Last weekend had looked like being a damp squib on the fishing front. The planned charter on the 28th was called off and it looked like a no fishing weekend. Anyway things picked up
and I bagged a trip out with one of the members of the club on his raider 18.
It was a big tide so the plan was to head out and try to catch some Congers and Huss around the back of some offshore sandbanks. We brought along squid and a few ragworms to drown for when the tide was too strong to fish at anchor.
First stop at the usual Mackerel gathering point produced nothing. Mackerel have been as rare as rocking horse poo on this part of the south coast this year so it wasn’t a big surprise.
Next stop at a mark called the Nab rock produced doggies and point. The variations of bait produced much the same until the tide picked up slightly and we started to get some small hounds and then I got a rather nice bonus bass of just under 5 lbs.
As the tide eased we moved out and thought we would try drowning some ragworms on a Portland rig over a range of sandbanks 15 miles out. This proved to be by far the best idea of the day. We had almost a fish each every drift with some truly impressive fish the best was just over 8 lbs but several were 7 plus as well. We also had bass following up hooked bass as well an amazing sight.
Then the tide eased and someone down there threw a switch and the fish stopped feeding completely. We then headed out a bit further to a patch of rough ground I had a nice bull huss of around 14lbs and the obligatory packs of pout and dogfish. As soon as the tide started we tried a bit more drifting on a sandbank and we picked up another few bass.
Total tally was around 12 bass between 5 and 8 lbs. Pictured is part of the haul and the skipper lee with the best fish of just over 8 lbs.
Its a funny old world, I have had several bass trips down here where we might have had one or two, when they were fished for as an afterthought we caught a box load.
Well for me down on the south coast the fishing season this year got off to a very poor start, lots of rain and wind combined with crew call offs meant limited opportunity to get the boat out.
Anyway on 19th July we finally got a reasonable forecast the weather was supposed to be over cast with the possibility of thunder storms. However when we got to the compound at the entrance of Langstone harbour it was almost flat calm and over cast. So off we went. Crew for the day was Mark Luffman who I’ve known for a number of years. Given the wind forecast we thought we would head to a mark known as the Overfalls which is a series of sandbanks about to the South East of the Isle of white and about 18 miles from the harbour entrance.
Mackerel have been hard to get inshore on the south coast this year, but we thought we would give the usual marks a try on the way out sadly to no avail. The Overfalls is known as a blonde ray mark with some other bits and bobs thrown in as well. Its got a terrific tide race so generally it’s a place to go on a very good wind forecast with a small tide.
We got there just as the tide was starting to ease and choose a spot between a couple of sharp sandbanks. The pick went in and at the same tide the weather improved, almost straight away I had a pack tope of around
12lbs and then Mark had the first of many blonde rays.
As the tide died away the fishing got more and more furious. We had numerous tope and blonde rays.
The average size of the tope were small say about 10 lbs however the blondes were all in the 15 to 23lb catergory. In total we had about 20 or so. The consolation prize was a 6lb bass which came to Mark’s downtider as he was winding in the biggest of the blondes.
Tackle was pretty straightforward running ledgers to 6/0 hooks with squid rag and frozen mackerel as the primary bait offerings.
A very interesting mark though with the tide being sufficiently strong to discolour the water at the top of the boils in the sandbanks in 90 foot of water.
Eventually we ran out of bait and with no rags or squid left we made the run back to the harbour without issue. Pictured is Mark with the best blonde of 23lb and the “joint” 6lb bass.
Paul from Glasgow Angling Centre and Kyle MacAleese had the opportunity of a days trip out for the skate recently, with a few thankfully making an appearance. View some pics of the day below...
A wee window in the weather forecast appeared with very light SE breezes. Graham had suggested travelling across to Dunbar in the hope of some early summer cod. Never one to shirk a challenge, I
agreed and we set off at 6am. Dunbar had been avoided for the last couple of years by many boat anglers because they had raised the slipway fee to a ridiculous £16. Thankfully, this has now been
reduced to a more moderate £10 per boat, and season tickets are available for regular users. The slipway has a dogleg in it near the bottom, but there was still plenty water there when we launched
half way into the ebb tide.
