I felt almost no confidence, but I simply could not resist getting out on the coastline yesterday late afternoon and early evening to chuck a few lures. The expectation of actually catching a bass was about zero, but this stunning weather has got to me. Me, my red rod, a few lures (ok, quite a few lures), and my sheepdog Jess. It felt a little like summer until the sun dropped further in the sky, but I have been promising myself not to head out lure fishing for bass until at least April. Are we not eternal optimists though ? And yes, I was right, I saw not a sniff of a fish.
To be perfectly honest, it was not really a proper fishing session as such - I wanted to get a few photos of the coastline as the sun dropped low, and I also wanted to have a really good walk/scramble around to check out where I reckon the fish might be hanging around when they are in. My feelings are that where I was fishing is going to be a back tide mark, with acres of rocks and weed shallowing out nicely as the tide clears. Yesterday was deliberately timed to be over the low water period so that I could see the lie of the land properly.
The light yesterday evening did not end up as impressive as I thought it might, but I took a few photos I was fairly happy with. Just sitting there with my camera on a tripod and watching the sun dip over south Devon kind of does it for me really. Nobody else was around, and more's the pity that no bass were around either !! To be fair, the water was about as clear as possible and bigger tides are going to help. But as I said, how can you resist going plugging when the weather is so good ?
In years gone by I would now be chasing bull huss in a big way around south Devon, with regular trips thrown in to the shallow reefs up in the Bristol Channel (Hinkley, Lilstock etc.) for the thornback ray and spring codling, but I tend not to spend much time these days with beachasters in tripods. It's awesome fishing, and it always will be, but I am restless person by nature and I live for different experiences. And I simply do not have as much time as I used to.
My feeling is that it won't be long until we connect with a few bass around here. Reports of bass turning up in various places are increasingly frequent - and I don't include Ireland here, that place is a (bountiful) freak of nature. Jealous, me ? I have a feeling that certain methods might work in very specific places around here (cryptic eh ?), and much as these east winds are blowing in lovely blue skies and relatively warm day time temperatures, I am going to feel a whole bit more confident when we get a nice set of spring tides and more onshore conditions to inject a bit of "life" to the sea. We shall see.....
I would imagine that a few of you watched that mightily impressive Yellowstone programme on BBC2 on Sunday night ? I made myself wait until it was on in HD last night, and I have to admit to sitting there open mouthed in complete astonishment at such awesome programme making. Some of the shots in there were breathtaking. What a place, what a brutal winter. If you missed it, watch it here on the BBC iPlayer. Nick Hart and I spent a day in Yellowstone last summer when we were out doing a job in Montana, and just that brief glimpse of the place left a lasting impression on me. The mighty Yellowstone river was still blown out with snow melt in late June when we were there. It continues to stagger me at how impressive this world can look. Too much to see, too little time.