 10, from Rochester, Kent, truly had a great week with us catching not 1 but 2 personal bests!! Jacob caught a PB 24lb Common from Nirvana’s Day Ticket Xanadu Lake AND a PB 18lb 11oz Grass Carp from the Main Carp Lake, his Dad was very proud!!
Anglers Paradise has a wealth of fishing for both the specimen hunter and the family. Below are a few pictures and stories from Zenia that sum up the fun and fishing available at Anglers Paradise.
(Below)Father and son Charlie and Archie Snell enjoyed a great fishing trip to Anglers Paradise.
GUIDED SESSION SUCCESS
Wayne hasn’t fished for 20 years because of general life getting in the way! But he decided it was finally time to get back out there, so he got in touch with Julian Chidgey to go on a guided session and he caught a personal best 20lb 12oz Mirror from the Specimen Carp Lake amongst a few others! Of course Julian got in on the action too and caught a stunning 19lb Linear and Grass Carp from the Main Lake and two 15lb Mirrors from the Octopussy.
Julian shared with us –
“Wayne used to fish on a regular basis but with a busy job he recently realised he hasn’t picked a rod up for twenty years! With a van full of new tackle Wayne headed down to Anglers Paradise for a holiday, and a guided session.
We started yesterday evening by getting a couple rods out on Octopussy lake so we could sit down and look at rigs and baits. After 3 anglers had struggled on the lake during the day I wasn’t expecting miracles so was happy to see Wayne land a double figure carp within 10 minutes! An hour later and we were interrupted whilst tying some rigs up by another slightly bigger fish. My favourite helicopter set up with short pop up rigs and Tor baits Squido producing the bites.
Not wanting to night fish Wayne headed to his accommodation to get some sleep ahead of a stalking day today. Based on the conditions I planned a route starting with a bit of a gamble, the Specimen Carp Lake. The fish in here are big but ultra-wary. After an hour of feeding floaters we had two of larger fish feeding and after setting the hook, Wayne did a great job playing the fish through the weedy bay.
I hadn’t asked Wayne what his biggest fish was but the look on his face told me everything as the scales settled on 20lb 12oz. What a return to angling!
The rest of the day saw us catch from several other lakes whilst I showed Wayne some great spots to try during the rest of his holiday. Only a few slots left now for summer sessions and the September carp and cat camp, so get in touch if you want to improve your angling.”
WELL DONE WAYNE – GREAT TO SEE YOU’VE GOT THE FISHING BUG BACK!
Zenia Gregorek with a stunning golden tench.
CARP AND CATFISH BRACE FROM THE MAIN LAKE
Congratulations to Martin Judges who stayed with us with his wife and son and caught a 29lb 12oz Mirror AND a 63lb 2oz Wels Catfish from the Main Carp Lake, which I believe are both personal bests!
Martin shared with Anglers Paradise –
“Mega Main Lake Carp and Cat brace!
I have been coming to anglers paradise for a number of years now, and on occasion have managed a nice carp or a nice Cat but I have not managed both in the same week let alone the same session.
This changed this week when about 16.00 on Wednesday, I had a take from a margin spot on the Main Lake landing a stunning 29.12 Mirror and followed this up 02.30 on Thursday morning landing a massive 63.02 Catfish!!
Both fish were caught on Active bait solutions Hydra K barrell waters presented on korda kamo hooklinks with size 8 Korda Frank X hooks.
Just had this email from a Father who just finished a 72 hour session with his 2 Sons at our Day Ticket Complex ‘Anglers Eldorado’ , and they caught plenty!!
My two sons and myself, recently had a 72hr session on the Eldorado Lakes choosing the Bottom Carp and Cat Lake and also had a fish in between on the others on our ticket.
We had a brilliant trip, although the carp were playing hard to get, we had over 30 Carp and 11 Cats, plus some lovely Koi from the Koi Lake, unfortunately the bigger Catfish managed to snag us up resulting in hook pulls!!
We had a great session and are looking forward to getting back, largest cat 25lb, largest carp 16lb
Wilder Van Koutrik aged ten caught this stunning tench of 6lb 7oz from a Private Lake near Barnstaple. Its great to receive a picture of a fine tench from a local water as these fish are no were near as abundant as there were in North Devon waters. This is partially due to an obsession with carp fishing and also I guess due to environmental factors? Its also great to be able to report of a successful junior anglers.
Many thanks for the below report from Martin Turner
NDMG v Bude Canal Anglers
. Individual Results
1st Simon John Allen 34lb 4oz
2nd Andy Gray 29lb 6oz
3rd Kevin Shears 27lb 4oz
4th Paul Morris 26lb 14oz
5th Paul Ware 26lb 10oz .
North Devon Match Group hosted the first leg of our annual inter club event on Killock Lakes , the 12 a side match was fished in hot humid conditions which led to a close match. Pole fishing dominated with Simon John Allen coming out on top for Bude Anglers, but this sterling performance by their captain was not enough to prevent NDMG from winning on the day 164 points to 136 , over 350lb of fish were landed, and we all look forward to the return leg in September, thanks to all competitors and Killock Farm Shop for breakfasts and after match snack.
The warm spring weather has truly woken the big catfish in Anglers Paradises Day Ticket Specimen Cat Lake with some awesome cats banked. See report from Anglers Paradise below.
Tony Trenerry from Launceston had a Red Letter session on our day ticket Specimen Cat Lake catching 4 Cats of 46lb 4oz, 48lb, 51lb 8oz and a new PB of 54lb 8oz!! What a session!! Tony also caught another 51lb 3oz Cat on his previous session!
Tony shared with Anglers Paradise – “Yesterday I had a real red letter day session, the kind of session we fishermen dream of! I did a 24 hour session on the Specimen Cat Lake, and managed to land 4 lovely hard fighting Cats, the biggest was at 54lb 8oz which is now my new PB!
I caught the Catfish with Luncheon meat and fish based boilies, all fish were caught during the day, a true work out, as they all really gave me the run around, and truly put my gear to the test, I need a rest now!”
Also getting in the action was Michael Pearson from Nottinghamshire, who had Cats of 37lb 9oz, 43lb 9oz and finised with a new personal best of 58lb 10oz also from the Specimen Cat Lake! Michael used a Krill boilie with a bag of matching boilies in a pva bag with a 1 foot long hook link to a size 4 barbless wide gape hook KD style.
Matthew Colegate, 26 from Leigh in Kent caught some stunning Koi including a Two Tone Koi!! Matthew lost count of the number of Koi he ended up catching, the biggest at 8lb 8oz and 8lb 2oz, I’ve included all the pictures as they are far too good not to share!! All the fish were caught on free lined mixers/A2 baits pellets.
I’m personally extremely envious and I’m sure many of you will be too!!
This is a fun fishing venue teaming with rudd and a few carp that have probably grown to a little over 5lb maybe more. I had persuaded Snowbee ambassador Jeff Pearce to join James and I on a fun trip to try and catch a carp using fly fishing tactics. James would act as back up using free lined stalking tactics to get a carp for the camera if Jeff and I failed. Jeff is a dedicated Fly Fisher and loves to catch his fish on Fly Tactics whilst I tend to be a little more flexible in my approach generally using whatever tactics are within the rules to catch. On this occasion however I was going to remain strictly Fly Only!
Jeff was first to tempt a fish a small golden scaled rudd.
This was closely followed by a couple more tiny rudd on Jeff’s small nymph patterns. The fascinating aspect of this being that once a couple had been caught it seemed that the lakes population had been briefed for catching consistently became frustratingly difficult.
James was persisting with the traditional bread tactics and caught a pleasing rudd early in the evening and glimpsed a couple of carp cruising the margins.
