The Causeway Lake is an attractive, mature 30 acre gravel pit about a mile south of Twyford, close to the River Loddon, set in very quiet peaceful surroundings and is the club’s premier carp water. Also known as Whistley Mill Fishery (not to be confused with the RDAA water across the road) it got it’s name from the old causeway that used to separate the original pair of pits, which were then dug into the shape of the lake we know today, well over 20 years ago.
As well as carp, the lake contains a small head of large bream, with many well in to double figures. A few tench are also present and in increasing numbers, with the best reported at just over 10lb, so that elusive double is in there. The lake also contains a small head of pike to mid doubles and a reasonable head of perch, with the perch in particular of a good stamp.
The Causeway rose to fame in the late Nineties and early Noughties when it came to national attention for producing ‘that’ massive carp. So much so, that Terry Hearn devoted a chapter of his book, “Still Searching”, to his exploits on the Causeway. This led to many of the dedicated big carp hunters of the time pitting their wits against the now famous fish.
The ‘Causeway Fish’ passed away many years ago and has sadly long gone, and with it the crowds of glory hunters, once again leaving the lake to do it’s own thing, to mature and grow on the next generation of monster carp. The lake was restocked with a healthy amount of the local Dinton strain of carp soon after the demise of the big one. However, just as these fish were breaching the 20lb barrier, disaster struck in the form of the 2007 floods that wiped out most fisheries in the Loddon Valley catchment area. Most of the stock ended up in The Loddon, on their way down to The Thames, leading to a whole stocking of scaley Dinton strain fish in the river Thames!
This led to the installation of the current perimeter fish fence, which was severely tested with rising waters yet again in 2012, with floods of similar proportions to those 5 years previously. In almost a repeat performance, we lost several fish to ditches and in turn to the flows and had no option but to restock once again, with the same strain of carp as before.
These have since been mostly left alone for a good 7 years, when some of them started breaking the 35lb barrier and with one carp in particular going over 40lb at the right time of year. They were then joined with some new blood in February of 2020, when 40 carp of C3 age (3 summers) were stocked between weights on 5.5lb and 7.5lb. Most, if not all of these fish have doubled in size in less than a year. The future is certainly secure thanks to this influx of the finest VS Fisheries carp you have ever seen, a nice mix of Harrow, Leney and Dink crosses and back crosses.
Today the lake has carp mostly in the 15lb to 25lb bracket with quite a few 30’s present. In the past The Causeway has clearly produced really big carp and has the potential to do so again, with the current lake biggie being caught in summer 2020 at a weight of 44lb and 8oz. This is partly due to the massive amounts of natural food in the venue, helped by the regular inflows from the Loddon, bringing nutrient rich water with it.
This has led, in the past, to algae bloom issues. In 2020 the Fisheries Team deposited 6 tons of barley straw around the lake, which had the desired effect and knocked the algae back considerably. We are going to repeat this every season with luck, and regain a few months of critical feeding time for the fish. This was repeated again in 2021 with great success and the algae has been held at bay for another season.
The Causeway could not be classed as a ‘runs’ water by any stretch of the imagination, but with a bit of time and some effort the carp are there to be caught. We have a healthy night ticket membership with 60 places available and a waiting list in operation. The venue has 3 dedicated Bailiffs and is regularly fished by members of the Club Committee. This is reflected in the amount of work that we carry out on the venue, keeping the paths clear and the swims fishable. There are still plenty of overgrown and unmanaged areas, as well as plenty of opportunities for the day angler who wishes to stay tucked away and fish a few spots in the edges.
The lake has a large central island, a few dot islands, gravel bars, shallow bays, silty gullys, inlet/outlet pipe, weed beds, reeds, plenty of overhanging trees, snags and a whole host of features that you would expect of a mature gravel pit in the Loddon/Thames valley.
Not for the faint hearted, it can be a grueller at the best of times, but the rewards are certainly there for those brave enough to tackle The Causeway. With the potential for further stocking in the seasons to come, a pro-active Fisheries and Bailiff team, a full night ticket membership and growing fish, the future is looking very bright indeed.
Only members belonging to the 'Night Fishing Syndicate' shall be allowed to fish between the hours of 9pm and 6am.
The waiting list is currently CLOSED.
Minimum age to join the syndicate is 16, however, no member under 18 is allow to night fish unless accompanied by a member above the age of 18.
Maximum stay of 96 hours on the fishery and 24 hours break before returning.
No unattended rods.
Braided mainlines, leaders, nut baits and artificial baits are all permitted.
No powerful lights.
No open fires usless as part of a working party.
Members are responsible for clearing any litter from their swims before fishing.
A locked car park is provided next to the lake. Access with a club key. Located between Hurst and Charvil. To avoid the ford, take the Hurst road behind Twyford train station. Take the right hand fork towards Winnersh, then the right hand turn signposted ‘Whistley Mill Lane’. Follow the road until you come to the car park and lake on your left hand side.
Postcode: RG10 0RA
North, South & West banks only, no access to area belonging to house.
All year round.
Club rules apply.
No boats (except for remote-control bait boats used responsibly).
No swimming or wadding beyond the margins.
Up to 4 rods permitted on the lake, all rods to be used in one swim only.
Dogs on leads are only permitted if they are accompanying a bailiff.
Pike Fishing – Bait Fishing
Pike fishing with bait (live or dead) between October 1st to March 31st inclusive.
Unhooking mats must be adequate and must be used at all times.
Minimum of 2 sets of forceps to be carried to aid unhooking.
No gaffs or pike gags to be used. Anyone found with these items will be escorted off site.
Minimum breaking strain line of 15lb mono, strong braid preferred.
Minimum trace length of 18”.
Landing net should be 36” wide at least, 42” preferred.
All pike to be handled with a maximum of care and returned to the water as soon as possible