Friday 15 November 2013

Centre Parcs Elvedon - You Bas***d

I have just returned from another great week away with the family at Centre Parcs in Elvedon, I caught a big Perch here in March on sweetcorn but this time I specifically came with Perch in mind, two pints of maggots live and dead, lobworms, dark groundbait, king prawns and chopped red worms.

My youngest Sam helped me pre-bait a swim I was going to fish which was yards from our woodland lodge Ceder 164. With the trap set the following morning I was using two rods, one baited with lobworm under a classic Perch bobber and the other king prawn on a running rig.

The other anglers I've spoken to at Centre Parcs, are only after one fish and that's the carp, and the lake it full of them. Where the kids feed the ducks on the beach area you can literally feed 20lb carp with your fingers, luckily certain areas of the lake you are banned from fishing from. It's carp soup.

It didn't go well for the first hour or so because despite the water being freezing the first two fish I had were 7lb Carp. I noticed some fry jumping and sure enough the next hour I had 6 Perch all over 2lb, with the biggest 2lb 6oz.

I must mention the zandervan roll over indicator as it worked brilliantly, it's more or less resistant free and even when the wind was blowing and there was tow on the lake only a small adjustment was needed to get it working effectively again.

I fished for 5 mornings, two or three hours each session and I had similar results each day apart from yesterday, it was colder than the previous days and slightly overcast. I'm a stickler for fishing rules however I noticed some gulls flying above my swim, obviously focusing on something in the water, it was a dead Roach and I could reach it by extending my landing net handle to it maximum length.

I thought it might be a little big at 5" but it went straight on the hook, glad I did as what a difference a change of bait made, as soon as it settled the roll over indicator was rising and line being pulled from the reel. The first fish pictured below was a tad under 2lb but it took such a big bait no problem. It shook the deadbait free and it came out from under the water a few metres from the bank, again it went on the hook.

15 minutes later another confident rise of the indicator and line began to peel off. I closed the bail arm and wham, I was in to another decent Perch again, this felt different though, this was a big'un and put a proper bend in my 10ft 1.5lb TC Rod. As it came to the surface I couldn't believe what I was seeing, it was the biggest Perch I have ever set my eyes on, a proper'un. 

What an impressive sight and it was shaking it's head from side to side to get rid of the bait my heart was racing, this is what all the planning and preparation was for, then Sod's law 

Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We have all had a fish that got away story and sadly I've got another one to add to my collection. With it's violent head shaking it managed to get rid of the hook and dead Roach, I got a view of it's flank and head when it broke the surface before it went back to the depths of the lake, it really was huge !!.

You Bas***d were the words I think I used when I threw the rod down. One of those angling nightmares that I'll relive again and again, no doubt.

One thing I have learnt, and my mate Dave Roberts was very much correct, big Perch love a deadbait, and a BIG one at that.  

If I recall correctly the late Kev Green filmed a program with Steve Burke on the predators series where they fished big deadbaits at dusk, I must dig it out on youtube. 


  1. Unlucky with the really big one Mick, but it sounds like you had some good fishing anyway. I had my eyes opened today with my first perch on a deadbait. I've never really considered it before, but it's something I'll be researching a little more for sure.

  2. Sean, this is worth a look

  3. Oh and it starts at 1.10.

    RIP Kev Green


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