Located in an extremely rural setting, catch 22 is one of the best fishing lakes in Norfolk. It was a former gravel working started life as a general fishery run by a local angling club. When the club relinquished their lease, the water was taken over by Norfolk KOI Imports, who decided to transform the fishery into prolific run water.
In 1994/1995, the lakes were heavily stocked with imported Dutch carp which averaged single figures in size and it was productive all year round. East Anglia (where catch 22 is located) lacked any venue of this type, so its popularity during the Colder months was unsurprising.
Even when conditions were thought to be bad for fishing, anglers from across the country made long journeys in order to fish. They often caught twenty or more fish a day.
However, as the years have gone the fish stocks are much lower, therefore allowing room for the carp to grow to specimen sizes.
When you pull into the car park, you will find a tackle shop where trip preparations can be made. Next step: purchase your ticket and get some advice on what’s working best at the moment before heading off around the lake.
After you’ve had a little chat, it’s time to go fishing. The first lake is around 20 acres in size and has 30 swims spread out along its beautiful tree-lined banks. Common carp make up 60% of the stock; other species include mirror and Leather carp
Many of the residents are in their 20s. I remember one summer when the main lake produced 15 carp for an angler up to about 32lb. The biggest sits over 45lbs.
Depths are between 8 and 30 feet, and the lake is filled with features including islands, bars and plateaux. So make sure to bring a marker rod—the bed can be tricky.
There’s also plenty of bird life around here, when you’re not gazing at the screech of a buzzard you’re spotting the darting flight of a kingfisher or the pecking of the resident woodpeckers.
By far the most memorable swims are at two unique pegs called “The Island” and “Nature Reserve.” Each is accessible only by boat. Only two people can fish these pegs, so book in advance.
What makes them unique is they have access to part of the lake not fishable by any other pegs. From my experience, there’s always carp in these sections of water.
To hire these private swims out, it cost £35 for 24 hours. This sounds expensive, but with virtually private water and the most productive pegs on the lake, it’s a no-brainer. Day tickets run from 07:30am – 07:30pm from 1st April to 1st November and 8am-5pm from 1st November to 1st March. Just to add, there are different discounts for certain nights booked, so worth checking with the lake first.
If you decide to stay for an extended period, there is a quad available that will make it easier to get around the lake. The downside is that this vehicle might not be available, and even if it is—it’s quite a bit of work. There are also some lodges on site which are very nice and cosy; these may be of interest to hire.
Catch 22 is always very well-kept and maintained, the fish are looked after with equal care too. The owners are very protective of the fish and the safety of all guests. The gates are locked at night to prevent any issues from arising. There are also cameras on site to monitor everything. Rest assured this is a very good fishery, both the fishing and management really do care. In customer care, this is one of the most customer focuses fishing lakes in Norfolk.
If you wake up after a night of catching all the fish, what better way to recover than to grab yourself breakfast on-site. They even have showers, toilets plus a water tap. If you’ve read the whole of this and thought, It sounds amazing, but I’ve no idea what I’m doing, they also offer to tutor this lake. Become an expert before you even wet a line
Catch 22 has another syndicate lake, it’s picturesque and has carp to around the 48-50lb mark. Best to speak to the management directly if you want to become a member.
Catch 22 is one of the best run Fishing Lakes in Norfolk. It has everything a modern fishery needs as well as top-class management and fish care
Lake Size: Around 21 acres
Lake Record: Carp 48-50lbs
Stock: Carp 40lb+ Bream 10lb + Tench 14lb Roach 2lb + Pike 30lb +
On-Site: Toilets, Cafe and Showers
Contact: 01603 872948
Website: Catch 22
Address: Norwich NR9 5BQ
There are plenty of other Fishing Lakes