Coarse Fishing in Guernsey
Coarse Fishing in Guernsey
Guernsey is the second largest of the Channel Islands the only larger island being Jersey. It is an island of rare beauty, unspoilt with idyllic countryside, quaint country lanes and abundant wildlife.
The majority of anglers on Guernsey tend to sea fish only, mainly due to a shortage of suitable fresh water lakes or ponds of a viable size in "angler friendly" locations. Until recently most coarse anglers have had to fish in disused quarries that have been flooded to allow fishing to be possible. These quarries are not ideal, as in many cases they are too deep for many species of fish such as Carp, and frequently they only have room for a couple of people to be fishing at any one time. Other alternatives that are available are a couple of lakes on the island, one of which is the pretty, but very small, Willow Lake, or there is the much larger and beautiful Les Rouvets Lake. Both of the lakes contain various Carp species up to good sizes, as well as other well known coarse fish varieties and allow both locals tourists to fish them on day tickets. There is also the local reservoir, but this is fly fishing for trout only, as well as only allowing members to fish it. The problem with this is that there is a five year waiting list to join, so it puts most fly fishermen in an unenviable position of having a long wait to satisfy their need to fish.
Currently the island records for various species are low compared to the UK, but these records are being broken all the time, and it should not be too many years before we catch up with the UK. The sea fishing here has always been most likely to break UK records, but there are still very keen Coarse anglers over here that wish to establish this popular sport within Guernsey and take some records of their own.
The baits which seem to be mostly successful are the old favourites, boilies, sweetcorn, luncheon meat, maggots, worms etc, but it is always worth trying more unusual ones such as kidney beans and sugar puffs. Personally I have had most success with luncheon meat and boilies, catching my personal best on a tutti frutti boilie, a 27.8lb Ghost Carp called "Neal".
Fishing tackle is readily available from local outlets, either to buy or to hire, so tourists need not travel with their own tackle unless they really want to. Personally I buy much of my tackle and bait online, as this really brings the costs down and makes shopping for it so much easier.
Truly Guernsey is a lovely location to fish, whichever kind of fishing you prefer. The weather is milder than the UK and the surroundings are idyllic. The island is safe and has a very low crime rate, the locals are friendly and the beaches are clean. I can find nothing I enjoy more than spending a weekend fishing by a tranquil lake, watching the dragonflies, waterfowl, rabbits and kingfishers going about their day to day lives, whilst I wait for that all important bend to appear in my rod and I can commence the battle of wits with the fish on the end of my line. However, even if I don't catch on the day I never feel frustrated, as I have had those precious hours to relax and unwind, forgetting the stresses life brings.