Thursday 24 March 2016

A Spring Ling (Pollock and Barbel too!)

My new personal best ling of 24lb
I ended my last blog post by telling you that I had some boat trips booked and a trip to the River Wye planned for March 14th, the last day of the river season. I've got lucky with two trips aboard Spot On! of Brixham and my day on the Wye all producing some great fishing and on lovely sunny spring days too. The first of my two boat trips was spent wrecking for pollock and to say we caught a lot of fish would be an understatement. Pollock to 16lb were caught in abundance by all on board and there were a lot of aching arms by the end of the trip. My day on the banks of the Wye at Courtfield changed the pace a little and it made a nice change to sit down and wait for a bite instead of winding lures furiously all day. Two barbel of about 5lb a piece were the reward for chancing my luck on a river that can be very unpredictable at this time of year. Great to end the season by catching my favourite species from my favourite river! Trip number two aboard Spot On! and I was keen to try and catch a ling on bait. There would be a window of opportunity to do this during slack water but until then it was a case of working lures to try and tempt other species. I caught a few pouting (that was the ling bait sorted) and a few nice pollock, biggest was about 12lb. Just before "ling o' clock" I got the rod and reel I had intended to use for the ling fishing in an almighty tangle, losing a lot of braid. I had no choice but to set up my lighter outfit, the one I use for "having a bit of fun with the pollock" with my ling end gear. A 12oz lead was soon plummeting to the seabed dragging behind it a pouting head mounted on an 8/0 hook tied to a short length of 70lb line. Of course the inevitable happened and after only a couple of minutes I found myself attached to a ling that had me fooled in to thinking I'd snagged the wreck below. This fish really did feel huge on a rod and reel that had previously only handled cod and pollock to mid doubles. I slowly but surely gained back braid and after a ten minute scrap that I really enjoyed a big ling lay on the deck of the boat. It pulled the scales round to 24lb, beating my previous best by 9lb. I was very happy and even caught a second, smaller ling soon after as well. Visit for all you need to know about trips with Ross aboard Spot On! and for information on the River Wye. I'll be out again soon no doubt so check back here to see how I get on.

One of two Wye barbel caught on March 14th

Wednesday 23 March 2016

Kingston Seymour Sea Wall (Bristol Channel Sea Fishing) Cod at Last!

 Since before Christmas I have made numerous visits to the sea shore of the Bristol Channel in search of a PB shore caught Cod,
Which stands at a Lowly 2 1/2lb caught some years ago, so with the tides spot on this week and rumours of fish being caught I planned a visit Tuesday evening my approach was to be two rods one with a whole squid fished at range and another two hook flapper rig with rag fished closer for a flounder or smaller fish,
First cast at around 6.30pm produced a couple of small rattles on the rag worm rigs which I left followed by an almighty drop back which I promptly wound down too, this was no flounder not what I need a good size fish on a size 2 thin wire hook pumping it in from 60yds the fish kited right then tried to make for the rocks under my feet by this time, I still hadn’t Seen the fish but was now convinced I was connected to a Cod, not massive but certainly a PB,
It’s at times like this you need some luck and tonight I had some a freak wave lifted the fish out of the rocks right to my feet where I pick it up and carried to the shore,  it was hooked by the most tenuous of hook holds with the thin wire no.2 practically straight ,
Between 4 & 5 pounds

Not a Breath of wind
Sadly I had not packed any scale’s but put the weight at between 4 and 5 pounds And feeling so pleased with myself I decided to return it alive , I fished on until 8.30pm with only a couple more small pin whiting to show for my efforts , and not a bite on the whole Squid , so if your struggling for a Bristol Channel Cod go Flounder Fishing ,