First sailing, and welcoming back Max, and my fishing family, Angela and her two lads Dylan and Oscar. Last time the family were out, the fishing had been quite hard, with mackerel and plaice being the entertainment, so I really wanted to give them the bass experience they so wanted.
Seas were reasonably flat, so I pushed out to check out some deeper rock marks, hoping to avoid the mackerel madness of the previous day, and to the point, it worked. Mackerel were still there in some healthy numbers, but not to the point of stopping the bass getting to the lures. Bass also fell, with Max leading the way.
But it didn't take too long before the family got involved, as we pushed the final tally to 17. Maximum kill in the fish wells, and as Dylan's school project about his foray into sea fishing also includes the eating side of it, he decided to take a cuttle to try as well. I think he will be pleasantly surprised. No beasts, biggest around 4lb.
Second sailing, and a birthday voucher redeemed (thank goodness. Less than 3 months before they all expire. Please be aware of that, and bookings remain according to availability, if you own a birthday voucher) with JP joining us, and happily also first time on BIF1, Chris, from back in the good days of Worldseafishing.com. Regular Ian was the third rod.
I returned out to the deeper rocks, but things had changed. Wind was now fairly stiff, and ESE, pushing us on a less good drift. Ian managed one, but it was a struggle for good fingering for the new guys, so we headed in closer. Where, an amazing thing happened.
Drifting one reef, Ian gets excited as his rod slammed over, and the reel refused to stop screaming as the fish crash dived back to the bottom, each time Ian got it ten feet off the bottom. A very dogged battle, and suddenly I saw a flash, not of silver, but of white. The cod came drifting up, and the net was easily placed under it. Incredible. But more incredible, was when on the next drift Ians rod went over again, with a twin in the 7lb region, and JP nailed his birthday rewards with one around 5lb, And the very next drift, he was in again, with a small one around 2lb, which swam off happily on release
When people ask about cod, I explain, we can fish for them all session, and if one of you catches a single fish, it has been an outstanding session. Thats how scarce they have become. And I was already beginning to write this seasons cod fishing off as poor before today. However, it might just be, that the cold spring that delayed much, has also had a knock on effect, meaning the season might just be late, instead of poor. Time will tell. Thats the exciting bit of this job. I am always excited to be heading out again. "Whats in the box...?"
Which is why I was so sad to have to cancel the final sailing, as the ESE wind increased, troughs began, and lure control again became very hard work. Especially as it was fellow members of a group all about the lure fishing. Fingers crossed we will get them out soon. And, as a result of an early bath, October availability will be loaded on the ticker before midnight tonight.