Saturday, 27 May 2017

Rodney’s Beach

It must be around 18 years, probably more since Rodney took me here to catch my first Bass. Sadly he’s no longer with us but as far as I’m concerned it’s still his beach. I’ll always fish it a couple of times a year and I won’t ever step on this beach and not think about him. We had some good times here, a lot of laughs and some nice fish. Of course there were some failures. I liked to wind him up about these, he would blame me for most of it but we always laughed about it. Rodney also liked his bed so it was hard to get him out of it for the early morning sessions that always seemed to produce our best fish back then. That grey time of the morning, half-light. It was rare to get a smile from him at daft o’clock but a nice Bass usually cracked his face with a big grin. He was never far away from some kind of nonsense, fishing related or otherwise. Within a short distance of where I was stood he had a tent torn to pieces by a Great Dane, fixed some kind of belt problem on a MK2 Golf using a bait fork as one of his tools and had a panic attack climbing a cliff. These dramas didn’t necessarily amuse Rod but it did always give us something to consider bettering on any given fishing jaunt.

Anyway, I digress, the fishing was pretty good considering. I knew I wouldn’t be getting any decent fish tonight, it was very flat, but I didn’t expect to hit double figures. I’ve been over the Tay Bridge twice today on the other side of Scotland and drove past my home to Luce Bay to catch the tide for two hours fishing. Just as well it wasn’t a blank, too much on this weekend to stay any longer. I won’t be complaining about that for my first Bass trip of the year.
I just used my Sea Trout in-lines, pretty effective for this size of Bass at least.
I forgot how spikey these little fellas are while handling them.
Another highlight were these fellas. I did consider pegging it off the beach with them, Norfolk Terriers, can't say I've come across them before. I hooked a sand eel and fed it to them thus starting a short tug of war, typical terriers.
I might have a shot for Tope/Bass from the kayak on Monday weather and domestic life permitting.


Thursday, 11 May 2017

May already

With the year passing so quickly May has arrived in no time at all and the seasonal gear change is kicking in everywhere. I’ll be taking a backseat this month, too many commitments on the domestic front, projects running behind and other things that need attended to. Given I’ve had three blank sessions trying for Sea Trout since my last capture it’s probably a good time to have a break. These were only short 2 hour trips but blanks all the same. If I can squeeze in a few hours I might but won’t be sweating it if I don’t. Most years I get to August and feel a bit burnt out, a bad time to feel like that.

I can’t complain with my year so far, the kayak challenge I’ve set myself will pick up again in June when I can get my rig out of the garage again. The Tope, Bass and Smoothound will be here in better numbers by then. I’ll get around to improving the Perch I have here as well.
I’ve only started thinking about a trip to Ireland and the possibility of a Blue Shark from my Outback, the ideas is still there but I need to start networking soon to establish if anyone else has similar thoughts. Having also entered my first kayak competition this was a step forward to putting a Zander in the kayak. I’ll be fishing the World Predator Classic 2017 qualifier to be held at Grafham in August. The final will be in Holland. For me it’s really about getting two days on that venue and the possibility of a decent Zed. If that fails it will be a long journey back down to England in the Autumn for a schoolie Zander from Rutland, motivation enough to get it right first time hopefully.

Friday, 28 April 2017

Timing and tides

I'm not sure it could get much better without a trip to Fyn or Bornholm.
Two cracking fish


Saturday, 22 April 2017

Chasing fatty

Imagine my shock when the builders couldn’t start work when they said they would .... Every cloud and all that. Probably a lot other things I should have been doing today but nothing that won't wait till Sunday, fxxk it, get the Perch gear. I don’t need much encouragement

Seven rigs and my first anchor lost today, what happened to the single digit wind strength? They’ve not done their business yet but it can’t be long now, doubt I’ll get another chance this year for a real big fatty.