After a couple of hours we retired to the lakeside Summerhouse for a well earned cuppa with delicious ham and chutney sandwiches, salad, crisps and Kit Kat’s. Special thanks must go to Sandra for making us welcome and ensuring we didn’t go hungry.
Fortified we returned to the fishing I dabbled my chum mixer fly in the margins and watched the rudd nudge and nibble at it whilst I hoped to see a carp materialize from the green tinged water and devour my offering. Jeff and James had crept up to the shallows where James had spotted a few carp. I strolled up to see how things were going and Jeff said a good carp had slurped up a bit of floating crust from amongst the reeds. James had modified his tactics and was using a chum mixer on the hook that slowly sank with the weight of the hook. This tactic proved successful as the line suddenly zipped tight and the rod hooped over as a carp surged to and fro stirring up clouds of silt as it fought gamely before eventually slipping over the rim of the net. Sandra appeared at this moment to congratulate James on catching the first carp of the season a handsome mirror carp of around 4lb.
Agapi is the perfect venue for a family fishing excursion with hordes of small rudd to ensure plenty of action and the chance of a carp to set the pulse of the young angler racing. This is thie sort of water all young anglers should start off on for many anglers today set their sights so high that they reach the summit too early without enjoying the journey. Of course old timers like me still get immersed in the fascination of the chase and the challenge of catching whatever the lake holds.
If you are going to Agapi I suggest you give Sandra a ring for directions and to book the lake and secure a few hours of tranquil seclusion deep in the countryside.
Ross Stanway enjoyed a great day out with his son Charlie at Riverton Fishery. He was particularly chuffed with the crucian carp that was his first of the species. Young Charlie caught his biggest fish to date. They caught tench a few bream and a few small carp.
Ross commented, ” I have to say what a well managed fishery Riverton is now very impressed. All the fish we caught were in prime condition.”
(Above) AMAZING GOLDEN CATCH! Here is Jonathan Sanders from Corsham, Wiltshire with his truly fantastic Personal Best 5lb 8oz Golden Tench from the Specimen Tench and Orfe Lake! Jonathan caught the beauty on float fished sweetcorn.
Father and Son, Daniel and Michael Shephard stayed with us last week at Anglers Paradise for the first time and wanted to catch some of the Specimens on the main complex Lakes.
Michael Shephard caught a stunning 26lb 4oz Common from the Specimen Carp Lake, Daniel caught two pretty scaley Mirrors of 22lb 1oz and 14lb 7oz, with Daniel also landing a 15lb 5oz Common from the Main Carp Lake. All fish were caught on our popular Paradise Baits ‘The Twist’ boilies. Daniel said – “It has been a pleasure fishing on your complex, we will definitely be coming back with some more of our friends thanks again for having us.”
(Below)2 PERSONAL BESTS FOR YOUNG HARVEY! We are over the moon for Harvey Cooper, age 10 years old from Seaton who’s beaten his Personal Best twice in 2 hours! Harvey caught a 17lb 6oz Mirror and a 22lb 12oz Mirror from the Main Carp Lake. Harvey set up on Friday 13th on Neville’s Point with his brother Tristan and Dad Scott, casting his baits over to the margin of the 5c’s island he settled into the session. At 9pm Harvey had his first take which resulted in a 17lb 6oz Mirror (New PB!!) he left that rod out to let his swim settle. At 11pm his final rod burst into life which resulted in another Personal Best 22lb12oz Mirror. Both fish were caught on Paradise Baits ‘The Twist’ boilies. Harvey said – “Two pb’s in two hours, I was well chuffed!! Friday 13th not unlucky for some!!”
(Below) Julian Chidgey had a couple of hours at Anglers Paradise on the Specimen Carp Lake. After seeing a couple of big carp sunbathing amongst the weed, it took him a while to get them interested, but then out of the blue a lovely fish appeared in the margin and took a stray mixer. Swinging the cut down pop up hookbait into position gave him an instant take and a beautiful 24lb Mirror.
John Jobson fished a North Devon Lake and had a surprise when he hooked a hard fighting fish that took 20 minutes to get to the net using a 1.75lb TC carp rod and 15lb b.s line. The catfish scaled 30lb! The warm sunshine will bring these hard fighting predators onto the feed.
Chillcheaters are now producing army green jackets, smocks and bib and brace in their renowned Aquatherm material these products are ideal for the carp and trout fisherman who want 100% waterproof clothing that is both lightweight and hard wearing. Braunton Baits are stocking the products. The jackets are £159, The smocks £140 and the Bib and Brace £130.
Water temperatures are slowly rising and this normally gets the catfish moving. The latest report from Anglers Paradise come right on time. The first few weeks of springlike weather often see the cats go on feeding frenzy with multiple catches likely especially from Eldorado’s catfish lake that has very good head of fish. If you want a fish of lifetime try the Day Ticket Nirvana lake which has cats to over 50lb!
With the temperatures rising, the Cats are showing!! A 35lb Cat came out of Eldorado’s Bottom Cat and Carp Lake and here’s Jack Sparrow who caught a Personal Best 47lb 3oz Cat from Nirvana’s Specimen Cat Lake on a Krill Wafter on a running rig with a pva bag of smashed up halibut pellets and ground bait. As you can see Jack caught the Catfish at night and had to do a self-take so the quality of picture isn’t great but you can still see the size of it!
The pictures below sum up the Spring so far. Many thanks to Martin Turner for his new report from the enduring North Devon Match Group!
1st Kevin Shears 57lb 12oz
2nd Christopher Morris 52lb 13oz
3rd Martin Turner 42lb 13oz
4th Tom Downing 41lb 11oz
5th Paul Morris 41lb 6oz
6th Nathan Underwood 31lb 2oz .
Silvers James Grogan 7lb 1oz .
Despite our efforts that man Shears has secured yet another victory! Kevin drew on the road side on lake 4 and landed 20 carp on corn on the pole in the margins. Christopher drew on one of the reed beds on lake 3 for second also on corn on the pole. Martin was next peg to him , and caught on bread and maggots. The spring day started well for the 17 competitors but deteriorated in to sleet by the time we weighed in .Thanks to Start Sharp for allowing us to use both lakes and providing breakfast rolls.
Easter is an ideal time to take the family to the waters edge and Agapi Fruit and Fishing Lake is an ideal location to catch a few fish in tranquil surroundings. Situated close to Torrington the lake has a healthy population of crimson finned golden rudd and numerous carp that are growing well. As the waters warms the venues carp should be tempted with that traditional of carp baits the floating crust.
Big Fish Off
The latest series of the Big Fish Off is scheduled to air on ITV4 starting on the 29th March at 8pm. Not sure when the episode that was shot here is on, but there are sure to be some cracking episodes with a load of laughs, can’t wait. The show will be discussed on Soccer AM this Saturday,17th March and there will also be clips from the forthcoming series.
The Big One
If you’re planning on visiting The Big One Show between the 24th and 25th March in Farnborough, Hampshire, then make sure you pay the Anglers Paradise Team a visit! They will be on stand 28a along with Deception Angling. Zyg and Zenia will be there to greet you. Over the course of the weekend there is an opportunity to win a holiday for 8 people. For a lucky few, or probably the early birds, they’ll be a chance to take away a sample of the “Twist” which is one of the Paradise Baits range, produced exclusively by Burton Bait Rollers.
All the big angling names will be there, as well as their products and hopefully there will be some cracking deals to be had. “We hope to see you there for our 1st ever show, we are very excited!!”
