Posted 10:58, 31 January 2011
- If I think back to say when I first came to Plymouth and started at the university, I could not see how life could get any better. Finally I was able to completely indulge my obsession with fishing and basically fish as much as I wanted to – which back then was nearly all the time. My girlfriend (now wife) was up the road at Exeter uni, and she was never the kind of girl who was remotely interested in hassling me to fish less. Even when we finished uni and she came to live with me in Plymouth, she never had a problem with me fishing one hell of a lot – ok, I do remember fishing for 14 nights on the trot late one autumn, but I only got a bit of grief because I got so overtired and foul tempered (who, me ?) that I literally passed out on the fifteenth night and had to give in. Back then I thought that I would be fishing those methods and for those species for ever. The thought of not fishing much with 6oz beachcasters never really crossed my mind – mullet fishing and deep-spinning for pollack excepted.
- Now what this blog post is NOT is some kind of me having a go at anglers who don’t want to try different things. Some people are more than happy to fish “the UK way” for ever and ever, and if you think about it, what on earth is wrong with this ? Nothing at all. We live in the UK and we need to fish in certain ways to catch certain species of fish. I am only asking the question “have you changed much as an angler ?” because from time to time I think about where I am now, and where I used to be, and I then look around at people I know and wonder where we all might be in say another 10 years time.
- If you had said to me 15 years ago that I would have basically gone completely over to light tackle fishing then I would most likely have muttered something unsavoury under my breath at you. Me ? Me NOT heading out multiple times a week under the cover of darkness to chase huss, rays, cod, congers, etc. ? Not possible. The thought never even entered my head for one second back then. “The UK way” of shore fishing is just awesome, but perhaps it’s life that changes first, and then we adapt our own fishing to suit a changing life. Or perhaps we don’t……….
- If I think about it now, I suppose that a fundamental change in my own preferred ways of going fishing was inevitable as my life changed. As I said earlier, I have never had hassle from my wife (then girlfriend) to not go out fishing. Fishing has never been an escape for me, but work is work, and my work tends to be fairly hectic. I love my work, but we all need to pay the (ever increasing) bills. I also have two young girls that I want to spend time with – and again, if you had asked me say 15 years ago whether I could possibly imagine having a family being as much fun as it is then I would have fallen about laughing. But it is, and I love just hanging out with my family and doing fun stuff.
- But the above is a matter of not having as much time as I used to to actually go out fishing, plus as much as I am completely and utterly obsessed with this magical sport, I don’t want to go out fishing as much as I used to. Less tends to mean more me to these days if that makes sense. There are various reasons I can think of for me not using 6oz beachcasters much if at all these days, but primarily for me this light tackle lure fishing especially has given me the opportunity to go right back to the drawing board and force myself to almost learn about fishing all over again – and like with all kinds of fishing, sometimes the amount more I need to learn to try and keep getting better almost overwhelms me. But it also excites me hugely, and I guess for me that change is important to really keep my interest levels high and to stimulate the old brain cells. My fishing is so wrapped up with my photography as well, and lure fishing can just look so awesome when the light and conditions are right. Sure, so can “UK style” shore fishing, but the continual movement in lure fishing reminds me so much of fly fishing, and both are fantastically photogenic ways of fishing. Fly fishing and lure fishing combining ? We haven’t even started yet………..
- And if all this deep and meaningful Monday morning stuff is not enough to keep you on the straight and narrow, then do yourself a favour and navigate your way to this web page here – scroll down and click on their online lure fishing catalogue. I am lucky enough to call a number of people within the trade my friends, and these guys are just fantastic people – and they are out and out lure junkies like many of us here. Who, me ? I bear no responsibility for what happens if you spend too much time looking at a lure catalogue like this………..
