Henry Gilbey
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Back off to Ireland today.....

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Yes, I have only been home a week, but later on today I am heading back over to Ireland with Nick Hart. Excited ? What do you think !! We will be spending a few days along the (awesome) Copper Coast on the bass, but then Nick and I are then going to move down to the glorious Beara peninsular to stay with Paul and Anne at their guesthouse (check here). I have such fond memories of the Beara and its fishing, but for some daft reason or another I have not managed to get myself back there since we filmed a TV programme down there a few years back. I describe the Beara as the kind of place you drive around with your jaw on the floor. Breathtaking ain't the word.

If the weather is kind to us then I know that Nick will do all he can to nail some bass on the fly along the Copper Coast, but then he is also more than open and also very much capable of picking up a lure rod and mixing it up in order to catch fish. Much as I think fly fishing is just about as good as fishing gets, what on earth is the point of NOT being prepared to take on the conditions or a specific location with whatever method might work most efficiently. There were a few spots that Andy and I fished with Ger the other day that I think might suit the fly and somebody who can cast as well as Nick pretty nicely. The place that Andy and I got done by those big fish can easily be fished on the fly if the wind is in our favour, indeed I did catch a bass of 6lbs plus there that took the lure almost right off my rod tip. Saw the fish's gills flared right out as it inhaled my lure. A little bit exciting to say the least. Not that I nearly fell of my particular rock in shock.

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We have various plans for our few days on the Beara if the weather lets us. Pollack obviously, indeed I am hugely looking forward to spending a bit of time on these fish. And yes, I know that I should be spending more time on them than I actually do. I blame the bass !! The Beara peninsular has just so much ground for chucking various lures at pollack, but still from speaking to Paul I understand that relatively few shore anglers actually spend proper time on this wonderful coastline. I really like staying with Paul and Anne, and it really helps that Paul is a mad keen angler himself who has his finger right on the pulse of what is happening (see here). I know for example that he caught a bunch of nice mullet the other day down there. Many plans......

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Nick and I are also going to try and get up into the hills for some proper wild trout fishing. We have done lots and lots of fishing/photography together, but wild trout fishing in south west Ireland will be a new one for the both of us. Another first for me is taking this newish Swansea to Cork ferry service - I travelled on the old one a few times over the years, but so far I have not been on this new one. It's an overnight crossing there (and back), so in theory we can grab some kip and arrive ready to go. I know it might seem a little strange, but ferries do it for me, and especially when that ferry is heading over to Ireland. As per usual I will do my best to keep this blog regularly updated with how we get on out there - here are a bunch of photos from my trip out there the other day. Hoping we might get lots more good light........and a few tidy fish. Oh, and I know it's Friday and it should be a ranting day, but when I am back home and not going away for a bit I will get back into my normal stride.