If you had to describe some pretty tidy bass fishing conditions ?

It seems strange to be putting a photo up here from lure fishing in January to illustrate what I think are some pretty tidy bass fishing conditions, but it does seem that in some parts of the UK there is every chance of a bass or two on the lure gear. So far this winter is not remotely like the last two we have had, and yes, I bet you I end up regretting saying that when we are not even in the middle of January yet. Whatever the case, the photo above was from yesterday morning in south east Cornwall. Oh, and in case you were wondering, we did not have a sniff of a bass !! Fish are sods, it's official.

So what do I like on the open coast ? Good clarity but with the kind of tinge that to me means enough life and fizz in the water to get the bass going (even though we blanked !!). There was a gentle swell rolling in and some wind chop generated by a "not quite lively, but interesting enough" onshore breeze - some guys call this kind of combination "lift", as in "there's a decent bit of lift on", and it does make sense if you think about it. As for the location, well it's a new spot for me, but I hugely like that there are so many features for the bass to hunt around (gullies, holes, sandbanks, rocks etc.). The fact that Mark had his 8 ½lb fish from here the other day of course proves that this location can hold decent bass.

What I really, really like is when you get a combination of good sea conditions for fishing and some interesting light for photography - as in the photo above which I shot yesterday morning. Floats my boat in a major way, and it more than makes up for not getting a sniff. Mark was asking me what on earth I do with all the photos I shoot and I explained that of course I don't sell all the stuff I shoot, but I love my photography as much as I do my fishing, and I just can't hold back from getting the camera gear out when the light gets interesting.........as much as angler can't not go fishing when the conditions go good.

Oh, and I met a thoroughly nice angler by the name of Craig. Or at least he seemed like a nice guy until he went and let me have a quick go with his Daiwa Japan Morethan Branzino lure rod plus Daiwa Certate 2500 spinning reel. Does he not know how weak I am ? Did he not see the weakness in my eyes ? Repeat after me - "I do not have a problem with nice shiny lure fishing gear". Tackle lust aside, it was interesting to hear Craig say that he comes from a fly fishing background and has really got into lure fishing in a big way. Nick Hart and I have spoken a lot over the last couple of years about how much common ground there is between fly fishing and light/balanced lure fishing, and especially when it comes to the more finesse side of things on the lure side. You gotta love how fishing never stands still.