9th September 2017


Having suffered the extremely hot and dry summer and having also seen the anglers continue to strive for a crumb of encouragement from feeding carp which just wouldn’t pick up a hook bait, it is a real pleasure to be reporting a good week.

“Ting Tong’s Tours” arrived last Friday evening with the weather seeming to have broken the day before they got here. Some of them were using a new bait, from Dynamite, that I hadn’t heard of before, the Complex-T. I’m always skeptical about baits that our carp have never seen before but this proved to be different gravy. Seemingly, within minutes, Iain had had two double pick ups and the action continued throughout the week. On a slightly unfortunate note, it appeared that a lot of the twenties and thirties were the first to switch from naturals to boilies, so their totals didn’t included the number of known big fish that might be expected. However, we have to salute any group that banks 70 (yes seventy) carp. That total included 10 forties (several above 47lbs), 2 fifties and the cream of the crop in the shape of Cut Tail at a superb 71lbs 9oz.

Well angled fellas.

I will just end by saying that there may be some interesting developments in the pipeline before the start of next season which could reduce some of the hassles for traveling anglers. We are always looking for ways to make it easier for our customers to enjoy their stay even more by taking away some of the headaches during the “making sure you’ve got everything” stage. Watch this space.

2nd September 2017

Well last week was, shall we just say interesting? Let’s get the grim part out of the way first. Conditions were shocking for the first five days with temperatures in the high thirties. We then had our first proper rainfall which raised the level by one million gallons and dropped the water temperature by four degrees. The result of all that was a poor week for fish captures but, and this was the real frustration, the carp were bubbling, rolling, head and shouldering and crashing out every evening and through the nights. They were obviously feeding on naturals but wouldn’t pick up hook baits. I was able to fish myself and took the opportunity to test two baits that some good friends had persuaded me to try. They had been so confident that they would be perfect for Moorlands and I was looking for the chance to test it. In short, I failed miserably and “not even a bleep” covers my week. I’m pleased to say that I stuck rigidly to my tests and tried beds of bait, small scattering of bait, glugged baits and washed out baits so I can now discount those baits for future use.

Right, that’s got that out of the way. The other lads fished hard but struggled and only four fish topped 40lbs, three mid forties and one fifty in the shape of “Horseshoe Scale” at 52lbs 7oz.

Now the typical frustration of carp angling has kicked in with the new group turning up with different baits (Dynamite Complex-T) and, even fishing to the same marks as last week, within 2 hours of casting out, had had 5 pick ups and banked 4 fish. Astonishing!!!

I will finish with a taster for the future. This year we have got on top of the weed growth and we are confident that that is a problem of the past. We also tried the blue dye to control the algae but, unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to have worked as expected. It appears that the suspended clay particles may have absorbed the dye and this has simply turned the lake a misty blue/green color with very little clarity. Now we are investigating “floculants” and various means to oxygenate the silt and thereby stop the silt releasing the nitrates etc. which are, apparently, the main cause of algae blooms. Our initial tests are VERY interesting and our test samples have cleared within 24 hours. Now I’m not expecting the entire lake to be crystal clear by the start of next season but I am confident that we should be able to make a massive improvement and that should be able to be improved year by year. If that proves to be right, we should also see a major change in the colors of these beautiful carp. Exciting times ahead.

27th August 2017


I’m pleased to say that the first week back after our summer break hasn’t been the total disaster that the incessant hot, dry weather could have caused.
There were more twenties and thirties than it would be reasonable to expect but 3 forties and 3 fifties in these conditions are a fair result. Add to that that five of those six carp were above 46lbs and we can continue to be excited for the following weeks.
That leads me nicely into some detail, albeit a small sample, of the success of the recovery of these fish. I know I keep rabbiting on about the weather but it has always been my belief that some “average” summer weather would produce better conditions for the carp to get back to “feeling good” and thereby in the mood to eat, recover, after spawning and grow back to their pre-spawn weights. This year has been far from average plus we have removed the weed and dyed the water. In the light of all that, here we are with some interesting figures.
Before our break, on 23rd July 2017, Alan caught The Peach at 57lbs 5oz. Back on 30th May 2017 she was reported to us at 58lbs but we didn’t see nor check weigh her and the scales that were used didn’t offer themselves for an accurate reading. Going another step further back, on 3rd October 2016 she weighed 59lbs 14oz and that was a confirmed and double checked weight. In short, she is already approaching last autumn’s best weight with the two most important months growth still to come so I expect her to be well into the sixties by year end.
This week we’ve also seen two unknown mirrors at 46lbs 9oz and 52lbs 7oz. Without knowing what they weighed previously I can only say that they should both be fifties, one possibly an upper fifty, by the end of the season.
Now, we’ve also seen two known fifties and an upper forty that we can trace.
Chunky’s Double was banked on 21st August 2017 at 49lbs exactly. Her previous capture was on 4th May 2017 when she was banked, full of spawn, at 50lbs 13oz. To already be back up to that weight is simply amazing.
Another capture on 21st August 2017 was Black Scale at 53lbs 8oz. Her best ever weight was 57lbs 3oz on 10th May 2017 when she was just about to spawn. 12 days later she had “shrunk” to 47lbs 8oz so she is another of the fifties which is well on her way back to her best.
We then also saw The Twin on 23rd August 2017 at 54lbs 13oz. Her best weight last year was 54lbs 11oz when she was caught on 27th September 2016 so she has already passed that mark and is close to her 2017 best which was 55lbs 7oz prior to spawning on 10th April.
Taking all of these recovery weights as an “average guide” and putting those against the remaining stock and known big fish would suggest that, given suitable conditions for the rest of this year (please let it rain) we have have the potential for some new lake records and some very big hits. Exciting times ahead.

