Director’s notes

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For episodes 2,3 and 4 of Pursuit, we decided to take a summer road trip to France to film and fish on some really lovely waters we already knew quite a bit about.

Having fished Meunier in the last series of Crabtree we had a lot of feedback from viewers asking to see more big fish from abroad. We had also been approached by several venues in France and Ireland (more of that in a future blog) asking us to come and have a look at their lakes.

After several trips and recce’s, we finally got down to a shortlist of four angling destinations that ticked all the boxes. So with our locations arranged we packed up the trucks and embarked on our French road trip.

In this episode, the first on the road trip to France in the summer, John, I and the team head over to Etang Du Puyravaud for a Carp fishing session with some good friends.

A Carp anglers’ Eden offering some really exciting action with big fish galore, lots of action and beautiful scenery.
I know that we often say that a particular lake or venue is stunning and special, or John may wax lyrical about the setting, the accommodation or the fishing. But Puyravaud really is a fabulous French angling destination with so much more to offer than top quality fishing.

Based in the beautiful Charente countryside setting, Puyravaud, offers 2 lakes of just over 6 acres and a second at just under three, with an enviable stock of very large hard fighting Carp up to 55lb.

The lakes aren’t in sight on arrival to the property, but the big reveal, is really worth waiting for. On arrival to Puyravaud you drive in through the main gates to be greeted by a stunning set of converted barns and a wonderful farmhouse.

Owners, Peter and Marion have put their heart and soul into the place (as well as a significant sum of money by the look of it) and have created a boutique standard of accommodation that can cater to over 20 guests at a time. The barns, living spaces and the bedrooms have been created and built to the highest of standards and can be described as 5 star accommodation.

The reveal, is owner Peters, party piece, as he walks you through into the full glass surround dining room of the farmhouse, and you get this wonderful vista of the main lake glistening through the trees down the bottom of sloping lawns.

It’s a magnificent opener and all of the crew and guests were blown away and couldn’t wait to get onto the bank. Well the guests and presenters couldn’t wait, the crew would have preferred to enjoy the hospitality and the facilities and maybe a dip into the pool that overlooks the valley.

Gary Hagues and his mates Frank and Russ joined us on this shoot. Gary, may be known to you, as he has the unique legend of being the man who has caught the World record carp – twice! The guys know the venue well and have helped Peter turn these lakes into prolific waters.

To the fishing – our first consideration was that the Carp were spawning on the main lake, and the fishing had been slow, so we decided to start off on the smaller of the lakes. And what a good decision that was as you will see from this episode. I won’t go into detail but the action was both fast and furious and records and PB’s fell quickly and often.

The fishing at Puyravaud is very very good, the fish are in mint condition, fight hard and it’s far from a hard place to catch very big specimens. But it’s the accommodation and the facilities that set the place apart.

It is a beautiful part of France so you are surrounded by lovely countryside and there is plenty to do and see for the non-angling guests in the group. I would say that if you were looking to combine a family or big group holiday with specimen fishing then Puyravaud is a perfect choice.

Hope you enjoy this first episode of the France road trip – we certainly had fun making it.



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