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Archive for September, 2011

The Friday evening session this week was a bit of a mish-mash. I had arranged with Simon to meet myself and John at Ferry Road, Poole Quay for a fish and mainly a chat about LRF (Light Rock Fishing). While there, John and I would bait fish for the minis and any possible Bass, while Simon would display his LRF gear for me to see and maybe try out.

Well it started out OK but we had to cut short the quay session as the tide race got to strong with plenty of weed around. It would probably have been OK on the other side of the quay due to Fisherman’s Dock and quite a few boats moored up that would have greatly reduced the tidal effects, but that on a Friday night is a bit rowdy. However, I did get a view of a dedicated LRF rod, and boy is that fine and light. One hardly knows that you have a rod to hand! I can’t wait to obtain one myself.

I did muck about with totally inappropriate gear using LRF Soft Plastic lures by using a 9.5 ft light quiver tip rod from my coarse gear. Set-up with a small fixed spool loaded with 8lb braid and a 5lb Fluorocarbon leader, I attached a small jighead to a tiny 1.5 inch Grass Minnow and surprised myself by hooking and landing a small 7-8 inch Pollack. Great fun.

Once the tidal flow got too strong we moved to Evening Hill. There was quite a few there along the main wall but myself and John found a spot between them, while Simon moved further down under the hill in search of deeper water. No more fish for John and me, but Simon was very pleased to land a couple of school Bass, his first on LRF gear. I did notice one good Flounder come in to another angler, with reports of others.

It was a shame that I didn’t get to spend more time with Simon but unfortunately this evening was already set with John and after the quay it was a bit difficult to think of somewhere that would have suited all. We will definitely have to organise a dedicated LRF session together very soon. I am already looking for a rod and reel combo and hope to have something sorted over the next couple of weeks.

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Quite a bit of bait left over from the  Ferrybridge trip, so I checked to see if there was going to be anyone on Boscombe Pier this evening (rules say two minimum after dark), and there was. So quickly chuck the gear into the car and down to the pier for 7:30 pm. Arrived to find the main gate unlocked and wide open, and walking the stem of the pier I could see no sign of any anglers. Fortunately, tucked around a corner and chomping away at a bread roll, was Franco, so fishing was on.

The lights on the pier are still not working, and it is obvious to all the pier members that this has seriously effected the fishing this year. Very poor compared to normal. I know it’s been poor elsewhere around here, but the pier had nose-dived.

A pleasant evening trying for the Bass and Sole that should be around at this time of year. I ended up with one Scad and three small Sole, none sizeable unfortunately. Franco had one Black Bream and also three Sole, but he was fortunate to have one for dinner tomorrow.

No Bass tonight despite a good sea running. A couple of other members turned up around 9:30 and fished into the wind on the other side and were plagued with tiny butterfly Thornies. Almost one a cast.

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Once again John and myself found ourselves trudging the shingle at Ferrybridge on Chesil Beach, searching the fabled Triggers. Go no further intrepid reader if you want to here of brave anglers landing scores of battle hardened, lance carrying Triggers. It didn’t happen.

The Adelaide was packed with anglers, so we walked to the Landing Craft and managed to get to within 30-40 yards of the spot. To cut a long story short, I blanked and John managed one small Black Bream and a very feisty Bass of around 1.5lb caught close in the gutter.

All the time during daylight we were having our baits stripped by very small Bream, continually tapping away and driving us to frustration. These Bream must have been small or on speed as they were just uncatchable even on mini hooks. I even tried launching big baits (whole squid with wraps, half a mackerel) to the horizon to try and escape them, but to no avail. Tap, tap, bloody tap.

The only excitement for me was a good pull down on one of the launched big baits. Reeling in I felt nothing until about halfway, then a solid weight but no movement. I assumed that I had dragged into a passing weed raft (bit about today) or the usual mass of feathers and trash from the holiday makers. About a third of the way to go and the ‘weed raft’ decides to wake up and goes ballistic and is head-banging away big time. This carries on for about fifteen seconds before whatever it was decides to take a mini- break in Cherbourg. Ping!!!! One snapped line. Now what the hell was that!! Suggestions on a postcard please. One colleague suggested a Lesser Spotted Lemmy. Hmmmm, I wonder what he got up to as a youth.

