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Everything posted by Pelamid

  1. The river Lot has been most peculiar this spring and early summer. At first I thought the colder than usual water temperatures were "snow water" as there was a late fall of snow on the Massif. But the water is still a little coloured despite only a few thunderstorms. Well, my friend sent me a photo from about 50k upriver at the Truyer/Lot confluence.... Then the penny dropped, they were draining a dam for maintenance! Still catching a few bream, barbel and occasional carp, but fishing slow.
  2. If you come to the Lot high summer it's too hot quite often. This last two years summers have seen 40c+ temperatures for weeks on end, the sun is cruel. You may be used to it now, but the summer river is low and the fish hiding! Spring and Autumn can be lovely and the fishing generally good. Winter can fish well.....it depends on how the weather pans out. You can often sit outside comfortably in December, but if the Massif has seen rain the river can be fierce! Not sure if I have put up this link here before but it is worth another look........
  3. In a river a hooked carp has plenty of opportunity to run you into snags. Part of the challenge is planning your approach to get your carp away from the bad stuff, I have usually worked out my strategy for a swim before my bait is even cast out. That last carp I had worked out how to avoid an island, trees, boat channel buoys and how to land and return any big fish. The swim was an 8' almost vertical drop to the river, I had spotted some little ledges I could get my feet onto sideways to climb part way down. I then had to feel confident I could do a difficult lift, at almost 71 I trusted a little adrenaline would get me through that. It did! Quite a few of my carp captures have involved me getting soaked following big fish downriver. Of course, I had already planned the safe way and how to exit the river if I ended up downriver of my swim. Car keys, phone in a waterproof bag in my pocket - just in case this happens! On the river Lot there is always a realistic chance these big fish can turn up, plan for that!😅
  4. The river Lot is still flowing powerfully, the remains of snow on the Massif must still be finding its way through the bogs and feeder stream as the water temperature has risen a little - but very slowly. It's still only around 11c and I think that is holding back both feeding and spawning of various species. But I continue to fish and amongst a few of the smaller barbel and chub a few specimens have turned up. First a carp of 21 lb which was followed by a couple of 4 lb barbel. Next trip it was an 8 lb 13 ozs barbel, about as big as they get here. A week ago I went camping (in a camper-car!) about 30 miles upstream of my home patch, First afternoon I had a 6 lb 11 ozs bream and a lovely condition 4 lb 7 ozs chub. The next afternoon I had a 35 lb carp........
  5. Nice fish! On the Lot recently the water has barely reached 7 centigrade! We had snow in January which actually lay for weeks, followed by hard frosts and temperatures down to -10c. That has not helped the fishing at all! But somehow I have scraped out a few barbel and a solitary chub. The chub looked dead when I reeled it in, but its gills were moving slowly. When I released this chub it hung around for minutes, like it was having a job waking up but it swam away OK eventually, Lot fish are not used to the cold, I guess. The barbel are much the same and I can only look forward to the Spring, not far away now, and March can be a wonderful month here. About a week ago I was barbel fishing in the sun, afternoon temperatures reached 17c. As usual I had a second rod out at long range downstream with a double Shimano Isolate LM94 bait. With the water temperatures so low I did not expect a carp but I got a lovely 27 pound surprise.....
