We are in the Perche, at the Moulin de Gémages which extends in a sumptuous setting on six hectares of meadows, twelve bodies of water and three kilometers of banks! Not only are the places charming and bucolic, but the various varieties of trout that haunt the fishing route, feed perfectly naturally and are very combative!
A treat for the fisherman.
Take your cane, we take you …
We are greeted upon our arrival at the Mill by Ivan Iannaccone, the owner of the premises, who takes us into the comfortable lodge of the course for a small snack. Here everything has been thought out for fly fishermen. After a delicious meal here we are at the water’s edge. On Ivan’s advice, we decide to go back to the top of the course where the water bodies fed
by collection reveals clear water at constant temperature. Many fish are already active on the surface and it seems that the small “greyness of the sky” promotes this activity. In this period when the leaves of the trees are adorned with shimmering yellow and orange colors, I decide to try my luck with a small terrestrial of my manufacture. I land my fly on the “road” of a beautiful yellow trout (Aguabonita) which misses it completely ignoring it! but, when I recover my silk to relaunch, a huge V occurs behind my artificial which disappears in a swirl. Reflex shoeing and a beautiful fight with a superb rainbow trout which must exceed 50 centimeters. A fish in good shape, nervous and brawler! The friend Jean-Didier who had chosen him for a small
emergent, take down a first fish before also making a very nice catch that I slip into the large landing net with silicone mesh. Only these landing nets are authorized and available to fishermen. Yes, here nothing is left to chance for quality management. We will take several fish in this lake while fishing from a distance, including some “yellow” trout by reducing the size of our points to 12 hundredths. In fact, these trout, which can be perfectly distinguished, have shown themselves to be “finicky” probably because of the fact that they are more used than the others.
Moving around a bit, I realize that the banks are frequented by many trouts waiting for food within a meter of the edge. Ivan had explained to us that in this season many salmonids are recovering their health by chasing “the fodder” near the edge. Thanks to the successful cutting of the water, multiple corners, turns and water inlets offer superb positions for salmonids. I mount a small “pheasant tail” type nymph in size 16 and keep my long tip in 12 hundredths. Two trout are placed 50 centimeters apart near a water collector. A first pose gives nothing because my nymph goes too low, the fish are almost on the surface. A very light model shifts the first trout and the spade, big fight under the branches and the “rebel” ends up in the landing net. The trout have a beautiful dress with well developed fins and have been handpicked. The mill of Gémages really offers a great diversity, and whether the fisherman is an expert in casting or a beginner he will easily find a situation and a position where he can have fun. By fishing the many nymph edges on sight but also in dry, the catch will, once again, be very numerous. My advice would therefore be not to forget all these small banks and these plant arches which offer “lodging and cover” to the little disturbed salmonids.
The next day, after an excellent night in the cozy and comfortable guest rooms of the mill and after a hearty breakfast, we are back at the water’s edge. Ivan, a distributor of Thomas & Thomas rods among other things, entrusted me with a Avantt silk model of 6 for testing, an excellent very light and perfect cane for the course. Balanced with an Abel SDF reel, the whole is a real delight. We are trying this morning under an azure blue sky, first the weir then the winnowing (a small picturesque canal) which marks the limit of the route. A few attempts under the weir bring us back in nymph over several vigorous farios with a copper robe. The touches are frank in this little current and the movements of the leader are fairly easy to sanction a shoeing. While housing the winnowing, I still capture beautiful trout posted on the borders very close to the vegetation. Introduced by Ivan several years ago (size 8 to 10 cm), these farios are particularly well acclimatized and feed naturally. The owner also tells me that in summer, the massive hatchings of caddisflies and mayflies quickly raise all these little people to the surface for the greatest pleasure of amateurs! The
only difficulty consists in fact in correctly placing his fly under the vegetation. a small sedge will be right for some farios stationed along the borders. After a very good meal concocted by Sophie and taken to the lodge with other fishermen (conviviality is in order at the mill), I start my fishing party again with a small black drowned man and a nymph at the tip. By launching as close as possible to the vegetation, I hit several trouts in succession, knitting slowly with my left hand. sometimes on a stop it is the simple displacement of the silk which signals me a catch. The fishing is colorful and the catches are regular. Be careful here some large specimens quickly break your point if you are not attentive or if your brake is not perfectly adjusted. For fun, in the recesses of the lake sheltered from the vegetation, we try some fish posted with a simple crossbow throw or roll and it is very rare that the trout let a small olive or black nymph pass in their field. vision. A very fun and exciting fishery, where presentation is often decisive.
In all water bodies the fisherman can take rainbow trout, fario, aguabonita, leopard but also fountain salmon which are very aggressive in the middle of winter when the waters are very cold. Know that the course of the Moulin de Gémages was entirely built on a vast meadow, on a very original idea of Ivan Iannaccone who himself designed the course which operates in elevation. During our visit, water was lacking throughout France, but this
route has never been impacted thanks to constant contributions in quantity and temperature. The Moulin de Gémages runs with the family and its geographical location has been particularly well thought out: 1 hour 30 minutes from Paris Sud, 45 minutes from Chartres, 35 minutes from Le Mans and 45 minutes from Alençon. The Moulin boutique is beautiful with an impressive quantity of high-end rods and reels, but also silks and accessories. the Moulin de Gémages is the exclusive distributor of several prestigious brands. For fishermen, it is indeed very easy to try a rod at the water’s edge by taking some trout on Ivan’s advice before making the final purchase. This is probably the best way to find a product that matches
perfectly to his expectations in fishing action.
If you are in the Perche region, do not miss this exceptional course. You can stay on site and eat in a picturesque setting, totally dedicated to fly fishing and managed by a family of enthusiasts.
Text and photos Laurent Guillermin / Fly Fishing