Fish Moving Well
Lee Abbott one of our estate staff lost a big fish on Kraking Carp the other day. Fish are moving well now that the milder climes are here, were glad to see the back of the cold spell we had the other week, even we experienced snow even though it “never snows in Devon”
Special Easter Offer
We still have Fisherman’s Majestic on offer (sleeps 4) on March 31st normally £900 a week, for the offer price of £700. Fabulous views across Dartmoor at a saving of over 20%. Offer is on a first come first served basis. Come and join Rose and myself for. Apart from the offer there is still are a limited number of villas available over Easter.
Its seems that spring is slow to arrive and just as we think its getting milder another cold snap is forecast. But any day now we will get that first real day of spring when warmth prevails and balmy air descends.
There are of course signs that spring is here as daffodils, primroses and celandine’s line the hedgerows and roadside verges. Frogs spawned a couple of months ago now and their spawn is already transforming into tadpoles. It will be soon be the turn of the toads to converge onto lakes and ponds their birdlike croak echoing around. Any time now we could glimpse that first sand martin and then that true harbinger of spring and summer the swallows.
As anglers we are of course very aware of nature that is around us and this is all part of what fishing is all about. I am always filled with optimism as the days grow longer and the chance to fish evening sessions in daylight arrives. Of course many plans are made and time is as ever less plentiful than desired. In just a couple of weeks the clocks spring forward.
There will be the chance to cast a fly across the river for spring salmon. Flick a dry fly upstream for wild brown trout or fish a buzzer on a Stillwater for hard fighting rainbows.
Carp anglers will relish the warming water knowing that carp will become more active and as a result will search for food maybe even coming onto the surface where a chum mixer will be slurped down with that delightful sound of summer evenings.
If you’re a sea angler your thoughts will be turning to bass, smoothound and ray. It will of course depend upon your favourite angling style what you seek. The bait angler will enjoy sitting back waiting for the nodding rod and screaming reel. The lure fisher will be more mobile searching for fish casting here and there searching for that electric tug on the line.
I could ramble on but I am sure you get the vibes that I am trying to convey that excitement at the arrival of new a season and fresh piscatorial adventures. I hope to report on your catches over these coming months, not just the fish but also an appreciation of all that angling means. So please feel free to send me your successes, stories and any images of the angling world you enjoy.
Many thanks go to those who sponsor this site and support this project.
John Shapland enjoyed a cold days fishing at Jennetts Reservoir using quiver tip tactics to catch skimmer bream and small roach. A raw prawn bait fishing in the margins tempted this lovely perch of 2lb 9 1/2oz.
Ashley Bunning has followed up his capture of a common carp called ‘The Don’ at 34.04 from Upper Tamar Lake with this cracking Perch of 3.12 caught on an Eco Gear Ikajako soft lure fished from the perch boat.
Kevin Smith has also been in the action with this lovely 3.08 Perch from the same venue.
North Devon Match Group Championship No. 2 Millpark Results
Many thanks to Martin once again for his report on the North Devon Match Groups match at Mill Pond. Some stunning nets of roach in this close run event. This has to be one of the best silver fish waters in the area! A venue I have many fond memories of as I caught my first coarse fish there almost fifty years ago!
1st Kevin Shears 29lb 6oz
2nd Pete Slade 27lb 4oz
3rd Martin Turner 27lb
4th Nathan Underwood 26lb 10oz
10 of our members enjoyed a rare mild early spring day on Millpark Berrynarbor, but try as we might we cannot put an end to Kevin’s remarkable run of wins!! He drew on the platform below the car park and amassed a super net of quality roach on caster on a short pole, Pete Slade drew on the stream side and took second spot with a 9lb carp and a nice net of skimmers and roach all on the pole and soft pellet, Martin came in third with an all roach net, Nathan’s bag included a nice chub.
(Above)Nathan Underwoods net included a fine chub a fish more often associated with running water!
I occasionally receive emails from members of the public in relation to my weekly angling column and always try to answer in a polite and informative matter. I recently received the below email from Robert Durrant a non-angler who has undoubtedly taken an interest in my weekly column. His inquiry relates directly to sea angling and the killing of fish. I will let you read through the exchange of emails below and I will add a few comments at the end.
Wayne, Every week in the Journal you write about vast numbers of fine fish, targeted for sport and brought to weigh-ins. Many are species of shark which are endangered and protected. Are all of these fish bought dead to the scales, or have these anglers moved into the 21st century and found ways to weigh specimens at point of catch without harming them and then releasing them live and unhurt back to the sea? I wish you’d write more about such practices. Best wishes, Rob
Thank you for inquiry and prompting me to give more coverage on angling practices in relation to catch and release. Angling has progressed a long way in recent years and catch and release has become the predominate practice for all angling disciplines. In relation to shark the larger species are all returned alive to the water and in some instances are tagged to enable scientific research to track migration routes. Sadly many of the blue shark tagged are recaptured by long-liners in foreign countries where the fish are targeted for making sharks fin soup. Spurdog numbers have increased dramatically in recent seasons as a result of a commercial ban on the species and all of those caught by boat anglers are returned alive.
Fortunately the practice of bringing dead fish to the scales is becoming a thing of the past with most anglers happy to weigh and return fish after a quick photo. You will notice that the vast majority of pictures I use for the Journal are on location and the fish returned alive. There are sadly a few clubs that have weigh ins where fish are brought to the scales due to a lack of trust amongst members. I do not think this will continue for many more years.
Salmon anglers now return over 90% of salmon caught, with no fish retained before June 16th. Bass are now catch and release only for recreational anglers, though this may be reviewed later in the year if scientific data determines it is possible.
I have no problem with anglers retaining the occasional fish for the table if stocks are healthy. But I have no time for killing fish for competition purposes.
I will write about the changing practices in a future Journal column and on my website. I do not know if you are an angler or have ever fished but I would point out that angling does engage people with the countryside and many anglers are keen conservationists who have a deep love of nature.
Thanks so much for your courteous, informative, and encouraging reply, greatly appreciated.
It would be great if you could give more coverage to the enlightened practices followed by ethical anglers these days, as so much emphasis is given to weights and trophy specimens that it often seems that conservation of species and fish welfare comes a very long way behind.
I’m delighted that we see eye to eye about avoiding killing fish except for table use where the stocks are healthy.
I’m not an angler, though of course I’ve enjoyed a little sea fishing in my earlier years; but my interest stems from a particular awareness of marine conservation issues, where I have some involvement, from recording marine species found from the shore, and from diving. I’m very much aware of tag and release practices involving sharks, but little is ever mentioned about this in the media regarding local practices, or indeed in the publicity put out by local sea fishing operators. Maybe it’s just taken for granted; but it would be good to see greater emphasis on conservation and environmental issues.
Yes, I have noticed that most of the photos you use in the Journal do show the fish displayed apparently close to place of capture, but without confirmation that these specimens are not later hauled away to the scales elsewhere, it was difficult to be confident. Certainly friends of mine who have been involved with sea fishing clubs in the past have been nauseated at the pointless waste and indeed cruelty involved in these inland weigh-ins which used to be standard practice. I’m so pleased that in recent years things have moved on.
I hope that an emphasis on decent practices will help make those benighted clubs which still insist on weighing dead fish at the club’s scales realise that they have become social pariahs, whatever happened in the past and too often still happens overseas.
I look forward to reading your comments in the Journal, and your website too.
Thanks again for your very positive response.
All the best, Rob
Hi again, Wayne,
Just been looking on the North Devon Angling News site. Lots of pics there of sea catches displayed on the beach or in the boat, but too many not good – one on top of the harbour wall at Clovelly, eg – particularly lots of sharks being dangled by their tails. Shark Trust handling guide very strongly emphasis that sharks must never be held up by their tails alone, and abdomen must always be supported. Otherwise, though the shark may be able to swim away after return it may very well die out of sight from internal injuries.
