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Escrick activities: a beginner’s guide to fishing

By Helen Pentith  //  Wed 19th March 2014
Fishing Escrick Park

Rural Yorkshire is a great place to while away an afternoon or a whole weekend, and with spring just about on the horizon we’ll soon be able to enjoy our time in the outside world once more! Of all the rural activities you could choose to indulge in this spring, fishing is perhaps the most rewarding. Escrick Park Estate is the perfect place to try your hand at fishing, whether you’re an expert or a complete novice, and lodge owners at the Hollicarrs have free access to our well-stocked private lake. So, what do you need to get started and land yourself a record-breaking catch? Before you pay us a visit here at Escrick Park, you ought to check out our beginner’s guide to coarse fishing in Yorkshire…

The lake

Every fisherman must first get to know his or her terrain, and adapt their technique to the conditions at hand. Bottom feeding species, for example, will be found towards the bottom of a water source and hunt by sense of smell – they will not be deterred by poor water clarity. Sight predators such as pike enjoy fast-flowing water found in the bends of rivers and near small waterfalls or rapids, but when the water is clear they may be spooked by your visible presence on the bank. Our lake fishing venue here at Escrick Park will give you the chance to catch a variety of species and numerous casting points with which to pursue them, so come and scope out the best fishing spots and determine the best way to tackle the terrain!

The fish

Different fish take different bait, are found in different locations and require different techniques to catch. Our well-stocked lakes offer a variety of fish species including carp, tench and roach, ranging in size from juvenile tiddlers to monsters suitable for any angler’s photo scrapbook! Tench are bottom feeders that prefer still water and don’t rely on their sight to hunt. Carp are also coarse fish that tend to hunt near the bank and boast very acute hearing. Roach are small fish that favour vegetated water, and as they live predominantly on plankton, can be caught with surface bait.

The bait

When a lot of fishing newbies think of the sport, they automatically imagine rising early digging a handful of juicy earthworms from the soil and baiting their hook with a wriggling invertebrate. If the thought of such an activity gives you the willies, don’t worry – coarse fishing in Yorkshire is often a much less grisly activity! While roach will feed on worms and maggots, they’re just as likely to bite sweet corn, bread and hemp, while carp will go for flavoured pellets and ‘boilies.’ Tench, meanwhile, aren’t particularly fussy, and can often be caught using any combination of the above!

The gear

As a beginner, you’ll want to keep your coarse fishing rig as simple as possible. While it’s possible to get caught up in the allure of buying expensive equipment and owning a well-stocked tackle box, all you really need to fish the waters here at Escrick Park is a basic rig consisting of: a rod, a reel, some thin line, a series of ball lead sinkers, a variety of floats and some small hooks. Basic rig diagrams can be found online, but you’ll need your own gear and a fishing licence to fish the waters here at Escrick Park.

The technique

Fishing techniques can be taught online, but really, the best thing you can do is get out there with someone who knows what they’re doing! Once you’ve gotten to know your gear you can start fishing effectively. Remember when fishing for carp to lower the line into the water rather than casting – the fish will hear any loud disturbance and be sure to scarper! As well as the essential gear mentioned above, it pays to bring a pair of wellies, warm or waterproof clothing and plenty of food and drink. A long day’s fishing can be a miserable experience if you aren’t completely comfortable!

Hopefully, our beginner’s guide to fishing will have let you work out whether or not the sport is right for you. If you find yourself becoming a fishing fanatic, why not consider making an enquiry for one of the timber lodge holiday homes available here at Escrick Park? You’ll be able to indulge your favourite pastime every year in comfort and tranquillity with exclusive access to our private lake!
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