Hard Slog…

It’s been a while…

As some may have noticed I’ve really been rather tardy in my updating of the blog since September last year and if I’m honest I lost a little bit of enthusiasm for writing things up despite another great trip to Ireland in November in somewhat challenging conditions! Fished some new ground for me around Courtmacsherry area for a couple of days before heading down to Thatched Cottage in Kerry to meet up with my mate Nobby for the excellent hospitality and guidance on offer from John and Lynn. Best fish of the week was actually the first one I had based out of Courtmacsherry and while quantity was better in Kerry the fish were on the smaller size and boy did a lot of effort go into catching them!

Fast forward to this year and the virus hits.

Until very recently fishing has been a bit of a non-event as it has for most and I have only very slowly started getting out there amongst it. First couple of local sessions with Nobby resulted in a single fish between us barely bigger than the lure itself  and then on our first excursion meeting up in Dorset we both blanked on a half-hearted recce trip…. more depressing was seeing inshore netters once again throwing their nets out within casting distance. Let’s not go there.

And so to yesterday’s hard slog… been keeping an eye on conditions for a Chesil trip and with winds dropping down a little and having a fishing itch to scratch I booked a day off work, dragged myself out of bed at 2 a.m., drove for an hour and a half, walked for a further half an hour and was just about fishing for first light. From my start point it was walk and cast, walk and cast, walk and cast, and so on with lure changes to boot for the next three hours I think…. not so much as a sniff, zilch! Frustratingly, no more than 300 yards offshore I could see birds working the surface for whitebait and what I would guess were mackerel breaking the surface from beneath but couldn’t be certain from a distance. Water clarity was patchy given the winds of late but certainly not soup and eminently fishable…. it was becoming a bit soul destroying so by the time I’d reached as far as I thought I could go taking into account the return trudge I stopped for breakfast and had a quick shut of the eyes!

It was a good job when a shower passed over to wake me up and get me moving again…. only a nap honest! It was time to head back and follow the same process of walking, casting and changing lures intermittently largely on the basis of slight changes in water colour. I hadn’t long changed from my favourite Pearl Rainbow Zonk to the Hot Shad version of the same lure when out of nowhere… BANG!… the rod bent over and finally I had a bass! It may have only been a schoolie but I don’t think I’ve ever been so pleased to have a blank saver!

Being I still had a fair trek ahead of me I was freshly invigorated and every cast for a while I was expecting the rod to bend over again but guess what….. nothing, no knocks, no sight of a fish in the waves, absolutely nowt… and still the birds fed 300 yards off shore!!

A single fish was all it was to be and I don’t mind admitting I arrived back at the car shattered…. my health app told me 18000+ steps which on those stones feels twice that believe me! I just kept telling myself at least I hadn’t blanked but truthfully I had hoped for a little better. For the dedicated lure angler we can only hope things pick up now and into the autumn….. fingers crossed anyway!

Until next time…

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