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Dave Smalleys trip to Domain de Brocard

29/03/2022 - Special Captures

Venue: Domain de Brocard (large)
Booking Agent: Angling lines
Date: 12/3/22 - 19/3/22
Fish Count: 6
Weight: 33-3, 35-6, 47-8, 20-2, 42-10, 33-10
Peg: 11

This trip was originally booked for March 2021 and I very nearly cancelled it myself due to other cancelled trips that had rolled over.
At the last minute the decision was made to go but I would now be taking my partner and the lad with me ( extra fishing tokens for an extra trip in April ) The plan was to fish the nights and take the family out on the days.

On arrival at the lake the wind was blowing north west into the peg ( 6 ).
I considered this peg to set up in, however it was a cold wind and the lake is shallow. After a drive round and with a couple of free pegs Available I decided on peg 11. Having seen two fish bosh I felt it was the right area to be in. 

On exploring my peg it was clear that there was a Chanel close in, from the bank at around 32 yards out then it shallowed up.
The far tree line where I saw the two fish bosh was only 20inchs to 2ft deep and 175 yards away.

To start with the plan was simple 3 rods spreed along the tree line and 1 rod in the deeper water towards peg 12 at 70 yards. All rods were set up the same 1 metre of Korda 45lbs Dura Cord, heli clips and low lying pop ups. Rig wise consisted of simple slip D rigs with size 6 Nash pinpoints chod twisters. Hook baits again started mixed with two rods on white DT Baits cold water green beasts, and the other rods on a washed out pink version. I started cautiously with the feed to begin with my plan was to fish for a bite and then possibly add more. The mix was DT bait cold water green beast boilies, matching stick mix, 2mm & 4mm coppins pellets. The boilies were crushed, chopped and whole baits. With a pinch of red maggots ( which I actually removed after catching a 4oz Poisson Chat ). The only alteration I I made was to throwing stick 20 to 30 baits around the closer In rod each time. This mix remained the same all week.

The first night saw me take one fish, which was on the right hand tree line rod at 175 yards. The this was a stunning zip mirror not a mark on her!! She slipped up on a white Cold water green beast pop up.

Night two again resulted in 1 bite but this time it was from the deeper water rod, a common at just over 35lbs, after day one I switched pop ups and this was on a peach & orange cult classic from the DT range. Unfortunately night two was a nightmare with the birds mostly Tufties! They had me over 3 times on the long tree line swims!!!!

Monday & Tuesday:
Nights 2 & 3 resulted in blanks unfortunately, and I was considering on a move. Bucket in hand off I went. Back into swim 6 which the other lads on the trip with me had seen some signs of fish showing in there. However with the weather forecast and the fact the area still felt cold I was unsure!! After some
Consideration I felt I was in the right area but needed to wait it out!! The gamble paid off!!!

The long range weather forecast looked good for the Wednesday. At this stage I had to consider the issues I’d had with the bird life I split my rods 50/50.
Two over to the tree lines and two on the area closer in. Its worth mentioning I did make a little change to the long lines and that was switching to 8oz leads and Korda pin style bait stops. This was just to counter the birds and it worked. I had full confidence the baits would hold and they could not move the leads.
With the afternoon sun now blazing down on me I unexpectedly had my largest fish of the session a mirror of 47lbs 8oz.
Once again this come from the spot close in where the water was deeper.
No more bites came after that unfortunately, which I felt was strange as the conditions felt spot on maybe I did something wrong maybe not.

Thursday evening saw me land the last fish of the trip and the best looking one I felt. A lovely fully scaled mirror languished in the bottom of my net.
My Methods were very much a repeat of the previous days, by this stage of the trip I felt I had things ticking over steadily.
Once again the mirror slipped up in the deeper water swim and a peach & orange cult classic low lying pop up did the trick.

My Conclusion

If I could repeat the trip again I would switch things up a little and that would have been on the distance spots. Not being prepared enough has I think, cost me the chance of more bites. And if I visit the venue again or somewhere similar I will have some dark feed, hemp halibut pellets or a dark boilie with me and some extra hard pop ups!! I feel like I got peg selection 100% spot on however maybe a couple of days with just the rods and a net and a mobile approach would have put extra fish on the bank! How ever this trip was never a sprint with Laura and boy with me and a fair balance was achieved.

Would I go back to the venue? Yes I would with out hesitation. Frank is very welcoming and the site is clean and has decent Facilities.

Lastly this was the first time using a new bait and I don’t impress easily, having always sided on the safe side by going with cell I wanted a change. My choice was DT Baits after speaking to the guys at the angling shows. After the all important smell test 15 kilos was ordered, along with some pop ups, wafters and stick mix.
If you have not seen or used them before take a look! At this stage I can only recommend supa fruit & cold water green beast, however since returning I have had samples of the full range sent to me. And 100% there will be an additional bait coming out with me in April.

Kind Regards

Dave Smalley