Updated Address

July 24, 2016

The new updated link that should work – if interested:

https://afoolatoneend.blogspot.co.uk/

Would be great to see you there. Thank you

 

 

Dear All,

After many years with WordPress I have decided to move to a different hosting site. It seems that most angling bloggers are on ‘Blogger’ so I have moved my swim and joined them.

To everyone who has read the ramblings of this old fool over the years,  thank you and if you ever wish to cast a line in my direction then you will always be welcome:

https://afoolatoneend.blogspot.co.uk/

(As I understand this may take a while for the address to be recognised)

Once again many thanks and tight lines all.

 

For me and my past results, this year is already proving to be rather good. Went out again this morning fished a different venue and after two missed runs struck third time lucky and landed a bass of 26″.

There are times when stuff just comes together and I had one of those moments while playing this bass. All those years of fine tuning my tackle, working through venues and times all just came together while watching the water boil as I stopped run after run against a tight clutch, just fantastic.

My forum buddy has also returned with a bang catching a 26″ from another local venue, lets hope this continues throughout the summer.

Incidentally the running camera saga nearly continued. Having looked at the prices on Amazon I decided to use another old camera. It was only after returning the bass I noticed the mode dial had been knocked, and it was on landscape mode – I think I was fortunate to get the quality I did. Thank goodness!

IMG_0003

Still chasing

June 25, 2016

This morning I had a great trip, in fact one of my best but I’ll quickly update on the last few months first.

I really considered fishing for carp this year and spent the spring looking at a local water I used to fish many years ago as a teenager. The old magic was still there and so were the carp but it had a tremendous weed problem. Now this would normally be a good thing as it keeps anglers off the water but this was really bad and up until May there were perhaps only 2 or 3 fishable areas so I decided against joining just yet.

June is normally time to start my bass fishing but over the last few years it has proved to be pointless, but old habits die hard so I have already done a couple of trips with no results – although a strange dropped run has kept my enthusiasm levels topped up. In recent years all my recognised marks have turned off and when I’ve had limited success the times have all changed as well, and I’m not alone as this seems to be a trend amongst other bass anglers I have spoken to.

Only last week I was saying in a local tackle shop that I’m now chasing rather than waiting for the bass by trying new marks and times, and perhaps I should just stick to my old ways? So this morning saw me trying a new ‘old’ mark, at a new time just to see what was there!

Usual tactics were deployed with mackerel close in, but the quality of the mackerel was appalling with the flanks pulling straight through the hook, so big head and tails were used as they didn’t come off! The tide was just on the turn when I had a small run. I was almost shocked as it really wasn’t expected but I failed to connect and put it down to a small schoolie, but it was encouraging. About an hour later I was just getting the rod into position after placing the bait when I noticed the line had pulled tight before I had chance to set the freespool, inevitably the extra tension resulted in another dropped run.

Wow, this doesn’t normally happen to me, two runs on a newish mark, in June?  I made the decision that if I should get another run I will let it develop longer and see what happens. Perhaps 20 minutes passed when I felt and watched the line start to move from left to right, it passed right in front of me and continued for about 20ft when I engaged the spool. There was a moment when we were both confused but sure enough it was hooked, so it decided to take a leisurely run putting a nice curve into the rod. I could see the bass and realised it was a good one, but the fight was easily controlled so it wasn’t long until it was beached.

After all these years I still shake like a teenager in front of a girl when I land a large bass but she was quickly unhooked and measured at 28″.  Unfortunately, and for my second successive bass capture my camera failed to work; I can’t express how frustrated I was at my ineptitude for continuing to have faith in a camera that after 16 odd years clearly doesn’t want to work anymore, but to happen now was painful. Very painful.

Anyhow I have now found a mark that fishes at low and could potentially throw up a huge surprise later in the year – and I can’t wait.

NB, BASS Society length to weight scale 28″ approx. 9lbs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

December Update

December 31, 2015

Sorry for the late update but I did manage another trip out this month on the 13th. Really interesting session not just because I caught something (!) but more for the venue and method.

My old hunting ground had proved fishless this year and although I should really keep revisiting; when there are beaches more local it’s difficult. My original choice was out-of-bounds due to some MOD activity so plan B was hatched rather quickly. I arrived and was soon set up as I am now down to one rod, an extended freshwater rod rest and a small rucksack.

Now this was a higher than normal tide and the venue is known for its run and weed during such times, so it took a bit of searching before I could find a spot where a 2 1/2 oz lead could hold bottom and keep out of the weed. But that’s the beauty of this set-up as you can up sticks in an instant. To be honest, until I found a spot I thought it was going to be a wasted trip as the weed was proving very difficult, as the rod was almost parallel to the beach due to the small rod rest, allowing the line to pick up every bit of passing weed.

Fishing in close with a large lump of mackerel, laying down next to the rod I was soon enjoying the conditions. After a couple of hours I was becoming resigned to another blank when for the first time this year the rod took a savage knock. In an instant I was up by its side, but as time passed I started to convince myself that maybe it was a larger wave that caused it when the baitrunner screamed as the line was taken viciously to the right. The bass ploughed up and down parallel to the shore line before eventually allowing itself to be beached helped by an oncoming wave.

It was in fantastic condition and measured 24 1/2″ (between 6 to 6 1\2lb) and I was very happy to see it swim away strongly. However I was not so happy when I discovered that the two pictures I’d taken had failed to save to the memory card as I’ve never had a bass in December before. That will teach me to not check the camera before setting off!

