add or change details Les Etangs de la Croix Blanche

The Lakes
The lakes are mature sandpits covering around 17 acres in total, excavated in the late 1970’s. The lakes comprise of three waters, a 6 acre lake "L'Etang de la Croix Blanche" stocked with common, and mirror carp, an 8 acre lake "L'Etang de la Tortue" which also has some very large carp and will also be stocked with giant catfish, and a 1 acre lake where no fishing is allowed.
In the late eighties the site was run by a club for a few years, (stockings here totally unknown) before the last owner bought the site with a view to building a house for himself. He stocked the lakes with fish, but they remain largely unfished for, the carp only fished for by a couple of anglers in the last five years. The banks are flat and grassy with trees around most of the margins. Weed growth is so far only minimal with no obvious under water obstacles or snags. The water itself is crystal clear with a bluish taint characteristic of sandpits.

Number of Pitches:
The number of pitches has been kept to a minimum. I personally don’t like fishing crowded waters, so the Croix Blanche lake only has seven swims, with eight pitches on the Tortue lake. Access is excellent with a track around the whole property, so anglers can park their cars adjacent to their swims.
The banks are grassy with ample space for bivvies to be pitched. Anglers are quite welcome to double up in a swim should they so wish. The property is entirely closed with a fence around the whole perimeter.

Fish Size:
The actual head of original fish can only be estimated. The stocking eight years ago was of two-three hundred 2 year old carp in the 6 acre lake and fifty in the 8 acre water.
Photographs of numerous fish between 25lb and 40lb7oz, convinced me it was a special water.
Preliminary sessions on the lakes over this first summer surpassed my expectations, with 12 thirty pounds plus fish to 37lbs and 2 forty pounders my best going 43lb exactly.
Since acquiring the waters I have sourced a number of large carp between 15 and 35 pounds, which have been introduced to the waters, so supplement the existing stocks.

L'Etang de la Tortue
The Tortue Lake holds carp to forty plus too, in the crystal water we were able to observe some huge carp in only inches of water, basking in the sun.
Further carp between 15 and 35 pounds have been introduced this year.
An added interest to this particular lake is the head of giant catfish.

These magnificent fighting fish start at 20 pounds with the largest specimens going over fifty pounds.
With many carp anglers now setting their stall for these large predators, our lake offers the chance to catch a big cat in ideal conditions.

The Faclities:
The facilities on the water are very good. A small chalet / bureau at the entrance to the lake also has a kitchen with cooker, fridge and freezer, shower and English style toilet in the cellar. This is entirely at the disposal of the visiting anglers.
A more rudimentary toilet cubical and water tap is also installed at the far end of the lake.
Tea and coffee is always available during the day in the kitchen area.
There is a selection of bait making equipment available on request, sausage gun, rolling tables and chip pan, for those who like to make their own bait at the water side.

Shops:
Shops are fairly thin on the ground in the region the nearest supermarket being in the village of Fismes, some 10 miles away.
The nearby village of Beaurieux does have a small grocers, bakers, butchers and chemists. Fresh bread and croissants are available from a local baker who does the rounds everyday except Tuesday.
The property is entirely fenced in and cars, which have to left inside the perimeter, can be parked next to swims as long as the ground is not too muddy.

About the people:
My name is Gareth Watkins I am 37 years old and live with my French wife Malvina and our two young sons William 8 years, and Alexis 3 years. We were fortunate enough to be able to purchase the very special waters that are "Les Etangs de la Croix Blanche" in June of 1999.
The venue is then, a family business currently run by just the two of us.
We are both photographers. I have been involved in News photography for the last 15 years, working my way up from local press in South London to Daily Newspapers on Fleet Street, including the Standard and Agencies such as Press Association and Reuters, where I was a staff photographer for 12 years.
I have been fishing for as long as I can remember, since a friend as school persuaded his father to take us to the River Thames at Taplow. All through my youth I was keen as mustard. Making my way up the ladder of angling achievements. Until one day while after tench, I caught a carp. This changed my outlook on fishing completely, for although not a big fish, a common of 11lbs, it was by our usual standards, huge. We then sought out carp in all our local waters in the west and north west of London. Tring, Staines, Rickmansworth and Uxbridge all got our attentions.

A move back to South Wales did nothing to calm my appetite for carp fishing. I discovered the famous Llandrindod Wells lake and had some marvelous bags of doubles. And the totally unfished Reservoir in Barry Dock. There too I had some memorable sessions catching commons upto just under 20 pounds.
In the early 80's fishing took a back seat as I tried to make a living out of journalism. I had a ticket at Yateley for a season or so, but little time to fish and therefore caught nothing.
I moved to France in 1989 which saw me renew my interest in carp fishing. Here I had the opportunity to fish for larger specimens, in very unpressured waters. For ten years then, I have fished many of the famous French waters with the notable exception of St. Cassien. My personal best however, fell on my very own waters this summer at a weight of 43 pounds.
Running a carp fishing venue is a completely new departure for us. As a carp angler for the last 20 years, I think I know what carp anglers want and we will try our best to provide it. With a fantastic complex of lakes and some cracking fish,we are off to a good start.

Contacts:
Fishing at the venue is by organised trips only with A & J Eurocarp Sessions For prices & further information about fishing at the Etangs de la Croix Blanche: Please contact:
Telephone: A & J Eurocarp Sessions 0208 590 6987
See their website at: http://garethw.free.fr/index.html
Email frenchcarping@aol.com


 
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Lord it up at venues like this one ...