Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

How to ruin an angler - bring him to Ireland !!

Ask your mate who has never been to Ireland to come along on a bass fishing trip to the south coast of this magical country. Get him out on a quiet little spot that is the kind of place we would never even think about fishing back home and then watch as three bass for around 30lbs are landed - 12lbs+, 9lbs and 9lbs, although to be fair Ger had the 12lb+ fish just before we got to the spot. I'm watching Mark's face and I think he's ruined already !!

Then move locations within Dungarvan Bay and watch as your mate lands a couple of bass of 5lbs and 7lbs for his first ever two Irish bass, both taken on a Black Minnow bumped down the current. You'd struggle to see bass in better condition or scrapping harder, and it is with a sense of joy that Mark has seen a glimpse of how awesome Ireland can be when it wants to be tinged with bit of guilt that I've helped him along the road to ruination that is discovering bass fishing in Ireland.................

I had one of those classic surface takes last night on an IMA Salt Skimmer, the sort of take that almost reminds you of a mini GT it was so brutal. First cast in a quiet little bay out on the Copper Coast and a little bit of the sea came alive with the sheer ferocity that this bass hit the Skimmer. It's hard sometimes not to get blasé with how the bass fishing can be out here at times, so I am conscious that when I say it was "only" a 4lb fish, of course what I mean is that it's a fine bass and if I had lost it I would have put it at 6lb plus is scrapped so hard. Wow are these fish fizzed up.

It seems that the coastline is loading up with fish, but the thing is that the conditions are not exactly ideal for catching them (during daylight hours anyway) - if the wind stays off the land like it is at the moment then we'll be doing more night fishing and also spending a fair chunk of our time within Dungarvan Bay. I'm hearing of some good fishing with some big bass being taken and reports of some donkeys seen moving around, and of course there was that monster 12lb bass taken this morning by Ger on a 6'' senko rigged weedless/weightless, doing nothing more than winding it dead slow. Half an hour later when we turn up and he's got a 9lb fish on the Boga for me to photograph. Another half an hour or so and Steve's landing a 9lb bass taken by the exactly same method. I can't believe how soft plastics are shaping the way so many of us lure fish....................

Day two of the trip hasn't even come to a close yet and already I've got a mate who's ruined, we've seen some pretty serious bass fishing, and who knows what else might happen over the next few days. It's easy to be a cynic in life, but I would rather just carry on with what I do and get to spend a bit of time in this special country with some very cool people, fishing for a fish that I have completely and utterly fallen in love with. I don't remotely set out to promote Ireland as a fishing destination, but on the other hand I want to try and let anglers to know how awesome it can sometimes be. Sure, as with anywhere the fishing can be tough sometimes, but a long time ago I realised that fishing or photography trips away from home are about putting the time and effort in to try and end up with the sort of experience say that this morning was. Pretty simple really.