Maybe you could put out a warning that you will cease publishing pics showing bad practices? Would be a brilliant idea if boat skippers showed a bit more responsibility in guiding their clients correctly!!
All the best, Rob
Thank you for your reply. Following on from our exchange of letters would it be possible for me to post the letters on my website followed by a brief article on conservation practices and changing times. I think using the exchange of emails would give a good introduction to the feature and demonstrate to anglers how non anglers view what appears in the media, It might also make people think a little more deeply. This will have more impact than me simply stating my views.
Certainly very happy for you to do that, sounds a good plan.
I look forward to it.
I am an all round angler and fish for species in all disciplines of angling and I can understand Rob’s concerns to an extent as sea angling is to some degree less focused on fish welfare than Coarse and carp anglers. To some extent this is due to the fact that Coarse Fish and Carp are valuable commodities stocked into lakes that cost the fishery owners considerable sums of money. For this reason fisheries have strict rules to safeguard the welfare of the stocks. The use of unhooking mats, antiseptic solution to prevent infection, safe rigs, barb-less hooks and the sterilization of equipment prior to fishing is common practice.
Anglers also embrace good handling practice because they value the fish and have a respect for their quarry. I fish for pike and know a good number of pike anglers who are very passionate about the pikes welfare preaching the use of correct tackle and the care needed to safely remove hooks.
Game Fishers who fish for salmon and sea trout now return the majority of fish caught and get very involved in protection of river habitat and even run hatchery projects to attempt to halt the decline in stocks of wild salmon and sea trout. When I first fished for salmon over thirty years ago the majority of salmon were kept for the table and I delighted in feasting on a wild salmon caught from a local river. I always felt a tinge of sadness though after administering the last rites and seeing the vivid colours of life drain from the vibrant flanks. Today I take far greater pleasure in seeing the occasional salmon I manage to tempt swim strongly away to hopefully complete their Journey to the spawning grounds.
Sea angling I concede has been slower to move towards catch and release practice in part I suspect down to the vast and wild nature of the sea and the once misguided perception that fish stocks are not impacted upon by angling. There is only one reason to kill fish and that is to eat it. At this point I will confess that I used to fish in local angling competitions and dispatch fish to bring back to the weigh in. I also killed fish to submit for specimen trophies. As time passed I and many other anglers grew concerned at this unnecessary slaughter. The Sea Angling Club that I have fished with over the past forty years now practices catch and release for all competitions. In modern times with quality scales and modern digital cameras and phones there is no reason to kill fish except for the table. Images of live fish at the waters edge are far more rewarding than a dead corpse held aloft in the garden or in a club house.
As a child I gazed in wonder at the corpses of dead blue shark at Looe in Cornwall brought ashore by members of the Shark Angling Club of Great Britain. This club is now 100% catch and release promoting responsible angling practice that minimizes mortality of these magnificent fish. I have fished for shark on numerous occasions and thrilled at the power of these fish on the line. I have enjoyed the privilege of interacting with the shark and delighted in seeing them swim away. In some instances shark are tagged and this has proved valuable in scientific research tracking the vast migration taken by sharks. Sadly many shark are recaptured by commercial long liners who target the fish for use in shark fin soup.
Whilst sea angling has moved towards conservation there is room for increased awareness of good handling practice. Thought can be given to tackle used with circle hooks sometimes beneficial in reducing deep hooking. Tackle used should always be strong enough to give a good chance of landing the fish hooked. Fish should be weighed in a suitable bag or weigh sling and not hung up by the gills. When holding the fish for a picture it should be handled firmly and supported to reduce risk of damage to internal organs.
As anglers we have a responsibility to show respect for the fish we seek to catch and to always show the pastime in a positive light. We should not judge past generations by today’s standards. Perceptions change and as we realise the fragility of the natural world we adopt more enlightened practices. I have always been a passionate angler and believe interaction with nature via angling has given me a deep bond with the natural world and an appreciation of the great outdoors. Angling in general is a healthy sport, good for both mental and physical health and an important social pastime that also bring huge financial rewards to local business via angling tourism.
Thanks for the reference in your article this week, linking to the great article in your blog, which I found very helpful; and I most grateful to you for the very positive way you have responded to my approach to you. I am sure that many readers will be encouraged by what you have written; and I hope that it will nudge angling practices a bit further in the right direction.
There are not enough waters in North Devon holding pike so a trip to Porth in Cornwall might be an idea.
Geoff Mason has caught this 19.05 Pike from Porth on a ledgered spratt. Geoff also had a 9.10 fish using his running ledger set up. This follows Geoff catching an 18.05 pike from the same venue only a couple of weeks ago!
Make sure you all the right unhooking tackle when you fish for pike and always use a wire trace.
Otters have become a controversial topic within the angling world with the reintroduction of the species into areas where their numbers have dwindled proving disastrous in some instances. I have no expertise in this area so can only give my own views and feelings without any scientific facts. I have seen otters on the rivers around North Devon on many occasions and I am always thrilled when I glimpse them as they hunt the river. Otters have been present on North Devon rivers for many years and have a big place in peoples hearts this is in part due to literature like Henry Williamson’s famous tome “Tarka the Otter” and the film ‘Ring of Bright Water’.
I believe that wild otters are part of North Devon’s natural Eco-system and belong as the damage they do on the river is acceptable. Sadly eel numbers have plummeted as have salmon and sea trout numbers and this undoubtedly forces the otters to look elsewhere for food. When they find a lake stocked with big meaty fish like carp they undoubtedly feel that they have stumbled upon a natural bounty. The fact that a specimen carp can be worth several thousand pounds is of no consequence to the otter. To the fishery owner an otter visit can be devastating which is why responsible fishery owners are investing thousands of pounds in building otter fences around their lakes.
Anglers Paradise are investing many thousands into the building of an otter proof fence to protect the valuable stock within their lakes.
See post below from Anglers Paradise.
PROTECTING ANGLERS PARADISE
Sadly, with the ever increasing threat of Otters being released in the UK, means that all Fisheries need to take action in protecting their stock.
We have commenced work on our Otter Fence which will protect the Anglers Paradise Lakes, it’s a BIG job but we have had to do it for the future of Anglers Paradise.
Construction on the Otter fence has progressed. The fence now runs from the Trout Lake to Easy Access Lake and beyond, a mammoth project in order to protect our stock from Otters and other predators. Evidence of Otter damage is a constant reminder that the population has soared in recent years.
The fence should hopefully be completed within the next couple of weeks.
Simpson Valley Coarse and Trout Fishery is set in a peaceful valley near Holsworthy amid over 140 acres of farmland. The complex boasts several lakes that hold a variety of species that can be targeted using a wide variety of tactics. I visited the venue with Snowbee tackle representative Jeff Pearce in the hope of contacting one of the venues big pike on fly fishing tactics. Mallard lake has been stocked with a good number of pike the biggest nudging 30lb with several topping 20lb.
The pike proved reluctant to play the game so we enjoyed an interlude in our predator hunt and targetted the trout of Jenny Wren Lake where I was delighted to catch my first tiger trout and a stunning rainbow of around 4lb that gave a terrific scrap in the cold water.
We were joined at Jenny Wren’s fishing hut by fishery Manager Andrew Moore who made us a welcome hot cup of coffee. Andrew chatted enthusiastically about Simpson’s Valley and of its fishing and plans for the future. The five lakes on the complex offer pike to thirty pound, carp to 35lb, along with specimen perch, eels, chub,trout and other species. There is a unique opportunity to target rainbow trout using LRF tactics on Skylark lake where catch and release is permitted during the winter months. This style of fishing is an ideal opportunity for young anglers to enjoy great sport without having to master the complexity’s of fly fishing.
