First sailing, and it was my pleasure to welcome Steve and Ray, from Fulling mill out to play. The intention was for fly fishing, but as we left the marina, and I headed in tight, it was clear the hint of swell was going to make fly fishing tough. And so it was, with the wind also still holding a grip, although forecast to drop imminently. In these conditions, the combination of the troughs and the boat being pushed onto the line, when fished with the wind, means by the time you have it at the depth you require, the boat is over the fly and the scare factor is, well, a factor.
I've never claimed to be much of a fly angler so happy for suggestions. Casting into the wind, the line takes an incredibly long time to get to where the better fish want it, even if you dump line as you pull away. These are DTI 7's. No troughs, and everything works fine. Anyhow, after a while it was agreed that it wasnt really happening, which widened my field of operation instantly, as deeper waters could be fished. And with the time remaining, we managed to put seven bass to the boat. Three for the table. All the time the wind abating, but perhaps the toughest ride of the day, with much slack water due to short tides. And mackerel. So many mackerel. Truly making it hard for the bass to get to the lure.
Second sailing, and Paul with his son James, finally aboard. Paul has taken the brunt of a lot of wind cancelled sailings this summer, so it was great to get them aboard finally. The session started well, with James and Paul both scoring from the first drift. But then, mackerel appeared. Not all bad as the guys were happy for a good feed. A few jumps around, and again we found some bass. Kind of setting the scene. The final tally was twelve, with a full house in the wells. Gurnard and Cuttle also said hello.
Third sailing, and Joe, Jon, Marcus and Giles were aboard. Conditions had fallen to pretty much perfect, a light easterly breeze holding the boat back ever so slightly against the eventually flooding tide. By now, the mackerel had become a real plague at every spot. Good training for reacting to takes, but quite quickly extremely annoying as I was marking the bass below them, which they were not letting the lures gets down to. It really must have been team tag with a billion striped marauders down there.
It was a really great round up to a really great day. The lads were thoroughly entertaining. One even confessed to being a carp angler. I won't say which one though. What goes on BIF1, stays on BIF1. Unless I blog about it, obviously. The final tally was 12 bass, as the tide got going. Biggest, weighed afloat, at around 6.5lb. Great fun, very happy guys. Very bloody boat. I wont be unhappy if the mackerel all go to Dorset, where they are being missed.