20th August 2017

Just a brief update at the start of our first week after our summer break.

Nothing immense to report but a few details which may help following groups. The lads spent yesterday wading out to find spots of interest and then marking and baiting, quite heavily, to those spots. The guiding factor was simply to watch where the fish were feeding on naturals and then wade to those spots and the signs are that the fish are coming to the bait very quickly. We watched fish head and shouldering over three or four of the baited areas within a couple of hours of the bait being put out. That surprised me a bit because, while I had said that I thought they were hungry, it normally takes 24 to 48 hours to get them on the bait.

Anyway, three fish banked and three lost so far but the biggest banked is only a 35.15 fully scaled. I’m pretty sure that there could be some surprises to come.

17th August 2017

As promised, I have waded parts of the lake in order to check for snags and I’m pleased to say that none were found.

I started in “Stumps” and waded across in front of “Leanin Tree” and the center of the arm in that area is waist deep and there was no sign of any weed growth.

Having reach the forest bank I waded along under the trees and the whole area was free of obstructions. Personally I would not be fishing right across the arm as the fish appear to be feeding on naturals (probably bloodworm) in the softer clay in the middle of the arm. The bow waves from the fish that I disturbed suggested that there were some very big fish skulking about up there.

I then waded out to the fourth lilie bin and aerator and was just able to get there in chesties (chest deep). There were some interesting hard areas in the middle and another as I made my way back towards the forest bank point.

From there I waded along the trees into the Easter Arm bay and, again, no snags nor any sign of weed growth. The water in front of “Oaks” was waist deep and shallowed up to thigh deep as I got just past “Evening Pitch”.

From those observations, until we get some rain, my advice would be to concentrate choosing swims from, “First or Second Pontoon”, “Royal Box” or “Oaks” on the field bank and “Stumps”, “Sun Rise”, “Boneyard”, “Dog Leg”, “Reeds”, “Middles”, “Mistletoe”, or “Pampas” on the long bank. There have certainly been signs of feeding carp in the other, shallower, swims but my gut feeling is that, even the lightest disturbance would move them away.

Hope that is helpful.

I’m now off out to mow a strip of grass and put three stumps and bales at each end. That always used to work in England.

be lucky.