Andrew enjoys a hard fighting rainbow tempted on LRF tactics
We returned to Mallard Lake after our informative chat with Andrew and once again set about tempting a pike with our Fly Tackle. On two occasions I thought I had hooked pike but found that plump rainbow trout of close to four pounds had seized my four inch long pike fly! We will be back again and next time I may well sit it out with a dead-bait. If I don’t get sidetracked by trout or other species.
Its not North Devon but its is winter and nice to see a good pike. Ben Smeeth of South West Lakes Trust sent me this picture of a fine pike caught at Porth near Newquay. North Devon anglers can always target these toothy winter predators at Lower Slade near Ilfracombe.
Richard Mason visited Porth reservoir near Newquay at the weekend to land this cracking 18.05 Pike on a ledgered smelt near the Dam wall. A size 6 hook and 20lb Fox trace were the successful tactics for Richard.
Once again I am prompted to mention the contentious issue of litter and angling. Last year there was talk of a ban on angling at Clovelly as a result of anglers leaving litter, bait and urinating against the harbour wall. Clovelly is a picturesque village that is currently in the running for Channel 4’s Village of the Year with Penelope Keith. it is completely understandable that the owners of the village and the community do not want their beautiful village to be tarnished by irresponsible anglers who undoubtedly have no respect for the environment or local community.
When I have posted about this previously I have provoked strong protestations about this issue with many anglers condemning the culprits. This vitriol on Facebook and social media achieves little. In my view local anglers need to take action and work with the Clovelly Estate to address this issue. As Bideford and District Angling Club are closest it would be useful if they could take the lead and I have contacted them to this end and the issue will be discussed at their AGM. I would hope that anglers from other areas of North Devon will join in with a possible beach clean and show that we do care. If this is considered a good idea I will promote the event both here on NDAN and within my Angling Column in the NDJ.
It may well be that there is a need to control angling access in future so that any culprits can be identified and banned from future visits.
Twenty anglers fished the 2017 Fur n Feather match held across lakes 3 and 4. With cold water coming into the lakes and a gusty wind, it was not easy fishing.
Kevin Shears (Above), pegged on the trackside on lake 4, took the win with 62lb 3oz of pole caught carp. Second overall was Paul Ware, on the point peg on lake 3, with 47lb 3oz. Martin Turner(Below) was third with 45lb 1oz from the wood side of lake 4.
The random pairs was won by Shaun Stenton and Kevin Shears with a total of 101lb.
All anglers went away with a range of prizes.
Christopher Morris 41lb 7oz (runner up lake 3)
Norman Martin 25lb 6oz
Mick Seaward 7lb
John Forster 18lb 6oz
Shaun Stenton 38lb 13oz
Paul Morris 17lb 10oz
Matt Sampson DNW
Barry Lee 13lb 8oz
Neilsen Jeffrey 15lb 8oz
Paul Ware 47lb 8oz (won lake 3)
Ian Owen 14lb 1oz
Kevin Shears 62lb 3oz (overall winner)
Kev Wilton 15lb 6oz
Nathan Underwood 16lb
Paul Elworthy 10lb 11oz
Ian Croxton 36lb 11oz
Martin Turner 45lb 1oz (won lake 4)
Garry Thornton 35lb
Peter Seaward 8lb 8oz
Keith Copeland 39lb 3oz
Combe Martin Sea Angling Club member Kody Chugg was devastated when thieves broke into his car and stole over £500 worth of sea angling equipment including 3 reels that included 1 penn 525 mag, 2 slh 30, lots and lots of tackle! Shakespeare’ seat box, small green and yellow tackle box. If any one has any information please pass it on to Kody or send a message to NDAN and I will contact Kody.
Pike are the traditional target of winter coarse anglers and Ian Grimes (Above) enjoyed success with the species landing a personal best of 25lb 8oz at Simpson Valley Fishery near Holsworthy. Colin Howis (Below) also enjoyed success at the fishery tempting a fine 26lb pike on float-fished mackerel.
The South West Fly Fair has become an eagerly anticipated event on the West Country Anglers Calendar and is well worth a visit on the eve of a new salmon and trout season. Don’t think its all about trout and salmon though as there is something for anglers of every persuasion. I hope to see you there on the day.
There is something special about the local tackle shop; a vital part of angling’s social structure and a focal point where you are likely to bump into fellow anglers and engage in fishy talk. In North Devon we are fortunate to to have several great tackle shops each of them having a special niche within the local angling scene. At this time of year the local tackle shop is of course a great place to locate Christmas presents for the angler! I am very grateful for the support North Devon Angling News receives from Summerlands Tackle at Westward Ho!, High Street Tackle, Ilfracombe and North Devon Tackle in Barnstaple.
(Above) Jamie Miller at North Devon Tackle where they stock an extensive range of bait and tackle for Carp, Coarse and Sea anglers. Click on their advert below to browse on line. An ideal present for anglers is a gift voucher for North Devon Tackle.
( Above) Danny Watson at High Street Tackle Ilfracombe. Danny and Pauline specialize in bass fishing lures and carry a very impressive range to tempt both angler and bass. They also have a a wide range of sea and coarse tackle to satisfy the needs of all local anglers.
(Above) Just a few of the lures on display at High Street Tackle. Click on the advert below to browse on line.
(Above) Heather at Summerlands Tackle Westward Ho! Summerlands tackle is well established family business that has a vast range of tackle for all angling disciplines their latest offers that would make ideal Christmas presents are :-
Fenix 1750 Lumen’s headlight – HP30R was £139.99 now £116.99
Rovex Boots – Was £49.99 now £39.99
Deeper Pro + was £219.99 now £199.99 (Below)
Free 525 Mag 2 Reel with every Century Beachcaster sold whilst in stocks last. Click on the advert below to browse on line.
I am sure all the local tackle dealers would like to wish a Merry Christmas to all their customers. The recent news regarding the reprieve for bass anglers will come as a relief to all our local tackle dealers. Whilst it is unfair that anglers are restricted to catch and release for bass when commercial fishing can still retain fish it is far better than the total ban that was being discussed.
I would like to to wish all our local tackle dealers a Happy and prosperous New Year. As I said earlier local tackle shops are part of anglings rich social network; many a fishing excursion has been planned in the tackle shop.
Bideford Angling club are holding their AGM at 20.00 on Friday 19th Jan. 2018 at the Bideford Conservative club. All proposed rule changes or applications for office must be received by 29/12/17 Please Email Skinsie@me.com Or PM Pete Skinner on facebook..
Opportunities to fish for pike are limited in North Devon with only around half a dozen venues holding the species. If you fancy a try at pike fishing Anglers Paradise has a good stock of these toothy critters available to target with lures. See report from Zenia at AP below.
Ashley Bunning used his day off work to have a couple of hours on Valhalla. Ashley caught 3 Pike in total with this being the biggest and used a Ecogear Ikajaco Lure to catch them.
Remember our Predator Lake Valhalla is now open for all to fish until February, time to get some Winter Lure Fishing in!
Adam Elsbury, aged 26 from Reading, had a Holiday to remember at Anglers Paradise after catching his biggest ever fish, a Monster 62lb Catfish from the Specimen Cat Lake beating his previous Personal Best of 14lbs which he caught just 2 years ago meaning he’s beaten it by 48lbs!! This is the New Cat Record for this Lake too as the previous was caught by Ryan Owen at 60lbs.
It is unusual to bank a catfish so late in the season but with mild conditions the season gets extended.
Adam caught the Beast at midday just 3 hours after casting and used a simple running rig with a 22mm Halibut Pellet and a 20mm Halibut Boilie on the hair with a small PVA bag full of Micro Halibut Pellets.
Anglers Paradise just held their annual Lure Weekend which was a great success. Full report from Zenia. The weather was testing, rain, wind and hail but every Angler still stuck it out till the end of the Competition!
