I don't think the weather likes us very much
When you cop an unfortunate one with the weather, you may as well go the whole hog !! Holy cow are we at the receiving end of a combination of weather factors out here that combined are producing some truly tough conditions, but what can you do ? I can't remember having to battle so many calm, clear and lifeless days as I have seen on my Irish trips so far this year, so I guess this October one is a little reminded that we haven't gone so far down this supposed global warming route that our weather's gone all Seychelles on us...........
I love these trips away, indeed they are an important part of both my work and my fishing "buzz" if you like, but in essence they are highly unrealistic ventures if you stop and think about it for a second. You pick a set of tides and a time of year that you like for whatever fish you are chasing, you sort out your travel and accommodation and perhaps guiding, and then you can do nothing but hope the weather at least remotely behaves - which it categorically isn't right now !! Sure, we're out there trying, but if this was back home for me, or if I lived out here ? I would not have been lure fishing for bass for one single minute of the time we have been out here so far - which makes these trips what they are - fantastic, but also highly unrealistic in that you can't pick and choose the conditions.
To be fair, Steve got done by a serious fish on the first morning when his fluoro leader broke on what we must assume was the edge of a rock. There have been a few small bass landed on soft plastics bumped down the current and I know that James saw some serious fish cruising around the other evening, but otherwise this is about as tough as I have known it out here and there ain't a thing we can do about it - except ride it out and plan for the next trip out here.
One thing that awful weather does I suppose is show up the gear that does or does not work. I really liked the look of this kayaking cag thing that Del had bought, yet on his first bad weather outing with it the front pocket leaked like a sieve and soaked his chest. Steve has had a new pair of waders fail on him within three days of buying them, but Nick Hart is wearing a brand new Simms Slick waterproof jacket (details here) that has not let one single drop of water in, and to be honest it looks about the best designed bit of fishing clothing that I have seen for a while. Sure, it's hideously expensive, and yes, Nick has a fly fishing shop (see here) and he sells Simms gear, but Nick is also a full time fly fishing guide and instructor and as such he is out there all the time in any weather - Simms might be a fly fishing brand, but the design of that new Slick jacket to me makes it look almost as if it were custom designed for lure fishing. The best stuff is never going to come cheap.
I actually had my Simms G4 waders "condemned" by Simms Europe the other day. I sent them off to see if the neoprene feet could be replaced as it was looking like the tape stuff around the seams was coming away (delaminating ?), plus the gravel guards are ripped to shreds, but I then got an email back from them saying that my waders were essentially knackered all over and that would I like them to be recycled - no thank you very much, I'll have them back please !! OK, so they have been used and abused a bit and I accept completely that whatever price waders and saltwater usage essentially don't mix, but condemned or not my G4 waders are still going strong out here. Come Xmas and I'll send them off to Diver Dave wader repair up in Scotland to see what he can do about them as I know they do some miracle stuff.
Anyway, we'll keep at it. The major backup for us that is Dungarvan Bay is pretty filthy from a big south east blow the other day plus some serious rain water, but even so a lad nailed a nice looking bass yesterday via bumping a Black Minnow in the current. We can do no more than take whatever the weather throws at us, but I can't help but wish we had some conditions to fish "subtly" with soft plastics because this new, bigger Yamamoto Swim Senko just looks utterly insane when you rig it weightless on one of those awesome 5/0 or 6/0 Owner Twistlock weedless hooks and then retrieve it nice and slow. I've also got a couple of the smaller, 5.8'' MegaBass DOT Crawler soft plastics that cast just as well as I hoped they would, but we just aren't getting the conditions for properly trying them out. What can you do ? It's October, I love it out here, I know how it can fish when the conditions are bouncing, and there's always the chance of something very serious at any time............