Probably the last day of three sailings today, with an iffy forecast for the rest of the week. Some hope of getting out Thursday first sailing, with 2 spaces available. But that then looks like it until perhaps Sunday, when daylight hours mean I can no longer squeeze in 3 sailings a day, and drop to two. With our bass killing season running to 31st December, this does mean demand exceeds supply. I would recommend my regulars consider November and December dates now.
First sailing, and I was out with regulars Richard and Jude, joined by I suspect soon to be regulars Bob and Steve. Seas were quite calm, but not the mirror I was hoping for. Sunrises always picture better in mirror calm seas. And bass were not rampant, but deffo taking part in the procedures. First stop first 3 fish were small, so we left that alone straight away. But second stop was more productive. Steadily picking away, we had the max kill of 8 fish, and returned more, in the final tally of fifteen bass landed.
Second sailing was a cephalopod trip. If you like to eat, or use for bait, cuttle fish and squid, you might find good value in joining one of these trips. Squid are currently quite plentiful locally, but remain quite a high price on the fishmongers ice. You need to have Whatsapp, and message your name and the word SQUID to 07970 112774. With me was long time former sushi chef David, Dean, Lee and Mitch.
Squid were there from the off. And cuttlefish. My boat can testify to it. I personally got a few direct blasts in the face but happily each time it was water, and not the horribly viscous ink that will almost certainly be coming my way soon as I keep running these trips. That's just the law of averages. Plenty of Forbessi in among the Vulgaris but none have reached kraken size yet. Getting there fast though, and I envisage super squid by the end of November.
One cod to my rod, but skinny and quite small, so it got returned. Lee caught a tidy plaice on the 56gm Axia mighty minnow. When I say Cephalopod, we are also always looking for a cod as well if you wish, with a shad as the base weight. A gurnard to Lee, snagged on the squid jig, as well as a couple of mackerel on the shads. Lots of smiles, and lots of ink also. Final tally was fifty two squid and five cuttlefish.
Final sailing, and the return of a very dear friend Andy, with his far too grown up kids Reece and Jasmine. Like, they have jobs and stuff, and I think of them as little people. I do not embrace reality. I am quite up for pausing time for a few decades every now and then. But no. It rolls relentlessly on, and the time for fitting everything in reduces quite literally, by the minute. On we go. A very food oriented trip, we started on the cod / squid for the first half, and moved onto the bass for the second half.
The first half went really quite well. Jasmines lovely pink top was inked in no time. Smiles were constant, with some great sniping from the squid. Cuttlefish were released at the side of the boat which saved the worst of the mess. A cod, again to my rod, and this one tidy and despatched. With twenty six squid accounted for, it was on to the bass.
Sadly, predators rather ruined it. Many fleets of gill nets suggesting someone with bass entitlement has decided it worth a go, despite the spider crabs still being fairly numerous. And, with just two schoolies landed, I was really scratching my head when the very old and very grey seal emerged, as Reece noted, like a hippopotamus. It actually made me jump (twenty feet right where I was watching my line enter the water) so much I did actually scream like a girl. Which shat the very life out of the seal, who also wasnt really expecting us, so he crashed dived more like we were all polar bears, causing a huge wake. Sometimes, I wish I always kept a camera running. For these moments. It would be amazing to share it with those not so lucky to be by the water daily.
We left the area after that, but fortunes did not fair any better, other than another squid to Jasmine on the 28gm Mighty minnow as the sun set. Classic squid o clock. So, we headed back. A little despondent we couldn't make it with the table bass, but very happy to have been able to check in with Andy and the kids. Well, offspring I guess now.
I still have a single rod available for a shore guide. Wellies required. Wednesday. Meeting in Brighton for 0730. River based, and dont worry about that screaming SW wind... Text 07970 112774 if that is for you.