A previous weekend saw me and Tim head out for a morning session. It was flat calm and sunny and not a fish in sight apart from the ever larger growing population of Garfish!
We tried a few marks for Bass and fished on the surface without a sniff, It didn’t take me long to switch my attentions to Wrasse. Even these where hard to find but the trusty Seaspin bikoa in Deep Junebug got nailed on a straight retrieve close to the bottom.
Apart from getting smashed up big time that was all the action we saw. We felt pretty disheartened and looking out across the mirror like sea it clicked… THE BOAT!
Why aren’t we out in the boat??! We hatched a plan to get up the next day and take it out for a spin…
The forecast winds where offshore but they had picked up from the previous day. On arrival it clearly looked choppy but we always new we had the estuary to fall back on if it was too rough.
We got out on the water around 11am, Tim wanted to try trolling so I stuck on a Seaspin Mommotti 140 in ACR as we headed out and past some Commercial guys. We watched them for a bit but they caught nowt and soon headed back off to port. We where a little late to get going this morning but it only took us 5 mins to get into our first Bass of the day. Only a schoolie but it was welcome all the same. Tim wanted to give it a go so he stuck out a lure out too and we did another two runs along this stretch of coast without any further success.
I wasn’t really into trolling and we headed off to see what else we could find, with no GPS or fish finders we where fishing blind. It turned out to be rougher than it looked from the cliff top (as it always does) but knowing the wind would be dropping off later we carried on. We moved round the coast, found a little bay and a little bit of shelter. The bay looked good with a nice swell breaking onto some mixed ground but we weren’t going to push it by getting to close in the SIB and instead we sat a few hundred yards offshore.
My plan was to fish near the bottom, hoping for wrasse and pollock along with the chance of a bass… The Fiiish minnow 25gm offshore was my chosen lure. Not in kaki but the grey type colour. Instantly we where getting bites. Little knocks here and there and a few tentative taps from wrasse. We where drifting along at a slow pace just covering some ground. The lure was close to the boat and I was fishing a slow sink and draw just keeping in contact with the bottom when I felt a slightly better tap that I managed to connect with. The fish held deep and up popped a nice bass of 55cm.
Things looked good and I managed to pull in some wrasse, pollock and another bass. We set up for the same drift and Tim stuck on his favourite Savage gear slug. Few casts into the drift and he hooked a dead weight. The result was a nice surprise John dory!
Such a cool looking fish and you can see how close to the shore we where…
I picked up a few more wrasse and pollock. While Tim was looking for another lure he left his rod hanging off the side of the boat with his lure mid water and letting the swell do the work. To our surprise we saw a tap and he struck into a fish but it wasn’t on for long. Tim started fishing mid water rather than letting the lure sink and started to get hits he just couldn’t connect. Few hits later though and he connected with a nice 54cm bass.
We tried it for a little while longer but the bites died off and we decided to try a different approach. The swell had started to die down so we moved within casting distance of the shore. With Tim in control of the boat I started to cast into the white water and around the swell. It didn’t take long before I hooked a bass around 2.5lb. We swapped over but we couldn’t find anymore.
Time was getting now and we decided to try and target some wrasse near one of our favourite shore marks. Just further off the shore are a small group of islands with a submerged reef and plenty of current. Somewhere I have always fancied trying for bass and pollock, you just can’t cast far enough to hit the features or cast at the right angle to get your lure in the right place.
We tried for some wrasse but couldn’t buy a bite. I soon changed to the 42gm SGS in real pearl and tried to target bass and pollock. I cast towards the corner of the reef and brought it back along the edge with a steady retrieve a little tap and I was into a fish. A nice bass of around 4-5lb surfaced shaking it’s head on the surface and unfortunately shaking the hook too…
We lifted the anchor and moved to position our self’s behind the reef casting towards it and with the current. This resulted in one pollock and another nice bass following Tim’s lure right to the boat. I wanted to try some different angles around the island and this resulted in lots more pollock but all small at around a 1-1.5lb.
We moved inside of the reef again but so we where able to cast along the side of the island as well and we picked up a couple more pollock just fishing sink and draw as close to the bottom as we could get away with before I got nailed bringing the lure vertically back up to the boat. The fish hit the lure and headed straight for the bottom with a decent run. I stopped the fish and it held deep for a second before a nice pollock of 4.5lb came to the surface.
That was my target for the day and I was pleased to get it. It’s not a good boat caught pollock by any means but It’s just what I wanted to see, admittedly I was hoping for most of them to be around that size but we where only fishing a few hundred yards off the shore and we where limited by the weather. Still a fun day afloat for our first attempt at sea and leaving us hungry for some more.
Sorry for the lack of updates recently, I have been busy moving house and the Internet doesn’t allow me too edit my blog so until I get things sorted properly it’s pretty awkward at the moment. Hopefully this winter I plan to do a lot more on the blog with some of my thoughts and all the things that are left playing on your mind at the end of the season plus a load of reviews from some of the new products I have been trying out…