GO ON LES! A Week To Remember at Lesmont

Posted by: Adam Reed on May 15th, 2015

Well, after 13 years since my last trip to France, I was finally off again, for a week at Lesmont with a few of the boys from Trakker and a couple of close friends.

It was the first time visiting the venue for most of us going, but some of the lads had been before, so listening to there stories over the past couple of months had really got me hyped-up for the trip.

After loading my mate Bone’s van to the roof, with what seemed like enough gear for a year, never mind the week, we were off. We met up with the rest of the guys at Folkestone, and after a quick coffee and a natter, we were boarding the train for the short crossing, then a four-and-a-half-hour journey down to Lesmont .

We arrived to heavy rain but spirits where high and we where soon walking the lake with bailiff Rich, getting filled-in on the past week and what’s been going on. After the slow walk round it became clear most peoples top 3 swims where very similar so it was all about the draw although it was set to be a great week where ever you ended up as all the swims offered plenty.

The draw came and went, and I pulled 5th out of 6, so the favoured swims where gobbled up, but I was more than happy to jump in next to me old mate Bone in swim number 10. It was the second to last peg in the corner although 11 had been removed from our draw offering a stalking option for 9 and 10.

It wasn’t long before everything was set up and the anticipation began. First blood came to sam, AKA Abu, from the opposite end of the pond, and after some shouts across the lake and a couple of battle cries, it felt like the holiday was underway. A nice 40 was his prize – a great start.

The night came and went with no activity for me. I’d gone very light with the bait, just setting little traps on a couple of rods. Not knowing what’s gone on the week before, I felt this was the best way to play things, well, at least for the first couple of days anyway.

Just after first light, the call came in that Farmer Mark had just banked a 50lb common, so I was soon on my way round to share the buzz and get a few pics. I’d hoped someone would have a good fish on our week, and for this to happen on the first morning was fantastic.

It wasn’t long before we had something to cheer about at our end. Bones’ right hand rod was away mid-morning, and he was soon doing battle with what felt and looked like a very big fish. Added to that, it was hooked on a 14ft Zig, so he was understandably nervous whilst a determined carp tore around his swim in a desperate attempt to rid itself of the hook. After a good battle it went in the net first time of asking, and we both knew from seeing it in the clear water that it was a PB common for Bone, and a primeval roar was unleashed that could be heard around the lake, and probably most of France! After letting both Bone and the fish recover, we soon got the weighing and pics done. The needle on the scales span round to 47lb 1oz – a stunning, brute of a common, the capture of which had made the whole trip worthwhile already, just by seeing my friend so made-up.

A few more fish started to trickle out, and it wasn’t all that long before ‘the gaffer’ Jerry was soon off the mark, with nice 30-plus mirror, again on a Zig.

The next couple of days passed with no action at our end of the lake. Sam had landed a few more though, with some very good angling, fishing to a marginal snag, and both Jerry and Farmer Mark had added to their total so the mood in the camp was high .

I stuck to the same spots, telling myself it was very early days, even if the fish weren’t at our end in any numbers. Like everyone else, I was just happy to be on holiday with the rods out.

I was woken that night by a big shout across the lake at around 2.00 am. I checked my phone and I had received a text message from Jerry saying that Clint had banked a fish known as Masons at 67lb+! I was over the moon for Clint, and shot straight down there to enjoy the moment. I walked in the swim to find the kettle on, and Clint and Jerry smiling from ear-to-ear. All anglers can relate to this buzz, and I was so happy for Clint – a new PB and a truly amazing mirror. I sat with the lads for an hour drinking coffee and savouring the moment, before making my way back to let them try and sleep, but that was never going to happen – they were both flying.

Later that Tuesday morning, I went round to the shower, passing the bottom corner in swim 4, a swim that hadn’t been taken in the draw.

I noticed some fish in the snags, so before jumping in the shower I threw some chops in just off the snags. After retuning, the chops were gone. I made my way back to the swim and had a chat with Mark about my observations. With nothing happening for both me and Mark, the decision was soon made.