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Only one fish in this report so skip if you wish. This afternoon Dad and I set ourselves up on the beach upstream of the new weir on Throop Beat One. Now it’s not very often we, or many others, fish beat one. I have never understood why as this beautiful stretch holds some superb Barbel, Chub and Roach. It does tend to be a bit of a pioneering stretch with it’s many bankside trees, high banks and dense undergrowth, but it also contains some wonderful deep glides and many gravel runs. Having walked this stretch only a few days ago I would guess that there would be some first class Dace, Perch and Pike to be had as well.

I had chosen the beach mainly due to a section of shallow deepening midstream to a wide, deep gravel run through streamer weed. Scouting around I had seen good numbers of Chub with some definitely touching the 6lb mark. Well this turned out to be a poor choice of locale. Not the fish or the fishing; the dog walkers and picnic makers using the beach and totally ignoring the fact that we were fishing there. Stones thrown, sticks thrown for dogs to swim out to and plenty of noise. An hour and a half of this and we up’d and moved. I had failed to notice the public footpath running behind the beach area. Bugger, on to the new weir.

Throop New Weir

Throop New Weir

We resettled in the pool at the new weir. High bank but quite fishable. We noticed that the rush island are startng to break their backs and turn, so it won’t be long until the Barbel runs we love will become fishable again. In the meantime we attempted to attract the resident Bream, Chub and Roach from the pool.

Looking slightly downstream of the new weir.

Looking slightly downstream of the new weir.

Very slow going for us and one other angler. Fish were visible but once again not interested in our baits. Only fish of the afternoon was a Bream of around 2.5 – 3 lb to me from the edge of the main run from the weir.

3lb (ish) Bream

3lb (ish) Bream

The fishing here (and for us) just does not want to pick up.

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Midway Path, Sandbanks

I had a short solo session tonight to use up a lot of excess bait from Friday, mainly Ragworm but a bit of Squid and a couple of Mackerel. The local forecast was for 15 mph SW winds strengthening to gusts of 25 mph with a possibility of rain towards 10 pm, so I decided on the beach by the Midway Path at Sandbanks as this area provides a bit of shelter. I needn’t have bothered as it was pretty calm and dry all evening.

I started fishing at 6:30 with the usual two rods, one with various flappers and the other with a 3/0 Pulley for the bigguns. Well it wasn’t a blank, but not much to report I’m afraid. One Mackerel on a pop-up rig in daylight, two small Bass on a Pompey rig at dusk and a small Plaice just on dark.

9:30 pm saw the Spider Crabs come out to play. Three snipped snoods later and around 10:30 pm I packed it in. The remainder of the bait fed the crabs and fish close in, assuming the fish could get there first of course.

Hope the weather forecast holds for the rest of the week as it’s another Chesil trip on Friday. The Trigger search continues.

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Arrived with John at the pier last night at around 6:30 pm to find half of the pier end fenced off for repair work. With a strong SW wind blowing through it meant that we would have to fish the stem. Not a major worry as this section is often where the better Bass come from. Usual baits taken – Ragworm, Squid and Mackerel, and our tactics was to alternate between scratching rigs and large pulleys for Bass. Met up with several other members including long-time-no-see member Mo and normal fishing buddy Phil (Mr. Gadget) with his two new Daiwa 7HT Turbo Super Tuned Multipliers (very nice looking bits of kit, but I can’t afford the mortgage).

I’m afraid the curse on us still exists with John blanking while I managed to catch two small Bass during the last hour towards midnight. Still poor for this venue, especially at this time of year. Other fish seen was one Tub Gurnard, one Scad, one pin Whiting and a very small Thornback. Paul once again managed to bag the best fish of the evening by landing a 4lb 7oz Bass on his first cast, just 3oz short of Tuesday’s fish.

