A Welcome Dorset Foray

Firstly, an apology for the quality of some of the photos – schoolboy error  on my part…. forgot to wipe the lense before I started!

Onwards and upwards though and today was my first chance to wet a line since the Cornish jaunt – this time it was a bit closer to home but it was still an hour’s journey down to Dorset. There was a trio of us fishing today – regular sparring partner Nobby and another pal Richard Cake of Dorset Fishing Rods fame. It was an early start as the weather was forecast to deteriorate as the day progressed so we wanted to make the most of the better conditions…. that meant the alarm going off at 2:45am and a large coffee to go. Arrived around 4:30 with Richard meeting us soon after though we were then slightly delayed as Mr Cake seemed to have a few problems deciding which of his many lures to pack….. anyone who knows Richard will understand why his own blog is called ‘Lure Addict!’.

Soon enough we were trudging the shore and before not too long we were casting out into the dark into a decent but not too challenging south westerly. I think we were all fishing Zonks to start with – I know I certainly was with the Hot Shad variety the choice I had plummed for given the conditions. There was not a lot to report until the light was upon us when Richard took a schoolie to get us off the mark . All the time the wind was steadily increasing so I changed tact and decided on something with a bit of punch and slim profile to try and cut through the wind – the choice was the Duo Tide Vib Slim 140 D-27…

This proved a good choice and coupled with Richard letting me try out one of his excellent  9’6” rods as opposed to my own 8’6” I was able to get better distance into the head wind and that put me on the bass. My first hook up I lost in the surf though I did see the fish and it was only a couple of pounds at best. Encouraging and it was looking ‘fishy’ now with good colour and a bit of fizz in the water as the swell and wind increased. A hundred yards along the shore and ‘bang!’ the lure was hit again and this time the fish was landed safely – a lovely conditioned bass again around the couple of pound mark…

Not long after that I picked up a smaller schoolie and that was it for a while but at least I hadn’t blanked!

We stopped for a few minutes to refuel ourselves at what turned out to be the furthest point along the shore we ventured. Here’s the lads taking a breather, with Richard once again sorting through one of his many lure boxes!

Once we started fishing again we had the ‘incident’ of the day with Richard having the misfortune of a juvenile sea gull snatching his brand new lure… this was not good! The bird was less than impressed but with a bit of gentle winding and coaxing we managed to get the bird under control…

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And ready for treble hook removal…

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All was well in the end with Rich practising his strict ‘catch and release’ policy…

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We fished back as best we could with a few more schoolies to boot. Richard was getting up close and personal with one of them!

By now the head wind was making lure fishing extremely difficult with the swell getting up as well so we took the hint and trudged back to the car – not easy with the wind as it was and the shingle underfoot!

All-in-all though a smashing few hours fishing despite the weather deteriorating as it did and especially good to catch up and fish with Rich again – top man. Already thinking about opportunities to get out again in the coming weeks – prime time for some better bass as they feed up before heading offshore so I definitely need to manufacturer a fishing window or two!

Until next time…

Cornwall Trip… Day Five – The Last Hurrah!

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So, final day of the trip and we had two extra bodies with us… Paul and a mate of his Steve who had not fished before! Paul had plenty of kit though and soon had him kitted out ready to rock and roll. It was to prove a slightly damp experience for Steve!!

We headed north of Newquay, grabbed a pasty along the way and then bobbed into a well known lure fishing shop in the area to pick up a few supplies. A short trip from there and we were at our chosen mark.

Conditions were bright but there was a fair westerly blow coming in which meant a hefty swell….. it did looked ‘bassy’ though with some nice gullies and white water swirling around. We would be fishing a flooding tide from low up so we were able to see some of the channels the sea would be reclaiming and it looked good. We split up with Nobby and myself heading a bit further round from the other guys and then down the rocks and as close to the waters edge as we dared. Here’s a couple of shots of the ground…



The swell coming in was getting progressively bigger as the tide flooded in and we both took a couple of waves to wake us up a bit! It wasn’t long before Nobby had a hit on the lure of the week the Savage Gear sandeel but it didn’t stick. Encouraging though and within a few casts he had a bass of around the 3lb mark to show for his efforts – the best of the week as it turned out – he really did have the best week on the fish front out of all of us! Next cast he had another hit and this time it ripped line from the reel, the rod was bent nicely and this seemed like it may well be a decent fish before ‘ping’ and the line went slack….. the air went blue. On retrieval the lure clip had given out so the trusty sandeel was gone! Me – same lure, same tactic – not even  a sniff!!