25th July 2017

Well we have completed the first half of 2017 and we are now into a 4 week break from the fishing. This is not normal but we there is a considerable amount of work to be done around the house and garden so the plan is to hit it hard and give Sharon a break from the cooking times. This should mean everyone can relax and be fresh for the second half of the season.
We also plan to add some more dye to the lake in order to try to finally get on top of the algae so it will be interesting to see how effective this is. The biggest effect will probably be more evident next season.
Right that leads nicely on to a resume of this year so far. I will keep it brief but there have been some major events.
The first of these has to be the weed control.
In previous years the weed cutting began as the weed developed and it was then a race to keep swims open and fishable. This year, the team worked on the weed before it got a foothold and it seems to have done the job beyond everyone’s expectations. The type of weed in our lake is one which sets “turions” (seeds). These then drop to the lake bed and germinate before growing very rapidly into new plants. It is hoped that the early control this year (and possibly next) might lead to even less work for the future simply because the weed did not have time to set seeds. Fingers crossed.
The knock on effect from removing the weed may also have something to do with the fishing being harder this year, although I know of several lakes which are going through similar patches, without having any weed control to blame. It could be that the natural foods that would normally be in the weedbeds are now openly on offer to the carp as they roam about and this large supply of readily available natural protein seems to be very much to their liking. Now before anyone shouts that they don’t get big on natural food just bear in mind that 1 gram of dried daphnia contains 525 calories, yes you read that right; 1 GRAM = 525 CALORIES, and the blue whale seems to do alright on shrimps.
We have to hope that this free food source is not so widely available in future years as the weed growth becomes less and less. Bloodworms, snails and slaters will always be there, as they have been since the lake was dug 300+ years ago and that is good for the welfare of the fish but we need to be able to compete with our baits.
Following the weed control we needed to work on the algae blooms. One thing leads to another I guess. Our research through some of the best U.K. fisheries has led us to use an aqua blue dye from “Lakeserve”. We have made one application and the second will be added during this break. Our research suggests that the final piece of this complicated jigsaw will be that the fish will begin to feed very heavily again. The reasoning behind this is that some of the small daphnia type organisms feed and thrive on algae so once the algae is beaten the food chain above changes dramatically leading to anglers baits becoming far higher on the acceptance scale.
Right, onto the fishing. The obvious highlights have been the captures of Half Lin at 74lbs 15oz and Cut Tail at 76lbs 15oz. However, there were one or two other sixties that we were waiting to see but they didn’t get banked until after spawning so we now wait to see what those can do during autumn. Without digging through records the fish that spring to mind are, Clover, Pipesmoker, Twin, Lumpy, Footsteps, Horseshoe Scale, Black Scale, Chunky, Andy’s Common, Roundscale, Peach etc. etc. All of these, plus a few more, could be big sixties if they get caught at the right time and the weather conditions remain good for the “post spawning” recovery period.
The possibilities for next spring are mind blowing but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
As a final piece to this blog, I mentioned “Peach” above and Alan spent an evening float fishing following his earlier success with an unknown fifty, and his only bite, as they light faded, was from her. She turned the scales to 57lbs 5oz so, firstly, a huge well angled to him for that but it’s even more impressive if we look back at her previous captures.
Her best ever weight was on 27th March last year. This was before spawning and she weighed 61lbs 4oz. That’s just 4lbs bigger than she is now and she is currently well spawned out. Let’s take this a little further. We know that the big girls can shed 10lbs plus in spawn and we also know that our growth rates, even conservatively, are 4lbs plus. Just those two facts alone give her, along with several of the others listed above, the potential to be upper sixties before the end of this season and new seventies next spring. That being the case, what about Half Lin and Cut Tail???? 80lbs plus????
Be lucky.

Peach at 57.05

19th May 2017

Now that the quality of the fish, the facilities and the fishing at Moorlands is out there for all to see, it’s no surprise that the number of anglers coming to fish here is growing. Many of this years anglers are returning regulars but some are new visitors and may not be familiar with the rules and the way we like to run things at Moorlands. So now is as good a time as any just to familiarise everyone with a few things. First of all a good start would be for everyone to actually read the copy of the rules on our website, it really does save everyone a lot of hassle long term and would put a stop to any genuine misunderstanding. The main rules are that leaders of any description are not allowed, no lead core leaders, no safe zone leaders, no leaders of any description are allowed. Main line for Carp is a minimum 15lb breaking strain. Lead clips are also banned. It makes no difference whether you trim your tail rubber or the leg of the clip, nor does it matter what other lakes do, all clips are banned, as are all in line leads. We do NOT insist that you use tubing as it was never intended to be for fish protection. It is simply to reduce tangles when using braided hook links and that leads nicely to my next point. Uncoated, braided hook links are not allowed. If you must use a combo rig or strip back part of the coating then no more than half inch to be stripped back.
I know it’s an old fashion concept these days and it’s all about me me me now, but we still expect our anglers to fish with consideration. If you are fishing into the main bowl of the lake you must NEVER cast more than half way across. There are aeration heads and lilies along the centre line so there’s no excuse, apart from which, casting beyond the centre would risk the air line being punctured. Before making your swim choice and casting out, just have a look around you, see where the swims to your left are, see where the swims to your right are, and see where the swims across from you are. If those swims are occupied, speak to the people in them and find out where they are fishing. If the swims are empty, then bear in mind that during your session it’s quite likely that someone may occupy them. Are you fishing in their water? It’s no good chucking 10 kilo of bait into what is quite clearly not your water, only to have someone move in next door. It doesn’t matter if you have put 10 kilo or a single out, if you are in someone else’s water you will have to re position your rods and fish in the confines of your own swim. It’s so much easier to think about these things before hand and it saves everyone a lot of grief if we all avoid these situations before we even cast a line out. I’m not saying anything revolutionary here, it’s simple good manners and courtesy. I don’t care if you are the hardest bloke on the planet, manners and decency are not a sign of weakness, they are what makes the lake (and the world by the way) a better place. Just please think of other people before you make a decision, be aware of your surroundings and how your fishing may impact on others.
Please also be aware that we run a carp fishing holiday, we do not run Club 18 to 30 holidays, you are not in Ibiza when you are on our lake and you are certainly not in J D Wetherspoons. If you want to party then by all means get yourselves off to them places, don’t come to our lake. If you have a radio or ipad or iphone or any of the other noise polluting gadgets, there is a simple thing to remember, If anyone else can hear it, it’s too loud. It’s not for you to decide how loud other people think it is or isn’t. It’s quite simple, If anyone else can hear it it needs turning off or at the very least turning down.
Fish care. Everyone who fishes our lakes must use a cradle, we provide them for each angler. We expect the fish to be returned freely to the water in less than 10 minutes after it enters the landing net. Get it in the net, leave it there in deep enough water while you get your scales, camera, medicare and water bucket sorted, make sure your cradle is as near to the water as possible to minimise the distance the fish as to be carried from the water to the net. Never lift any fish that looks to be thirty plus without placing a suitable sling under the net and do not ever ever put photo location before the safety of the fish, IE do not carry the fish 30 yards so you can have a photo in a more picturesque location. If you catch a fish in the night do not ever ever retain it until daylight. Again the simple rule is, get it in the net and back into the lake within a maximum of 10 minutes, no excuses, no exceptions.
I have tried not to make this to heavy and really it is all basic stuff. I’ll talk about cleaning the toilet after yourself and keeping your swims tidy, so as not to attract rats, another time. Your behaviour has a massive impact on everyone else so let’s make it a positive one. Let’s keep the old values, let’s keep the sporting etiquette, and let’s keep fishing in peace and tranquillity.
I REALLY hate having to send people home early but it has been necessary in the past. Please don’t make it necessary again.
Thank you

