Arrived for a quick weekend to see my folks accompanied by my youngest Leo. I grew up fishing in this area, and literally never saw or heard of a single bass being caught, but now several of my friends are catching frequently and some big fish too. On the advice of friend and guru Paul Medd I had a look at Jackson's bay just south of Scalby Mills on the end of Scarborough's North Bay. Just look at that ground! It felt a bit hopeless though on the second half of the ebb, but even so I put a top water all over the incredible looking scars and gullies in gin clear water. I don't think I was covering fish as I would have seen follows and evidence of bass in that shallow clear water. But I'm sure on its day ( probably that very evening) there would be every chance of great fishing.
Next day I managed to get a ticket ( 15 quid) on Scalby Beck ( aka the sea cut). This is a river, partially man made in 1799 in order to ease flood pressure on the river Derwent further upstream, but water has been following this course since the ice age. It's the only sea trout river this side of the Esk in Whitby. This was true wilderness fishing and I fished all the way up from the sea. the path was non existent in places and I had to battle through brambles and watch out for big holes in the clay underfoot.
I was rewarded with multiple kingfisher sightings, a close up peregrine falcon ( one bird from a known pair who nest on the cliffs on marine drive), dragon flies and the best black berries I have ever tasted.
I worked my way up river , being daunted somewhat bey some deep slow stretches - I never know quite how to fish that sort of water. A more experienced sea trout angler would have put an upstream nymph over the water Czech style I imagine. I always seem to do better fishing down stream and I caught fish on a drowned dry fly fished downstream with a jerky retrieve. Sorry purists ! High light was a 14 inch wild brownie with a huge powerful tail. On the higher reaches of the rive I had several browns around 12 inches, beautifully marked naturalised stockies but the look of them. No sea trout, but they were there all the same.
More king fishers accompanied me as I waded the middle of the river and it felt as if I as fishing at the dawn of time.
Leo came out for a couple of hours and I found a spot where he could have a go ( I cast and he received) and gratifyingly he got a few takes and hooked one, nearly landing it on his own.
We finished the day with a pea stock and a black gnat with the hook bend removed, trying to get a rise form the resident frog in my parents pond. It wasn't impressed .
Scalby beck info is here, http://www.scalbybeckanglingclub.co.uk and there is even a free stretch if you want to practice your casting. I had an hour on it and rose a few fish and caught one. many Many thanks to the secretary of the club who was so helpful and provided the day's most successful flies.