Couple Quit Their Jobs, To Fish Full Time - Part Seven.

Once more it was the wind that lightened our farewell. With all its coldness it blew us further into the real adventure. It blew us from France, into a country that is in economic crisis and therefore less predictable. We really needed guts to trade the familiarity of carping in France for some angling adventure in Spain. In Spain, the fishing license cannot be ordered easily from the Internet, information about captures, bodies of water or fishing spots is rare when comparing with France. Carp often occur in high densities (resulting in low average weights), reservoirs are huge (three to four times larger than in France) and the language barrier is also substantial. Then there is the long journey, which is a problem for everyone travelling by car. All these points result in the fact that most people that come to fish do this by booking with a guiding service. In comparison with France, however, there is almost no carp tourism.

Indeed, it took us a lot of time to start the carp fishing adventure in Spain. For instance, it took half a day trying to get a cell-phone prepaid card, without success. First, there are only very few larger cities in the region of Extremadura. Travel distances are, therefore, long. Additionally, everything is slower here, even in a mobile phone shop. Nano-SIM cards for iPhones are only available for customers with a contract (which you get only with a Spanish bank account number). A prepaid-card, however, was also fine by us but the employee didn’t want to sell it without a Spanish residence address. The reason was that terrorists would have it more difficult to get a Spanish cell-phone and plan an attack. We spent half a day and more than 100 km in the car for nothing. The next day however, in a much smaller town, no Spanish residence address was needed. After some work with scissors, the micro-card was transformed into a nano card and we were connected again!

Access to the lake was scarce and almost impossible without a 4x4. The first path almost swallowed us. With spinning wheels we slipped back to the road as the rain fell in sheets. We were tired and in desperate need of our comfortable Colossus tent or a hotel if necessary. We needed a shower, felt broken and empty. We had no more proper clothes. Somewhere between the low-hanging clouds emerged a sign saying, ‘Terreno de Camping’. Thanks god, the camping had already opened in March. It was affordable as well. Sunrays came out of the dense grey.

Here we are, back from a short expedition walk. We saw wild nature, hundreds of small common carp and lots of storks and vultures. We collected wild leek, spring onion, asparagus and peppermint as well as lots of impressions. Our plan to fish mobile and without a boat seems difficult. You cannot walk directly at the shore. This is due to the high water level. We were told that it rarely rained in the Extremadura as much as it had that winter. The paths a bit further from the shore were overgrown with bramble bushes, only traversable for wild boars. But these are just first impressions. We plan to stay some more days on the camping where we can enjoy some more hot showers and wash a mountain of clothes. From here, we can explore the enormous lake and find our way to catch some large carp that may never have seen a hook before. For tomorrow, we plan to get the fishing licenses at a bank. I am already curious how that will work. The price, however, is fair: €4,90 for a year’s fishing!

Alex y Caroline