Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Bottle-noses, Boats and Bass

So I recently decided to get back into the lure fishing game. Ive said before that my love for fly fishing probably stems from many hours lure fishing when I was younger. It’s the constant searching, working the lure, chosing the right lure.. it all brings the hunter out in you, and I love it. In the same way that you would match the hatch in fly fishing, you have to chose lures appropriately to match what the fish are feeding on. It is by no means easier than fly fishing! Forget the egos, this is wild fishing, for wild fish, in extreme places. At the end of the day, we all have one common goal, to catch fish and to have fun doing it, so why does it matter if you use a bait, lure or fly rod?

I’ve had a lot of uni work on (yeah, sometimes us students have to put down the bottles and turn the music off, eat something other than a ready meal, grind at a desk staring at a screen and become a normal human for a bit) so apologies for the lack of posts. If there’s one thing students are good at, its procrastinating, and my new interest in LRF (light Rock Fishing) and my rekindled love for lures saw me spending many hours watching youtube videos and standing around in my local tackle shop chatting. As soon as I finished my work, out I went, new lure rod in hand, a box of soft plastics and visions of monster sea creatures.

I bought a 7-28gram lure rod, not quite LRF standards as I wanted to do some heavier lure fishing with the possibility of some bait fishing as well. The rod? A HTO Rockfish ML from Tronix, an absolute cracker for the grand total of £35. I stuck my Okuma Trio Red Core on it with some Shimano SPRO Braid that I had from my lure fishing days. Now all I needed, was lures.

When messing around with lures, you don't need pro stuff
The HTO Rockfish ML - A steal at £35.

Having worked in a tackle shop before, the million pound question is “What are they taking at the moment?” and I was well aware of not asking this, but the folks at The Art of Fishing in Falmouth were oh so helpful, and sent me on my way with some soft plastics. This is a cracking little tackle shop - check them out: http://www.artoffishing.co.uk . One lure particularly caught my eye, the Black Minnow. What a lure! Incredible action, and the first soft plastic that I’ve ever seen that’s mounted on an articulated jig head!

Articulation between the hook and jig head makes for
an impressive action!
The pack contains one mounted body on the articulated
 jig head and one spare body.
I scoured the rocky shore for hours. The Fal Estuary was buzzing today, crashing swell, gusty winds, lots of interesting boats (we all have a little nerdy side) and to my delight, a pod of Bottle-nosed Dolphins swimming by! I found a small reef structure that I could see from my rocky vantage point, aided by the superior polarization of my Costa CatCay 580G sunglasses. I had a lot of follows, Mackerel, Garfish and some very large (I mean monstrous!) Bass, but my reward finally came when I cranked the Black Minnow hard and fast over the reef… WHACK! A Bass came outta nowhere and inhaled my lure! My first Seabass to a lure rod, and jeez it put so much heat on! So much fun, incredible. After a less than graceful landing (I nearly took a dip, twice!) I was gazing at my prize, a beauty. I returned her safely (that’s right, just because it came out of the sea doesn’t mean you have to kill it) and after a little patience she swam away, flaring her gills in a little goodbye – I’m sure it would be less polite if Bass could talk!

What a fantastic creature, and a hungry one at that!

Electric blue fins.

Sufficiently charged on adrenaline, I headed home. What a great morning! It just goes to show that you can catch fish anywhere, even when at uni! My other moral to end on, is that if you really do love fishing, you’ll do anything to get on the water, even if that means dropping your ego and doing something different, because if I remained a fly angler and refused to even cast a different kind of rod, I’d never have experienced that day. I’ve always hated the egos and social boundaries in angling – what’s the point?! We all have the same interests and share the same resource, so why act like we are all so different? Hope you enjoyed this one, and I also hope that you’ll take my opinions (no rant intended) with you, because it really is refreshing to try something new!

Time for lectures now (or shall I just go fishing?).

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