Trip #106 – Outstanding Oathill
It’s been a long time since I’ve been fishing. One measured in months, maybe even years. The last fish I caught were 9lb and 6lb Bass during a storm on a Bench in South Wales (I should post that blog). Coarse fishing is something I like to take me time over, since with a younger family and busy weekends it has been years since I contemplated picking up a piece of coarse fishing equipment. So, this past weekend gave me the rarest of opportunities. We (family and friends) were camping and I noticed the website mentioned the site had a “fishing lake”. “I’m only going to have a look” i assured myself. “Just a look”. I looked and found a small pond with one of the highest density of Carp I had ever seen. It was basically a stock pond, that was all the invitation I needed. Where we were staying wasn’t that far from where we lived, so that evening I nipped home and grabbed a 9ft spinning rod, inspected my reels (what a mess) and a box of floating “bits” as well and the fishing mat and landing net and with that I was off back to the campsite.
The set up was as basic as it comes. a small clear bubble float (for some weight), held in place with 1mm clear silicone tubing. This was connected to a small swivel which then linked to a 12″ hooklink. I would be banding on or hair rigging dog food biscuits (as i had no other bait with me) with a size 14 QM1 hook.
A handful of biscuits and the fish were boiling on the surface. Dropped the bait in, managed a fish almost straight away of around 2lb, next fish slight smaller and third, slight larger, tipping the scales at 3lb. I had a few friends with me who weren’t overly keen anglers, but non the less happy to give it a go. They all took it in turns to catch fish varying in size from 1/2lb to 6-7lb. It was some of the easiest fishing I have done. I think I managed one which tipped 7lbs (barely) but I in my haste to grab gear I didn’t grab a scales! School boy error. We fish for just over an hour and managed to go through all the dog biscuits and fake offerings I used as bait. Landing well over 15 fish in the time I left pleased with the result.
Still I needed some essentials. Bait for one, hook links for another, I didn’t have time to sit and prep some hook links so the next day on a visit to West Bay, I popped into the great fishing shop there and picked up some floating biscuits and pre-tied hooklinks (reviews to come).
The biscuits I bought did the trick and sent the fish into a bit of a frenzy, fishing the following evening was even easier, and it seemed as though the bait was pulling a bigger stamp of fish. Another hour well spent and having banked a few fish around the 5-6-7lb mark we set off back to our tents for the rest of the evening.
As fisheries go this is a small lake on a campsite absolutely filled to the banks with carp. Any serious angler could easily get 100lbs of fish in 2-3 hours, between 4 us, we managed 40-50lb in a evening. The lake itself has 1 “platform” i use that term loosely as it is warped and wonky. The other pegs are just grass gaps between the reeds. In terms of disabled access you could get a wheelchair down there, with assistance, but there are no real “pegs” to speak of. Also, if you turned your back for a second the ducks were in a scoffing your feed! Either way, any prospective caravan owners (on the site) or campers looking for a place to easily catch a few, look no further than Oathill. A compact venue which won’t disappoint.
Accessibility ***½ – Easy to find and park.
Fishability ****½ – Easy fishing, a compact lake with a ludicrous amount of fish. A proper confidence building venue.
Value for Money **** – Think you can fish the lake for £6
Disabled Access – **½ – You can park close to the lake and get down to the water, but the only peg to speak of (although sturdy) is difficult to get on and off from in a wheelchair. You could however fish straight from the grass.