First sailing, I had given the option to the previous night. Winds were to be strong Northerly, difficult. but with it all very likely to be about surface lures, not impossible. Steve and Martin, both returning, had bought along their friend Nic. There was also persistent rain forecast, and these guys had booked first two sessions. Both Steve and Martin are very experienced anglers and have been rained upon in the call of duty before, so of course, they said they wanted to sail.
I will take a moment to talk more of Nic. The guys met him thanks to Martins unquenchable thirst for cooking techniques, and especially outdoor cooking. And Nic's business is all about cooking. He runs ceramic egg cookery courses at his home in Cambridgeshire. He does live cookery streams mostly utilising the "BIG GREEN EGG" ceramic creations, that, perhaps BBQ, perhaps bake, depending on how you have it configured. This style of cooking is really becoming a thing, and looking at the amazing recipes on www.meatsmokefire.co.uk it made me instantly want one. Which is where Nic comes in handy again, as not only does he livestream cooking shows on his youtube channel of the same name, but he can also sell you one and even install it for you. And these systems do stuff like let the internet control your heat. I sh*t you not... Ypu can see for yourself as he will be livestreaming cooking sussex bass on his INSTAGRAM channel this Saturday at 1130.
The weather was exactly as predicted, but so were the skippers predictions, and surface lures ruled the roost. Lots of smashes and bangs. Eighteen fish landed, with a maximum kill also recorded. And Neptune's latest ploy, of having Southern Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority wait for me as I dock, is also failing. Because I go beyond the current laws on bass retention, as I more than anyone, will benefit from the stock recovering. Which it really is not IMHO.
However, the rain had rather got to us all, and with the food target already hit, we mutually agreed that the following sailing, which looked to be a repeat weather wise, was quite unnecessary, so, after the usual high quality nose bag at Cafe Zio, we called a close to it there.
Third sailing though, was forecast to be a very different affair. The stiff Northerly winds become light northerly breezes and the rain leaving completely. On board with me, Steve, Max, Dave and Joe, all returning. And we headed out to... exactly what it said on the tin. With one flip side. Sunlight, and bright. I really thought I would simply head out to some shallower bits with surface lures and that would be it. Wrong.
Instead, it turned into quite a tough session. And yet, somehow, there was always that air of expectation. Indeed, I almost felt CHANGE happening this session. Something was very different. Although we only landed four bass, with just one for the table, there was more interest from other fishes. Far more tub gurnard than we usually catch on shads. Lots of garfish being annoying. A few mackerel. I managed another John Dory and the smallest codlet of the season so far (sub 1lb). Happily, as I have a cephalopod only trip on in the morning, where targeting anything other than cuttle and squid is prohibited, we were harassed by cuttle. If you want a part of such trips, send me your name on Whatsapp and I will add you to the group. Always something going on, which made it more interesting for sure. And fantastic company, and much laughing. Topped by a beautiful sunset. A cracking day.
Spaces on 1100 and 1500 sailings tomorrow. Text to 07970 112774 if that a piece of you.