Saturday, 31 May 2014

Fishing with friends.

I've had a little bit of free time lately and as a result I have been able to catch up with some friends, which has been a huge positive.
We've had some pretty good fishing, sunshine and some laughs too. 

Thursday night I was out with Ben and his mate Ed; I've never met Ed but he seems a thoroughly nice chap and clearly a passionate angler. We were fishing a new mark and Ed led the way kicking off with two feisty Bass while myself and Ben were blanking. A little later I dropped a small fish and thought I'd blown it when  literally just before we left, I managed to save the dreaded blank by tempting a Schoolie to take my 5" Skid Stik in Holo Yellow. Nice!

Skid Stik

At the time the fish took, I actually had a small audience consisting of a father and his two children. They got incredibly excited to see the fish, which was quite funny and the young girl snapped my picture for me. I gave them a small education on Bass as a predator , they seemed to really like the fact I cut my thumb on the gill raker!

Friday morning I had planned to meet my good friend Ross Johnson as he is over on a holiday from his work in Alderney Angling. Ross also bought his friend Rich along too and we headed up the peninsula.
The fishing started slowly so we made a little move and things kicked off for Ross and Rich as they started catching Wrasse and Pollock, yet I was still to get off the mark. At first I employed the same tactics as the guys without any joy and decided to stick a jig on which worked a treat!

Off the mark!

From that point on we were all getting some pretty good and constant action with fish averaging around the two to two and a half pound mark. I wish I had pictures of the guys as Ross pulled out some Wrasse with some stunning colours and Rich was bagging up on Pollock, Wrasse and Coalies.
Unfortunately you are just going to have to put up with pictures of my fish.

40g "Bad Ass Bob"

My first Coalie in maybe 20 years!

30g Tacklehouse Nebura Deka

4" Ecogear Paramax

40g Tronixpro jig

I lost all my jigs during the action, I got absolutely owned by a really big fish which took me completely by surprise and lodged itself under a deep ledge. Admittedly I am not very experienced with really big Pollock and I was totally overwhelmed, the thing pulled so hard I nearly lost my footing on the rock I was standing on, its something I will never forget and I was gutted to lose it.

I lost another fish this was and another to a really dodgy clip made by Flashmer;

Shit clips!
I'll be throwing the rest of those in the bin for sure! I did also lose another fish and jig due to a bad knot, I have no one else to blame for that except myself!

After losing my Jigs, I changed to a deep spinning carolina type setup and after a little experimenting I found that a rig consisting of; an initial 25lb leader with a 28g drilled bullet weight, a bead, then tied to a swivel. After that; a 2 foot 15lb trace and a 4" orange curl tail at the business end, this put me back in the action along with the boys.
That rig actually landed me the biggest fish of the trip which I was very pleased about! It still didn't even begin to compare with the one I lost, but a nice fish none the less.

4lb 12oz
It was an intensely enjoyable session, but the day wasn't quite finished.
Ross wanted to come down my end to catch some Weever on lures and have a bash at the Turbot, so we headed back and fished with light game gear. Ross out fished me on my own mark and the jammy bugger got a Flounder on his first cast with a Daiwa prisoner jig, literally just as I said to him "I've never had a flattie on a jig"!

We both caught a few weever but failed to land any Turbot, we couldn't really grumble after such an epic day though!

We actually reminisced a bit throughout the day and I felt genuinely privileged to have made such good friends through this awesome sport. I hope that myself, Ross and Scott can get together at some point, we've had some great times in the past. 
Well thats for the future and who know what that'll bring?

Thanks for reading and tight lines all!

Gear I used;
Apia Foojin' AD Flow Hunt 89ML 
Sakura Mazzera 742MH
Breaden GRF85- TR85 "PE Secial" Houri-island

Shimano Rarenium 4000
'13 Shimano Complex 2500HGS F6

Sufix 832 20lb
0.4PE Gosen 240

25lb Sakuma Fluorocarbon
15.4lb Seaguar Hard Ace
0.198mm Toray Premium Protype

Fishin' Magician Skid Stick
Tronixpro casting lures
Madfish "Bad Ass Bob" 
Tacklehouse Nebura Deka
Ecogear Paramax
Berkley Gulp Fish Fry

End Tackle
Decoy Rockfish hooks, Home made assists, Decoy Delte Magic SV51 Jigheads

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

You make me wanna….