There were 20 Lure Anglers that took part and the 4 Teams were Captained by Nathan Edgell from Fladen, David Watkin-Smith from Quantum, Kevin Cox from Fox Rage and David Drake from Drennan. The Competition ran over 2 days of fishing on 4 different Lakes that consisted of our Predator Lake Valhalla, the Specimen Cat Lake, the Trout Lake and the Bottom Cat and Carp Lake at Eldorado of which all Teams fished each Lake in rotation.
In total, there were 11 Pike, 14 Perch, 2 Trout and the 1st ever Anglers Paradise Lure caught Koi and Golden Orfe to come out in the annual Competition, there was also a big Catfish lost, so no Cats were landed this year!
The Winner of the whole Competition was Damon Braxton who caught 3 different Species at a combined length of 108cm, Damon caught a 39.5cm Koi (which is the 1st ever Koi to be caught on a Lure here!) a 10.5cm Rudd and a 58cm Pike. Fladen and Anglers Paradise Sponsored this Event meaning Damon Won a Week’s Holiday for 2 at Anglers Paradise and a huge range of Fladen Predator Tackle, including a Rod, Reel, Lures and Clothing. Damon’s Team Captain was Fladen’s very own Pike King – Nathan Edgell, who was very proud of his Team Member to Win the Competition!
The Runner Up was Lee Paynton who had a Perch and a Pike at a combined length of 92cm, Sponsored by Quantum. Third Place was Tom Wilson who also had a Perch and a Pike with a combined length of 80.5cm, Sponsored by Fladen.
Tom Wilson took the Crown for the Biggest Pike with a respectable 68.5cm Pike from the Specimen Cat Lake, although Nathan Edgell actually caught the Biggest Pike measuring 86cm but as he’s a Team Captain – it doesn’t count!! Tom was in Team Quantum with Captain David Watkin-Smith leading him to Victory! Tom won some pretty special prizes from Quantum including a Spinning Rod, a Spinning Reel, a Specialist Bag, a Rod Guard and other goodies – Thank you so much to Quantum for the amazing Prizes.
Ben Taylor Won the Biggest Trout Category with a lovely 45cm Rainbow Trout, it was hard going on the Trout Lake all weekend but in the end he and Joe Drury were the only 2 to catch Trout on the last day of fishing!! Ben was in Team Fox with Kevin Cox from Fox as Captain (and Joe Drury as stand in Captain on Sunday) who both gave Ben plenty of tips and inspiration to help him win this title! Ben won a Fox Rage set up of a Rod, a Reel and some Lures – Thank you to Fox Rage for the great prizes and for sponsoring this Category.
Lee Paynton caught the biggest Perch measuring 33cm from the Specimen Cat Lake. Lee was in Team Drennan with the wonderful Dave Drake as his Team Captain, Lee won an absolute superb selection of Drennan Lures – he could start up a new Lure Shop with them!! Special thanks to Drennan for the amazing prizes and for sponsoring this category. This was Lee’s 1st ever Lure Weekend with us, and we are so happy that not only did he win but he also shared with us that he loved every minute and will be back for next year’s Anglers Paradise Lure Weekend!
The Winning Team was Team Fox – which consisted of Jim Williams, Ben Taylor, Bex Nelson and Father and Son Dominic and Dylan Cooke, Captained by Kevin Cox, (with help from Joe Drury as stand in on Sunday) knocking Team Fladen’s Nathan Edgell off his Thrown!! They won with 5 species, Pike, Perch, Rudd, Trout and the winning/deciding fish was a Golden Orfe caught by young Dylan Cooke just 10 minutes before the end of last session!!
Barnstaple and District Angling Association are one of North Devon longest running clubs with a rich history. They control fishing on a popular stretch of the River Taw with salmon and sea trout fishing. They also have coarse fishing at Aller Pond an atmospheric and tranquil water sited within woodland near South Molton.
(Above ) Newbridge on the River Taw B&DAA Club water.
(Above) South Aller Pond
On Monday November 13th a good proportion of the clubs membership gathered in Barnstaple’s Corner House for their AGM.
After the formalities of reports and election of officers members mingled and we swapped tales of local fishing history and prospects for the future. It was good to see that this long established club is still going strong.
Membership Secretary, Colin Ashby, 13 Green Meadow Drive, Barnstaple EX31 4HT. Tel. 01271 323017.
e- mail email@example.com
Club Secretary Sheridan Toms, Upcott Farm, Brayford, N.Devon EX32 7QA. Tel 01598 710857.
Chairman. John Webber e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congratulations to all the winners and competitors at Anglers Paradises lure weekend. Latest results direct from Zenia.
THE WINNER OF THE NOVEMBER 2017 LURE WEEKEND IS…
**Sponsored by Fladen**
DAMON BRAXTON – Who caught 3 different Species at a combined length of 108cm, Damon caught a 39.5cm Koi (which is the 1st ever Koi to be caught on a Lure here!) a 10.5cm Rudd and a 58cm Pike making him the WINNER OF OUR 2017 LURE WEEKEND!!
Fladen and Anglers Paradise Sponsored this Event meaning Damon Won a Week’s Holiday for 2 at Anglers Paradise and a huge range of Fladen Predator Tackle, including a Rod, Reel, Lures and Clothing.
Damon’s Team Captain was Fladen’s very own Pike King – Nathan Edgell, who was very proud of his Team Member to Win the Competition!
Special Thanks to Fladen for being so generous with the Prizes and a MASSIVE CONGRATULATIONS to Damon for WINNING THE LURE WEEKEND!!
THE BIGGEST PIKE Sponsored by Quantum
Tom Wilson took the Crown for this Category with a respectable 68.5cm Pike from the Specimen Cat Lake, although Nathan Edgell actually caught the Biggest Pike measuring 86cm but as he’s a Team Captain – it doesn’t count!!
Tom was in Team Quantum with Captain David Watkin-Smith leading him to Victory!
Tom won some pretty special prizes from Quantum including a Spinning Rod, a Spinning Reel, a Specialist Bag, a Rod Guard and other goodies – Thank you so much to Quantum for the amazing Prizes.
THE BIGGEST TROUT Sponsored by Fox Rage
Ben Taylor Won this Category with a lovely 45cm Rainbow Trout, it was hard going on the Trout Lake all weekend but in the end he and Joe Drury were the only 2 to catch Trout on the last day of fishing!!
Ben was in Team Fox with Kevin Cox from Fox as Captain (and Joe Drury as stand in Captain on Sunday) who both gave Ben plenty of tips and inspiration to help him win this title!
Ben won a Fox Rage set up of a Rod, a Reel and some Lures – Thank you to Fox Rage for the great prizes and for sponsoring this Category.
THE BIGGEST PERCH Sponsored by Drennan
Lee Paynton caught the biggest Perch measuring 33cm from the Specimen Cat Lake.
Lee was in Team Drennan with the wonderful Dave Drake as his Team Captain, Lee won an absolute superb selection of Drennan Lures – he could start up a new Lure Shop with them!! Special thanks to Drennan for the amazing prizes and for sponsoring this category.
This was Lee’s 1st ever Lure Weekend with us, and we are so happy that not only did he win but he also shared with us that he loved every minute and will be back for next year’s Anglers Paradise Lure Weekend!
The netting report from Zyg and Rose at Anglers Paradise
Our annual Netting revealed our biggest ever Catfish weighing in at a record weight of 90lbs 11oz, we also weighed in two 60’s to 68lbs and four 70’s to 78lbs from the Main Carp Lake, which is the largest of our holiday lakes and home to the biggest head of carp and the largest predators on the complex. The fish were safely re-located to stock ponds while works are carried out on the lake and will be re-homed following completion.