Our first mark was over an inshore wreck to see what was there. I had spinning rod set up with a chrome pipe leadhead and ragworm bait. My other rod being 12lb class with a 3-up muppet rig. As well as the ragworm, we had squid, mackerel and frozen black lug baits with us too. We had just got our first baits down when we were joined by Camie on his floating shower cubicle with what looked like a crew of cut-throat desperados from a notorious housing scheme in a bad part of Broxburn. First fish up was a short spined sea scorpion that took a fancy to the leadhead and ragworm. This was followed by the first small codling and a wee ling to the muppets with mussel bait.
We had several drifts on this wreck and a good run of fish. The earlier species were joined by poor cod, ballan wrasse and Pollack. We had quite a few decent fish. Graham’s biggest cod in the UK weighed in at 9lb 11oz and my ling tipped the scales at exactly the same weight. We had several Pollack on the spinning rods between 4lb and 6lb giving great sport and making dive after dive.
As the ebb tide eased off, so did the fishing. Graham moved us dow to a patch of rough ground near to Torness Power Station. Fishing was slower here, but still productive over the longer drifts. Tackle losses also mounted in the rougher ground but were not too bad considering where we were.
As the flood tide picked up in the afternoon, we decided to venture back to our original mark. Motoring over, we could see a boat near it and a buoy in the water. Divers had got there first and were just preparing to go over the side exactly where we wanted to fish. We moved further North nearer Dunbar and had a couple more codling whilst we gutted a few fish that we had kept and got the boat cleaned up before heading back in and the journey home.
Good fishing. Good company. Good day.
The ASAC Prize giving for the 2013 Calendar was held at the Ally MacLeod Suite at Ayr United Football park on Saturday 22nd March. We had a good turn out of members attending the night with a fair amount of alcohol flowing too...! - Also a big thanks to the Staff at the Suite for your hospitality and to Ian for the great buffet once again ... chilli again next year mate!?
Prizes as follows...
1st Place ... Jason Nicol
2nd Place ... Steven Toner
3rd Place ... Darren Sloan
1st Place ... Stephen Kirk
2nd Place ... Jamie Soons
3rd Place ... Nico Wilson
JUNIOR BOAT CHAMPION
HEAVIEST BOAT FISH
Gordon Goldie - Skate
HEAVIEST SHORE FISH
Stephen Kirk - Bass
BEST SHORE SPECIMEN
Stephen Kirk - Bass
SUMMER LEAGUE RESULTS
1st ... Sandy Wason
2nd ... Shane Wilson
3rd ... John Wilson
SHORE TEAM CHAMPIONS
Stephen Kirk & Jamie Soons
SHORE SPECIES HUNT
John Wilson & Will Miller
BOAT SPECIES HUNT
Stuart Cresswell & Gordon Goldie
Traveling up to the Tay with Eddie and Shane. The other guys were already there when we arrived.
With the usual banter and greeting it was off to the fishing.
After a few hours and nothing to show it was time for lunch. While heading back I noticed Eddie was further up stream. I asked how he got on and he said he had just released a wee trout.
That was it for much of the day. Everyone getting a good work out at least. Thinking about on the way home I would have to listen to Eddie and his wee trout. lol....
Report by John
Stuart, Willie, Sandy and myself attended the East Fife Shore Sweepstakes fished on Sunday 5th January, with boundaries from Carnoustie to Ferryden. Over all 45 anglers fished the competition with fishing times of 11am to 4pm.
After the registration we headed to our chosen destination of fishing, being Rhumness, after 'gracefully' descending down the steep hill we decided to fish the point at the front, with conditions starting off as calm and barely no wind it was quite pleasant fishing to start with...
With 3 of us fishing from the same rock ledge, thankfully fishing a rod a piece other wise it could have been 'fun' to say the least! - upon the start of the match we all casted out our baits and it wasn't long before I had my first rattle, then lifting into my first fish of the day, detaching my rig and clipping on the next and putting the rig in round about the same spot as previous. I was using braid and as such I had only used it the once before, but I must say, I can't see me going back to mono after the amazing bite sensitivity and the way that it cut down on line drag when the sea got up!
It was pretty neck and neck between myself and Stuart for fish and bites throughout the day, although thankfully I managed a couple of more decent fish.
