Think I'll claim fish of the day...
You know what? I not only have the best job in the world, I also seem to get the best customers in the world. And because my brain fails to grasp the concept of rest, I've been thinking a lot about this. At first, I thought it was simply co-incidence. But it kept happening. There is not a single customer who I would be unhappy to take out there again. Whats the chances of that in ANY business? Unlikely. I like to use the same lateral thinking I use to solve fishy problems. How about this... We are relatively expensive if you want to look at us as simply a charter vessel. Per head, very expensive really. To come on board BIF1, you have really got to WANT to do what we do. You perhaps already realise the high cost of the lures and lines and everything else we sacrifice without any extra cost. Maybe you understand the logistics of fuel supply and smashing around at 30 knots to maximise your lines in time. Or maybe you dont. Perhaps you appreciate the open boat, where you cannot escape the guidance of the skipper even if you wanted to. Its all deliberate, and all part of the plan. For us to shine, you need to fish well. And we WANT to shine. So you HAVE to fish well. And if you are not, we will tell you. Repeatedly if we have to. Please understand though, it is all for the same reason you have stepped on board. To put fish on hooks.
And it carries benefits. We have had many many poor casters step on board, with sharp, distant and most importantly accurate casters leave. Or maybe it is simpler than that. Perhaps you see the amazing fishes that inhabit the inshore that we reveal on a daily basis, and see value in this simple fact. Whatever it is, please keep thinking it. And keep coming. We have so much in development as well. Lure fishing for plaice is taking some interesting turns. Fly fishing for flatfish is a reality, although not yet for sale as it needs some more work. And you guys are paying for all of the R&D each time you step on board. All of you are actively promoting the very real progression of how we fish the seas. Not by buying t-shirts and baseball caps, but by coming on board, and suffering the lows as well as loving the highs.
What bought this rant on? Well... the usual things.. Tiredness... bit of turmoil in the home, a brain that wont STFU. And a dig from our very own troll. That it is only one, is a big suprise to be fair. We thought we would wobble far more. This troll had a rant about our prices on Facebook. Its his second go. Clearly an agenda. Either another charter skipper or a close friend of one. But it does sting. Every single fishing based business I have either run, or been a part of, has been budget. My whole niche as a shore guide was finding top class fishing that regular folk who wear Foster Grant polaroids instead of Costa polaroids, people like me, can not only afford but afford without impacting on their families. So when someone digs about the cost, it sort of actually, despite this weather beaten thick skin, hit a nerve. Until I observed the reaction from our legions of very satisfied clients. And then it occured to me. And I loop back to the top of this brain dump. We have the most amazing customers. And I want to thank you all.
Back to the fishing... 1st sailing was with Tony and Richard. Richard in fact was on for the whole day. I had high hopes for some good action. The sea was beautifully empty of the myriad of craft that lay around the inshore on the weekend. All looked good. But it was a bit slow. Slower than I would have liked certainly. But definitely not tragic. And no very small fish, but quality scrappers in the 2lb region.
2nd sailing, David swapped places with Tony, and off we went again. As the water left the various patches of rock where I am focusing, hunting BIG fish rather than numbers. My thoughts are, that with bass being not just very adaptable, but also very efficient, especially when they get bigger (older...) when it comes to energy expended for a meal, that the current glut of shucking spider crabs would hold attraction. Seemed to work as well. Not many, and that is how it works in these days of low stocks, but some better ones including a 6lb fish to my own rod. We finished with an hour on the plaice. Smallish fish prevailed. Lots of gurnards. Plenty of mackerel. We said goodbye to a smiling David as he set off up the road with his dinner.
3rd sailing was just Richard and myself. I had been looking forward to this all day, as we were going to go hard at it on the fly. It simply didnt work. Or so I thought until we drifted one particularly shallow reef and noticed fish after fish chasing after it. No. Not chasing. Tracking. And nothing would make them take it. With shoals of whitebait floating around 20 feet deep and hundreds of yards long, I suspect they might be a bit off them for a while.
We ended up with lovely long drifts plaicing. And we even caught them. No huge ones, although we both dropped real heavy fish. Exciting stuff at a relaxing pace. Very enjoyable indeed. Some spaces available all week on a great forecast. 07970 112774 to get on board...