  6. Well, it has been some time since I caught a carp! Summer drought conditions since mid-June and fishing has been a struggle. Very early morning sessions I managed a few barbel, mostly small. But I did have a couple of decent barbel just before the canicule heat spoiled my chances.... The weed growth did continue during the heatwave - both in the river and along the river banks. Long stretches covering my favourite swims solid with Japanese Knotweed making them unreachable! I lost three big carp over a couple of sessions due to the river weed. It made me rethink my hook-length and leader materials. Having made a few changes I tried again, my next mistake was telling my friend where I was fishing. He of course caught a 31 lb carp and a nice barbel - I blanked! But a few days later I noted some fresh flow in my local stretch, first for months. No idea where that came from! But I had a good idea where I might get a carp, unfortunately my friend came with me! This time I was determined to catch "MY" fish! had a couple of good knocks on the rod tip about 15 minutes after casting to my favourite tiny "hot-spot" where two currents converge over a slight depression. A little while later this great fish took off towards the opposite bank. A tremendous fight ensued, where the carp headed for every snag from boulders to sunken trees. My change of trace/leader material did its job and I got the carp to the net at the third attempt. Weighed over the water in the net, wet net deducted, gave a weight of 38.5 lbs. I had lost a couple from this swim in previous years so it was a great relief to finally get it right. Between the two of us we put the net across my thighs to protect the fish during the "trophy shot" moment. No time wasted the fish was back in the river and after a little rest it was away from the net. My tackle changes were not rocket science. I had to give up with mono, fluoro and uncoated braid and tried ESP tungsten loaded semi-stiff braid. Despite that fish going through the usual snags there was just one small area of coating damaged, the interior braid was still intact. That and changing my lead clip to a Korum type, it did its job and slipped the lead on the take. Oh, my fishing buddy blanked this time! 😂
  7. Another from the river Lot.......
  8. Not too many catfish, fortunately! Yesterday I took my inflatable canoe upriver of Carjac. Lovely afternoon on the river..... The boat has not been used this last couple of years, still looks good.... and had one silure, taken on a big yellow/black shad lure fished under a shear cliff amongst fallen trees. I was lucky to land it!
  9. one of my better barbel from the Lot, caught about a year ago......
  10. Hi gagnaccarp, no idea how the restocking went but I did see a video where it was mentioned. This is a video showing an angler who really knows what he is doing, fishing my local stretch of river...... My fishing has been very much a "mixed-bag" this year. Spring started well but lockdowns have allowed some of my best swims to be vastly overgrown by japanese knotweed, much now over 4 metres high and 30 metres+ depth. my health hiccups this year have not allowed me to do major cut-backs into that..... Away back in March I had a brilliant short 4 hr session on the Lot about a 14 minute drive from my home. Three wonderful carp of 26lb, 29lb and 44lb in the first three hours and then , after the carp had moved through, finished off with a nice barbel. So, if I counted the ounces, about 100 lb of wild river fish during a morning sat in the Spring sun. If I did not have photos I would now think it a dream! The summer was a hard shift with variable weather and river flow generally poor. As I mostly fish for the barbel (carp are my by-catch) I had little to talk about. I did catch a 13 lb after losing two to the rocks in my nearest weir, I have been using barbless hooks due to the carp! Even when fishing for barbel you never know if a carp will snaffle your bait. As this stretch has many in the 50lb-70lb range you can guess how that ends on a 1.5lb tc barbel outfit! Having said that I have had the 29 lb carp and 13 lb carp on the barbel rod! Now it is autumn the river has a little more flow, nightime temperatures have dropped and the barbel are feeding again. Many are under 2lbs and the only way to avoid them is bigger baits. Unfortunately, although that keeps the average barbel caught at around 4 lbs, the carp like a 20 mm boilie just fine! I hooked on a couple of weeks ago that took about 60 metres of line across the river, then the same downriver - all in seconds! I pumped it back slowly hoping it would head back mid-stream....but it decided to go into fallen trees to my right! So many snags, if you want the carp here you really must have an inflatable boat to follow the fish! Follow all the best advice on building rigs that allow the weight to be lost first and the line to fail at the hook-length. No harm in using barbless hooks, these river carp fight so hard these hooks will not fall out during the fight! I am planning a longer than usual daytime session soon - with the heaviest tackle I have. Best I take my inflatable canoe as well!
  11. Just got a few minutes, here are last years. All between 14lb and 20lb for me. But my friend wanted to catch a carp so I had set him up with tackle and he got the biggie at 34lb. Fishing with friends not always recommended!!!!!
  12. Forgot my password for a while so never got round to putting up a report of my 2020 carp. This year a few problems distracted me but here finally are a few recent carp photos. I was fishing for barbel, but always take my carp rod. When I saw the river at perfect flow and felt it was warming in the sun I felt confident there might be carp about. Put the heavy rod out at long range downriver whilst I fished the feeder rod for barbel. The 26lb fully scaled came first, then the 29lb "ugly" carp took on my feeder rod. Last was a massive 42lb fully scaled river carp - Dream Fish! I did not take that last one up the bank, released quickly as it had put up a really good fight in the current. I will find a few photos after lunch of last years carp.
