Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

Is there anything more satisfying than taking a complete punt on a mark and finding a bit of decent fishing?

Can you remember such a long stretch of amazing weather like this? For sure it doesn’t give us those bouncy conditions and fizzing green water, but after that winter and early spring we had I’ll take as many of these long sunny days as possible. In the eight+ years I have lived here in SE Cornwall I can’t recall ever seeing the sea so flat and clear and of course that presents a bunch of problems if you’re looking for some bass fishing. Combine this with these short nights and more and more moon on the (clear) water and it’s not exactly easy to come up with a plan……….

Mark and I spoke on Friday about various options, but try as we might we just could not come up with a logical plan that really spoke to us. We arranged to sleep on our lack of ideas and then speak again on Saturday morning and see what we had come up with - but my mobile went on Friday evening as I was watching a rather disappointing film. Mark had a very cunning plan - a punt, but a punt with a good bit of logic behind it - current, plenty of current. Cue Saturday morning. 


And what a glorious morning. Not having to get in my car to head out fishing is a particular thrill, and if going fishing is also a good dog walk for Storm then even better. With how calm and bright it was when we met up I don’t think either of us were feeling that confident, but at least we had plenty of current. The River Tamar is so big and deep in places that to be honest it tends to slightly freak me out as regards bass fishing with lures (oh how confident I used to feel with baig baits nailed hard to the bottom when fishing the Tamar!), but thanks to Mark’s cunning thinking we had some good looking ground, plenty of features, and that all important current. If nothing else with such a sunny start to the day it was a good dog walk!


So we’re chucking surface lures around in a decent run of current and Mark’s got a new APIA rod on test from The Art of Fishing where he works that I am itching to have a quick go with. He hands the 9’3’’ length of high-end carbon over and I have a few exploratory casts, and as I go to hand the rod back to Mark there is an almighty crash on the surface lure. OK, so the bass doesn’t connect, but ladies and gentlemen we have signs of life! About the same time I see a poor little baitfish trying its best to escape an unseen predator. Two adult hearts start to race like kids in a sweet shop.


Don’t you love how bass often hit surface lures so bloody hard in current, and then how they scrap when they’ve got all that assistance? With current weather conditions so utterly uninspiring for so much of the bass fishing we tend to do yet thanks to an extremely cunning plan on Mark’s behalf we end up having a few nice fish over the weekend - and damn it floats my boat when you take a punt like that and it ends up working. If there is one thing we are all after in our fishing it is surely options - options on where to go fishing in all kinds of conditions and tides and what have you. Obviously I am overjoyed we caught a few nice bass - and I’ll take explosive surface hits all day long - but more than that what fun it’s going to be to start really working this new mark out and seeing what we might find.

From bashing our heads together and really struggling for ideas to having a good bit of surface fishing for bass from a location we had never fished before. You have got to love how fishing never ceased to amaze us, indeed it was if Mark had read my mind yesterday evening when it went so flat and calm and clear that all signs of fish life disappeared and we just enjoyed the peace and quiet and complete lack of other people around - “do you think we will ever suss this fishing thing out?” asked Mark. Gotta love it.