You Make Me Wanna Shout! A great song by the Isley brothers, but I thought I'd use the title to highlight how much I am loving my little jigs from Shout! The Dangan Mame really is a cracking little jig and as well as bagging me a fair few Pollock, it's also been serving me well on some other species.

Lure and light game

Shout Dangan Mame


Lure and light game

I've been doing crap on the Bass this year and cannot for the life of me understand why! Hopefully that'll change soon.
The Skid Stiks are getting some interest though and I managed a small one recently on the 5" Stick in Holo Black Back;

Skid Stick

I'll hopefully find time to get out again soon and weather permitting, I shall be up the peninsula soon for some heavier stuff.

Well until then, here's a couple of release shots;

Tight lines!

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Rockfish Türkiye!

I have recently been on our first family holiday abroad, as you might gather from the title, we have been to Turkey. To be specific we have been staying in Mahmutlar, Alanya.
Obviously being a family holiday I did not fish a great deal, but I did manage some productive early morning sessions on the Beach outside our hotel, a couple of hours in Alanya Harbour and also on the Piers on the main beach.

For the most part I actually found the open beach far more productive than the man made structure, the beach is a mix of Sandstone and sand. It drops off very quickly and has some nice shelves of rock along the shore.

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Due to the topography I found a simple jig head and lure worked best, just casting out and allowing the drop into the inner shelf resulted in fish instantaneously. With this method I was able to bag up on White Bream.

White Bream

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Now although I did use other lures, I found Berkley Gulp Alive Angleworm to be far more effective and with limited fishing time, that is what I caught most of my fish on and I make no apologies for that!

I soon realised that I would go through a lot of lures here too, as everything wants to bite your lures in half and sometimes the fish would strip your lure from the hook in a millisecond! This did wonders for my reaction time, as you often need to strike lightning fast!
The bream were also great little fighters for their size and I just had a lot of fun catching them, in fact I will miss them like crazy.

Using the same swing-fall method I also caught Striped Bream and Mottled Grouper too.

Alanya Fishing

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Both of these species also pull well for their size and I was genuinely surprised they were often so small. The fish were just stunning to look at and I was just so pleased to finally catch some foreign fish.

Alanya Harbour looked like it would offer huge potential, but in truth I found it disappointing compared to the open shore, the water was filthy and there was lots of rubbish floating about. I did find the locals very interesting, there were quite a lot of people fishing, young, old, Male and female, they also predominantly use poles for their fishing and bread as bait. 

Many didn't seem to have much success, though I did witness a few catching small White Bream. I liked the local anglers a great deal and people found my methods and tackle interesting as I did theirs. However I am not being arrogant when I say, I out fished them with light game technique a fair bit at times.
I found it quite amusing when one of the attendants on the harbour looked at my gear and asked me in broken English "you professional fisherman?" To which I replied "no" and he gestured to me to say that I was all mouth and we did laugh!

Here's another small Grouper that I caught in the harbour, (a White Grouper I believe);

Lee Goddard Fishing

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Teeth on that bad boy!
On the way back through the town I spoke to a shop assistant who spoke very good English and he informed me that in the "close weather" bigger fish were more prolific close to shore, I was a little unsure what he meant by this but I think he either meant humid weather, as is similar for our fishing in the UK, or he meant "closed" as in; when all the Tourists have gone and things waterside are quieter, which would also make sense.

Back in Mahmutlar after two and a half days of constant rain(!), I was able to resume my early morning sessions and again fished the open shore for the Bream. I also fished on the piers utilising jig head and dropshot techniques with good success. I mainly caught Bream, I lost a Wrasse specie which I was disappointed about, but I did catch a Pufferfish and a Demoiselle too which pleased me no end.

