Moroccan Carping: Real Pioneers Part I
It is Wednesday, day five of our week-long break, and our host, Fraser, guides the small inflatable boat around the furthermost point of another apparently innocuous little bay to reveal, for the umpteenth time, a winding, vast expanse of water. At this point it truly dawns on me that to catch a carp from this monstrous lake requires something more…epic, than simply ‘baiting and waiting’.
The lake is Bin El Ouidane, 7500 acres of clear blue water set 800m altitude in the mid-atlas mountains of Morocco, and it is here that two friends and I undertook the challenge of tempting one of the lake’s stunningly conditioned and enormous carp. We were booked with Morocco Carp, a new company in its first year of operating, for a week’s worth of fishing along with evening and breakfast meals as part of the ‘Bankside Package’.
Upon arrival at the quaint and comfortable ‘Hotel Bin El Ouidane’ we were greeted by warm smiles and a stunning view of the lake. Though weary from our travels, it was hard not to feel energised by the sight of the turquoise oasis, and over a welcome beer and sandwich we listened to and questioned Fraser to find out exactly what sort of a trip we were in for.
Perhaps now is the time to explain that, although a modestly experienced fisherman, the scale of Bin El Ouidane was something entirely new to me. ‘Big water fishing’ was something that had long played upon my sense of what true carp fishing really is, yet i had never been quite bold enough to take the plunge and give it a try. Until now of course.
I knew what I was expecting to gain from our trip: more knowledge that trophy shots (yet there was no doubt that i wanted dearly to catch). So then, when Fraser began by describing how tough the lake was fishing, it came as little surprise and, if anything, firmed my resolve. In my eyes, raising the difficulty simply raises the level of potential reward.
Our first night was to be spent in ‘Twin Waddies’ a well fished swim on the same bank as the hotel, and one that has produced a lot of fish over the last 6 months. However, our host had grander plans for the remainder of our trip suggesting a relatively untested swim on the opposite bank, where the fishing is harder and the isolation more extreme. The stakes continued to escalate.
to read the rest of this excellent article and Part II click here.