I grabbed a rod and a few bits, and we chucked our waterproofs on and made our way down there, in the rain, to try and stalk one out and get me off the mark. When we got round to the swim, the fish were still ghosting in and out of the snag, so Mark scared them off with a few half-baits, before I dropped the rig in. Fishing locked-up and sitting on the rod, it wasn’t long before we were away. Running fast to my left and with lots of side strain, I managed to get the fish away from the snag and after a good battle I’d landed my first fish of the trip – a low-20, and me and Bone were buzzing, not only for me to be off the mark, but from the adrenaline rush of stalking one at such close-quarters. Before heading back to my swim, I put another 50/60 baits on the spot, knowing I’d be back tomorrow.

With another uneventful night, I was soon on my way back down to the stalking spot. I could see all the bait I’d put in was gone, and there were a few commons swimming in and out the snags that looked around 30lb, one in particular being a real character. I scared them off with a few baits, then got the rig back on the spot, and it was no more than an hour before it was off again. A single bleep rang from the alarm again and I lifted into the fish, before sinking the tip down low and giving it everything I’d got to stop it going further into the snag. I was soon in control, and after a little battle he was mine. As soon as I’d slipped the net under him, Bone walked into the swim. He’d seen me playing it so shot down with the camera and scales. It was one off the commons I’d been watching, and at 29lb 15oz, I was chuffed to bits again. Not a monster, but plenty big enough for me.

I tied another rig and put another 20 chopped baits on the spot before leaving them to come back. After a couple of beers with Jerry and Clint, I was soon back in the swim ready for another go. The other common I’d seen was back in there, along with a couple of better mirrors. Once back on the spot, it wasn’t long before I was away again. After another great battle I landed the common I’d seen – a real character, and stunning-looking and a kind of burnt orange in colour – I was over the moon.

That was going to be it for the day, as two from the little spot seemed like I’d pushed my luck already, but after popping round to give them a bit of free lunch before heading back I saw two good mirrors ghost in, so I put some bait in and went off to sit with the lads again to let the swim rest.

Returning to the swim at around 3.30pm, I immediately noticed all the chops were gone, and there were fish back in the snag, all be it not so active and less of them. I decided to have a go anyway, and the rod was on the spot for just over an hour before another single bleep let me know one of the Lesmont residents had made a mistake. This felt a bigger fish straight away. It gave me less hassle coming out the snag, but felt very heavy and stayed deep. After a fairly long fight, I slipped the net under a big mirror, again, a real character with a gnarly old tail. I could tell it was a PB mirror without weighing it, but, for the record it went 43lb+, and once again I was buzzing.

Jerry had heard my shout of “GO ON LES!”, which had become the battle-cry for the week between the lads on the trip, and was soon ringing me to find out what had occured. I told him what I’d had and he was with me in five minutes with a couple of bottles of beer and his camera. We got some great shots of the fish, before sending it back safely on it’s way, and settling down with a couple of beers to savour the moment and take it all in.

I then baited the spot again, ready for one last go the next day, and was lucky enough to take two more mirrors the next morning, one being a lovely scraper-20 and the other a rate unit at over 39lb. The trip had turned out to be a great one for me, but after that I was going to put in some effort in my base camp.

Before the week was out, I managed to take two more fish from the swim I’d been bivvied up in for the week – a stunning 24lb common and a clean 32lb+ mirror, both from spots I’d been baiting all week. This was a relief as I was started to getting a ribbing for being a poacher!

It really was a week to remember, with over 25 fish banked in total, spread between the lads, and for me to have 8 was a real bonus. The fish included some stunning 40s, Clints 67lb mirror, and even a 52lb grassie for Bone.

I’d like to say a big thankyou to Abu, Farmer Mark, Bone, Big Clint and Jerry the Jedi for making it a week to remember.

I’m pleased to say were booked-up for next year already and really look forward it .

 

Tight lines and be lucky.

 

Ads

 

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

This low-20 was my first fish of the trip, caught after a chance sighting as I walked to the showers!

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

A plump common from the stalking spot.

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

This one was a bit of a character, and it didn’t half pull my string!

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

Another hard-fighting Lesmont mirror – this one going over 39lb!

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

This 43lb personal best mirror was the icing on the cake for me!

