Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

When the wind’s in the east……………….the bass feed like piranhas!

What the hell do I know anyway? Take some conditions that I’d generally despise for bass during the day, yet we’re out there smashing fish on soft plastics - an east wind that’s stuck around for at least two weeks now (very much offshore where we were fishing), crystal clear water, a mix of sunshine and overcast skies - exactly the sort of conditions I’d write about in Sea Angler as being a real turn off for bass. Oh, and it’s nearly Xmas. What on earth is going on?

Well that’s the whole point if you ask me, and I love it. When are we ever going to come close to knowing it all? I couldn’t fish the weekend before last because my wife was away at a 40th birthday party and I was looking after my girls, but a couple of mates went out on the east winds and absolutely smashed fish. I then managed to get out on the Monday and had a bunch of fish on my go-to “twitchbait” style soft plastic, the 6’’ OSP DoLive Stick. If bass fishing gets any more fun than working soft plastics over stunning ground with plenty of rip currents, fizz and life and fish hitting you pretty regularly then please let me know, because I spent the few hours literally feeling sick with excitement I was loving it so much. That connection between you and your lure is just electric, and I can’t get enough of it.

White senkos, night fishing and a few bass aside last week - I’m generally feeling fine with flat calm conditions for this as long as it’s properly dark - a few of us got to fish this daytime spot again on Saturday. I got out of my amazing Berlingo, saw the sea and the clear water and the calm seas and I must admit that my heart sank a bit, but as I got down to the rocks and saw one of the lads playing a bass, well let’s just say that I was jumping for joy yet also giving myself a mental kicking for being so bloody predictable with my worrying about conditions. There were plenty of bass around if you kept reading the water and looking for them, it’s early December, it’s pretty cold with the freshening east wind, yet I’m sweating away again with my excitement levels fit to burst.

It goes without saying that I love fishing, but without a doubt it’s the direct connection between rod, lure and fish that is the principal reason for why lure fishing has done it for me in such a big way for a number of years now, and those few hours on Saturday before the England v Australia rugby match kicked off were about as much fun as I can imagine having. If you read my blog then you will have worked out that I am having another love affair all over again with the DoLive Stick, and I guess that it’s the confidence this lure gives me in a situation like that which is so important, and the hit from a fish as you’re working the lure is just frigging awesome - twitch, twitch, pause, reel a bit, twitch, tap from a fish, twitch it again and then the tip slams over as the bass connects. Come on, does it get any better? I can’t pretend that a certain amount of over excitement didn’t occasionally cause me to fish like a bit of a tit (sorry Jody for wrapping my braid around your rod tip when you had a fish on!), but overall I am just happy to keep on learning - learning about fishing better with weightless soft plastics, and learning to stop dissing certain conditions because they might not fit with my mental image of what “the perfect bass fishing conditions” actually are.

And we won the rugby after a scary twenty or so minutes of tripe. What a game. Unbeaten for 2016, could you possibly imagine that after England’s dire World Cup last year? And then it was Strictly in the evening with my girls. My perfect Saturday!