Cavagnac is nestled in the Aveyronnaise Vally just outside the village of Bournazel, a beautiful village with a castle as its centrepiece, a jewel of the Renaissance period, and if you are looking for the fish of a lifetime than you really need to take a look as there are carp up to 85lb swimming in it depths! If that isn’t enough to whet your appetite the lake itself is set in breath-taking surroundings and you will quite possibly see deer coming to drink at the water’s edge and the whole woodland setting around the lake and the open fields is alive with all types of wildlife. The lake is also known as Bournazel Lake and is quite large at around 52 acres (21ha). Although it’s quite a long drive down from Calais at around 8hrs 45 mins (560mls/902km) if you are travelling by car there are several routes you can take depending on whether you want to stick to the motorway system or take it more leisurely. It is also possible to fly to Rodez airport which is around 20km from the lake. The lake is managed by David, who speaks fluent English, and on offer are both drive and survive and fully inclusive packages. The lake has a long history and was originally used as a coarse fish breeding lake, being drained every two years to remove stock. The carp were kept in the lake and have bred successfully over the years resulting in some classic French carp of huge proportions!
At 52 acres and with 3 large bays and 2 smaller ones, the lake has a perimeter of around 3,200m. It has varying depths ranging from shallow margins and bays up to around 5m (15ft). The lake is fed by several springs, including one underground spring which emerges into the middle of the lake. The lake itself is classed as a heritage area because of its ecological status and historical landscape. There are 18 swims, most of which are capable of taking two anglers, and a maximum of 25 anglers fish each week.
Big lakes need good fish stocks and Cavagnac is no exception to this rule. The lake is home to around 600 carp with an estimated 300 of these being between 20-30lb. There are also 150 x 30-40lb, 120 x 40-50lb, 30 x 50lb, 3 x 60s and at least one 70lb fish. The lake record is a massive 85lb 2oz, called Single Scale. That’s huge by anyone’s standards and the stocking is a mix of lovely commons, mirrors, fully-scaled and leather carp which are quite rare to find. Of course, with a lake of this size the fishing cannot be classed as easy but there are usually a few 30s caught each day and several 40s each week. There is also an impressive array of other coarse fish including large tench, pike and zander. There are also grass carp to 57lb but Cavagnac contains no bream, poisson chat, crayfish or catfish. The lake allows pike fishing only in winter.
Cavagnac is a well-managed water with an impressive array of facilities (see below) to complement the well-prepared swims. Most of the swims are capable of taking two anglers comfortably and there are three smaller swims if you fancy a quiet time on your own. The swims are accessible via a pathway running around the lake and there are also some swims accessible only by boat (8, 9 and 10). Several of the swims are on wooden platforms so it’s advisable to take some screw hooks if you choose to fish on these. All the swims have shaded areas and are surrounded by the mature bankside woodland. There are lots of small beds of lilies around Cavagnac and most swims have access to areas of lilies and all the swims have large areas of open water to fish too.
The lakebed at Cavagnac is largely free from snags, and is made up of soft clay with some harder gravel patches, some soft silt patches and is generally free from weed.
Bait boats are allowed and there are rowing boats available to transport anglers to the swims only accessible by boat and to free up any snagged fish. The boats can also be used for baiting up. Both bait boats and rowing boats, can be hired on a weekly basis and electric motors are also available to hire. The bailiff is on hand to help transport your gear to your swim on arrival.
This is one lake where you can also bring your dog on holiday check with the rules opposite before you book as they are not allowed in all swims.
All sorts of baiting approaches work at some time at Cavagnac but larger beds of bait with the hookbaits fished to the edge are a proven method. Alternatively small beds of baits or even just a few baits, strategically positioned next to lily pads is also known to work well. The fish are not that hard to spot as they cruise around the lily beds but fish of the size and calibre that are in Cavagnac are not easy to catch and you will need to keep the fish in your area with bait if you want multiple catches.
Bait is available to purchase onsite (boilies and particles) and there is also an array of end tackle and other equipment.
If you want to find out more about fishing at Cavagnac why not visit the bailiff’s page on this website. Here bailiff David Frechou describes how best to tackle this wonderful lake, what baits and tactics to use, and how to get the best from your visit. David’s feature is available here:
GOOD TIPS FOR THE CAVAGNAC LAKE, by David Frechou (Manager)
As we mentioned above, the facilities at Cavagnac are excellent. There is a lodge area with terrace and dining room and anglers can enjoy their meals outside in the fresh air. Meals can be purchased on an ad-hoc basis for those who visit on the drive and survive plan and there is a full food package available if required. This consists of a full English breakfast, or Continental if you prefer, plus an evening dinner. At the time of writing this package is available at 150€. The lodge sells snacks and drinks throughout the day and there are power sockets available for charging equipment. Anglers can also use the microwave and the fridge in the lodge.
At the back of the lodge is a sanitary block with toilets and showers. These are cleaned and checked on a daily basis.
The Angler’s Shed is something you won’t find on every lake. In here you’ll find fridges and freezers, plus an array of power sockets for charging equipment.
All-Inclusive pack: An airport pick-up service is available for anglers arriving by air and upon arrival at the lake you will be on the all-inclusive package. You will be given a boat, inside which you will find a bivvy, a bed chair, a chair, 3 rods per person, a landing net, a weigh sling, an unhooking mat, 2 carp sacks, a set of scales and even an empty bucket for your baits and bits. Breakfast and evening meals every day and ou will also be provided with a stove and a tea and coffee kit (a kettle, spoons, cups, sugar, milk), and some bin bags for your rubbish. Meals include: a full english or continental breakfast and evening meal cooked by our resident chef, Arny. (A sandwich can be ordered for your lunch each morning at breakfast.)