By now the swells were getting pretty hefty and somewhat dangerous so we decided to head over the headland to a spot in the lea of the wind and prevailing seas… what a difference – it was near on flat in comparison! I’d decide to throw on a Tide Minnow and give that a bash and first cast ‘bang’ fish on… if only a small bass and it saved a blank at the end of the day!


This is where Steve had his fun and games! He had perched himself on a rock not far from the tide line but his inexperience probably told in that he misjudged the incoming tide and when he went to get off he took a dunking!! It was deeper than he thought! Obviously he learnt the error of his ways and took up residence on a much safer rock a bit further round the bay…. wrong!! He was again fishing away but it wasn’t his day and as he climbed down from the rock it was swimming time again I’m afraid! He was under the mis-apprehension that we had not seen his second episode in the drink but alas for him it was all duly noted and remarked upon with Paul and Nobby chuckling quietly on their fishing platform…


There were no more fish to show for our efforts and the time had come to put it to bed for the day and indeed for the this year’s trip. We headed back to Paul’s to wash the kit down, have a quick brew and then we were on the road home to sunny Hampshire.

All told it was another great trip – plenty of fish if not of any decent size – think we may have been a bit early for the bigger one’s in this neck of the woods. Nobby and his Savage Gear Sandeel definitely took the plaudits for the week that is for sure! Great company, lots of laughs and a real tonic after a summer when I’ve not fished anywhere near as much as I had hoped. Mustn’t grumble though as thoughts have already turned to next year and where we might turn to for our annual fishing foray… Cornwall again? Maybe, but perhaps the time has come to try somewhere a bit different – we’ll see. Hope you’ve enjoyed the write up of the trip… my thoughts have already turned to when I can get a decent session in somewhere in Dorset… it’s addictive this lure fishing lark!

I’ll leave you with some additional photos from the trip…

One of Nobby’s bass…

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My good self at the trusty fishing wagon for the week…

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A small hard lure caught bass for Mo…

Nobby fishing…


Decisions for Mo on what lure to use…


A lure change for Nobby…


A Sakura ‘Magic Eel’ caught pollack for me…


Some of the fishing grounds…





Until next time…

Cornwall Trip… Day Four – Sometimes it pays to moan!


A full day after the Cornish Rattler experience, followed, by the Tribute beer evening, and then coupled with his cold Nobby was still whingeing on about how rubbish he was feeling when we woke up on day four!! He obviously got bucket loads of sympathy from Mo and myself!

The plan was easy today – literally drop down to a local mark and fish the rising tide again and if the winds got up go give the south coast a go. Simples! We headed down the cliffs in the morning some of us more easily than others…

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We found a tidy mark with some nice gullies and I decided to stick with the hard lures but it was a bad choice as it turned out with Nobby straight into the pollack on his Savage Gear sandeel and Mo picking up a solitary mackerel. Not a sniff on the hard lures for me and as the wind picked up and tide came in we were once again starting to have fun and games with the waves…. it was time to move and we found a bit of shelter a bit further round the bay and once again Nobby nabbed a couple of small bass and pollack. Nothing for Mo or myself!

Finally, we agreed a change of scenery was in order… Nobby dripped on about how rough he felt all the way back up the cliff path to the car and we decided to head to the south coast. After a quick pasty lunch we were fishing in much calmer conditions – too calm in fact – there was still not a lot happening for either Mo or myself but guess what? The moaning member of our party was into a fish again and this time a real surprise….. a sea trout! Nothing big but it went like stink leaping clear of the water on a couple of occasions!

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At this point Mo and I came to the conclusion the fish too were fed up of Nobby’s whingeing and simply snaffling his lure in a suicidal manner because they couldn’t take any more of him whining!! Sometimes it does pay to moan I reckon?!

