I was busy on Wednesday and couldn’t make the White Acres mid week match, by Sunday I was chomping at
We look at venues in Essex, included in our study are brief venue details and contact information.
Blasford Hill, Chelmsford
Carp sport on the Main lake is good with lots of doubles and low twenties. Boilies or big halibut pellets fished over loose fed PVA bags of particles work well. The swims opposite the end of the island are usually good. Aside from carp, there have been crucians to 2lb 12oz caught and a 50lb catch of huge roach was weighed in on a club match. These roach run to over 2lb and provide some brilliant winter fishing with casters being top bait. The Match Lake continues to be reliable through early winter for small carp, F1′s and big roach on pellet or small cubes of meat. As we get further into winter casters, maggot and chopped worm will take over. There are a few doubles in this lake and they seem to show themselves more in winter than summer so be prepared. The Tench lake has lived up to its name and produced “tincas” up to nearly 7lb. This lake will be the first to be affected by frosts but should not be ignored on mild days. Big baits like paste have been essential this year to avoid the swarms of tiny roach but hard 6mm pellets, luncheon meat or double corn work well. The river that borders the lakes was recently electro fished by the EA and more than 10 different species found including some big chub and pike running to 10lb. Tel: Chris on 07860 110303.
This 50 peg lake fishes brilliantly, and has provided excellent sport for both club matchmen and the “speci” boys. A 32lb 8oz mirror was caught by Mark Martin of Grays from peg 35 on a big cube of luncheon meat fished off the rod end, and a few days later a fish of 28lb fell to floating crust during an evening session. Tench to 7lb have also shown amongst and there are reports of a huge eel of 7lb 10oz. On the match front, the venue’s match record was recently broken in a club match by Jamie Carr of Downham Tackle with 252lb of carp to 14lb from peg 30. Jamie caught his fish from the margins on big balls of paste. Margin fishing with pellet, paste and meat has been the best approach this autumn, both in matches and for targeting the “lumps”, and this will probably continue until the really cold weather sets in. With fish averaging 6-10lb it’s best not to fish too light! As water temperatures drop, fishing pellet down the ledge into the deeper water at around six to eight metres is a good standard approach that will also produce tench and some quality silverfish. If you have a choice, it’s always worth picking a swim at the downwind end of the lake. Tel: Barnesie on 01473 327366 or visit http://www.quietsports.co.ukBrowning Colemans Cottage, Witham
All lakes are slowly going into “winter mode” as water temperatures drop and the water gets clearer. Match winning weights will begin to drop but pleasure anglers will still have a very good day. Particle baits like corn and pellet are now best on all lakes but don’t feed too much as the fish seem to be spooked by large amounts of bait. On Pathfield and Copse lakes it will be best to concentrate on the deeper water at 5 to 13 metres although the margins can still produce a few fish later in the day. The fish are still fighting like tigers so it’s wise to stick with fairly strong tackle. On both lakes, the wider open water pegs will usually be the best choice. For lots of bites head for Wood Lake where the massive head of “silver” fish will give brilliant sport. Fish soft pellets at around five metres for skimmers, barbel and small carp. Keep feeding small amounts of bait and the bigger carp will usually show up at some point in the session. On Wood lake matches, “kinder cupping” corn over to the islands into around 3′ of water is the usual winter matchwinning tactic with weights topped up by of some bigger carp from the deeper margin swims late on in the day. Chose two or three long lines and rotate between them re-feeding after each fish. Tel: Jayne or Gerry on 01376 516383 or visit www.colemansfishery.co.uk
Claverhambury, Waltham Abbey
The fishery comprises of Two lakes which are available for club and corporate bookings as well as day tickets, only one lake is allowed to be booked out to a club at any one time, with a choice of either the “Top Lake” or the Match Lake (the bottom lake nearest the car park). Various methods but floaters are still producing the goods as far as bigger bags of quality fish are concerned, The Top Lake is also producing the goods to floaters but with colder weather forecast this carp feast is bound to slow, Good bags of roach to 40lb + are achievable on the bottom lake which bodes well for the winter. The cost of booking either lake is the same at £185, whilst Day Tickets available on the bank cost £7.00 for one rod and £10 for two rods, Biggest carp this year from the match lake has been 27lb and the top Lake is 18lb, Contact: 01992 8980150 where Elie Huxton arranges club and corporate bookings.
