Best Mirror Carp Bait
This is a follow-up post to the original Chateauroux trip at the turn of the millenium. As the title suggests I returned to Chateauroux many years later. The fishery had become one of the best fisheries in France, now known to many as Maison. The goal: to find the Best Mirror Carp Bait and to catch a forty or even a fifty pound carp. My good friend Simon now accompanies me on these French trips every year. Simon had a special milestone to pass, catching a forty plus carp had so far eluded him. So, I suggested we make the long journey to Maison.
I called to book our place, the only time we could get was in mid-August, not the best time to go down that far south with the weather likely to be very hot. Well, we booked anyway as there was only one other booking on the whole complex. With the Ferry booked, it soon came around and we were on our way. Both of us feeling very exited about spending a week on this known big fish water. Incidentally this was the first time I had ever been away fishing for the whole week. The weather forecast was looking very promising for angling, low pressure and rain was forecast for most of the week. could we really be that lucky in August?
After a long drive, we eventually arrived at our destination, the lake we had chosen was empty, no other anglers to compete with, “we were in luck”. Sometimes this can make life a bit more difficult as fish can move away from where you are fishing to areas free of anglers. When there is more pressure on the fish they are sometimes forced to move around. Anyway we would cross that bridge if we needed to. We chose our spots and started to get our fishing heads on. Simon was round to my right with some nice areas to fish to, I’m soon fishing with 3 rods out at long range fishing to an area where we had spotted fish on our arrival.
Wet Weather Angling in Summer
Long range fishing was something I’ve had plenty of experience with on a couple of waters I fish in the UK. Before I had even got the bivvy and other comforts of a week spent on the bank set up, the right hand rod was away. After a good fight, Simon netted the fish at the first time of asking and our week was off to a great start with a 34lb mirror carp. The weather as promised was looking very hostile as clouds rolled in from the south, it rained continuously for the next 3 days. During this period, I’d managed to land mirror carps of 38 and 35 pounds.
Best Mirror Carp Bait in Summer
Although the area still looked good for a bite, Simon hadn’t got off the mark. As this trip was really about Simon catching his 40+ fish we needed another plan for him. We decided a move to my left and fill it in with bait was the plan. We didn’t have the use of a boat on this trip, so we managed to find a nice area by casting a marker from the bank to Simons left. We then set about baiting up with the throwing sticks. At the time I was using Mistral baits first fish meal made with Belacan, a substance used in the cooking trade -- an ingredient I’d used extensively in the past in my home made baits. Yes we were very confident that this could be the best mirror carp bait and tactic we were employing at this stage of the session. Given the results, it appeared that this was the best mirror carp bait in summer. After all the work moving and baiting up, Simon was confident he was going to catch that night. After a great meal, which always seem to taste better cooked on the bank we retired to are respective swims and waited for the fish to play the game.
The next morning Simon excitedly called out he’d landed what looked like a good forty, I was as pleased with that news as he was. Unbeknown to him, I was aware he had always liked a silver common carp ornament I had on our sideboard at home. I’d managed to find another one in antique shop and had been carrying for just this precise moment. Simon had also prepared well for this moment with a video camera to record the event. Pictures and video all done with the weight agreed upon as 48lbs and Simon the new proud owner of a silver common carp. We had achieved what we had come all this way for. T
The next couple of days we had mirrors of 43,45 and a couple of thirties, Late afternoon on the second to last day I had a take on the same right hand rod as the first fish of the trip, this rod had been the resting place for a kingfisher that flew by every couple of hours, so it was only fitting this turned out to be the biggest of the trip so far a mirror of 51lb, the last night came and went with no further action.
Careful Bait Planning
After Simon, had moved from his first swim I’d kept the bait going in every day still thinking it should have produced a fish or two. I decided to have the last morning on this spot with a couple of rods. At half eleven one of the rods was away, didn’t expect to see a 52 in the net after a short battle once away from the rush bed I was fishing tight to. No more action as we slowly packed away and headed for home.
Best Hook Choice for Carp Angling
Some of the tackle we used on this trip included the mandatory barbless hooks. We opted for Korda wide gape barbless in size 4 to accommodate the double 18mm boilies presented snowman style balanced to sit on the hook. We used 4 half hook baits as a pva stringer, or cast just on its own for a few extra yards on the cast. This tactic accounted for most of my fish at range. Good old Diawa sensa line in 15lb loaded on my Shimano Long cast reels. The rods I had at the time were 3lb through Action Harrison’s, these were since stolen from the back of my van.
The Future at Maison, Chateauroux
Since our last trip to Maison the fishery was sold, I don’t know if the fish are still there but it’s no longer advertised as a carp fishery.
The memories of Maison and investigating what makes the best mirror carp bait are some of the best we’ve had in all the years we have fished in France. Tight lines, Trev.
Best Mirror Carp Bait Two 50 Pound+ Caught on Return to Chateauroux in France by Trevor