Wednesday, 12 April 2017

4-6/4/17 Bass n Bream

On the 4th I quickly nipped out of the harbour for a couple of hours that evening and managed to catch a nice bass of close to seven pounds on a lure but, little else happened and hardly any signs of fish were seen on the sounder.

The plan for the 6th was to secure a few live baits and try for a decent bass but, best laid plans and all that..............
The  baits(pouting) were actually quite easy to find and once I'd had enough in the tank, decided to head over to the reef mark and set out my float rig. First drift  through, on the last knockings of the ebbing tide, produced a take, and a good bass hooked but...............subsequently lost when it slipped off the circle hook. That was to be the only action to the live bait rig all day.
Meanwhile, the soft plastic lures, both fished vertically, and cast away from the boat, did their job quite well although  it must be added that the bass weren't exactly monsters. Whatever, I was having fun and soon lost count of those caught.
Black bream have also been showing up regularly on baits and when I hooked one on a lure, It was a cue to drop the pick, and send down the 'messy stuff'.
The bream came thick and fast which was nice to see but ,again rarely of any size-maybe just under two pounds maximum. Again I enjoyed the fishing and it was good to see these old friends return again for another year, one in which I might spend a bit more time targeting them with a view to breaking that elusive four pound barrier.
I finished the day, a long one at nearly twelve hours at sea, back on the lures with a final flurry of bass from the same reef area.
So bass of any size proved elusive possibly due to an extremely small tide. One commercial rod and line angler was working a nearby area and having struck up a conversation with him, I found out that he was also struggling to find the better fish. As per usual, we'll never really know why.

 A greedy bream

 and a plump bass

30/3-1/4/17 Welsh Piking

This year's pike fishing season  was further extended when a spontaneous  decision was made to tow the Orkney to a lake in Wales, having been given a tip off by one of my good mates from the Panama trip-Kyle Waterhouse.
The adventure began with some difficulties when, On trying to recover the boat from the river , it was found that the winch had fallen off the trailer-never to be seen again. Brian had kindly motored the boat the twelve mile trek from the mooring to the slipway and the missing vital component was not discovered until he'd arrived.
 To make matters worse, the tide was so low, being a big spring, that I was probably a little ambitious with my 4wd and it got completely stuck in thick mud at the foot of the slipway with the tide coming Luckily a kind passer by with a van offered to lend some assistance and we successfully managed to tow the truck clear but it was a valuable lesson learned.
The boat spent the night in the marina and, having obtained and fitted a new winch was recovered the next day ready for my journey out West with hopefully no more 'incidents'.
It was certainly an easy journey and my campsite was conveniently located for the slipway but the weather didn't want to play ball at all and for the first couple of days it rained almost continuously but this didn't seem to put the pike off.
 Easy boat launch


Several pike hit both my lures and dead baits and , although most were on the small side with a few low doubles thrown in, they were boldly marked and fought hard. The fishing was better in the deeper parts of the lake although the pike could turn up literally anywhere and did appear to be well spread out .
I met up with Kyle , and his boat buddy Jon on my last day, just as the weather was improving and the following day, in bright sunshine they had a blindingly good session with Kyle taking a brace of 'twenties' to finish off their trip in style.
A beautiful picturesque venue that I shall certainly be making further trips to in the future.


27/3/17 The Bass Are Back


I'd been watching the sea state at the back of my house for most of the morning deliberating over whether or not to venture out when a call came through from Martin saying he'd pick me up in fifteen minutes at the visitors pontoon.
 He and his Dad- Brian had been out that morning and, although it had cut up a bit rough, they had caught bass and, as the fishing had slowed over the slack high water , they didn't mind coming in to pick me up- I've got some priceless mates haven't I. Grabbing a lure rod I was ready and waiting in ten minutes flat.
The sea actually calmed down considerably during the afternoon and, as there were literally no other boats about, we had the mark to ourselves and enjoyed some terrific sport with the spikey ones soon losing count of numbers.
Nothing big, I suppose the best fish was about six pounds, but we caught consistently until the tide lost its momentum late in the afternoon. Superb.

12-14/3/17 The End.



 An 'eleven' that I'd seen before.

 The sun sets on another river season.
Following our return from the Broads I managed to squeeze in three sessions on the river before the closed season took effect.
A short evening trip produced a jack , and a fourteen pounder from a reedy swim and, the following day, in bright , sunny conditions an upstream trip gave me another jack, and the recapture of an 'eleven' from an area that has otherwise been relatively disappointing, results wise, this season.
The final day resulted in a blank but I was fortunate enough to spot a peregrine falcon 'doing It's thing', and was captivated watching it's antics for quite some time.
These fantastic birds are becoming a more regular sight in our neck of the woods and I've been informed, by a far more learned bird enthusiast than myself, that nowadays they spend the majority of the year in residence, defending their territory.
The pike fishing season is extended slightly on 'my' still water venue, closing when the water temperature increases to a certain level and , a few days after the river fishing ended I visited the water for the last time.................and blanked.
Although it hasn't really produced the goods I will be returning again next year. I haven't used it very much because the river hasn't really flooded this past winter but I'm sure If I didn't renew my membership next year, the river will be out of sorts, and I won't be able to go pike fishing.
Although not quite as productive as last year, both Dave and me have caught more pike  in our boat this time around than we would normally catch when bank fishing and, despite the extra expense, we will continue to keep it moored on the river with perhaps a few more excursions towing to alternative venues.