We had a situation over in Ireland last week when we could see a bunch of terns working over what we presumed were sandeels, and of course you can’t help but assume that there may well be a bass driving those sandeels up from underneath. And then you see the odd big swirl on the surface and your heart loses a few beats and your knees go all wobbly………..
On a couple of occasions those terns came within a relatively easy casting range and we could get at the bass - there must have been a good number of bass around because I distinctly remember properly missing a good hit on my DoLive Stick due to my over excitement (when will we grow up? Never I hope!), only for another bass to hit my lure and hook up a split second later.
But when those terns/sandeels/bass were out of conventional casting range, that’s when you are left rummaging through your lure boxes to see if you have got anything that might get out there. It was one of those times when I wish I had been carrying one of the GT Ice Cream lures to see how it might do here, but I wasn’t. Steve though had one of these Bass Bullet lookalikes, the Westin Kongetobis with him (says 27g on the packet, but it’s actually a 30g lure). I wonder how many anglers have looked at lures like this and thought no way, where’s the bib, where’s the big action, surely it looks too simple?
If you catch the Westin Kongetobis right it absolutely flies, but it does call for the right drop and rod speed. When Steve gets it going it frigging flies out there, and I guess much like fishing a senko or DoLive or something like that, yet again it seems to be the case that less is often so much more. Straight retrieving that Westin Kongetobis at a medium sort of speed gets it swimming with a bit of a lazy slalom just under the surface, and what was so important here was distance. I’ve got a few hard sub-surface and surface lures with me that are very good casters, but they can’t get out to where the bass are feeding at this particular time.
A couple of good bass later and yet again it’s hit home to me how it can be so worth carrying the odd lure with you that might not end up seeing a whole lot of water time but can give you a different option. The option here was of course as much distance as possible, and whilst distance if of course not remotely everything in bass fishing, on the odd occasion the ability to put a lure a long way out there is a handy weapon to be able to turn to.
We had another situation last week where we were fishing a raging run of current and again we could see some terns working. We tend to bump the bottom here with soft plastics on say 20g jig heads, but the fishing was very quiet and with those mostly out of casting range terns it just didn’t feel to me like the bass were going to be feeding on the bottom with the sandeels up in the water like that. So I put on the one casting jig I had with me, a 35g Duo Press Bait Fusion Slim thing that I think is discontinued, and on that truly remarkable 9’ 7-35g HTO Nebula rod and my beloved 18lb/0.12mm Sufix Performance Pro 8 braid this thing is absolutely flying out there (apparently the slightly more powerful 9’ 12-42g HTO Nebula is also a peach of a rod, but I haven’t seen it yet). A few casts later when the terns came just about close enough and as the lure is on the drop I am suddenly hooked up to the only bass we caught out there, and at about 5lbs and in that current it’s some scrap. We caught plenty of bass close in last week over in Ireland, but on a couple of occasions the distance thing paid off.
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