Today was one of those boat trips when I really wish I just hadn't bothered. I guess all small boat owners experience these sort of days occasionally , its 'part and parcel' of the game and need to be treated philosophically although I'm pleased to say , they're something of a rarity for me. Perhaps I'm just lucky.
I'd been feeling a tad 'rough' with a severe dose of the dreaded 'man flu' so the actual decision to go was not taken lightly and, after deliberating, I was a little late setting off.
The wind forecasts were favourable but, as is often the case with our unpredictable weather, our esteemed forecasters (who'd want their job)were a little off the mark and a fresh south westerly was developing.
With suitably small tides ,I'd chosen to head west to the deep spring tope marks in the eastern solent at #41 and see if I could winkle out a cod or two. Wayne and his mates from over the other side of Selsey Bill had been picking up quite a few nice 'greenbacks' on nearby marks, so I reasoned that these marks should produce and, as I was fishing solo, it was to be a day to experiment and explore new possibilities.
With wind over tide the long run down to the chosen area was extremely uncomfortable and several times I considered 'throwing in the towel' but, being the stubborn sort that I am, persisted and soon reached the point of no return where I'd gone so far that it wasn't worth turning back to fish more local marks.
Eventually I dropped(sic) the anchor and it was 'dogfish' city from the off with another annoying element in that the boat seemed to be repeatedly dragging off the mark.
Eventually I decided to give up, haul the pick and reset the boat back on the mark. All very well if you've still got an anchor, which I seemed to have lost. I suspect that the nose shackle had come loose and was just holding for a while on the trip ( I use three stout cable ties). When I lifted it on the buoy , the trip must have given way and my gorgeous stainless steel 'bruce'(it came with my Orkney and was too good to let go when I sold her)was lost forever.
Now, although I carry a grapnel for use on rock and as an emergency back up, I don't carry a second 'bruce' so I was unable to continue fishing the mark which was a shame as I really don't think I've tested its potential.
With nothing much that could be done except head for home, I decided to nip close in to Selsey Bill and visit my parents who have a sea front house there on the sheltered , east beach.
They were pleased to see me and in the calm water I could get the boat close enough to hold a conversation with them. To save the day I decided to pay a quick visit on the home run to reef mark #9 and play with some lures for a while. The water clarity wasn't actually that bad and the day was saved somewhat by a couple of feisty wrasse which took a shine to my soft plastic. I love those critters.