As the day went on the wind got stronger and the sea got bigger with more of a swell rolling in, eventually our rock platform got pretty hairy to fish and so we moved along the foreshore for more sheltered fishing. Stu fished up on one of the rock ledges, with Willie and myself fishing more round into the bay. My bites dried up here, but Willie managed to pull in another 2 fish.
The Match results are as follows...
1st Kevin Lewis 17.22 kilos and h/f 3.44 13 fish.
2nd Ian Crombie 16.06 kilos 13 fish.
3rd Jamie Soons 11.90 kilos 11 fish.
4th Stuart Cresswell 11.60 kilos 13 fish.
Top 7 all had bags of 10 fish minimum.
All in all it was a good enjoyable match with plenty of fish being caught - and for myself it was good to get one up on Stuart for a change!!
Still some of my winnings went on buying the team fish suppers on the way home!
Saturday 26th October saw the clubs first Open Sweepstake, held at Prestwick shore. Fishing times were 12pm till 6pm. We had a good first time turn out with 44 people turning up to fish the event, with a couple of folk coming from as far as morcambe to enter!
Fishing the incoming tide, the conditions started off pretty ok, with a nice decent roll of water along the shore. The forecast for the day was to have increasing winds coming from the South and it wasn't far wrong! Around 3pm the wind and rain came down which turned the sea into a churning cauldron of weed, fishing at either short or long distance there was no escaping it!
Still a few people managed to catch a fair few fish - the biggest to Tam Borland with a nice flounder of 41cm's on his first cast, followed promptly by another of 31cm's. It seemed the numbers of fish came from the northern end of the beach, with Alan Combe managing 5 flounders, and most of the other entrants in that area managing at least one fish.
The clubs' own Nico Wilson managed 3 flounders and took 2nd place in the competition ... Well done Nico!
We will endeavour to run this match annually and a big thanks goes to our support from
George Cunningham @ Tronix, Mike Thrussell Jnr @ WSF, Matt @ Gamesport and Will from Candy Co
for their generous donations towards the Junior prize table.
The results are as follows...
1st Alan Combe ... 5 flounders for 126pts
2nd Nico Wilson ... 3 flounders for 100pts
3rd Stephen Mckinney ... 3 flounders for 88pts
4th Tam Borland ... 2 flounders for 72pts
5th John McBlain ... 2 flounders for 62pts
6th T. McClusky ... 1 flounder for 38pts
7th Chris Grant ... 1 flounder for 31pts
Sandy Wason ... 1 flounder for 31pts
Shane Wilson ... 1 flounder for 31pts
8th Malky ... 1 flounder for 30pts
Jamie Soons ... 1 flounder for 30pts
Billy Buckley ... 1 flounder for 30pts
9th John Wilson ... 1 flounder for 25pts
10th Ian Grant ... 1 flounder for 20pts
Longest fish Tam Borland with flounder for 41cms
With good north easterly winds forecast for the weekend, Scott and myself opted for a trip up the east coast. Scott picking me up after a night shift at work at 7.30am on Saturday we headed off.
We arrived at Arbroath around 10am and headed for breakfast at McDonalds, as you do! peering out over the sea, there was a decent bit of movement with some nice rollers coming in and a nice dull clarity to the water.
We opted to head a little further north to a mark that I have fished a few years ago, called Ethie Mains. After the trek along the field and down the goat path to the mark we were glad to see a cracking sea turning in front of us.
We set up and cast our baits out, not far, 20/30 yards from us into a gulley at our feet. Scott was first to get a nice wee rattle and lifted into the first fish. Not massive but a fish of around 2lb. I was next with small nodding on the rod tip which amounted to nothing!
With the sea emptying in front of us we decided to fish off the front of the point, bit more exposed here with the wind but the sea was a lot more rougher here and pretty much a washing machine of white water in front of us. Scott managed another 6 fish here - again nothing huge with the biggest around the 3lb mark. I finally managed a bite and lifted into my first codling... phew blank lifted! - We fished till the turn in the tide and and a couple of hours of the flood, but it seemed to die off with less bites (not that it affected me as I hadn't had a bite in hours...!)