In addition to the terrific carp stocks at Claverhambury, there is also some great roach sport to be had as shown by Ivan Montague who amassed a 46lb bag on a shallow pole rig with caster.
Fennes Fisheries, Braintree
Braintree matchman Alan Lee seems to have it sorted at this venue. Alan fishes a feeder packed with dry micro pellets held together with a little fishmeal groundbait and alternates between a banded 8mm pellet and small boilies on the hook. Accurate casting gets the fished lined up and he has been catching 50 to 60lb of bream and carp from whatever peg he draws! Feeder will continue to be a good method on the Ash Grounds lake throughout the winter for bream and the odd carp. Pegs 17 and 18 seem to be most consistent in club matches. Hobbs Croft has slowed slightly but the big roach will be worth targeting when the frosts arrive. Last winter, 30lb+ catches of big roach with the odd skimmer and tench were taken by pole fished caster and chopped worm. The waggler can also be good on windy days and will often catch the biggest roach from beyond the pole line. Hill and Black Lake has been used for a few matches recently and has produced mixed catches to 50lb of carp and tench so is worth considering as an alternative to the main lakes on busy days. Tel: 01376 323285.
Gloucester Park, Basildon
Park regular Dan Taylor took tremendous Gloucester Park carp hauls on two consecutive days, landing eighty-one carp for a total weight of well over six hundred pounds! Dan fished the venues cockle bank where his first trip produced thirty six carp to 18lb 8oz. More than a dozen of his others were also good double figure fish! On the day Dan was joined by fourteen year old James Ackland who landed twenty five carp to 15lb 10oz himself. The two anglers fished Dan’s homemade boilies presenting them high in the water on zig rigs. On numerous occasions, they were both playing fish, and at one stage they had four carp on at the same time. Canvey Island Football Club goalkeeper Ricky Wiseman and pal Shaun Morgan also made hay with the park’s carp, taking a tremendous eight four fish haul between them. The duo fished the big bay where Ricky landed fifty one carp during his overnight and morning session. The best of these scaled 17lb. Shaun added a further a further thirty three carp to a best of 16lb. Both anglers were using Arron Coombes home-made tutti fruitti fishmeal boilies. Remember its not all carp here though, there are plenty of quality silvers here also and pole tactics can produce some cracking weights. Tel: Mick Toomer on 01268 282317
Magic Lakes, Upshire
In the clearer water here the fish tend to hug the far bank so soft pellets pole-fished very close to the far bank is invariably the best approach here. It’s also very important to scale down to lighter lines etc. as the fish here can be very finicky. On harder days maggot can be a good alternative to pellet as there are lots of “silvers” to be caught and a bit of activity in the swim will often encourage the carp to feed. The Small lake will give plenty of bites and is an easier prospect for pleasure anglers. Simple float fished pellet or maggot will catch small carp and silvers all day. There is no need to fish too far out, and again, fishing with light tackle will always catch more fish and is also much more fun. Tel: Peter on 07973 814330.
Northlands Park, Basildon
Regular Alan Newman fished an evening session at the venues road lake to land a cracking 24lb 8oz mirror, Alan tempted the fish with a Nash Tutti Fruitti boilie. shelf life boilies presented about a third of the way across the lake. It made a number of good runs, firstly going under the weed on the Eastern side of the lake, before crossing the lake and speeding under the surface weed on the Western side. The big carp was Alan’s best fish since April. Richie Andrews took a personal best 21lb common carp when he fished a halibut pellet bait on the café lake. The big fish fell to a halibut pellet bait presented in the margins. Quivertip angler Rob Mansell had a surprise when a fifteen pound carp picked up his sweetcorn bait at the road lake. It was his first cast of the day, and the bait had been in the water for less than five minutes! After a half hour battle Rob managed to juggle the big fish into his match sized net, wrecking it in the process. Although he didn’t land any more carp Rob added three tench and over fifty pounds of decent bream for a catch totalling over seventy five pounds. “Dagenham Dave” Pitt took a near 100lb haul of bream and tench when he fished halibut pellet and sweetcorn baits at Northlands Park. The big haul, which comprised of two big tench and twenty eight quality bream, came from a swim below the café. A cracking 22lb common carp put a smile on Liam McDonnell’s face when he fished an early morning session at the Northlands Park road lake. Liam was fishing the swim to the right of the wooden platform when his peace was shattered by a screaming run on his optonic. The big fish put up a determined battle, making a number of long runs from one side of the lake to the other. The personal best fish fell to a Grub boilie presented in open water on a semi fixed rig. Tel: Mick Toomer on 01268 282317 or have a look at www.mick-toomer.co.uk