The record for Wels Catfish was discontinued in the late eighties at 60lbs, this was due to fish being introduced at 100lbs or more from the Continent. It took me 4 years to get official planning permission from MAFF. I am particularly proud as our Catfish were introduced as small Catfish spawned in this country, the biggest about 10 inches, well under 1 lb. We are the only venue with proper provenance to have stocked Catfish and also bred them on our fish farm.
In addition to the physical work of netting the lakes, we take the opportunity to raise funds for local charities, some of this year’s nominated charities are Air Ambulance, local food banks, defibrillator for Ashwater etc.
The nutty netters come from far and wide to help in the netting, raising funds through such activities as Race Night, Bingo, Fishing Match, Archery, Quizzes and Disco culminating in a Bonfire and Fireworks spectacular on Friday 3rd November.
A particular thank you to Phillip Warren Butchers and graziers of Launceston for their generous donation of hot dogs and beef burgers.
The annual netting has been taking place at Anglers Paradise and the weights of the venues biggest cats should be revealed later this week!! Something for those catfish anglers to dream about over the cold winter months as they wait for next summer when the catfish will once again go on the prowl.
5C’s Member Jordan Whitfield, 21 from Exeter jvisited Anglers Paradise for a session on the Main Carp Lake for the last Syndicate Weekend of the year and caught this stunning 21lb 2oz Fully scaled Mirror and a mid-double.
Jordan caught the fish from the Little Point Swim with Mainline Cell Wafters casted towards the Boat House Island with scattered boillies over the top.
Not my idea of fun but if you fancy a bit of armchair fishing this new game could be of Interest. The details below come direct from Zenia at Anglers Paradise. I would rather fish in real paradise but I guess this way you wouldn’t get cold and wet.
KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR ANGLERS PARADISE TO BE IN A GAME COMING OUT IN 2018!
A NEW Game that will be an App called ‘Tight Lines Game’, will be coming to us all to play in 2018 AND Anglers Paradise are going to be one of the many Fisheries on it to fish VIRTUALLY!!
THE MAKERS OF THE APP SHARED WITH US –
“At the beginning of a Tight Lines game each player is given a tacklebox, fishing licence and landing net, and also selects two of the four hook baits available. It is up to the players to manage their tackle box, adding and removing items as strategy or conditions dictate. There are not enough tackle box compartments to carry everything that a player might need throughout a game, so keeping a good balance of items is important #tipthescales. Also, if #bobthebailiff catches you without a required item such as a licence, or with an illegal one like a banned bait, the penalties could be severe – unless you bribe him of course!”
Friday 10th November to Sunday 12th November 2017 are the Dates to remember and get the time off work as it’s our LURE Weekend! Location – Anglers Paradise, Halwill Junction, Devon EX21 5XT. Time is running out – so pick up that phone and BOOK YOUR PLACE! Prices Start From £140 Per Person which includes – Accommodation for 3 nights, Fishing in the Lure Competition + Entry into All Competitions! It’s a Weekend you will not want to miss! They’ll be 4 Great Team Captains in the shape of Nathan Edgell from Fladen, Rob Williams from Quantum, Kevin Cox from Fox Rage and Dave Drake from Drennan who all will help you gain knowledge to better your future fishing and be on hand with tips and advice. Exclusive Lakes to Fish on the Lure AND Great Prizes to be Won! If you’re a beginner, intermediate or experienced – it doesn’t matter – ALL ARE WELCOME! They’ll be plenty of help and advice throughout the weekend, it’s a weekend where Anglers from all over the Country come together and share their passion of the sport, share a tale or two in the bar in the evening and enjoy some great fishing in the day – What more could you ask for?! Any Questions? Just email us at email@example.com or call us on 01409 221559 and we’ll be happy to answer them!
The ever popular netting week commences on October 30th for more details contact Anglers Paradise.
Fishing Friends Scott Brown, Damien Hicks, Colin, Chris Jones and Girlfriend Leslie came down from different parts of the Country to Fish our Day Ticket Venue Nirvana, let’s just say…there was quite a lot of heavy dew during their session but at least it also rained Cats and Carp for them too!!
Scott Shared –
“All Summer I have been counting down the days for our trip to the Nirvana Day Ticket Complex at Anglers Paradise in Devon. Myself, Chris, Leslie, Damien and Colin arrived and set our traps hoping for a similar outcome to last year’s trip.
Zyg says it never rains in Devon – well on this occasion I’m afraid he was telling porky pies, it chucked it down! But never the less the, Lakes still produced a few corkers!
I managed a 30lb 3oz catfish and a 22lb 5oz mirror as well as three smaller but chunky carp, all my fish coming to Finforce baits. Chris Jones got the biggest of the trip a 51lb 1oz Catfish all from the Specimen Cat Lake and Damien managed a 29lb Common from the Kracking Carp Lake. Leslie and Colin bagged up on Orfe and Rudd whilst trying a bit of float fishing but unfortunately didn’t manage to get amongst the bigger ones this time.
Great trip had by all and I look forward to our next adventure as a group”.
FISHING, FRIENDS AND FUN, ENJOYING THE SPORT TOGETHER – WELL DONE GUYS!
Zenia at Anglers Paradise is successfully trying to get more women interested in fishing and having some success as can be seen from her latest post below,
ANOTHER NEW LADY ANGLER ENJOYING THE SPORT!
As you know, we LOVE to see more Women on the banks enjoying FISHING!!
Here is a lady that does just that! Emily Wearden, 35 from Abingdon in Oxfordshire has only been fishing for a year and joined us last week with her partner James and caught 2 Personal Bests – a 5lb 11oz Koi from the Koi Lake off the top on Dog Biscuits and a 9lb Mirror from the Beginners Carp Lake on a Pineapple Wafter, her partner James Durkin also caught a Personal Best 3lb 8oz Koi from the Float Lake on a pop up.
Emily Shared –
“We have just come back from a fantastic week at Anglers Paradise. Your family/staff have done a great job on not only the fishing lakes, but also the accommodation. We came down for James 40th Birthday and can’t wait to come back next year.
I have only been fishing for about a 1 year, I am now 35 years old and love fishing!”
ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC EMILY – KEEP UP THE GREAT ANGLING AND PASSION FOR FISHING!
(Below)BIGGEST EVER KOI BUT NO SCALES TO WEIGH IT!
Steven Blackburn, 39 from Liverpool joined Anglers Paradise for a week with the lads for some fishing and fun and on their last day they decided to go back to the Koi Lake to see if they could catch one of the bigger ones…
Well Steve did catch one of the bigger ones but he forgot his scales to see exactly how big it was!! But, it definitely looks bigger than 8lb+!!
Steven shared –
“I was free lining using the soft floating biscuits from your tackle shop, I was fishing just a few feet from the bank around the Lillies to the left as you enter the lake from the foot path. After throwing in a few freebies to get them confidently feeding I chucked in my hook bait and next thing I know this massive head slowly comes up through the water and sucks it in. I couldn’t believe my luck. All the way through the fifteen minute fight to get it in I was constantly saying ‘please don’t come off, please don’t come off”
We ended up doing two days on the Koi Lake, easily the best fishing experience I’ve had to date.”
(Below)Oli Dietrich caught this fine carp of 24lb from the complex xanadu on #robinbaits.
Paul Painter from Exeter, brought his Sons (Jack 7 and Harry 14) to fish the Middle Cat and Carp Lake at Eldorado for 48hrs and managed to catch quite a few fish! They ended up with 45 Carp, 1 Cat and some lovely Koi from the Koi Lake!
