Landing the 52lb mirror carp at Golden Oak

Derek with his 52lb prize!

It was with eager anticipation that we arrived at Golden Oak Lake to start our holiday, myself, my stepson Kevin and our respective families. The website photographs hardly do it justice, everything looked fantastic, as we arrived late we decided to leave sorting out the fishing gear until the next morning, Joe set out the most amazing meal for us. Bright and early next day we set up the bivvies halfway along the lake and settled into some serious fishing. Our optimism was a little tempered when Dick told us that the weather forecast was for high temperatures for at least the first half of the week, they weren’t wrong the thermometer rose to 34 degrees, needless to say the carp didn’t want to play, Tuesday was even hotter ( thank goodness for the plunge pool ) and again no runs. That evening we made the decision to move closer to the dam wall, where the water is slightly deeper. Wednesday morning we moved the bivvies and fed the chosen swims got the baits out and waited, guess what 36 degrees.

That Evening at about 6 o’clock we had a shower of light rain for about an hour and a half, Kevin and I decided that it was probably enough to drop the water temperature a little. With that in mind we made the decision to fish through that night, we repositioned our baits, which turned out to be a wise move. I was woken from my dozing by the sound of my bite alarm, as soon as I got to my feet it stopped, then went again for a couple of seconds, after what seemed ages the alarm started screaming, I picked up the rod and set the hook ” Fish On ” I yelled. There followed 20 minutes of playing the fish in the pitch black, the adrenalin was pumping and I lost track of where the fish was. By this time Kevin was at water level with the landing net in the water, the fish swirled about 15ft out, I was back in control, with steady pressure the carp eased towards the net head first. Kevin said ” it’s a good fish”. I walked up the bank until Kevin said ” it is in the net and it is huge! I told him to stop winding me up but he insisted ” I cannot lift it out of the water. Between us we got the carp onto the unhooking mat and IT WAS huge. Three quick photograhs then into the weigh sling, zeroed the scales which eventually settled at 52lb 14ozs, I couldn’t believe it, my previous best was about 20lb. You can imagine the buzz I was feeling.

The next morning we spoke to Dick and showed him the photo, he said it was the heaviest fish taken from the lake, without spawn. Unfortunately it turned out to be our only fish of the week, I didn’t care, Kevin’s view was slightly different!

I would like to add that even with the temperatures soaring Dick did everything humanly possible to help us catch fish, but as he says he cannot  put them on the hook ( I think if he could he would ). All in all a fabulous holiday, the ladies enjoyed the sun and all the facilities, my grandson ( 2 years plus) had a whale of a time, Joe kept him entertained, feeding goslings, goats and horses. A great place to fish and relax.

Derek Cross

Fishing Holidays at Golden Oak

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