Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Center Parcs, Elveden - The Big Perch Search

The main lake isn’t the clearest, it’s a nice tinge of green with a foot of clarity, it’s operational after all used for various water sports such as kayaking, paddle boarding, cable skiing and the like.Even Santa makes a visit on his motorboat during the fantastic fireworks display.Unlike the rank and file I wasn’t targeting the scum suckers but the big Perch that are resident here. The biggest I’d caught which bizarrely I had on sweetcorn was over 3lb I reckon , I was weighing scale less though so had to return it to from where it came kicking myself in the process.

Two subsequent trips I was more single-minded and caught plenty over 2lb and lost one that would have beaten my 2lb 11oz PB sadly the deadbait and hook were dislodged when after existing the water for the third time its aggressive head shaking finally paid off.

I’d come properly prepared again, for bait, some bleak deadbait, lobworms and krill and shrimp glugged king prawns. It’s a big lake so I made some groundbait to try and attract the bait fish and to get them more concentrated (It worked last time). The chum concoction consisted of natural worm extract, some bloodworm and fishmeal ground bait, chopped worm and dead maggots. A friend of mine Dave doesn't fish for specimen Perch till the first frost, for the week here it's stupidly mild. There are carp here and because its mild they well may feature, the greedy gits.

I’d never use a soft bait or spinner here before so to accompany my float and running set-up from time to time I’d throw out a lure here and there. As I'm here with the family, the mornings are the only real option as I'd like to have fished in to dusk.I never had a problem previously so I was hoping for the same.

Luckily it all fitted in the car amongst the holiday related luggage and paraphernalia…

Day 1
Sam helped me bait up a couple of swims, a float fished bleak and occasionally a lobworm in a few swims and didn't even bring a bite. Sam has the attention span of a gnat, so maybe he isn't quite ready yet. They have added more feature to the water sports since we were here last so another pontoon has appeared, meaning the swim that produced in the past, was out of bounds. I used the Mepps in and around it though and after an hour, not even a tap.

Day 2
I fished the pre-baited swim for a couple of hours and managed a few decent Roach just over a pound and a couple of carp. The deadbait would usually have some attention by now, but two hours later I was Perch less. I moved towards the corner of the lake to a swim between two large bushes.Eventually after an hour in the swim and some chopped worm every now and then the float was dragged under and something had taken the bleak.

Stupidly I struck prematurely, I initially felt resistance but then everything went slack and the float popped out. The Perch must have had the fish in its mouth, felt resistance and then let go. At least there was a sign some fish were around.

Day 3  
I started the morning in the swim that I left, when I left I added some chopped prawns and worms so it was ready for the morning. Well best laid plans and all that because not even a touch on the deadbait and lobworm only attracted the carp and some tiny Perch. The carp also liked the prawns so much so the next swim I tried I had a few in quick succession so I decided to fish exclusively the bleak, the biggest carp went about 8 or 9lb, it's a big old lake so it's a matter of finding the fish. 

The weather has been a bit hit and miss so with Wednesday the only real option as it is a family holiday after all,  it will be more of a roving session. A bleak under a float and also a Mepps lure, the bottom end of the lake has a large floating platform, so that's where I'd start. Weirdly since I've been here I'd only spotted a handful of anglers, the carp were still there off the jetty on the beach, only small ones mind, I wonder if they have removed the bigger ones.

Day 4
Well no surprise and not worth writing about, a few small Perch and even a carp liked the bleak, probably the mildest morning as well. The sky was clear too, nearby RAF Lakenheath had their F-15E Strike Eagles from the 48th Fighter Wing out patrolling the skies, at least that was entertaining. There is cold weather on the way next week, damn. I bet in two weeks time it will fish completely differently. With family stuff planned for the next few days, this was the last session.

All very disappointing, especially considering the potential, oh well, I'm sure there will be another trip. Sam had the right response, all very mehhhhh...


  1. There used to be lots of carp in there. I'd bought my permit before told it had just been heavliy netted out, the usual crap about the fish colouring the water too much for the ducks .

    1. Yeah I heard that too, there used to be loads of big'uns at the beach area where the kids feed the ducks, they were all but gone when I looked a couple of days ago. I'd spoke to a couple of carpers and they had one fish between them.


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