Finally you will be given a cool box with ice packs. The boat will be supplied with oars but you can upgrade to an electric outboard motorboat, 120 Ah battery and a solar panel.
A baker visits the lake on a daily basis and there are supermarkets 25 minutes from the lake by car. The whole area is very historical and if you fancy a day out the local village of Bournazel has the historic castle to visit and a few shops and bars.
Rowing boats and baits boats are available for hire. Rowing boats cost 40€ per week and these can be upgraded to an electric motor for an extra 70€. Bait Boats (Anatec) can be hired for 75-80€ per week. Bait, both boilies and particles, are available to purchase along with a basic array of end tackle. Bait orders should be placed 24 hours before they are required.
These are just a few extra services of Cavagnac:
- Anglers may use in the lodge the microwave and the fridge.
- The baker visits the lake every day and can bring you fresh bread.
- Supermarket is 25 min by car from the lake.
- The bailiff will help you transport your tackle to the swim.
- Transfers from and to the airport
- Tackle hire: you can rent a full equipment except reels, bait alarm, sleeping bag and small stuff.
- bait boat hire: Anatec without GPS and Sounder for 75 Euros per week
- Boat hire: 40 Euros per week
- E-motor for 70 Euros per week
- Particles are for sale for very reasonable prices
- Fresh Pro-Line boilies (- 6 Euros/kg).
Drive & Survive:
Angler: 300 Euros/week (PRICE INCLUDES: a landing net, a weight sling, an unhooking mat, 2 carp sacs)
Non-fishing guests: 50 Euros/week
boat: 50€ per week
e-motor: 80€ per week
baitboat: 85€ per week
All inclusive Fishing Package:
€600,00 EUR per week. See details above. (If you want to order this all inclusive package, please mention this when booking)
Lac Cavagnac is in a area of outstanding natural beauty and the local villagers have welcomed our business venture.
In fact , we could not have gone ahead without their goodwill.
It is important that all are guests respect this environment, including the lake inhabitants.
To save any embarrassment or potential misunderstanding, the following rules apply at Lac Cavagnac.
Our aim is to create a relaxing, high-quality venue with outstanding fishing.
If your idea of a carp fishing holiday, however, is spending a drunk or stoned, may we politely suggest that you book some elsewhere.
Here we will do are best to make you enjoy your holiday, by looking after you and having the best admosphere you can have. You can ask for some help and advise. Here we help you. We are not just dropping you to your swim.
A deposite of 100 euro must be paid upon arrival
The deposit is only refundable if the fishing material is returned in full working order as received by bailiff on arrival.
A maximum of 3 rods per angler will be allowed.
No Braided mainline. Minimum main line BS of 15 lbs and hook links 25 lbs.
Micro barbed hooks only, up to size 2. Bent hooks (long shank curved hooks) are not allowed.
Only safe rigs utilizing a proper lead discharge system, such as safety bolt beads, allowed. You can also use inline leads as long as the system will allow the lead to detach itself when snagged.
Pets: On swims 16, 17 and 18 dogs are not allowed. On the other swims dogs are allowed.
Boats are provided for access to certain swims (Chateau, meadows point and sanctuary) , for baiting purposes or to rescue snagged carp. Life jackets must be worn at all times.
Drive and survive anglers must have very good safety quality equipment for the safety of carp. In order not to contaminate the water of the lake and the carp (boat, unhooking mat, 2 sacs, weight sling, landing net ) will have to be purchased at the lodge for a minimum cost.
Unhooking mats have to be used at all times.
Please treat fish with respect : keep handling to a minimum when weighing and photographing your catch and return fish to the water as quick as possible.
If carp angered , all anglers must have medi-carp with them. Must be purchased at the lodge if not have.
Concerning Particules and Tiger Nuts etc ... , it Happened too often that some of our fish died because of wrong preparation. That's why we are cooking for you mix of Mais, weet, pigeon conditioner (aprox 15 kg buckets ) and tiger nuts pots (aprox 1.5 kg). This prepaparation will be at your disposal for a minimum cost at the lodge. (don't forget to informe us 24 hours in advance).
Do not throw the rest of your baits either in the lake or on the bank before departure.
Barbecues are not allowed.
If you are struggling on your swim, fishing, you can ask for some help and advise. Stalking is allowed, free bait, ask the manager on site where to go. Here we are helping you. We are not just dropping you at your swim.
Please, you must keep your swim clean. You will find plenty of bins provided on the swims. For community and ecologic reasons we must separate our rubbish ( batteries, Glass, metal, normal rubbish ).
Crafty Carpers !! please use the toilets provided on the site, do not take the loo rolls and use them for fooling the swims, defecating around the lake will not be tolerated. Those found fooling their swim will be asked to leave the lake and will not be able to return in the future.
You are on holiday, by all means have a drink and enjoy yourself, but don’t spoil it for others. Drunken behavior will not be tolerated.
Any anglers not respecting these rules, the fish, environment, fellow guests or fishery staff will be asked to leave the water. We are not prepared to pay any costs this may incur.
It is necessary for our policy that you agree to all our internal rules.