Massively overexcited - off to Ireland today

I have been to Ireland a few times before around this time of year - catch it right and it can be awesome (see here for example), but get beaten up by the weather and it's like anywhere when conditions are against you. Tough. I am lucky though in that I have some really good friends over there who know their stuff big time, and with recent reports of some simply outstanding cod fishing I am feeling pretty confident that whatever we get I might see some good fishing. Bass are of course first on the list, but I am more than open to doing what is required to get in amongst some fish. And to be perfectly honest, anytime I can get to head over to Ireland is just about perfect in my book. Have you by any chance guessed by now that I am sort of head over heels in love with the place ?

I am taking over a fair bit of "new to me" lure fishing gear to play around with and see what I think of it - some MegaBass lure rods for starters, plus a MegaBass spinning reel. As much as I concur wholeheartedly with the way that the French guys fish for their bass, I am also starting to really wake up to more and more of the fishing tackle coming out of Japan. French rods are French rods, but as far as I can tell the Japanese tend to do things a bit differently, and it strikes me that so much of their gear can work so well for many of the ways in which we lure fish here in the UK and Ireland. I have had a quick few chucks with some of these MegaBass rods and they are feeling a little bit serious to say the least, and especially the particular one I picked up at the T&G show and immediately wished I hadn't !! Why I do this to myself I don't know - what happens if I go and fall for one of them big time and then have to go through the pain of packaging them up and sending them back ?

I have also managed to get hold of one of the brand new Daiwa Caldia Mag Seal spinning reels for the trip - the 2500 size is the one I have here, and it's loaded up with the awesome bright green 20lb Daiwa Tournament 8-Braid. I have been using this stuff for long enough now to conclude that it's one hell of a braid (why the bright green seems to me to be the best of the bunch I don't know, but the stuff is strong as hell if you use decent knots). I have been hearing bits and pieces for a while now about these brand new Daiwa Caldia reels with this Mag Seal thing, indeed it strikes me that Daiwa have for some reason decided to really up the stakes with this new spinning reel and include a lot of stuff in there that for a while was only available in the really high-end stuff like the Certate. I have also filled up a reel with a spool of that brand new Berkley Nanofil "Uni-Filament" line, in the 6.934kg breaking strain, or to you and I, roughly 15lb. We shall see how it performs.......

I am getting my "usual" 2.30pm StenaLine ferry this afternoon from Fishguard to Rosslare, indeed I reckon I could almost do the drive blindfolded these days. I will be staying in Tramore - close to the Absolute Fishing tackle shop which I will be doing my best to exercise great self-control upon entering. Bad people to sell all that nice looking gear which they know people like me have little hope of resisting. As well as all this different lure gear, I am also travelling of course with the bass bait gear and even a proper beachcaster and multiplier for a go on the cod they are smashing over there. I can't remember the last time I tried to properly wind a beachcaster up, but at least my efforts should prove amusing to the people I am going to be fishing with. As usual I will do all I can to keep the blog going.

Check out the cover above for the new issue of the consistently outstanding Australian magazine "Fishing Wild". I can't tell you how worth it is getting your hands on this publication. The fact that the editor is still publishing some of my work and has not worked out yet that I am nothing more than a self-taught fishing junkie photographer and writer is pretty remarkable !! I have got a big feature in this issue on that scary-good fly fishing for tigerfish in Tanzania that I went and photographed last year. Whatever fishing you are in to, just get hold of this magazine here and indulge your brain and your passion. Anyway, best go pack the car and head up to Fishguard.