The perfect family trip to Domaine des Iles

Bonjour Domaine des Iles,

We have just returned to England after out annual family trip to Domaine des Iles. As you and I discussed I have been fishing with you for over 20 years now and this has been our 4th consecutive family holiday and to date the best one yet. Again, it was only Sam and I who fished hard and between us we had over 900lb worth of carp with a few cats thrown in.
We spent the 1st night in swims 12 & 13. In 24 hours Sam had 5 fish up to 28lb from swim 12. Me and Georgia had 2 from the old stock pond, 18lb and 23 lb and I had a 37lb from swim 13.
As the main lodge with swims 1-4 was available we moved up there on the Saturday and that was well worth the move. The 1st fish to come out was Sam's 50.5lb common at around 2am on Sunday morning. It was a shame to have such a great fish during the night as the pictures doesn't do it justice, but still he has now officially joined the DDI 50 club and beat his PB by 2.5lb.
Over the next 72 hours the fishing was superb and we had a further 15 fish of good stock. unfortunately, I couldn't bag myself a 40 but came very close on a few occasions. I had 1x 36lb, 1x 37lb, 2x 38lb and 1x 39lb. All from the main lodge swims...
I had a run at 4am on Sunday morning and struck into a good size carp, but as soon as I struck, the other rod screamed off. At first I thought the lines had got tangled but luckily Sam was on hand to take charge of the 2nd rod and it soon become clear we were both playing separate fish. I landed the first, a 38lb common and Sam landed the 2nd, a 29.5lb mirror.
4 hours later at around at 8am exactly the same thing happened again! This time Helen was on hand to take the 2nd rod. I landed the 1st, a 39lb mirror and Helen the 2nd, a 29lb mirror and her new PB. What are the chances of that happening within 4 hours? Identical situations and almost identical weights! On Monday the bream started to spawn and a lot of the carp had moved out of our end of the lake. Jack was float fishing near the willow and caught a nice 6lb bream and later that day I had one of the hardest fighting carp I have ever caught, a lovely 38lb mirror.
As the fish were moving out, it was time to check out the channels. After a few hour's I found a channel that had a good quantity of carp all moving and feeding. I started to bait up and they were on it straight away. I set up in a good spot that I could confidently land a fish from and lowered the rig in just 2ft from the bank. within minutes I had 2 carp feeding on the bait. 1 was around the 20 mark and the other was around 30. I got the take but as the water was so cloudy from the feeding I couldn't be sure as to which one it was. As it tore off, I could see it was the 30 but it was heading straight for a snag. I tried to slow it down but it was so powerful the hook pulled. Gutted!
I let the swim calm down for an hour and then returned. There was still a lot of movement and so I started again. Same spot, same tactics only this time I hooked a smaller fish and could turn him before he reached the snag. 1st fish from the channel, 19lb mirror. I sat in the same spot but moved the rig about 8ft to the left in case I hooked another 30. Within about an hour I had another take and landed a 23lb mirror which was perfect. I'm sure this fish had never been caught before as there was not one mark around its mouth. It was time to call it a day as I wanted to get my rods out, back at the lodge, before dark. That night was quite uneventful, but Sam did manage to bag two at 19lb and 26lb.
I returned back to the channel the following morning but there was a lot less activity. As I had only seen two carp in two hours I decided to go back to the lodge for some lunch and return in the afternoon. When I returned I couldn't see any carp, but there were some pads just below the surface around 20ft out and so placed the bait close by. Within 15 minutes I had a take and landed a 27lb mirror and a new stalking PB. Well pleased!!
The last night we only landed 1 fish, which again fell to Sam 18.5lb. But all in all we had 31 carp and 3 cats.
. 1 x 50lb (Sam) . 8 x 30's (up to 39) . 16 x 20's, (up to 29.5) . 6 doubles (up to 19.5) . 42lb cat (Sam again).
what a fantastic trip with some amazing carp and PB's broken.
Georgia was the only family member not to catch on rod and line but was quite happy catching silver fish in the net. and reading Harry Potter for the hundredth time.
We all look forward to these holidays as we have such good quality time as a family with no x-box or PC distractions. Jack is ahead on the chess tournament 5-4, but I'm sure he cheats when I'm not looking (yes it must be that), Georgia has learnt how to land a carp and Sam has learnt how to row a boat when he got MY bait boat stuck in the middle of the lake (oh how I laughed!)
Helen and I would like to thank you again for the Coq au vin and the 2 bottles of red. We are just about to un-cork the 2nd bottle and have it tonight.
with kind regards,
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