Just a catch up on recent action from the last post, including the best fish of the season so far coming in at 72cm off the top on the tackle house vulture.
At any chance I’m always the first to get on the topwater fishing and this season has been good in terms of numbers and size but there is always a time when another method will prove more fruitful, so soft plastics such as the albie snax , sunslicker mishna eel and jackal rhythmn wave have all proved deadly in the right conditions.
Few words but sometimes its good to let the fish do the talking !!…
It is always a pleasure to see the return of Neil and his son Harry as they come down to North Devon for there summer holidays, both keen as mustard to get on the water and get into some Bass, each year there skills improve and excitement is always high. Between them over two days guiding they caught over 30 fish mainly taken off the top and generally small but great fun nonetheless, Neil broke his pb with a lovely fish taken on a fiish crazy eel…
Paul Bartlett booked in a short session and second cast was into a nice fish taken bumping a soft plastic in the flow a technique new to him but one he is definitely gonna try on his home patch in Kent…great stuff..
As ever this time of year I’m busy fishing so this is just a catch up on recent catches, the weather has been typical August kids break up from school kind of thing, wind, rain, hail you name it !!, which have made the fishing tricky at times but it bothers the angler more than the fish !!..
Its always a pleasure having Trev and Nobby down for some guiding and over the years I have known them we have become good friends,we all love fishing,beer and a good curry, life is simple sometimes !!.
The guiding ended up being a short session but ended up with 8 fish in total in some tricky conditions, the icing on the cake being Nobby getting a new shore pb taken off the top on the tackle house vulture…
So needless to say I’m already looking forward to catching up with them later in the year…
Hot fun in the summertime by sly and the family stone rings round my head as I sweat myself to my mark its June and an azores high as set us in a mini heatwave, 30 degree highs and its hard to recognize the familiarity of my local mark set against a new background of pure heat.
Over three days I fished early mornings and late evenings exclusively fishing topwater lures .As I look back now this time plays like a short film in my memory. I had some great fishing, two fish at 67 cm and 3 at 62cm with plenty in the 3 and 4 lb range.
Lures used where the patch 100,frosty,asture110 and vulture, chosen depending on the conditions as in wind strength and chop on the water, the main principle is to best present something natural to fool the fish.
The highlight of these hot fun sessions was taking a 67cm fish on the patch on a new rod ( a yamaga blanks ballistick tz nano 73ml, a rod deigned for topwater fishing casting to 22g its a dream to fish the small patch with and matched with a shimano vanquish 3000hg 16 lb braid and 12lb fluro leader was a match made in heaven and bags of fun !!)
There is no doubt I will be replaying this short film many a time in the months to come……..
Throughout May I concentrated a lot of my efforts on fishing a specific mark with specific tides. Within this time I had 5 large Bass( 7lb plus) hit and miss my surface lures. The first fish hit the frosty twice and then it was fight on, initially running straight at me ( something I have encountered before with decent fish ) then off on runs, don’t loose it kept ringing around my head !! and then the line went slack !, one of the trebles had snapped !!…so Bass 1 Joel 0.
The second,third and fourth fish either smashed the lure or rolled it , but no solid hook up. But the fifth fish was my chance to redeem the one that got away. As I was finishing the retrieve on a asture 110 I had a good fish hit and hit it hard, no messing about, this fish was on and the fight was on .All I needed was the hooks to hold. Splashes of the tail and runs back and forth the battle was all close in, my main concern was making sure the leader didn’t rub on its gill plate.At last she was in the net, a beautifull 71 cm fish and a sense of relief for finally catching one ! Bass 4 Joel 1 !!..
The water temperature has finally started to rise ( 13 degrees ). Before heading off to Spain with my family for a week I had a super quick session, which resulted in a lovely 66 cm fish caught fishing a 4 inch tt shad rigged weedless along the edge of a reef. A nice slow retrieve, pause, retrieve,pause, bang !!..
Sometimes it all seems simple, but there is always that thin line between sucsess and failure that keeps you coming back for more…
Last week I had the pleasure of guiding Greg Lewis from Bristol who I had booked in on a nice set of building spring tides.Greg was keen as mustard and raring to go after the early morning drive down.
The first session we concentrated on bumping tt shads in the flow and it wasn’t long before Greg was into the first fish of the day and the first smile !!. It’s a killer method, one which was new to Greg and after taking another fish he was quickly converted !!
The second session of the day was directed towards fishing topwater lures over some some lovely rough shallow ground ( Bass Heaven !) Conditions were tricky with a stiff cross southerly breeze but as the tide dropped the wind shifted to a westerly direction and the fish just switched on.
Greg was soon into a solid fish taken on an asture 110 in ayu which fought well to the net.The fish was in lovely condition but lean as you would expect this time of year. Greg’s smile said it all, a new personal best and off the top too ! magic stuff.
A change in location brought more fish this time on the Patchinko 100 in 500g all bristling full of energy to top off a great day with great company. A great way to start the guiding for 2017, thanks Greg !!..
Off she goes….
After a recent cold spell in November the water temperature has dropped off to 11 degrees, ive managed a few sessions recently with some sucsess, any winter silver is a bonus so im more than happy to have connected with a few.
Due to a prolonged period of solid swell the water clarity hasnt been great so i have concentrated on fishing shallow water over reefs to improve my chances. The above fish was one of two taken drifting a tt shad in some flow, the fish were sat in a pocket just out of the flow ready to hit any bait that should come along.Think like a fish to catch a fish comes to mind !!
If the conditions allow i will keep getting out through January eager for the hit, the adrenaline of the bite that keeps all us anglers addicted !.
So here is wishing everyone who reads this blog a very Happy New Year and tight lines for 2016….
All Bass caught by myself and my clients in 2016 were all released….
We all have lures, soft plastics that we turn to and fish with total confidence, trusty favourites that are proven fish catchers.Over the years you learn to read the conditions and select lures that you know will do the do and once youve got to know your marks its just a matter of time before you get your first hit.
The Bait Breath 4 inch tt shad in ayu has long been a firm favourite of mine, attatched to a ecogear iwashi 14 g its a match made in bass heaven and ive caught hundreds of bass bumping it in the flow.
The triangular tail of the tt shad is the thing that makes the difference in my opinion as it doesnt take much current to get it working and the bass just cant resist it. I tend to use the tt in clear water anything murkier i will switch to something else, like the x layer with the inbuilt rattle.
I tend to glue the tt to the jighead to prevent slipping or general tearing. Anyhows its a sp that i trust and its always in my bag and when conditions allow its deadly, as all these recent fish prove….
I recently had the pleasure of guiding Dave Taylor and Matt Newcombe, two highly experienced anglers, Dave has caught more big bass than you could wish for and many of his articles in Total Sea Fishing ( for bass ) have long stayed in my memory bank. I was confident we would catch knowing the fish had been showing well, yet it ended up being a tough day on the water with only one decent fish caught to Matt on a giant x layer bumped in the flow.
This got me thinking and im sure the difference in this soft plastic stickbait that made the difference was the inbuilt rattle.
So for my following solo sessions i tried the xlayer bumped in the flow in comparison to other sps and the xlayer came out on top, the rattle won the day !!
Many anglers are now adding rattles to there sps with great effect, so its no mystery that the rattle can make a difference between catching and not, the fish obviously hone in on it, anyhows from my recent experienced im now totally sold, shake rattle and roll, thanks Matt !!..
The water temperature has now dropped to 15 degrees which is what it was in June, so i will fish confidently through November into December as long as the conditions allow. If you would like a guided session please contact me via my email email@example.com …….