Puddledock Farm, Brentwood
Late summer has given some big fish and big match winning weights on the Snake lake topped by a 141lb catch by Waltham Cross’ John Green from peg 81 in September. John has had a real run of success at the venue and on the match previous to his big weight he had won the £1000 golden peg prize. John had his successes by fishing catfood both in the deep water at about 11 metres and hard over to the far bank. He will feed a few pellets and around 2 tins of Coshida during the course of the match and will fish four areas of his swim. As the weather cools the fish have already began to shoal up in certain areas and if you have a choice of swim avoid the straights as they have been poor in matches. The swims on the bends seem to be best. If catfood isn’t your thing, corn or pellet fished long and down the track can be good and will become the standard method when winter arrives. There have been some huge individual fish caught – fish of 18lb and 21lb have been weighed in on a recent matches – so perhaps the speci boys should consider giving the Snake a try. The Road lake has hosted a few open matches recently with mixed catches of 50lb being needed to win. Waggler fished corn over to the island has been the best match tactic but on pleasure days there are plenty of fish to be caught closer in. Tel: Steve on 07788 716837.
Rayne Lodge, Braintree
Match winning weights on all lakes regularly exceed the 100lb mark, and carp are still being caught from the Bottom lake. The Bottom lake is usually the first to be affected by the frosts so for best results here it’s always wise to start gently by feeding carefully and using finer tackle. Pellets are the top bait – feed hard pellets and fish expanda pellets on the hook, corn is also worth a try. The biggest fish are being caught on boilies fished close to the islands but it’s a bit of a waiting game! Avoid the pegs from 24 to 27 in the colder months as these tend to be poor until spring. The Middle and Top lakes will continue to fish to summer tactics until winter really sets in. Corn and pellets fished in the margins are still best and it’s necessary to feed fairly heavily to get through the hordes of small fish. Alternatively, big baits like paste and catfood can still be very good. As the water clears, pole fishing corn at about 13 metres is the usual approach and a small feeder fished over to the islands with big pellets on the hook can also be good on pegs 3, 14 and 21. The traditional winter “flyers” are pegs 3, 13 and 15 on Middle and 4, 13 and 21 on Top. Tel: Tony on 01376 345719.
Slough House, Bulphan
Top approach for the carp on here is big fishmeal boilies popped up over pva bags of pellets and this will stay the best method through autumn and into winter. The right hand side arm of the lake is usually the most reliable in colder weather. Last winter there were some excellent catches of roach and skimmers taken on floatfished casters and pellets and, as the weather cools, this lake will be a good choice for anglers looking for some good “mixed” fishing. The lake is fairly shallow and the waggler can often outfish the pole particularly for the roach. The roach aren’t big but there are lots of them so you’ll get plenty of bites. On mild days some better stamp fish can be caught by fishing casters at half depth but expect to miss lots of bites! Tel: 01268 520144.
Tylers Common, Brentwood
Sport on Ash and Willow lakes show no sign of slowing and 100lb+ is always needed to win club matches. The biggest weights are now falling to paste fished at about 8 metres and on pellets fished shallow on pole or waggler. It will take some seriously cold weather before catches drop and methods change. A 21.8.0 carp was caught from Wagtail lake peg 29 by venue regular Brain Hornet on a big chunk of bread flake and Barry Kemp had 9 carp to 19.8.0, plus 3 of the huge bream, from peg 17 on boilies. Fishing corn, meat or 6mm pellets at about five metres is a good method for the big bream and big roach on this lake at the moment but most of the carp seem to be around the islands. Match winning weights on the Horseshoe lake have started to drop and the fish are already beginning to shoal up. Catfood was the dominant autumn bait but polefished pellets and corn fished over to the island is now taking over. On windy days, or if you feel lazy, a small cage feeder of pellets with banded pellet or punched meat on the hook can be a good alternative – watch the rod though as bites tend to be a bit vicious! Access to the top 3 lakes is being improved with shingle paths and platforms being built so no more muddy boots here this winter. Tel: Janet on 01277 821342.