We made the trek back up to the car and travelled back towards Arbroath. As per usual the pier was packed with anglers for the flood so we opted to fish at Ballies - there were a couple of other people arrive while we were there but not a great deal of fish. I continued my bad run yet again, with Scott bringing in another 4 codling. Scott was using frozen crab, myself I was using fresh...? in most respects fresh in my book wouldv'e outfished the frozen, alas no, not in this case. I used one of Scotts frozen baits and strangely enough I got a good tug followed by some nice rattles, struck and ... nothing!
Hope this was my only bad day of the year up here!!!
Met up with Will at Cairn Ryan at the weekend for a night session. We headed to Port Patrick after a digging bait and a welcomed bag of chips. Fishing through the to the early hours of the
Plenty of fish about to keep us busy. A few new species caught to add to the species hunt. Nico had a nice double shot of dabs. Nice marked plaice and the Bull Huss were about. Will lost one about 6lbs and I landed one at 3lbs 15ozs.
Species caught were Doggies Bull Huss Pouting Haddies Coalies Pollock Dabs Plaice whiting and Mackerel. Shane caught a Mackerel that had been attacked by a small tope and healed. On the other side it seemed it had been attacked by a Bull Huss too. Lucky or what till Shane caught it. Headed up the road around 9.00am
A day afloat out of Whithorn saw Kyle MacAleese boating a superb Bullhuss of 14.5lb - other fish caught during the day consisted of small pack tope up to around the 10lb mark and also a nice Tub Gurnard to 3.5lb - Kyles was fishing aboard his dad, Scott's boat "Castaway" when they encountered the fish.
Way to go Kyle!
On a promise to Jason Nicol, I took Jason & Paul Bryan out for an afternoons lure fishing for Bass, with strong Southerly winds a few locations were pretty much out of the question for Bass newbies, so a sheltered spot with a few bass being taken in recent days was the option.
I fitted Jason out with a Xorus Patchinko II surface lure, a nice lure for beginners as it casts well into wind and has a great surface action (good for me too as chances of losing a surface lure were greatly reduced!!) - On his first cast and a couple of tugs of the lure saw a decent fish rise for the lure, followed by anticipated yells from Jason, but unfortunately he failed to hook up. But his second cast in pretty much the same location he got slammed hard by a decent fish. I was telling him to keep the rod up and pretty much bully the fish up and out of the kelp as this was the fishes first intention to get its head buried in the kelp. it managed to embed itself in a good head of weed, but I said to give it some line and eventually it came out. A nice fish around the 3-3.5lb range, photo taken and safely returned.
Next up it was Paul's turn, again fishing a surface lure, he struck into another fish, slightly smaller than Jason's but still great fun on light gear.
I was struggling to hook up myself... after trying around 10 different lures with no interest I opted for a new lure I had in the box, a Zenith Z-Claw surface lure, Black Candy, originally purchasing this for night fishing I thought i'd give it a go - a couple of chucks later resulted in a nice plump bass around 1.5lb. Unhooked and safely released in front of Jason's GoPro camera which he was holding under the water at the time, the fish made a nice swirl towards his camera then headed off - will be good to see the footage!
After we had all hooked up we opted to head off and try some shore fishing with bait for the Bass. I headed to Sandhead where I was met by Stephen kirk, his dad and family friend Ronnie. We dug some nice lug worm and headed off to the chosen shore mark around the bay. Stephen's dad and friend, had never fished for bass or for that matter landed a fish so I was hoping that today would be their day also!
Upon setting up on the beach I waded out around 20 feet into the surf and casted around another 20 feet and made my way back to the rod rest. At this point Jason had arrived on the beach and I began instructing him on where to cast etc and he got my attention by shouting "look at your rod" I swung round to see the rod tip bouncing hard - picked the rod up, struck, but failed to connect. Wound in re-baited and cast out again. I didn't even have time to get the rod in the stand again before the rod was being pulled out of my hands. Struck this one and landed a nice wee schoolie. very broad fish with good shape. Obviously been feeding well in the area!
This was pretty much the case for the next hour or so with almost a bite a cast. The fish were all around the 1.5lb mark which in all was still good to see the numbers, but I had heard of much better fish coming from this area in recent days.
