I had bitten the bullet and accepted an invite to join Mike ( Fairziff ) and friends for an 8 hour trip aboard Simon Parrys Suveran II. Today was the day!
Unfortunately our 8 hour trip for this afternoon was called off last night due to a forecast strengthening wind through the afternoon. I for one didnt fancy being stuck out in a rough sea with the tide out. We were however offered a 5 hour trip sailing at 7.30 instead, so the four of us who were able to take up this offer assembled at the new floating pontoon in the harbour and boarded the boat.
We all had a chat and Simon said he would take us to a wreck to try for some Bream as hes had a few off there recently. He doesnt usually go that far out on a 5 hour trip so we were all very grateful and we headed out at full pelt.
We got to the wreck and anchored up.
Due to the space on the boat, we were able to fish 2 rods each and Simon joined in the fun as well. Within seconds of hitting the bottom, our fresh lug baits were being nailed by small Whiting and Dabs. Not our target species but they kept us busy.
Mackeral started coming aboard so i put a set of feathers on to get some fresh bait.
I was hopeful of a Gurnard for the species hunt and possibly a Bream and with a treble header of Mackeral, my chances greatly improved and it was new species number 1 for the trip.
The Dabs and Whiting were now being accompanied by Tub and Red Gurnard but i still hadnt had one then Al brought in a small but perfectly formed Black Bream. I didnt have to wait long for a good rattle on one of my rods, and was made up when i reeled in a Bream of my own. New species number 2.
We fished on with a couple of Dogs coming over the rails to take the species count for the trip up to 7. Mike had a belting Mackeral which i weighed at 01-06-08Lbs and although we continued to catch fish, i still hadnt had the elusive Gurnard.
It was time for a move, after over 3 hours of fun, which had positively flown by. Rods were brought in and off we went to the Smoothy and Bass mark off the end perch, passing the other boats out on 5 hour trips as we went.
I decided to fish with my same 3 hook rig on one rod, baited with Mackeral just incase there were any stray Gurnard this close in and fresh peeler on the other rod for the Smuts and Bass. The Mackeral baited rig was first to register a bite, and it was a belter. I struck into it and after a second there was nothing. I reeled in to find my 30lb amnesia hooklength bitten through. Simon told us there were sometimes small Tope at this spot as well and we assumed i had been hit by one and that was that. I put the rig straight back down minus the middle hook.
It wasnt long before the same rod was bouncing again. This time my strike had the desired effect and the fish was still there as i wound in. Soon a small Tope was lifted into the boat. Perfectly lip hooked and new species number 3.
Paul was first in with a Starry Smoothie to live prawn, and it wasnt long before the tide started running and the fish were feeding. I decided to ditch the peeler as i was the only one not to have caught a fish, and a couple of rig alterations soon saw me registering a bite on the prawn. It felt like a good fish but unfortunately the hooklength broke, either as a result of the braid mainline cutting it or my dodgy knot tying, one or the other. Everyone had fish
either Starry Smoothies, a couple of Common Smoothies and Mike had another small Tope. Simon lost a decent smoothie at the side of the boat, which i reckon would have gone 7lb if weighed, and i got bitten off by yet another Tope.
Finally, i had another bite on the prawn. This time there were no disasters and i managed to get a Starry Smoothy to take my new species tally for the year up to 4.
It was soon time to head for home, very happy with the days fishing, and even happier that i hadnt chucked my ring up, which is always a bonus. Ill be putting my name down for another trip soon as ive got a date with a Gurnard!
Big thanks to Simon, Mike, Al and Paul for a fantastic day.