Posted 06:48, 26 January 2011
- These cold, lean months always seem to get me looking at all manner of fishing gear to tide me through, and naturally I am drawn to the increasing number of nice shiny lures out there. I can’t help it I suppose, but it is so easy to trawl around the internet and the fishing forums and think about different bits and pieces to get in. But I got to thinking about how we would go choosing say a lure to fish with – and it could as easily be rods, reels, lines etc. When you go looking, do you try to find something completely different to what you have already, or do you prefer to try to find some kind of variation on a lure that you know works well ?
- Let’s say you have a lure that you know is an absolute killer for bass – something like the Tackle House Feed Shallow or the MegaBass Zonk 120 Gataride. Do you accept that those lures are the best they can be, or does the voice in your head drive you to see if you can find something similar which may end up fishing even better ? I am very much into all manner of lures which work really shallow, but I came across something around early autumn last year which somehow sits almost exactly in between a surface lure and an ultra-shallow minnow like the IMA Komomo SF125. It’s not a new lure by any stretch, but it was new to me, and what gave me almost instant confidence with it was the simple fact that I caught bass on it in exactly the place I envisaged it working. And we all know that’s a huge jolt of confidence in a lure. This is the MegaBass Do-Rum 120SD. It does not cast particularly well like say the Gataride, but from my limited experience with it, I have found that I can get it to literally swim almost in the film of water just between surface and sub-surface if that makes sense. Use a slow but constant retrieve, get the rod tip up, and this Do-Rum swims with the most awesome side to side intense rolling action that bass obviously like – check out this video clip here to see it swimming.
- But do I really need to be carrying a lure like this ? It is not cheap, and I can’t see it coming out as much as a “conventional” surface or sub-surface lure due to sea conditions etc. The fact is though that it worked for me, and it does something a little different. I don’t really have a lure like it, and who’s to say that over time I don’t end up using it lots and lots ? I am hoping that it’s a difficult lure to lose (cost), but for some reason the Do-Rum makes perfect sense to me and how/where I like to fish for bass. I love playing around with this kind of stuff, indeed I am sure that a psychiatrist would have a field day with lure nuts – harking back to childhood toys and all that kind of psycho-babble, but I still can’t believe how this whole bass and lure fishing thing has got to me. Plenty more to come……….
Posted 07:55, 21 January 2011
- "Protect you sport and have your say" - this is from an email I have just been sent, via John Quinlan at IrishBass.org. Please read this blog post through. Many thanks. It is vital that we as anglers give our thoughts and opinions over when we are given a chance like this. Even if you have no interest in going fishing in Ireland, stand up and at least register your interest in protecting a fishery like this. One small step leads who knows where ?
- There is currently a consultation process about biodiversity in County Wexford (Ireland). The marine environment and the species that inhabit that environment are very much part of that biodiversity. We as anglers now have a unique opportunity to show Wexford County Council that the bass we fish for are a vital part of the inshore marine biodiversity of the county. The lack of an unsustainable and environmentally destructive commercial fishery for bass and the benefit of anglers sustainable and environmentally friendly exploitation of that bass stock are vital, both to the protection of biodiversity along the coastline and also the economic benefit of the coastal communities of Wexford.
- Bass angling as a method of exploitation delivers the perfect mix of both fish and habitat protection with negligible interference with other marine creatures and habitat. Therefore we need to urge Wexford County Council in respect of their commitment to protect and enhance biodiversity to do all in its power to maintain Ireland's bass protection legislation. The benefits both to the environment and the economy demand that our bass legislation be kept in place.
- You can do your bit to help by drafting a simple email explaining that you either already visit Wexford or plan to do so in the future to enjoy a bass angling experience. Simply outline to them that the bass stock along its coast are in your opinion an integral and vital part of its biodiversity and your actions do virtually nothing to damage that biodiversity while at the same time greatly benefiting the local coastal economies.
- Sadly, time is very limited, the closing date for submission is Friday 28th January so we need to act now. Simply email your views to: email@example.com before the closing date. It will only take a few minutes but could make a big difference. In case you get any problems with that email address, here it is without the link : firstname.lastname@example.org