Vantastic Lukas: Back in France

Vantastic Lukas: Zurück in Frankreich | Hammer Tackle

A spontaneous meeting

I stayed for three days at a lake at the foot of the Spanish Pyrenees. The area was unique, right behind my parking space was an old abandoned village. According to research, the last residents had to leave their homes behind in 1960 because of the creation of the reservoir and thus left their houses to decay. It was a cool, but at the same time a sad sight.

During the three days I spent at the lake, I threw two rods directly onto the edge of the bank, but I didn't hope for much success. The lake didn't seem like it could easily outwit a carp. I spontaneously decided to cross the border into France, which was not far away, to visit my friend Alex at a body of water in the south. The weather for the next few days didn't look particularly good and so it didn't make sense to stay in the Pyrenees any longer anyway. Since Alex and I actually wanted to meet in Spain much earlier, I was even more pleased that we were able to spend a few more days fishing together.

Finally arrived

After an eight-hour drive, I finally arrived at the lake in the dark. After a warm welcome and a short chat, I promptly went to bed. Alex was busy playing and photographing fish throughout the night. Since the day I arrived, things were going pretty well for him after a long dry spell at the lake. Only in the morning did I calmly lay my rods in the nearby herb fields, which were teeming with fish. Optimistic that we would also catch one or two carp, but things looked a little different after the five days:

On the first day I was able to catch one of the numerous catfish that gathered en masse in the weed fields in front of me. They had a rich buffet thanks to the many white fish that gathered in the weeds to spawn. A spectacle worth seeing, which unfortunately didn't go in my favor: the catfish swam constantly through my lines, which ran through the weed fields behind which I was fishing. The result was constant false alarms due to top-class line floats and warped assemblies.
I lost the only supposed carp during a fight of a slightly different kind in which my leader broke:

Actually I just wanted to check my rod. As always, I courageously pulled the braided line out of the weeds with my rod, which in this case broke at some point. I calmly tied a new assembly together on the boat and then picked up the torn end with my “search treble hook”. When I arrived at the spot, I was wondering why my marker suddenly disappeared. I reacted quickly and picked him up as he came back to the surface. The line I had just broken was caught in the marker - with fish. After a short drill on a free line, the thing described above happened: the leader broke. Frustrated, I rowed ashore and told Alex what had just happened.

After this action I had no further fish action other than the constant line floats. Meanwhile, a few meters away, Alex was working his fingers sore. I was happy that Alex, who had been fishing at the lake for several weeks at that time, was now having these great moments. For me at that moment the meeting mattered more than catching fish and so I was completely in agreement with my fishless situation.

Meeting in the South

When the area we fished was closed as a spawning and protected area for a month on April 1st, we packed up and moved on. A very appropriate moment, because the weather suddenly changed last night with a sharp drop in temperature and an ice-cold north-westerly wind.

We wanted to meet Alex's friend Matija and his family at another lake in the south to spend a few relaxing days at the lake without the intention of fishing. I also had to fix a few electronic problems on Matija's van, which I was fortunately able to help him with.
When Alex started his journey home to Germany after four days, I was still unsure about what to do next. It was still too cold for me in Germany to start the upcoming journey home. The weather forecast for the current region predicted sunshine, rising temperatures and wind in the next few days.

“I’ll stay a little longer”

I was overcome with motivation to stay at the lake for a while to take advantage of the good conditions for fishing. I knew that the lake had a low fish population and was not easy to fish. Nevertheless, the weather forecast gave me a good feeling. I looked for an area where the wind would hit in the next few days. The place where I settled was paradisiacal and invited me to linger. With the boat I looked for four spots in the crystal clear, turquoise water. With the polar glasses I repeatedly recognized weed-free areas between the ground weeds in which I placed the rods. The first three days, when the wind was still a long time coming, numerous chubs and ides made life difficult for me. They literally robbed me of sleep - the bait apparently couldn't be big enough for the pests to stop in front of them.

Not again!

On the fourth night the expected wind came and with the wind one of my rods reported a bite early in the morning, which this time did not indicate a chub. I ran to the rod and tried to fight the fish from the bank because of the wind. After a short contact, my line broke in one of the roots that were at the bottom. Not again!! I threw the rod on the ground and ran to the boat, cursing. I slowly fought my way towards the spot, rowing against the waves. “That couldn’t be true, I got the run I was longing for and the main line broke again.” I definitely didn't want to let the fish slip through the cracks - and I wanted to try everything possible. When I arrived at the spot in the boat, I threw my search treble overboard and rowed with it in tow across the spot where I thought my line had broken. I caught my chalk line on the first cast. YES!! I kept rowing over the root with the line in my hand to loosen the line. Suddenly I had direct contact with the fish below me. Drifting away quickly, I played the fish on the free line, certain that this time I hadn't hooked a chub. Shortly before my camp, I managed to drill the bright scale to the surface and maneuver it into my landing net. I was overjoyed and quickly took a few photos. I wanted to put the rod back later because the wind was getting stronger...

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

Vantastic Lukas: Unverhofft kommt oft | Hammer Tackle
Vantastic Lukas: Zurück in Frankreich (2) | Hammer Tackle