We were back mid-afternoon and ready to head up the coast for our final day on tour. We packed up and left the North Inn – heading up to Newquay and the grand hospitality of friends Paul and Carol. That meant another night with a couple of ales to consume and some great food for which I thank Paul and Carol! The proper bed was very welcome as well – top notch!

Tomorrow was to be the last day of the trip so we were hoping for a good one!

Until next time…

Cornwall Trip… Day Three – ‘Rattled’

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Well, what can I say… it wasn’t quite the early start we’d talked about the night before over the few pints of Cornish Rattler that were consumed. In fact one of us (Cough! Nobby! Cough!) was in a particularly bad place as he had developed a cold and it was this of course which was making him feel rotten…. nothing to do with the cider consumption in the slightest you understand. As he was feeling slightly jaded and it was taking him a while to get going Mo kindly offered us a brew in his caravan to try and piece a plan together… this did nothing for Nobby’s poor state of health as Mo’s caravan has been decorated as what can only be described as a ‘Purple Pikey Palace’ which frankly just gave Nobby more of a headache!

Eventually, we had a plan to have a quick fish  where we’d been the day before before taking a trip further along the coast. So, after a quick fry up to soak up the cider and  a bucket of headache pills for Nobby we hit the road.

At the mark the wind had swung round to a north westerly and the swell coming in was bigger than the day before so we had a few fun and games dodging waves… this did nothing for Nobby’s state of health though he was first to catch here on his trusty Savage Gear sandeel – he looks happy about it though doesn’t he?!


We managed a few more small fish here before we decided to make the move further round the coast to an interesting looking cove which involved a fair trek down to the shore line. Mo and I tried to access a mark in shallower water whereas Nobby headed out round towards the headland. Mo and I were out of luck – you simply couldn’t get safe access to the ground we wanted to fish so we set off to catch up with Nobby… we were just on our way when we heard a few yelps – he was in with a better sized pollack and the biggest fish to date – again on his trusty Savage Gear sandeel.

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We joined him on the outcrop in some increasingly emotional conditions with some big swells hitting the rocks. Luckily I managed to pluck another bass from the white water, again on a Savage Gear sandeel, but that was all we had at this location and by now it was getting too dangerous really.

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In truth after day two’s exploits we were all feeling it and after a mere six or so hours fishing we called it a day and headed back to base camp for a cuppa in the ‘Purple Pikey Palace’. After that, pie and chips in the pub washed down with a couple of pints of Tribute and we were ready to get our heads down… well, Mo was anyway… Nobby and myself did the honourable thing and did our bit for the Cornish beer industry until closing time!

I for one slept like a baby and didn’t hear the overnight rain that had clearly fallen when I peered out of my tent on the morning of day four.

Until next time…

Cornwall Trip… Day Two – Dropped a pollack!

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Despite the couple of ales and Mo arriving in the early hours of the morning we were all up and about reasonably early ready to fish the flooding tide. So after a hearty fry up we headed to our first mark which was fairly local to where we were staying and just off the coastal path. Conditions were good with a bit of a breeze, and at the first mark good colour to the water with a bit of white water swirling around the rocks for good measure. There was a shallow-ish  channel in amongst this which looked very fishy but despite a single dropped hook up for Mo it failed to yield us anything at all on either hard lures or the soft plastics which was a bit disappointing.

We fished our way round to a prominent rock where the water looked a bit deeper with a decent sand bar clearly visible beneath the waves. At this point we were all fishing hard lures but I changed to a Megabass Xlayer and almost immediately it was slammed into by what felt a decent fish. I was hoping for a bass but the lurching to the rocks told me otherwise and I wasn’t too disappointed when a very decent pollack surfaced. The problem with where I was  fishing was there was no easy point to land a decent fish so I needed to enlist Nobby’s help to grab the line and lift the fish up and over the rocks…… you can guess what’s coming next…. the braid caught on a razor sharp edge and in the blink of an eye the braid snapped and the fish was gone… still with the Xlayer in it’s mouth. I hate losing fish like that but it’s part and parcel with this type of fishing at times.

