Monday 21 May 2012

Sport Hots up! Local Lakes Fishing Well

This tench fell to sweetcorn
Summer is here and although we're yet to experience any real hot weather, the water temperatures are up and the fish are on the feed! All of our local venues have reported good fishing and with more settled weather forecast this looks set to continue. The only thing that could upset this is fish spawning. Roach and bream have already done this at most fisheries but the cooler than usual spring has prevented the carp from getting the job done as yet, so expect a little bit of a down turn in sport when they do. For the last month or so, my dad and I have been out enjoying this good fishing, trying all sorts of tactics and baits and with some very good results. Dad has put together some big nets of carp, with some good double figure fish making an appearance. Meat, boilie and pellet, presented under a float or fished on the bottom using a lead or feeder, have all produced fish. Dads highlights though, have to be the 6lb tench and the pound plus roach that he tempted on sweetcorn. I haven't let him have all the glory mind you! I've been doing alright too! Carp to 21lb, including a new surface caught personal best of 15lb 10oz have found their way in to my landing net. 15mm Mainline Cell boilies and floating crust have been the successful baits here. It's not been all about carp though, I've had some decent tench also and the winner of surprise of the month goes to the big perch that couldn't resist a piece of my floating bread! A very productive month and with the rivers opening soon, I'm looking forward to another!

Monday 14 May 2012

Lure Fishing for Tarpon in Cayo Coco, Cuba

As you may have read in previous posts, Dan has been to the Melia hotel in Cayo Coco, Cuba a couple of times and on his recommendation Gemma, my girlfriend and I booked a 10 night stay there.
I was given the names of a couple of trustworthy guides to contact out there. As soon as I got to the hotel I was on the phone to book one of them ASAP.
The weather in Cuba had been brilliant leading up to my holiday but I thought I pack some English rain and wind in my suitcase to feel at home! With all the poor weather and the 'Cuban Time' philosophy on life I managed to book just one day fishing, the day before we were due to fly home.
The Guide Alex, had told me with the weather Cayo Coco had been experiencing the fishing wasn't great but I told him I wanted to give it a try and go for some tarpon and grouper amongst anything else that we could find.
I setup with 50lb braid on my Shimano 8000D Baitrunner with a Greys Missionary 6 Spin 10ft travel rod, which is rated up to 100gm casting weight. I also had with me a new Fox Sport Fishing Tarpon Trek Spincast rod which I was hoping to try out for the first time. I also spooled up with 50lb braid and was using an Okuma Solterra multiplier for this setup. One invaluable piece of kit I had with me was a Buff UV facemask/scarf which kept the sun off my face and saltwater spray out of my mouth, you can see other anglers in the background of the picture below with similar masks! A must have!!

I took some of the Halco Roosta Poppers with me to try out in the 135mm size in the H53 White Redhead and H50 Pilchard colours along with a selection of other Rapala's.

As the wind was up and the deep water was too rough we opted for some inshore trolling near some reefs to start with in pursuit of some lively groupers! Within an hour or so we had a barracuda at the boat and shortly after a stonking take from a grouper. After a fierce 25 minute battle where the grouper was determined to get back to a hole in the rocks it unfortunately sheered the braid on the rock! I won't forget the sound the reel made on the first run for a while!!!!!!

1 of 6 Barracuda caught on lures in Cuba.
After a couple more barracuda trolling we opted to fish the channels between the sand flats. The tarpon were very spread out and pretty spooky. One fish we sight casted to had a half look at a popper but wasn't having any of it! We tried for the rest of the day with casting poppers in various locations which the guide picked out and I thought my luck was in when a big tarpon (guide estimated 80-100lb) propelled its self from the water like a missile after my popper, but the excitement was short lived as the hooks didn't set. With a few more barracuda and an hour long 'lumpy' motor back to the quay in choppy water we had to leave the elusive tarpon.......until next time!!
See below the beating the Halco Roosta Poppers took, these lures work amazingly whilst trolled or cast. They made a big surface disturbance and 'spit' water up causing a fantastic display which induces takes! I will NEVER leave these poppers at home when lure fishing on holiday!

Barracuda Chewed Halco Roosta Popper Pilchard.
The 'Munched' Halco Roosta Popper Rehhead.

Thursday 10 May 2012

A Day of Mixed Fortune. Fishing at Great Somerford

Second trip of the week and its off to Great Somerford in the Cotswolds. Fishing with friend and angling guide Kenny Parsons, the plan was to fish for tench on the eight acre pit whilst also having a go for the trout in the near by lake. On arrival we baited up with red maggot, using the Spomb to get the bait out quickly and accurately. Fishing the feeder over the top for several hours produced nothing, so we decided to rest the swims and head to the trout lake for a bit of fly fishing. This proved far more successful and within a few hours we had landed nine fish to 3lb 8oz, including two nice brown trout. Evening meant it was back on to the pit to try for the tench but the fish were having none of it and by the time the sun had set we both had to admit defeat. A day of mixed fortune! For more about fishing at Great Somerford and for everything you need to know about Kenny Parsons guiding services visit

A large brown trout

Fly Fishing Evening Competition Round Three at Chew Valley Lake

The first of two fishing trips this week finds me at Chew Valley Lake for round three of the summer evening competitions. Starting mid afternoon, I tackled up with a floating line and three holographic nymphs on a fluorocarbon leader. My boat partner, Alan and I motored towards Wick Green Point, where we had been told fish were being caught. After several drifts we had caught a fish each. Other boats were struggling too so we decided to move. Despite fishing several spots, including near the island, the dam and Woodford Bank, only one more trout was netted, so it was back to Wick Green with a couple of hours to go. First drift produced a fish for Alan, followed by two for me and another two for Alan. My four fish for 11lb, including one of 3lb 9oz and Alan's four fish for 10lb 15oz were enough to secure first and second places, so we both went home with big smiles on our faces!