15th May 2017

 Week ending 13th May 2017, WOW!!!! After several weeks of poor results (nothing to do with the anglers, just weather) we finally managed to see some of the named fish.  I’m not going to bore you for too long and will allow the photos to speak for themselves.  The crew consisted of two anglers who had been to Moorlands before with 4 new members. The week started well and continued in the same vein and I shall list the forty pluses for your enjoyment. I will just add that I haven’t got a clue about the numbers of twenties and thirties but here you go:-

42lbs, 43lbs, 44lbs, 44lbs, 47lbs, 48lbs, 48lbs and 49lbs 13oz common.

53lbs 3oz “Arfur”,   54lbs 0oz “Cluster”,   54lbs 4oz unnamed,   55lbs 15oz unnamed,         56lbs 10oz “Footsteps”,     57lbs 3oz “Blackscale”,     57lbs 14oz “Roundscale”,               59lbs 2oz “Pipesmoker,         73lbs 10oz “Half Lin”.

4th May 2017

Well yesterday was yet another strange day to continue this strange season. We are seeing fish upping, rolling, head and shouldering and bubbling all around the lake. That has been going on constantly throughout this season but getting them to pick up hook baits is tricky, to say the least. Yesterday it all seemed to be coming together when fish started hitting the bank. First off was a new lake record common to Andy Murphy at 59lbs 15oz. Agonizingly close to our first ever 60lb common by just 1ozNext it was Dale’s turn with The Half Lin at her heaviest ever weight of 74lbs 15oz making it two different mid seventies now residing in moorlands.

The next shout that went up was for Gary Westcott’s first, and long sought after, fifty and what a fifty to catch. It was a stunning linear scaled mirror of 51lbs 11oz and, as it was caught by Gary and was a linear it just had to be christened “Garry Linear”.

Now we just need these creatures to get on the feed properly so that we can see some of the other fifties and sixties before we get to spawning time and they all start losing weight.

30th April 2017

Here we are at the end of April and it feels more like the end of February.

I will skate over the general fishing because none of the lads have fished badly, the fish have simply stuck to the naturals which are very plentiful currently.
Now I have a theory about the reason for the quantity of naturals and will add that in a minute but before that we can bask in Cav’s success in trapping our new lake record in the shape of Cut Tail at an amazing 76lbs 15oz.

well angled my friend!!!!!

Right, back to my theories. Three weeks ago we were moaning about the number of sedges hatching and landing on us. Since then the temperature has dropped and we have seen very few sedges or midges hatching. Now, it is possible that, because they have stopped hatching, that the Cadiz and bloodworm remain on the lake bed in far greater numbers than would be normal for this time of year. If that is the case, it is likely that the hatches may start again this week and within a few days or so the natural food supply will be greatly reduced. If I have it right we should see a major upturn in the numbers of carp being caught as they start looking for other food items.