Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

It doesn’t matter how good or bad last season was, because around this time every year I start feeling sick with excitement about all the fishing to come

Whilst I don’t hold out a huge amount of hope for nailing a few bass on lures at this time of year down here, it is Cornwall, the water doesn’t feel too cold, and if conditions come good then a bit of a go has to be worth it. In reality though it’s the time of year for me when I start to literally feel sick with excitement and anticipation at the season to come - around where I live was very up and down on the bass in 2017, but you never know how each season as such will pan out, and as ever I have a bunch of plans and ideas to shake my fishing up a bit and see what happens…………


Every year is very different and I don’t know when your local bass fishing tends to switch on around you, but if I include January at least as part of the bass season down here, then I landed my first bass of the 2017 season on April 11th last year, as per the fish above. When might things switch on this season? My mate Mark who is kindly holding my bass above had a nice fish on March 12th a few years ago, and I would still love to know if that was a bass which had stuck around or was it a bass that had just come in?


I know that John Quinlan often starts his bass guiding season over in Kerry towards the end of March, and he fully expects his clients to catch fish or else he simply wouldn’t be taking their money. I keep hearing rumblings of some good, very early season bass fishing on lures in the deepest, darkest parts of Cornwall, and of course this sort of stuff makes my brain rattle around in my head when it’s early February, it feels like it’s been raining for two months solid, we’re burning a lot of wood to keep the stoves going, and my youngest girl is still wearing shorts to school but dad here isn’t as brave as he used to be and is waiting for warmer weather to get the shorts out.

I know things are different that far south and west, but are too many of us perhaps a bit guilty of doing the same things at the same times and not thinking out of the box a bit more? I am as guilty as the next angler of often defaulting to what you tend to know the best on your local patch, but with how up and down the bass fishing was around here last year I am determined to shake things up a bit. If there is one thing I don’t mind doing it’s taking a punt and risking a few blanks, because if I don’t try new places and techniques and stuff like that then I can get stale and lose a bit of the buzz.


One thing I didn’t manage to do last year was spend nearly enough time over in Ireland on my own fishing and photography. I consider myself incredibly lucky to spend what tends to be about a month in Kerry spread over a couple of guiding trips, but for various reasons I only managed the one Ireland trip where I got to fish myself and take a bunch of photos etc. We had some awesome fishing around Dungarvan last September, but if things go more to plan this year then I will be getting back to my usual quota of time over in Ireland, my favourite country on earth.

And of course it’s that epic time of the year when the Six Nations starts again. It might not be an epic time for bass fishing, but I can’t wait for the Six Nations and I reckon it’s going to be one hell of an interesting tournament with so many injuries for all the sides and with how strong Ireland and Scotland are looking. You all have a good weekend and may spring arrive pretty damn soon please……..