Stephen's dad, John, is an experienced salmon angler, he was using one of his salmon rods with a fixed spool reel under the guidance of Stephen and myself he was standing out in the surf with his rod feeling for takes. It wasn't long before his rod was bent double with a nice bass on the retrieve, followed closely by his mate Ronnie who was also into a fish. Mission accomplished! - they were happy to leave shortly after with a couple of nice fish under their belt. Jason & Paul failed to hook up here, maybe because they only had ragworm for bait, whereas we were using lug - but Jason was still on a high after getting his first bass anyway.
Eventually Jason & Paul left, leaving Stephen and myself fishing the tide up. The bites died off for a couple of hours and we were contemplating heading off ourselves, when as if by magic it went mental again with fish after fish. I also managed a wee freshwater eel which was a welcome addition to my species, but leaving my trace looking like a school dinners macaroni....!
All in all, a great day with around 50 bass between us. All returned, bar one which I gave to Paul for his tea!
Think Jason has the bug for it now so think the wife had better lock up the credit cards and keep him off the lure sites... I know all to well how addictive it can become!!
We left Portpatrick at 9.00am and headed to our mark, but were met by a fog bank which dictated how the fishing would be for the rest of the day. We had planed to anchor up and fish for some tope.
The skipper had a couple of drifts and we had some nice whiting and haddock on board.
The next drift produced Gurnards, Plaice, and the odd dogfish. We had a shot at anchoring and the Bull Huss made an appearance and the hope of a tope might be around. The skipper made the call to up anchor as visibility was poor as the fog was all around us as you will notice in the Pics.
Went on the drift again and was into some nice Bull Huss, Whiting and more dogfish. Mat had the best haddock which made its escape to freedom as I was taking his picture. Darren and Malky best Bull Huss at 9lbs 4ozs for Malky Darren`s around the 10lb mark. Shane the mackerel king and Victoria had a nice launce and Mat had a nice plaice. Everyone had a good time and plenty of fish caught well done guys.
Shane Nico and myself had a wee session down Prestwick last night. Dug some fresh lug at low tide. Started fishing around 7.30pm. Shane was first into a nice flounder around 1lb 1/2. Pestered with weed as the time came in but patience paid off as you see. We finish the night with 6 bass and 2 flounders. The best bass going to Nico around the 3lb mark. All fish were returned alive. Finish fishing at 12.30am
Went up to Craob Haven with Stu & Willie on Fri night and stayed over on Reel Deal. Set off 7am on Saturday morning after Willie wound in my wee rod with the sabikis and tiny bits of raggie -
and diddled me out of a beautiful wee Long Spined Sea Scorpion, and started with a fruitless search for coalies for bait. never saw a single mackie either. Got to a mark near Crinan and got the skate
rods down. Also had wee rods down as I was hoping to add conger, BMD or cuckoo ray to the species list.
Fishing was fairly constant throughout the day and we ended up with seven skate to the boat at 21, 30, 90, 103, 111, 150 & a big mama for GG at 204lbs :-) Four had previously been tagged, so their details were recorded and submitted to the SSTP.
Got an email back from Lewis Cowie to tell me that Big Mama was originally tagged by Ian Burrett in Nov 2011 and measured then at 197lbs. She had been at large for 591 days between originally being tagged and coming aboard the gin palace for a wee visit.
Stuart and I managed two BMDs each which takes me up to 23 boat species for 2013.
We got back completely knackered after all that lot. The forecast from HM Coastguard was for Force 8 gales on Sunday so we beat the retreat down the road on Saturday night.
Started fishing the low tide in Luce Bay around midday after a long drive. Crab baits were all I was using. The first hour saw a couple of dogs and no other bites so I decided to move and try
something different. The water looked very shallow but it was coloured and I flung out two crab baits. 15 minutes later I noticed a bite through all the weed pulls and slop gathered on the line. I
picked it up and felt another kick so wound into the fish. It felt a decent fish but I assumed it would be another smoothound. Just as my leader knot jammed in the tip ring I saw a good size bass
kicking about on the end of the line and ran back up the beach to get it landed!
This turned out to be the highlight of the day, a 7lb 8oz bass taken on crab on a 1/0 at 80 yards. My best bass so far and a perfect fish.
I fished on for a while then made a short move to an even shallower spot and picked up a schoolie before heaving home early. 5 hours driving, 4 hours fishing but it was worth it.