Monday, 17 April 2017

Slow day in the sun

I should have had a crack at the Perch today but opted for a day afloat on the coast chasing some silver.  The forecast was good so it made for a pleasant time on the water but it wasn’t very productive. I fished hard around a general area that used to produce some decent days for me in the past. Unfortunately over the last two seasons this area has produced very little, I wont be in a hurry to go back for a while. I thought covering the area from the kayak would make a difference, for today at least, it was more of the same.
I winkled out this fish, my first Sea Trout aboard Das Bite. I also had two tiny finnock, onwards and upwards to better tides and better fishing.

Friday, 14 April 2017

Dawn raid

I have a busy weekend planned so took the opportunity to get on the water this morning, first cast 6am. It looked fishy and on my fourth chuck the rod hooped over with the first Sea Trout of the day, fantastic! Almost at the top of my waders in the strong flow I had the fish in the net for a confident start. I reached for the camera to take a quick snap of a nice 2 pound fish only to find the memory card missing and the internal memory full, don’t know how many times I’ve done this. I dropped the fish back in and cleared down some the limited space, not wasting too much time before getting back to business. Time passed and I was thinking the fish had shot past me at some point and was also considering changing lures when I had the slightest of taps, with a couple of stops this was converted into a smaller Sea Trout this time.
This was followed by another, slightly bigger fish which put up a scrap punching above its size in the tide before a quick visit to the net and making its onward journey.
These little features are great, with the undulating bottom these small gaps provide spots for the fish to hold up, rest or ambush passing food items. Even when these are covered by a few feet of water you can spot the signs. Three of fish this morning came from spots like this, hundreds of yards from the main flow.
I was thinking of wrapping it when I had another little fat fish in good order to end a fairly productive 2.5 hours session. Now for a day looking at flooring and kitchen appliances .....


Monday, 10 April 2017

On a long shot

Leading up to Grand National weekend Jim and I had planned our own long shot with a trip to target large Brown Trout that inhabit a remote highland loch. I had planned to fish another loch in May with the same target so we made joint plans to give it a crack together. These fish we were after would be around 4 pound and above, sometimes considerably more, aren’t exactly numerous but they are there to be had. With a reasonable plan and some luck we agreed it would be worth the effort. I met Jim after driving to the venue when I finished work and we set up camp, in some luxury I might add. We had some food and opened a few bottles as we got the gear ready. We had a late night and a late start the next day but with no travelling time for a change we could afford that luxury.
All the gear and half an idea-we were in business

We spent about half of the first day throwing some budgies in a gusting 20mph wind with some drizzle. Jim had a Pike about 4 pounds and I had the smallest Pike I’ve caught in a while. This however was my first Pike on a fly; not exactly a significant capture but it brought a smile to my face on dour day.

We tried to escape the wind which was funnelling down the loch, some ducking and diving and Jim started day two with another Pike.

Having spawned the Pike were in a lean condition but they did add the odd bit of action while searching for trout. The first sign of these came to my rod. After casting out a Brown Trout pattern Rapala the lure swung around behind the boat and just at the angle you might expect a take a big Brownie hit it and went about 3 feet in the air. Unfortunately for me the line went slack ,the chance was gone. It did provide some encouragement and we refocused our efforts once again.
We started to pick up some nice trout but we did have a few setbacks. The weather wasn’t great,  the  fish finder failed and most likely, the area we ended up fishing as a result of this wasn’t renowned for the biggest specimens the loch can throw up.

While I appreciate they look of a good Sea Trout in freshwater mode I had forgotten how easy these fish are on the eye.
Lovely wild Brownies
On Saturday night the wind dropped and the loch was a much friendlier place. We agreed we could have been in a remote corner of Canada. We had the chance to relax and appreciate the surroundings, lovely sunset and a couple of fish, the world was a good place. It had been great to just completely get away from it all for a few days.
Back at base camp things however had deteriorated somewhat, stocks of Malbec had hit rock bottom, thanks to me. Jim’s Merlot had to be plundered and we realised the trip was coming to an end. I had arrived wearing a suit and over the course of a couple of days transformed into wandering around base camp in merino wool long johns and a bunnet, just what I needed as it happens. Thanks Jim for your hospitality, looking forward to our next adventure.