Once more, I was thinking, looking at XCWEATHER.CO.UK , that it would be another single sailing day. Based on that forecast, I cancelled both 2nd and 3rd sailings. And indeed hit the mental state of being a part timer once again, planning which chores I would ignore when I got home after breakfast.
Joining me for the first jolly, were all regulars. Steve (he who hooked the cannibal bass... If I haven't bored you with that story yet, do remind me). Bruno, my brother from my mother's Portuguese lover, (actually, for the sake of some of my relatives cardiac conditions, I should point out that is not a true statement. Mum never got out of Benfleet much) James, who makes my cups in his amazing pottery, and of course Chris, who mostly pays my mortgage these days. And sadly, or so we though, a victim of the weather, as he was on 2nd sailing also.
Anyone who reads the blog regularly, can tell that just a week ago, I was really really unhappy with how the late summer was running. And I was desperately looking for something to hang it on, with heat being the most viable culprit. I am now fairly convinced of it, as the bass are increasing in numbers, and there are more and more better fish around as well.
This morning was a great example. 29 bass landed, all on topwaters. Maximum kill and plenty more table sized plus released. A real buzz of excitement from my guys as well, which lifted me. I felt like the real deal again. And even better. although kind of worse as I couldnt salvage three of the clients, we came back in a flar calm. Clearly, there would be a 2nd sailing.
Just Chris then, although during breakfast I did also take a gamble and call the 3rd sailing back on, and happily they were still around town. Chris had already maxed out on bass, which were resting in his ice box, and was on a food mission, for a family gathering the following day. So, I rose to the challenge. We fished cod, hard. And one we caught, our ninth since they appeared, but a meal it was not. A lot of these 2lb fish being caught onshore as well. I hope we see their elder brethren before too long.
Mackerel were then the great hope, and although patchy, they did come, and Chris was a very happy man. We tried the plaice, but the soft breeze was bracing us against the flooding tide, and movement was limited. Even my casting method which usually beats this situation was not successful so likely they either were not there, or were being tight lipped. The end of session alarm sounded before we could find out.
Third sailing, and it was my pleasure to welcome aboard new to BIF1, Grandad Mark, his son Adam, and Adam's nephew, Oliver. They have recently purchased a family boat in the marina. and were keen to get a heads up on some lure techniques. They certainly came to the right boat. All were great listeners, which made my life easy. We did get going in close, first with Garfish, and then a couple of bass. But with the now bright sun having burned off all the earlier grey, it took a ride offshore a bit to get any regular action. Nine bass landed in the end, which was great. And the guys, even young Ollie, had a side bet on biggest fish. That's Olly in the cover girl position. I recommended he spent his £20 rewards on lots and lots of sweets. Assuming you can still get lots and lots of sweets for £20...
Looking like just one more sailing in the morning, and then most of next week destroyed by wind once more. For all those booked up, and then find themselves cancelled, please do keep trying more dates. Just having the diary fat, helps me feel better about this years heavy expenses and wind impacted turnover. And I find more fish when I feel good. Just saying, like...