  13. I have not used tiger nuts for bait yet - but I have eaten them myself! There is a good amount of vegetable fat in tiger nuts, as well as the fibre most seem to think is the main point of eating them. They are a bit tough but can be chewed, the flavour reminds me of hazlenuts. Lately I have blitzed a few hand fulls in a heavy duty blender to produce a flour. It's best to push the resulting coarse flour through a sieve and then blitz the rougher particles in the blender again, then the sieve a final time. Any larger particles left I chuck in my groundbait mix - nothing wasted! My wife makes bread and adds about 15% tigernut flour to her wholemeal mix. The baked loaf has a better crust and the flavour is subtle, nutty and very slightly sweet. Looks like we have a winner with this flour - tigernuts are tasty!
  14. For me and river carp the Shimano Oceana OC Baitrunner in 6000 or 8000 size is perfect. It does not have a "longcast" style spool but casts up to 100yds with a 3ozs weight smoothly. I use mine with 30lb braid and the drag and baitrunner have been faultless. As for the line-clip I am not sure, I only use mine to hold things in place when not fishing! The price is not bad either - about £110 if you shop around. My 8000 OC is at least several years old now, has done a lot of sea fishing and topped with several carp to over 40lb on the river Lot, France. This carp was caught on the 6000 OC......
  15. One autumn the setting sun briefly lit up this scene on the river Lot, France. Quite a magical moment which I was fortunate to capture!
  16. It's hard not to take a good photo here!
  17. I have an auto-immune disease (lupus) that was first diagnosed as rheumatoid arthritis. It was a battle over many years to get it correctly diagnosed and actually took two decades before I found doctors who were competent at treating the illness. Most gave me steroids (prednisilone) and painkillers, then sent me on my way! I ended up hooked on painkillers, and it took years to get off steroids with all their long term complications. Anyway, nearly died after severe pneumonia set in. THEN the doctors took my illness seriously! Finally (only took 20 years!) I found a couple of specialists who turned things round for me - I really do owe them my life! My advice on anything health related is to find the best doctor you can that really understand your particular condition. Practical advice on fishing: Don't drive too far, it is far more tiring than most will admit! Short fishing sessions Minimise your tackle - one rod/reel, rest, small bag of bits, bucket with bait, landing net, chair Search those places where you can get your car close I had to admit defeat with sea fishing, but when I got my state pension retired to France. I was lucky to be able to do that with a lot of support from my wife. Settled for river fishing and have spent the last three years searching locally for easy places to fish - and my health is improving! Here I am parked on the slipway (out of boating season) with my Decathlon chair (very comfy!) placed to take in the view. ......and caught some barbel, even hooked what was probably a carp - hooked pulled!
  18. For traces and leaders I have been using Seaguar Abrazx 100% Fluorocarbon. Hangs straight but is very supple, it is used as a mainline in the US. I bought mine from the US off ebay, sometimes Amazon have it listed as well. https://seaguar.com/freshwater/fluorocarbon/abrazx
  19. seaguar abrazx fluorocarbon fishing line Not sure if this available in Europe yet. I bought some off ebay from a US supplier. Postage was not cheap but it still worked out cheaper than other Seaguar fluorocarbon lines here. I have been using the 15lb in rocky swims for barbel, it's proving very tough and has taken a few carp between 14lb - 19lb as well. The braid hook length materials do not work for me here on the river Lot, France. Tried a few now, but few bites and no fish!
  20. Hi David, thanks for that very interesting post and the bit about caves and water temperatures might come in handy for winter fishing. Maybe even in summer as water temperature can be in the mid-20c bracket and the fish seem to hide up! I still have not really tried the Cele! So far I have been so obsessed by the Lot that I think of little else (ask my wife!) My best fish from the Lot last year....