It was a good sign though and not long after, with a change to a Savage Gear sandeel, Nobby hooked  a bass followed by a small pollack. In the next hour or so we all hit into school bass and pollack on the soft plastics but in particular the Savage Gear sandeel Nobby was fishing with was proving extremely deadly taking the majority of the fish – a recurring theme on the trip as it turned out!


A couple  of mackerel joined the bass and pollack party before things slackened off again so we walked on round the coast but without any further joy until we returned to the original mark with the shallow channel where we started to hook up again. Nothing big but fish all the same including my one and only hard lure catch of the day – a very small pollack taken on a Rapala X-Rap… I was hardly in raptures about it!!

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A few more bass and pollack and we were all done for the day. We trekked back up the coastal path to the car and headed back to the North Inn.

Surprisingly, we’d been on the go for nearly ten hours and despite the decent dropped pollack it had been a great start to proceedings catching a few and checking out the new ground. So, after cleaning up our kit we felt we deserved our pub grub and over a refreshing Cornish Rattler cider we reflected on the day and our plans for the following morning.

Day three was to prove a  mixture of  joy and pain for one of our party!!

Until next time…

Cornwall Trip… Day One – The North Inn


If you look at my blog articles for 2011 you will notice that roughly the same time last year my pal Nobby  and I made a trip down to Cornwall to have a few days camping and fishing. Well, on the basis we couldn’t remember what the beer or cider tasted like at the North Inn in Pendeen where we camped last time, it only seemed right and proper to go back and refresh our memories! This time we were to be joined by Mo , a pal of Nobby’s, who is just getting into his lure fishing.

The weather was reminiscent of last year as well when we arrived… low cloud and persistent drizzle in the air. Nevertheless, tents were pitched…


… food was troughed…


…. and then a couple of ales were sampled to remind us of what the local brew tasted like…


All done with an eye to where we were going to fish the next day. It was tempting to fish the same spots we had found to be successful last year but we were keen to establish some new marks and hatched a plan for the next morning over a couple of these ales.

A word on camping at the North Inn…. it’s basically a field at the back of the pub, no frills at all just rock up, pitch your tent and pay your dues of £5 per night at the bar. Facilities are simple with a couple of showers and a toilet block open in the pub 24 hours a day. Handily for us fishermen there is also an outside sink as well to wash down your kit after a session. All of the facilities are perfectly clean and serviceable. The real bonus is you have a proper local pub, serving very reasonable food and a decent pint on your doorstep. It’s definitely  got a certain charm about it and the landlord John is a smashing chap of true Cornish tradition! All this and it’s in a great geographical position to explore the coastline and fishing potential of the far west of Cornwall. All was set fair and we headed to our pits at a sensible hour ready for the first days fishing ahead of us… at 1:30 in the morning Mo turned up in his caravan!

We were ready to fish!

Until next time…

Kayak fishing over…… for now anyway

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Well, the picture says it all really but with a slight air of reluctance I’ve sold up on the kayak fishing front… for now at least! The simple truth is  I just wasn’t getting out on it anywhere near enough to justify having it sat around doing nothing and to be honest it had been on my mind for a  while to cash in on it. Things came to a head recently with the need to raise some funds for some pretty substantial  on-going dental treatment and sometimes you just have to make sacrifices.

If I was making the effort to go out then maybe I would have made a different decision but truth is I wasn’t and found myself more likely to choose the simple pleasure of lure fishing along the shore with minimal kit than taking the kayak out.

I will still be keeping an eye in on the kayak fishing world as there are some seriously good anglers on kayaks doing some awesome stuff all over the globe which is always well worth knowing about!

So there you have it.  I’ll be focussing 100% on the lure fishing for the foreseeable future and hopefully I’ll be posting a few more articles than  of late…. particularly later in the month when I get back from a week’s lure fishing in Cornwall.

Thanks to all those who have taken the time to read and commented on my kayak fishing articles over the last couple of years or so plus I should give a shout out to Rob at www.saltwateryakfisherman.com for his help getting me up and running in the first instance. Finally, good luck to Ian who bought all my kit lock, stock and barrel!!

Until next time…