I seem to have come away from this session with more bait than I took. Where to next? And where?

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My normal Thursday afternoon / evening coarse session with Dad was this week just downstream to where the Moors River joins the Dorset Stour at Blackwater on the Throop Beat 2 section. A large 30 yards long deep glide leads into shallow gravel runs with plenty of bankside growth, so the target was Chub and hopefully a Barbel.

Well the Barbel didn’t materialise once again but we did have a bit of fun with small Chub, Dad on the leger and myself alternating between leger and trotting an Avon float through the glide from a pretty precarious bank. Plenty of Chub to around half a pound and I also had a number of very good Dace, also to around half a pound. very pleased with that. Dad didn’t fare quite so well with just the one Chub on leger and a annoying but good sized Eel.

Only downside to this section was the number of Pike around. Dad got bitten of the once and I had a couple of fish snatched from the end of the Avon setup as I was bringing them in. Both resulting in breakages and one of the Pike wasof a very good weight. I might return here later on with the plugging gear.

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Last night I joined a few other members of the Boscombe Pier Sea Anglers for a bash at the Bass that normally swarm around this area after a good blow while there is a good bit of surf around. Well surf there was, but the Bass were far and few between. Not a lot of weed which was a good thing, but yours truly dod manage a couple of good scraps with the good old carrier bag fish.

Plenty of surfers around very close to the pier during the last two hours of daylight, which I always think is a bit naughty really. Even considering the dangers of a strong surf and swirling eddies around the pier stanchions, there is also a good chance of a line being snagged. They have as much right as the anglers in being there, but some, especially the wind surfers come incredibly close to the pier sides dragging lines with them. They know the anglers are there but totally ignore them. Miles of beach to wind surf and they choose to do it here. Strange ideas.

I managed to haul out one small Bass of around 1½ lb on Black Lug / Squid cocktail, and later on snuck out a small Sole. Not a lot, but more importantly not another blank. Three other Bass caught that I am aware off topped by this little beauty for Paul coming in at 4lb 10z and caught right in the middle of the surf.

Paul's 4lb 10oz Bass

Paul's 4lb 10oz Bass

The only other fish to see the light of night (?) was Scad and Black Bream. Not a bad little session compared to the doldrums experienced recently. The weather locally is starting to slacken a bit now so we will see what happens. I feel a Chesil trip coming on soon.

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I have always been interested in this style of angling, and have dabbled in HRF a bit with a little success. This form of angling is gaining in popularity at an incredible rate here in the UK and it is quite amazing what species of fish are now being regularly caught using Light Rock Fishing techniques especially.

In fact, are there any UK fish that will not take a lure? It does make you wonder.

To aid anybody else in discovering LRF / HRF for themselves, I have provided links to two excellent online reads by the guys at Jersey Bass Guides. Links to these online books can now be found in my Documents section.

I also recommend that you read, and possibly subscribe to the following three blogs; Fishing with DannyC , Smells Kinda Like Fish and The Rock Fishing Revolution. You can also find these in the Sea Fishing links menu box on the right

As I intend to spend a lot more time and effort using these methods, I would be very pleased to hear from any anglers in the East Dorset area who have also embraced LRF / HRF.

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Things have gone VERY quiet along my stretch of the coast. Following all the high winds and storms recently, it was expected that things would improve a bit with the SW winds stirring the sea up nicely and blowing food closer to shore. Not the case.

Very little being caught anywhere around the area at the moment. Quite a bit of annoying weed around, which is to be expected, but a lack of fish! I have had one three hour session over sunset on Wednesday – blank – and one session with John, Steve and mate at Branksome last night for about five hours, with only one tiny Plaice, a small Red Mullet and a decent sized early Whiting, none of them for me.

We are now in what is normally our best two months of the year for variety and numbers. Worrying.

The weather is set to worsen over the next 2-3 days but things are calming down from Wednesday next week, so off to Ferrybridge for another crack at the Triggers. And on a better note, the first of the Cod are now at Chesil. Limited numbers, but there.

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