Arrived in Portugal

Angekommen in Portugal | Hammer Tackle

Spain in fast forward

Bianca and I have covered a few kilometers since the last blog post. As quickly as we arrived in Asturias, a region in northern Spain on the Atlantic side, we left again just as quickly. The reason for this was the bad weather that was affecting large parts of Spain and France at the time. In addition, the Corona situation was getting worse again and Portugal seemed to have significantly fewer restrictions in this regard than was the case in Spain, France or Germany.

Hello Portugal

So we left the beautiful landscape of Spain behind us to get to the coast in northern Portugal as quickly as possible. On the first evening after our arrival we drove to the next larger city and got a SIM card so we could stay online. We didn't stay in the north for long because the weather wasn't really consistent there either and the actual destination was the Algarve in the south. We only drove through the large cities of Porto and Lisbon, as visits were strongly discouraged due to the increasing number of corona cases. Since Bianca and I aren't big city people anyway, we didn't mourn this fact for too long.

Algarve here we come

However, one thing was of great importance on our way south: getting my fishing license, which I finally got after the third attempt. After a few emails, I had my license on my phone a few days later and was authorized to fish the freshwater waters inland. That was exactly what was on the agenda next. We reached the Algarve much faster than planned. I had already heard and, above all, seen a lot about this region of Portugal. This winter I wanted to finally see for myself and explore the vast, wild landscape along the coast and inland. The reason for our quick arrival was the information about an upcoming lockdown, which mainly affected the northern region of Portugal. Below Lisbon the situation was more relaxed and after the last few days at sea we headed for a reservoir near the coast.

My first time in Portugal

With a size of around 50ha, the lake was quite clear and a spot was found quickly. We were able to park the cars right on the water without any problems, so we quickly went looking for a spot by boat. A headland on the other side of the river caught my eye as soon as we arrived. Right there I placed two rods at different depths. The third came to its own shore. Since our arrival I have only been able to spot a few fish actions throughout the lake and they have all been small white fish. Somehow strange, I thought, as the conditions were almost perfect. It was the end of October and the water temperature was still 19 degrees. The fish here have to eat around the clock and grow well - that's my thoughts. When I caught what was probably one of my smallest carp on the second evening, I wasn't so sure about my theory anymore. Two more mini carp and two barbel ended up in the landing net that night. The catches reflected my observations over the last two days. Because apart from really small, jumping carp, there was nothing to see or hear there.

The second attempt

But there was a second, slightly larger lake very close by. I had to find out if this one harbored larger fish. Since the weather forecast predicted absolutely no beach weather for the next few days, Bianca was easily convinced to go straight to the nearest lake. The weather should play even more into my hands: cooler temperatures, rain and wind should encourage the fish to eat...

We looked for a place that was in the wind and where I had the largest area of ​​water in front of me. Highly motivated, I spent much longer looking for a job this time than at the first lake. This lake had more structure and, with a depth of 25 meters, was also a lot deeper than the other one. After a lot of rowing around, I finally decided on spots near the shore so that I could still operate the boat in windy conditions. The weather seemed ideal and I had my eyes almost constantly directed towards the water - looking for jumping fish. But these also largely failed to materialize on this lake. Almost 24 hours later came the first run on the flattest rod in a small herb field. Shortly afterwards another barbel landed in the landing net. That's exactly how it went on. I caught more barbel and carp on all of the rods, which made me wonder how they even got my big baits into their mouths. I explained the many small fish as a lack of natural food. The lake shores were more like a sea and were littered with mussel shells that I didn't know if carp would even eat. The bottom of the two lakes was mostly sandy and didn't seem particularly nutritious. After three nights and lots of small fish action, my initial motivation was gone, at least for the first two waters.

Time for some sea

The weather improved again and so it was time to smell some sea air again. I slowly started to get used to the sound of the sea, the smell and the salty taste and to enjoy it more and more. There was something calming about it and the days flew by there, even without fishing. The places were often in a fantastic location and not very busy. I'm not giving up hope for my first, slightly better Portuguese carp any time soon. As I write these lines, I find myself again on the banks of a beautiful, large reservoir somewhere far away from any civilization...

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Reading next

Guido Richard: Une première à Saint Cassien (1) | Hammer Tackle
Guido Richard: Une première à Saint Cassien (2) | Hammer Tackle