A bit of a struggle right from the very beginning. A full boat, John, Jamie, Bret and Stuart on board. We headed out of the mouth at 06:00 straight into a big westerly breeze, and a swell that although not dangerous, did not constitute appropriate conditions for a full boat and lure fishing. Happily, I could simply offer to try again at 10:00, when the new flooding tide would have relaxed, and hopefully the wind would swing further North as the original forecast had suggested.
And that is exactly how it turned out, other than Bret dropped out to return on the afternoon sailing, and Leigh came along to join us. The swells, although still present, had reduced significantly, and the wind was far more northerly, but not too problematic in its strengths, allowing fairly straight drifts on the quite strong coefficients.
Not that it helped the fishing an awful lot. I think pretty much the entire fleet including private craft had a struggle reading the various reports later. Why? Well, the water is distinctly green with May rot, the annual algal bloom. Vizability though, wasnt actually that bad at the surface. However, may rot, as it colonises, gets heavy and sinks. The currents sweep it into tumbling balls of slime. So, you are never too sure what the viz is like at the bottom. I think the biggest shock is how the plaice and gurnard fishing has gone from quite feisty, to almost deadstop. And although only the plaice and gurnard really know, I would say the change came with the sea turning green.
We did have some action though. A couple of nice wrasse. We did bump into some bass, with four schoolies succumbing. Hunting for a coddie didnt bring us any cod but the pouting were happy to feed which at least got the rods bent. Gurnards, just a couple. But all in all, the fishing has deffo taken a downturn. How long will it last? Every tide brings changes.
In the afternoon, Bret returned, and was joined by fellow boat owner Gary for their first taste of BIF1. I knew it would be tough, but actually, it was tougher than the morning session. Same species, plus, perhaps the highlight of the afternoon, two jumbo mackerel. When you have to say that mackerel were the highlight of the session, it shows how tough it was. They are the first mackerel to be swung onboard this year though, so very welcome indeed.