The co-guiding work I do with John Quinlan over in Kerry has absolutely smashed it home to me how much fun and deeply rewarding it is to take anglers out fishing and try to help them catch a few fish as well as hopefully learn something and have a hell of a giggle all rolled into the overall experience. I have been asked so many times over the years whether I take people out fishing in the UK, and whilst I have always appreciated anglers getting in touch and asking the question, I have held back from doing so for various reasons. But then I started doing this work with John and absolutely loving it and I began to wonder why on earth I couldn’t be doing something guiding related here in the UK…………
But I left it alone, until that is I met up with Marc Cowling of South Devon Bass Guide, a business he set up last year in, yes, you guessed it, south Devon! I might live in south east Cornwall now, but when I first started living in the south west, it was the south Devon coastline that was as good as on my doorstep, and I bloody love it. Sure, I need a passport now to cross from Cornwall into Devon, but I can live with that! To then meet another lure obsessed angler who is very much on my wavelength and calls that stunning coastline his home patch was pretty damn cool, and the sheer level of professionalism that Marc is putting into his newish guiding business really made me sit up and think. And certain thoughts got in my head and started swirling around, and it was interesting to find out that Marc had been thinking along the same lines as me.
The long and short of it is that Marc and I are starting to make firm plans to do some work together and offer co-guided lure fishing trips around south Devon. Sure, bass will of course be the major species we target, but we want to make these trips fairly flexible to account for tides and conditions. Catching a few fish for our clients will of course be the priority, but it would be remiss to make a song and dance about hordes of monster bass guaranteed to crawl up the line - nope, as per my work with John over in Ireland, we want these days/trips to be about the complete experience, and I will be very keen to get that across when we start to actually market what Marc and I are going to be doing. Fishing, catching some fish, learning about lure fishing, and having a blast.
Now of course Marc offers his own guided lure fishing trips - and you should get in touch with him if you want to fish around south Devon with a seriously competent guide who will work his backside off to get you fish and increase your knowledge - but together I think we can bring something a bit different to the table. As I said earlier, I have thought a lot about doing my own UK guiding work, but it’s such fun to work with somebody else so that our clients get a whole lot more.
Anyway, that is where we stand right now with this. Lots of planning is going into how we might best offer these co-guided trips, and due to a number of factors we will start to work together from about September and then go from there. It’s a long lure season down here in the south west and I will be fascinated to see if there are actually any anglers out there who would want to come and experience what Marc and I are going to do together. Of course we run the risk of this concept falling flat on its face, but doing something in the UK has been niggling away at me for ages, and as I said earlier, the combination of working with John in Ireland and getting to know Marc and his professionalism was what brought it all together in my head. If what we are planning is of any interest, please contact me here and I can make sure to get in touch directly when we are ready to rock and roll.
Please bookmark Marc’s excellent lure fishing blog right here. He writes really well about bass fishing in a way that is very easy to understand, and I have asked him if he would be so kind as to do me some guest blog posts. Watch this space. Have a good weekend, and below is a glimpse at my work that is coming out in the next issue of Sea Angler magazine.