Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Easterly wind bass - 21st April 2014

Having got over the worst of a bad flu and chest infection I was eagar to get out fishing. However, the warm light southerly breezes of the past week were replaced by rather cold east/east southeast winds. One of my favourite marks for this time of year does not fish well if there is an easterly wind blowing so I made my way to an alternative venue. I got to the beach at about 8.30 pm which gave me 2.5 hours fishing to high tide, the optimum interval to fish this mark, although I would have preferred to fish it on a bigger tide. There was a weak to moderate surf with closely spaced waves breaking on the beach. So it looked promising. I set up my usual format for bass beach fishing, two rods with 4/0 pennel pulleys with large lug baits.

However, it was quite for the first hour and a half. Then at about 10 pm there was a sudden tug on the rod to my left and the line went slack. I rapidly reeled in the loose line. The fish had carried the bait in a long way, it must have been only 15 out from the shore by the time I  connected with it. It was a small bass of 2.5 lbs with a length of 46 cm.

After that there was more activity, but mostly small flounder plucking on the bait. The first flounder I landed was about 32 cm. This was followed ten minutes later by another bass. It fought a little stronger than the first and was a just under 3 lb with a length of 48 cm.

After another ten minutes I thought I had another bass. There was a strong knock on the rod, but as I was hauling it in the fight didn't feel like a bass, more like a flat fish. It was a flounder, but my largest of the year so far at 43 cm.

Then at the top of the tide I had a very strong tug on one of the rods. I immediately grabbed it and could feel a good fish on the end. This was putting up a much better struggle and fought hard all the way in. It was a 4.25 lb bass, 54 cm in length.

I had planned to fish for an hour on the dropping tide until midnight. But after the third bass it quitened down apart from the occasional flounder nibble. I decided to pack up at about 11.40 pm. I reeled in one of the rods, dismantle it and reached for the second rod. But as I began to retrieve I could feel some weight on the end and then the pull of a fish. It was another large flounder, just over 42 cm.

So with three bass up to 4.25 lbs and three flounder up to 43 cm it turned out to be a better session than I anticipated given the slack tides and easterly wind.

Monday, 21 April 2014

Couple of sessions from a few weeks ago

Early in the month I had a couple of beach sessions but didn't get a chance to post up a report as I was going on a week's holidays from 5th April and then on the flight home last week I was hit by a chest infection and bad dose of flu. I am just getting back to normal now.

Session 1
I got to a beach mark about 2.5 hours before high tide in the afternoon. There was a moderate surf and the water looked weed free. I set up the first rod and put a large lug bait on a 4/0 pennel pulley and cast out. Only a few minutes later, while I was still setting up the second rod I had a strong tug on the first then the line went slack. I grabbed the rod, reeled in the slack line and connected with a strong fish. It was pulling hard and fought strongly all the way in. It was a fine plump bass of about 4.25 lbs. That was a good start.

Less than 20 minutes later I had another tug on one of the rods. This felt to be another good fish and put up a similar fight. It was slightly smaller, just under 4 lbs.

A little later I had a third bass. This was a smaller fish with a weight of 2.5 lbs.

After that it got quite, apart from two flounder both of 40 cm. Not sure if it was the same fish I caught twice. On the photos they dont look the same but the light angle is different, the patterns on the second are much clearer than those on the first.

I also had a couple of small coalfish close to dusk.

Session 2
I had some lug left after the previous session so a couple of days later I finished work early and headed to the same mark, arriving about 2 hours before high tide. It was windier and there was a nuch bigger surf compared to the previous session. About half an hour after setting up I had the first bite, a 3 lb bass.

This was followed 15 minutes later by a second bass of 3.5 lbs. I noticed some subtle taps on the rod at first, I picked it up, held it until I felt a more substantial tug and then struck hooking into another strong fish. It surged to the right and put up a good struggle in the surf. When I eventually landed it I found that the lower hook of the pennel was embedded in the fishes gills. So thought it best to keep that one for dinner. It's egg sacks were exceedingly bloated so looks like it was very close to spawning time.

After about another 15 minutes I had a third bass, the smallest of the session at 2.75 lbs.

The bass appeared to move on after that. I was getting plenty of nibbles from small flounder which excelled at whipping the works off the hooks without been caught although I did manage to hook tow of them, both small fish under 20 cms in length. After dark I caught a small coalfish before packing up as the tide began to drop .