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GO ON LES! A Week To Remember at Lesmont

Posted by: Adam Reed on May 15th, 2015

Well, after 13 years since my last trip to France, I was finally off again, for a week at Lesmont with a few of the boys from Trakker and a couple of close friends.

It was the first time visiting the venue for most of us going, but some of the lads had been before, so listening to there stories over the past couple of months had really got me hyped-up for the trip.

After loading my mate Bone’s van to the roof, with what seemed like enough gear for a year, never mind the week, we were off. We met up with the rest of the guys at Folkestone, and after a quick coffee and a natter, we were boarding the train for the short crossing, then a four-and-a-half-hour journey down to Lesmont .

We arrived to heavy rain but spirits where high and we where soon walking the lake with bailiff Rich, getting filled-in on the past week and what’s been going on. After the slow walk round it became clear most peoples top 3 swims where very similar so it was all about the draw although it was set to be a great week where ever you ended up as all the swims offered plenty.

The draw came and went, and I pulled 5th out of 6, so the favoured swims where gobbled up, but I was more than happy to jump in next to me old mate Bone in swim number 10. It was the second to last peg in the corner although 11 had been removed from our draw offering a stalking option for 9 and 10.

It wasn’t long before everything was set up and the anticipation began. First blood came to sam, AKA Abu, from the opposite end of the pond, and after some shouts across the lake and a couple of battle cries, it felt like the holiday was underway. A nice 40 was his prize – a great start.

The night came and went with no activity for me. I’d gone very light with the bait, just setting little traps on a couple of rods. Not knowing what’s gone on the week before, I felt this was the best way to play things, well, at least for the first couple of days anyway.

Just after first light, the call came in that Farmer Mark had just banked a 50lb common, so I was soon on my way round to share the buzz and get a few pics. I’d hoped someone would have a good fish on our week, and for this to happen on the first morning was fantastic.

It wasn’t long before we had something to cheer about at our end. Bones’ right hand rod was away mid-morning, and he was soon doing battle with what felt and looked like a very big fish. Added to that, it was hooked on a 14ft Zig, so he was understandably nervous whilst a determined carp tore around his swim in a desperate attempt to rid itself of the hook. After a good battle it went in the net first time of asking, and we both knew from seeing it in the clear water that it was a PB common for Bone, and a primeval roar was unleashed that could be heard around the lake, and probably most of France! After letting both Bone and the fish recover, we soon got the weighing and pics done. The needle on the scales span round to 47lb 1oz – a stunning, brute of a common, the capture of which had made the whole trip worthwhile already, just by seeing my friend so made-up.

A few more fish started to trickle out, and it wasn’t all that long before ‘the gaffer’ Jerry was soon off the mark, with nice 30-plus mirror, again on a Zig.

The next couple of days passed with no action at our end of the lake. Sam had landed a few more though, with some very good angling, fishing to a marginal snag, and both Jerry and Farmer Mark had added to their total so the mood in the camp was high .

I stuck to the same spots, telling myself it was very early days, even if the fish weren’t at our end in any numbers. Like everyone else, I was just happy to be on holiday with the rods out.

I was woken that night by a big shout across the lake at around 2.00 am. I checked my phone and I had received a text message from Jerry saying that Clint had banked a fish known as Masons at 67lb+! I was over the moon for Clint, and shot straight down there to enjoy the moment. I walked in the swim to find the kettle on, and Clint and Jerry smiling from ear-to-ear. All anglers can relate to this buzz, and I was so happy for Clint – a new PB and a truly amazing mirror. I sat with the lads for an hour drinking coffee and savouring the moment, before making my way back to let them try and sleep, but that was never going to happen – they were both flying.

Later that Tuesday morning, I went round to the shower, passing the bottom corner in swim 4, a swim that hadn’t been taken in the draw.

I noticed some fish in the snags, so before jumping in the shower I threw some chops in just off the snags. After retuning, the chops were gone. I made my way back to the swim and had a chat with Mark about my observations. With nothing happening for both me and Mark, the decision was soon made.

