Photo Credit Emma Gaston Gunhill studios
I think I could characterise my fishing over the last few days as a partial success. I went at it quite hard trying no to go home until I had cracked the problems of the day and at least got a fish or two on the boat over the less productive short tides. I've been trying to find out how to be productive in the times when the sea withholds and doesn't give fish up easily. Wrasse feed at slack water for example and even in short tides it seems you can find bass if you just keep on casting in sensible places. Much like salmon angling though, it can be a hard repetitive business.... Maybe it's just more sensible to come in an have a break in Cafe Rouge and have a cold beer.
Bass always turned up in evenings of course and I know the local boats had plenty fish at dawn. At 7.30am yesterday it was clear I was far too late on the scene. I did however hook my biggest bass of the year -which threw the hook after a series of slow deep and heavy runs. Still coming to terms with that as I really wanted a donkey on the boat. The guys who fish for bass for a living put us all to shame constantly - their bad days are better than my good days and I must give them all a smile with these 'catch' reports...
But I have to say I am pleased with myself despite modest returns. Nearly everyone on BIF 1 is catching bass most trips, and we are truly loving the time at sea. even the inevitable quiet spells feel hopeful and are punctuated by pulls here and there and finding new patches of ground. I am busy on the snow adding and mapping any features I find.
The chunkier schoolies seemed to be hanging east side still, and we are continuing to catch those 3lb fish with some regularity. Top waters have been working great too and generally numbers of fish have been the norm with most small of course. I am using the boat seat as an unhooking mat and to date all anglers on the boat have wished to return all bass despite being able to take one, ( perhaps with some encouragement from me..)
Yesterday I had the privilege to taking out two experienced traveling anglers Ray and Del and although we had probably the hardest session to date, good their good company and good humour made the whole,day fly by in the summer haze. We reconnected with the plaice and two or three drifts produced plenty of bites and fish to the isomes. It's still amazing that we can not worry about worms and open instead a lovely fresh packet of blueberry smelling niceness at the drop of a hat, if we just fancy killing time idling about for half an hour.
BIF 1 is out of the water now for an engine overhaul and to get its sign writing done. We'll be fishing in the usual chilled out way through last two weeks of July and all August and I'll post available dates when the boat is back in the water. Rock n roll. Bruce