Henry Gilbey
Cape Cod - 1010.jpg


Henry Gilbey blog

How’s your local bass fishing been? Strange year so far?

Whilst there is of course no denying that bass stocks are under huge pressure from many different angles, I refuse to believe that what has been a very up and down season so far around here is purely down to overfishing. I hope I am not burying my head in the sand, rather things seem so different to last year that if this current lack of bass numbers was solely down to commercial pressure then I would be almost beyond worried if that makes sense………..

How has the bass fishing been around you so far this year? I keep my eye on as many fishing reports as I can, and unless I am mistaken it seems that some parts of the country have been experiencing some pretty good fishing, whereas in other parts it has sometimes felt like a bit of a desert out there. One set of tides and you’re finding a few fish, and then a week later and it’s as if something is seriously wrong. I dread to think how our catches would have been so far this year if we weren’t into night fishing.

Take yesterday morning for example. Mark and I found what could only be described as perfect conditions for this part of the world - every single thing was spot on (check the photo above, and believe me, for around here it doesn’t get much better - green water, bounce, nice tide, very little weed, you name it, that’s perfection), yet we managed one piddly little bass between us. Granted, it could have been down to some crap angling, but in reality at this time of year we really should have seen a few bass, and this has happened too many times for it not to at least get the brain churning about what might be going on out there.

Things kicked off sort of when you’d expect it to around here, as per above, and for a while it seemed as if we were on for a good few months, but the last while has been some tough fishing - how about you though? What are you finding out there? Are you experiencing anything close to what you might term “normal”, or are you struggling, or are you seeing more bass around?

As far as I can tell, bass aren’t coming close inshore for a bit of a laugh - surely they are coming in to where we might catch them because there’s a good food source around? And then they don’t come in if a decent food source isn’t around, or rather they are off somewhere else where their food source happens to be. I hear so many different things about who’s catching bass and where, where the shoals of say sandeels and mackerel might or might not be, and so on, but in reality I simply don’t know what is going on - my head tells me that we aren’t seeing many bass close inshore around here at the moment because their food isn’t around. Why though?

Does anybody actually know, or are we simply guessing? Is it a case of nature doing what it does - overfishing notwithstanding - and us as human beings clutching at straws when nature doesn’t then do what we kind of expect it to do, but because it’s nature, it doesn’t always work like that. And so on.

Are we as anglers sometimes guilty of going to the same marks at the same times and in the same sorts of conditions, and then when things don’t go to plan - like now around here - are we clutching at a few more straws? I have no doubt that the bass fishing will properly switch on around here sometime (or at least I bloody hope it will), but if there is one thing that the current up and down nature of it is telling me, it’s to change various things up and see what might happen - which might of course prove to be beneficial for the future……………..