I grabbed a rod and a few bits, and we chucked our waterproofs on and made our way down there, in the rain, to try and stalk one out and get me off the mark. When we got round to the swim, the fish were still ghosting in and out of the snag, so Mark scared them off with a few half-baits, before I dropped the rig in. Fishing locked-up and sitting on the rod, it wasn’t long before we were away. Running fast to my left and with lots of side strain, I managed to get the fish away from the snag and after a good battle I’d landed my first fish of the trip – a low-20, and me and Bone were buzzing, not only for me to be off the mark, but from the adrenaline rush of stalking one at such close-quarters. Before heading back to my swim, I put another 50/60 baits on the spot, knowing I’d be back tomorrow.

With another uneventful night, I was soon on my way back down to the stalking spot. I could see all the bait I’d put in was gone, and there were a few commons swimming in and out the snags that looked around 30lb, one in particular being a real character. I scared them off with a few baits, then got the rig back on the spot, and it was no more than an hour before it was off again. A single bleep rang from the alarm again and I lifted into the fish, before sinking the tip down low and giving it everything I’d got to stop it going further into the snag. I was soon in control, and after a little battle he was mine. As soon as I’d slipped the net under him, Bone walked into the swim. He’d seen me playing it so shot down with the camera and scales. It was one off the commons I’d been watching, and at 29lb 15oz, I was chuffed to bits again. Not a monster, but plenty big enough for me.

I tied another rig and put another 20 chopped baits on the spot before leaving them to come back. After a couple of beers with Jerry and Clint, I was soon back in the swim ready for another go. The other common I’d seen was back in there, along with a couple of better mirrors. Once back on the spot, it wasn’t long before I was away again. After another great battle I landed the common I’d seen – a real character, and stunning-looking and a kind of burnt orange in colour – I was over the moon.

That was going to be it for the day, as two from the little spot seemed like I’d pushed my luck already, but after popping round to give them a bit of free lunch before heading back I saw two good mirrors ghost in, so I put some bait in and went off to sit with the lads again to let the swim rest.

Returning to the swim at around 3.30pm, I immediately noticed all the chops were gone, and there were fish back in the snag, all be it not so active and less of them. I decided to have a go anyway, and the rod was on the spot for just over an hour before another single bleep let me know one of the Lesmont residents had made a mistake. This felt a bigger fish straight away. It gave me less hassle coming out the snag, but felt very heavy and stayed deep. After a fairly long fight, I slipped the net under a big mirror, again, a real character with a gnarly old tail. I could tell it was a PB mirror without weighing it, but, for the record it went 43lb+, and once again I was buzzing.

Jerry had heard my shout of “GO ON LES!”, which had become the battle-cry for the week between the lads on the trip, and was soon ringing me to find out what had occured. I told him what I’d had and he was with me in five minutes with a couple of bottles of beer and his camera. We got some great shots of the fish, before sending it back safely on it’s way, and settling down with a couple of beers to savour the moment and take it all in.

I then baited the spot again, ready for one last go the next day, and was lucky enough to take two more mirrors the next morning, one being a lovely scraper-20 and the other a rate unit at over 39lb. The trip had turned out to be a great one for me, but after that I was going to put in some effort in my base camp.

Before the week was out, I managed to take two more fish from the swim I’d been bivvied up in for the week – a stunning 24lb common and a clean 32lb+ mirror, both from spots I’d been baiting all week. This was a relief as I was started to getting a ribbing for being a poacher!

It really was a week to remember, with over 25 fish banked in total, spread between the lads, and for me to have 8 was a real bonus. The fish included some stunning 40s, Clints 67lb mirror, and even a 52lb grassie for Bone.

I’d like to say a big thankyou to Abu, Farmer Mark, Bone, Big Clint and Jerry the Jedi for making it a week to remember.

I’m pleased to say were booked-up for next year already and really look forward it .

 

Tight lines and be lucky.

 

Ads

 

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

This low-20 was my first fish of the trip, caught after a chance sighting as I walked to the showers!

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

A plump common from the stalking spot.

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

This one was a bit of a character, and it didn’t half pull my string!

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

Another hard-fighting Lesmont mirror – this one going over 39lb!

Go On Les – Adam Reed – Blog – Trakker

This 43lb personal best mirror was the icing on the cake for me!

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