  21. Sounds like you have had some fun on your travels! Biggest fish I have lost was from an anchored RN frigate off Belize. A tarpon in the 200 lb class took my livebait and gave me the run-around for about 40 minutes. It jumped many times and, in the ships floodlights, was an awesome sight! Plenty of noise as well as they seem to rattle their gills when they jump. I was using the tip from a Conoflex Cod 5 that Nigel Forrest had cut and spigoted for me, a Fuji snaplock whipped on so I could use the tip as an uptider or add the glass butt to make a beach rod. An ABU 7000 and 20 lb line completed the outfit. Looking back I honestly think that the tarpon kept forgetting he was hooked. After short runs with several jumps he would return to the ship, most likely to continue feeding on the baitfish attracted by the lights and gash from the galley. Eventually he went under the ships shadow and my trace frayed through! Now I have a Conoflex Safari 45 3-piece as my travel rod and do not go anywhere! Where I live in France satisfies my "fishing soul" quite well! I brought a few decent carp rods to France - but they are too long for the river! So many trees, the banks are a jungle! A ten foot rod seems optimum, often less is best. Anyway, enjoying the barbel and chub whilst I learn about this wonderful river. Eventually I will get serious about a carp attack - probably!
  22. I know the uptide technique very well, was there off the Suffolk/Essex coasts when it was being developed. Your idea looks sound to me and I will give it a try soon. Sorted through the gear I have stored in the garage and found a spool for my Shimano Ultegra 5500 xtb that is loaded with 20lb P line. It's hard and wiry but not too bad casting off a largish diameter spool, don't like using thick line but even more I hate leaving a fish with a hook, trace, swivel and a couple of feet of mainline to tow around! Also found some Seaguar hard fluorocarbon trace line in 19lb. Hope this does not spook these fish! Plan on trying a semi-fixed lead (with your uptide mod), more like a carp rig but a slightly longer hook length. It is just possible the fish I hooked last night was a carp as they can turn up anywhere. If it was a barbel it must have been a good one! My Shimano 50-100gr travel rod was bent as much as I have ever seen it, that rod has had plenty of barracuda, stingrays and small sharks in Florida waters.
  23. .......over rocky ground. Fished a couple of different swims on the river Lot, France recently for barbel. One was clearly a bouldery swim, the other looked quite clear apart from light streamer weed. River is low and clear, normal summer conditions here. The barbel spooky and keeping out of sight - but will venture out for a smelly bait! I have found cooked, peeled crevettes great baits, preferably a few days past their best! Both swims I could only approach the barbel by casting upstream. Anyway, good barbel lost in both swims. One to a cut trace, the second to the mainline being cut. Trace in both cases 15lb fluorocarbon, not sure of the brand. Mainline just 10lb Shimano mono, it has been adequate most places as the barbel seem to top around 6 lb. I have tried coated braid hook lengths but the barbel seem very wary of these. When the barbel here finally decide to take a bait they run off with the bait like pike. Missed one 10 metre "run"when I was having a pee! The next bite I hammered and bullied the fish downstream to keep out of the weed. It kited towards the opposite bank and cut my mainline on an unseen rock edge! Clean cut, not dragged and roughened. I only fish short sessions and two or three fish is enough for me. Blew my chances these last two trips on new swims, want to be better prepared when I go back! Normally I get my fish to the bank, but these swims need a re-think of my terminal gear and mainline. Maybe my fishing tactics need refined as well. Any suggestions?
  24. Cavagnac lake, I have not fished this lake but had a look at it a couple of months ago - very impressed! They have a Facebook page Fly to Toulouse, get picked up and then all inclusive. Looked a good deal, but i have done nothing to compare it with.
  25. Thanks for the reply. Montluçon is an almost 4 hour drive north for me, interesting maybe? Yes, the B word might be considered "swearing" on some forums! Not trying to dwell on the politics, just gets me depressed! I first read of the Lot fishing in the '70's I think. Somehow seem to have found my way here almost by accident! Anyway, it's a good place to be and glad to be into some fishing which is new to me. Just what I needed!
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