This band of happy go lucky anglers named themselves “The Suffolk Carp Crew” specifically for their annual trip to a lake in
The members of the crew have changed from year to year, but the core members just keep going back for more. The founder member of the group is David “Clacky” Clack who has been back 7 times now. The group this year consisted of “Clacky” (obviously), Dale “Swarley” Sankey, Mark “Pud” Parsley (useless), Stuart “Rhubarb” Rackham, Terry Ellwood, Stuey Crawford, Paul “Abby” Ablett, and myself, Keith Ellwood.
All the planning behind us now, on the 18th of September, the excited crew prepared to leave Halesworth. The equipment was expertly packed into the minibus by Pud, 16 rods, 8 bivvies, 8 beds and so much more equipment that I seriously doubted that it would all fit in and leave room for us. But fit it did (well done Pud) and we were on our way. Oh, did I forget to mention the 140kgs of bait that we also had on board?
After a gruelling journey of some
Etang des Royales - is a
After being greeted by our hosts for the week, John & Ben Hofgartner, we set about setting up our homes for the week at various points around the lake.That done it was off to the house for dinner and a drink or three in the bar. The social side of the week was really quite incredible with fancy dress being worn for the biggest fish of the day and forfeits being paid (a round of drinks) for numerous reasons including new personal best, loss of a fish and breaking wind at the bar. The crew were in touch with each other the entire week by means of short wave radios, which was a constant source of amusement with vivid descriptions of the local wildlife being provided by “Rhubarb Rackham”. The hedgehogs in his swim were apparently wearing yellow hats, high vies waistcoats and doc martins boots, they were also taking part in wrestling matches with the local rat population. This had the entire crew in fits of laughter for most of the week. The entertainment was further enhanced by the site of Stuey Crawford being chased around the lake by a flock of geese, Stuey was absolutely flying!!
The food was awesome, full English breakfast and evening meal, all prepared by our host John who along with his son Ben and wife, Magda, joined us at meal times. The quality of the food was reflected by the eight empty plates at the end of every meal.
The serious task of fishing gave us the following results over the week: 38 fish out of 41 runs, 35 carp - 2 doubles, 12 x 20's, 16 x 30's, 4 x 40's up to 47 ¾lb, a 53lb and three catfish up to 46lb. Fishing was a little slow due to the high pressure but picked up by the end of the week. Terry, spent a night on the small lake and banked three cats - 18lb, 36lb & 46lb. Clacky, the top rod of the week with 8 carp - 18lb, 22 ¾lb, 24lb, 28lb, 32lb, 39lb common, 45lb and 47 ¾lb, Stuey Crawford landed the fish of the week at an amazing 53lb, well done Stuey! Personal bests were banked by Clacky, Abby, Stuey and myself.
All in all, a great holiday with nice company, good food and fantastic fishing, not surprising therefore to reveal that plans are well under way for a return trip in May 2010 (fully booked again)!
The “CARP CREW” would like to congratulate Pud and