Well I got one in the end and will continue to try this winter if the weather holds out and will keep you updated. May I wish everyone a Happy New Year and a fished filled 2016

Fresh water is calling…

November 11, 2015

Well that was rubbish, 4 trips and not a touch, and I used up a weeks holiday to boot. Last week I was bemoaning my lack of success on a local fishing forum and they suggested that as the bait fish are still hanging around the harbours, that’s where the bass are likely to be.

So I’ve ignored that advice and continued to fish from the shore! In my defense we’ve experienced some great onshore winds this week and very mild conditions, so I’ve sneaked out a couple of trips before work, but once again not a touch, unless you count a snatched run from a schoolie. Give it its due though it had a good go considering the size of the mackerel I was using as bait.

Not giving up on this year just yet, but 2016 could well see my attention return to freshwater. At least I know they are there even if I’m not catching!

What a load of rubbish. Most years, I start early full of enthusiasm and flog the waters for an early bass, but as that has produced next to nothing for the last couple of summers, I’ve decided to play it cool and wait for the bigger girls to arrive. So far that hasn’t worked either.

During the down time the plan was to stock up with fresh mackerel for later in the year, but apart from two trips when they magically appeared – that hasn’t worked either. Last year I didn’t catch any so I should be pleased with the six I caught this year (yes, that’s right just six) but they’ve already been used up in my attempts for the bigger bass.

Looking back at earlier blog entries, I decided to also look back at old tide times and realised there was a pattern emerging over the years, so it was with real, genuine excitement I fished a few trips at the right spot and at the right time at the beginning of this month – surely lightening couldn’t strike three times? No it couldn’t.

The only thing that may have stopped all the planets from aligning was the Easterly wind, but I’m not sure. However the times are all queuing up again at the end of the month, so I have taken a week off work to give it my best, and even after all these years it feels like I’m waiting for Christmas to arrive.

My very good fishing companion has also disappeared like the bass and the mackerel, and I do hope all is ok. Although we very rarely fish together, we fish the same spots and give each other on-line encouragement in our pursuits, but perhaps his own bass mania has run its natural course. I hope not.

I’m off now to count the days to Christmas and will of course report back later, that’s if I don’t sneak open a present early.

Mad for it…

August 23, 2015

A beautiful morning although the sea was strangely moody considering their wasn’t a breath of wind. I was after mackerel again.

Earlier I had walked past 3 lads who were still enjoying a night out. Two of them were new age hippies with the third just hanging on to the thin line of normality and I imagined him struggling with the 9 to 5 grind stone as I walked past.

Couldn’t get out last night due to forgetting that we were taking Thomas out for a meal to say well done for his exam results but in the space of 24 hours it all felt very different, frustratingly so.

Working along the shore line for no reward I happen to come across the 3 lads swimming in the sea. Earlier my mind was wandering and I was thinking about my friends who also like to share the good times and it crossed my mind that after a good night we could also watch the sun rise from this point on the beach – but the thought of skinny dipping has changed my mind somewhat!

The weather changed, the wind picked up and there was more than a hint of rain in the air. As I was leaving I once again came across the group of friends, one of them who appeared least affected by the nights activities asked how I had done to which I gave the usual reply. I then suggested they were very brave to have had an early morning swim,

‘Brave! Fucking mad more like…’

A scattering of Mackerel

August 22, 2015

Typing this annoyed as I should have returned from another trip this morning, but woke up and then fell asleep dreaming that I was up and getting ready to go. The reason for the planned early trip was that I went out last evening for another attempt and managed to bag a few Mackerel.

But it was a frustrating trip as when they appeared they were very few in number, almost an apology for a shoal, and the weed made any form of presentation impossible. Eventually I found an area that was free of weed and managed to hook up a further two to join my earlier catch and a Scad also joined the bait bag.

I’m hoping to go back out tonight but the weather is already looking doubtful and if I do I will revert back to the small 8ft bushwacker and braid set-up as I’m not enjoying the sponginess of mono and my wrists are killing me this morning!

Hope and expectation

August 18, 2015

Been waiting for a break from this constant wind and hoping that a couple days of settled weather would bring the mackerel out from where they’ve been hiding for the last couple of years. Well it finally arrived, and with a set of decent tides as a bonus I trotted off hoping to stock up for bass later this year.

Conditions were if anything better than expected when I arrived and I was soon making my way along the shore full of expectation and hope (in that order). Casting out a set of feathers, working an area, then moving on 20 paces was the well worked routine but nothing was showing by the time I reached a resting point, in fact it was all looking pretty bleak as I sat down with a resigned thud of disappointment on the shingle.

While having a bite to eat, I notice to my left a small boat not much bigger than a dingy approaching and it was soon anchoring up about 10 yards off shore. He had a look of an old hand despite his casual attire as he was waiting for his anchor to take hold and everything on board looked right, in fact everything said to me he was a commercial.

A couple of days ago a freak gust of wind lifted my glasses from a pub table and dropped them on the floor in the process smashing them, so my vision was slightly blurred as I observed from my vantage point. Two rod were quickly deployed with what looked like sand eels or small live baits and sent out to their chosen spots. Rods were then recast after a maximum of 10 minutes and held every time a bite was evident, if it failed to develop it was then left to rest but not before mending the line to take the bait further out. All the while looking over his shoulder in case some one was approaching

In quick succession he bagged 5 bass most undersize, with only one returned with no respect for its well being or for the future of our sport. I can only assume it was chucked behind the boat in the hope that it wouldn’t return to the shoal. One bass needed the use of a landing net which from my vantage point I would estimate at around 4lb

I made my way back casting here and there more in hope than expectation (in that order) before making my way back home. It was good to know that there are some bass around this particular patch but I very much doubt they will be around for much longer…

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