Paul said – “It was good to see my boys enjoying the outdoors and catching lots of fish, Jack loved stalking out the beautiful Koi from the Koi Lake and Harry loved stalking out the Carp. Good to spend some quality time with my boys, top rods! Harry and Jack love your Lakes and look forward to their next trip after a nice big Cat for Harry and some Koi for Jack!”
WELL DONE TO THE PAINTER FAMILY – GREAT CATCHES AND TIME SPENT TOGETHER – WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT!
Peter Knight visited the tranquil waters at Agapi Fruit Farm and Fishing to land a pleasing brace of carp that are amongst the first to be caught at the water that I visited just a week ago. Peter a local angler visited the water with his partner after reading the review on North Devon Angling News.
Agapi is a delightful lake teaming with rudd and a healthy stock of carp that make the venue an ideal pleasure fishing venue for family’s and anyone wanting to escape for few hours by the water. This is not yet a water for the specimen hunter but is ideal for those who love fishing.
Agapi Fruit and Fishing is a unique venue nestled in a tranquil valley near Torrington that offers a fine family fishing experience. The owner Sandra Hood invited Pauline, James and I to sample the fishing and write a short review on the complex.
We followed an intriguing country lane at the end of which we came upon a pleasing lake stretching before us reflecting a blue sky and wispy white clouds.
Glancing into the water I immediately saw dimples on the water as small rudd broke the surface. At the far end of the lake a few carp could be seen cruising slowly, fish of up to around 4lb that would give a pleasing tussle on light tackle.
Sandra greeted us warmly and told us about the fishery and its facilities that include a spacious ready made up bell tent and a two birth caravan where guests can stay over at a modest cost.
James and I were eager to get fishing as late August evenings pass by all too quickly and it was already past 6.00pm. I had brought along a bait box full of Jolly Green Giant sweetcorn and half a loaf of white sliced bread. No need for modern fancy baits here just simple basics.
James started off float fishing with a single grain of corn and was soon swinging in small golden rudd the float disappearing with pleasing regularity within seconds of it sitting upright in the still water.
I was already focusing on the chance of a carp and tied a size 10 barbless hook to the end of my 3lb line that was loaded on my old Avon Royal Centre Pin. I tossed a few crusts out onto the water and expected the carp to devour them but shoals of rudd were on the bait within seconds. I wondered along the bank rod in hand to a shady corner where several carp were visible. I pinched a generous piece of flake onto the hook and swung it out in front of a cruising carp. The bait disappeared and the line slowly tightened. I felt a pleasing resistance as I set the hook, the carp made a dash for the weedy margin beneath the tree branch’s and after a tense struggle came adrift.
Sandra arrived shortly after with a tasty plateful of ham sandwiches, homemade chutney and a flask of hot water with tea, coffee and cakes.
Pauline chatted at length with Sandra whilst James and I became immersed in the tense and frustrating game of stalking carp. James found a group of carp on the far bank and was soon calling for me to rush over with the net. I got there to find the carp battling beneath the rod tip partially tangling in trailing grass and brambles. My attempt to net the carp resulted in the fish shedding the hook.
I had one further chance in the shady corner as I watched a carp suck in my bread flake just few inches from the bank. I lifted the rod expecting to feel a solid resistance; I instead felt the deflating thin air. Its been a while since I stalked carp and but after this exciting session it will not be long before I am creeping the banks again. I had forgotten just how addictive, and exciting this close up fishing is!
Sandra’s vision is to offer a unique fishing experience the emphasis being on fun. This is not at present a specimen fishing lake though I am sure the carp will soon pack on weight and in two or there years there will be carp present topping ten pounds. The fishing on offer is perfect for a fun family day out in beautiful surroundings. A cosy summerhouse offers shelter with a wooden platform that gives access to the centre of the lake.
Float fishing with sweetcorn bread or maggot will bring constant action ensuring newcomers to the sport get plenty of bites and beautiful golden scaled rudd.
We caught several rudd up to 8oz and there are undoubtedly a few bigger ones. The carp are plentiful and at present range from a couple of pounds up to perhaps 5lb.
The lake is available for exclusive use with adults paying just £5 for a day ticket and children fishing for free. Only one booking per day is taken with groups of up to six around the maximum for the venue. The lake has a very pleasing atmosphere and intimacy that is lost at many crowded commercial fisheries. To get away from it all and escape into the countryside with a bit of fishing I can highly recommend the venue.
In addition to the fishing Sandra is pleased to provide tasty food including Devon Cream teas and cooked breakfasts. In addition to fishing there is also the opportunity to pick your own Fruit in season.
River Reads are a specialist angling book shop operating out of Torrington well worth a visit as they carry a vast range of angling books on all disciplines. Here is their latest Newsletter penned by owner Keith Armishaw.
Well, it’s been a while since we wrote the last newsletter, but as the weather is too windy for sea fishing and the local rivers are running like soup and fly only, it seemed the ideal time to sit down and pen a few things that have been happening of late.
I have been continuing to add photographs of books to the site as I think it will aid decision making to be able to see exactly what the book you are after looks like and in what condition it is in. I have just completed the fly tying, fly casting and tackle catalogues having done the fly fishing, coarse fishing (carp, pike etc as well) earlier in the year. I hope you find it of use, and if you have any other ideas that would help, please feel free to e mail us.
Whilst we are on the subject of books, Dominic Garnett who writes a weekly column for Angling Times called in for a chat. He is probably best known for his Fly Fishing for Coarse Fish book, but also promotes the fishing in Devon and Somerset. He dropped off some of his other books – Crooked Lines and Tangles with Pike – which he signed whilst we talked fishing, had a cuppa, and recorded him talking for the Angling Heritage archive which you can now hear on line. We had an interesting time which just flew by.
We have also recently acquired quite a lot of our “Vintage Tackle”. Whilst several cane Hardy rods and reels have been added, we have also now got a great selection of nearly new – in many cases unused – high quality modern tackle too including carbon rods from Sage, Orvis, Sharp, Hardy, Greys etc so if you aren’t an old timer stuck in the mud like me, now is the time to buy your fantastic new tackle at great prices. Also acquired with the rods are reels from Orvis, Bruce & Walker, Hardy, ABU, Snowbee and many more.
If you are looking for any new or antique items, now is the time to peruse the antique tackle section.
Finally, I’m looking forward to our shark fishing sessions in Looe next month followed by what we hope will be an annual trip to British Columbia to fish the Frazer, then on to Vancouver Island after salmon. I went with Hugh Miles last year and we loved every moment so have booked the same again this year. If you fancy an overseas trip with the comfort of home where you can stay in spa hotels for your family, this is THE place to go. You can keep up with all my escapades in the “Diary” section of the website, or get a brief overview on our Facebook page.
Autumn is nearly here and I think this is the best time of year to fish, so get out there and good luck.
Anglers Paradise recently held a Kid’s Fishing Day that was a great success raising money for the local school and also encouraging the younger generation to fish!
Here are some pictures of the recent Kid’s Fishing Day at Anglers Eldorado, where Angling Coach Tommy Flower offered his services for a day to help kids learn to fish and to help those that already fish to further their angling knowledge.
It really was a wonderful day, the kids loved it from ages 3 up to the age of 12, some had fished before and others hadn’t, but every single one of them loved it which is exactly why we wanted to do it.
Here are some of the magic moments we shared, we hope to do more Kid’s Fishing Days in the future to encourage and help, as they are the future of this sport and it’s great to see more younger ones enjoying the sport like we do!
Thank you to all the Kids that joined in, you were all FABULOUS and a Special Thank You to Tommy Flower and his assistant Adam May – What you did was what Angling should always be about – Enjoying the Sport, Helping Others and of course keeping the Angling Passion going! Also special thanks to Skretting for donating the bait for the event. All proceeds raised will go to Halwill Primary School.