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Brayton Park Review: Wild carp fishing

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I have recently stayed at Brayton Park Lodges and we had a great time there (me, my wife, and our children ages 6 and 9). The setting is absolutely stunning with breathtaking views of the hills of the north lakes in a beautiful park-like setting. 

Disclaimer: I booked a week’s stay in the Easter holidays and paid in full, my review is based on my opinions on my stay, and have not been paid for this! 

What you will find on this review

Carp fishing at Brayton Park

We mainly booked these lodges as we were looking for a luxury lodge with a hot tub in the North Lakes for a holiday, the carp fishing was just a bonus extra. I struggled to find out much information on the lakes and the fish before we went other than the carp we around 10lb and there was a couple of bigger ones.

During the week we (me and my children) fished the lake for 4 half day sessions around what else we were doing during the trip. Here is one of 4 double takes we had! 

Double take of carp at Brayton Park

There is one lodge that is right on the lake with it’s own private peg. This was not the lodge we had booked so you have to take your gear to the bottom end of the lake as fishing is only from the tree-covered bank of the lake. This was a bit of a pain and we have now booked to go to the lakeside lodge with the private peg on our next trip to Brayton Park.

Here is the peg from the lakeside lodge – 

Private peg from the lakeside lodge

Whilst there I got chatting to 2 of the 3 members that fish the lake and found out a lot of information. I put it in bullet points here for easy reading!

  • The lake is 7 acres and was dug out by monks at a monetary around the 14th-16 century. At the first peg you get to, slightly to the right there are still steps in the water from that time (You can’t see them but can feel them with a lead).
  • The carp are on average 6-8lb, they are all wild commons that have bred in the lake. There is a couple in the 13lb – 14lb range.
  • There is a big lily bed that comes up in the summer making the first peg almost unfishable. I went in the spring and you could see it starting to come up.
  • The lake is very shallow in parts and some areas, even out in the middle, are around 2-3 feet deep. On the warm spring days, we could see the carp basking in these shallow areas and caught well from them.
  • The only fish in the lake are common carp and crucians, apart from an occasional natural hybrid there are no other fish or coarse fish at all.
  • In our best session, we had 11 carp in just under 3 hours from 2 rods. That morning they were going for it on one of the shallow spots!

What you need to take

Here’s a guide to what I took and would take again

  • Bank sticks or a pod are fine. (If you are in the lakeside lodge then you’ll need a pod as it’s a decked peg).
  • Solid bags with 14mm wafters worked well for me, another visitor was doing well on corn and a method feeder. 
  • I just used bags and no extra freebies as I was fishing at 12ish wraps with no spod. If you are there when it’s warmer I think boilies and a throwing stick would work well for bating up. (You can see my throwing stick tips here)
  • Shorter rods if you have them. I fished with 12-foot carp rods, with all the trees a 9 foot or 10-foot rod or swing tip would be better.
  • A decent side padded unhooking mat, I’m not sure if the fish are caught that often as even after letting them tire before landing they were still feisty on the mat! 
  • Usual tackle for that size fish.

Lodge Review

Our trip to Brayton Park was the first time we’ve been on a lodge break and we absolutely loved it! We had a 3-bed lodge with an outside hot tub that overlooked the lake, this was just down to luck to get that lodge. The other lodges around us were shielded by large mounds of grass and we had a large grassed area by the lodge to run around and play in too. 

Here is the lodge we had – 

Lodge overlooking the lake

since staying there we have stayed at 2 other lodge parks and Brayton Park is still our favourite. It is the most luxurious lodge we have stayed in and the best setting. The lodge was big compared to other sites and had everything you needed. The site was immaculate and had everything you needed. There are some shops in the local village including a Spar. 

There is a really nice relaxed vibe about the place. At the time we stayed you could have food from the restaurant delivered to your lodge, which we did 4 times in the week. the food was excellent and the desserts are well worth trying. At the time of our stay, some restrictions were still in place so we did not visit any other local restaurants or pubs.

The north lakes is a stunning area and we visited a few places nearby. The holiday was so chilled that we didn’t feel we needed to go anywhere and we were all happy to relax around the lodge and use the hot tub. 

We would all recommend the North Lakes lodges for a luxury relaxing break even if you don’t like fishing! We booked to go back before we’d left!

Want to see more lodges? See my full UK guide here!  

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