Light Game Turkey
Fugu anyone?
Bennet's Pufferfish
Torquigener Flavimaculosos (Pufferfish)
Striped Bream
Striped Bream

Lee Goddard Fishing
Lee Goddard Fishing
Saddled Bream
Striped Bream
Light Game Turkiye
White Bream
On the piers I was often joined by Kurdish anglers and also Russians. 
Alanya is predominantly a Russian resort and communicating was often a real problem, but fishing is a universal pastime and etiquette seems to be the same therein. We was able to appreciate each other that way, clapping each other as we caught and inspecting each others rigs. As I said before, Angleworm very often out fished the locals bread. On the last day, I gave a local pole angler the rest of my Angleworm and some of my fish. I honestly would rather release them, but I feel to overcome boundaries and build friendship we must some times learn to do what causes us personal discomfort for a greater good.

I was also able to help one of my Russian fisher-comrades when he caught a nice Rabbitfish, he was about to pick it up when I waved and shouted him to stop. Rabbitfish are poisonous as my good friend Scott found out on his Cretian adventures.

This fish was at least released! The Russians and Kurds do tend to keep everything I found, I did enjoy their company nonetheless though.

Alanya Fishing

I think Rockfishing and/or Light Game has huge potential in Turkey and although I am aware of a group starting near Istanbul, there is huge scope to teach the techniques to the locals. I think the introduction of the cheaper end of the spectrum, where tackle is concerned would be great. I could really see HTO stuff being hugely popular there!

I am off to Menorca for a weeks pure fishing with my good friend and species wizard Scott in October and I hope to add more foreign species to my tally. You should really keep an eye on his blog, at present he is absolutely bagging up in Lanzarote and will no doubt have a series of specie filled posts when he's back, I am certainly looking forward to that!

Well I hope you enjoyed my post, I certainly found the fishing therapeutic and I met some really good people, I shall no doubt return some day.

Tight lines

Gear used:
Rod: Yamaga Blanks Bluecurrent 80
Reel: Shimano Complex Ci4+ 2500HGS F6
Mainline: Gosen Braid 0.4PE
Leader: Toray FC Leader 0.158 + 0.198mm
Lures: Berkley Gulp! Alive Angleworms, Jackall Peke peke, Gulp Fish Fry
Terminal Tackle: Decoy Rocket plus jigheads 1.8g #10 & 8

Sabpolo Wormer hooks #10 & 8
Dropshot weights 2-7g

Sunday, 4 May 2014

The Garfish Return!

Well I'll be honest, I was really hoping to finally get a Bass on lure today, I have had a few on bait this year, yet I am still without one on lure!
There have been some big Bass coming out around the coast, yet I cannot seem to buy one at the moment, it kinda sucks.

I did however catch a Garfish on a 5" Skid Stik (Black holographic pattern).

Fishin' Magician lures

I just don't quite understand why no Bass, last year Bass and Gar were present at this mark together, yet I saw no sign of Bass?!

I also had another rather random and perplexing catch, well it happened twice actually, I caught crabs on a Savage gear Sandeel. How random is that!

I don't think I'll have a chance to get out tomorrow, as I am off on a family holiday on Tuesday. Never mind I'll get one sooner or later!

Thursday, 1 May 2014

20 Minutes South.

There's a mark 20 minutes south of me and although I know it throws up a few fish, decent ones too, I avoid it like the plague. The thing is, it tends to get overrun with tourists, crab liners and people feathering for Mackerel. I don't generally like crowds, I deal with hundreds of people every week at work and when I am fishing I do tend to do my best to avoid more.
That being said, today I had a window to fish and decided to give the place a visit, I'm glad I did!
It was a good chance to try my new Breaden rod too (see previous post).

On arrival the tide was high and the inner harbour was quite dirty, so I chose to fish a 2.5g Decoy head and a White Gulp fish fry, I knew there were likely flatties in there, so this seemed a good move. Bumping the bottom slowly it wasn't long before I was proven correct.

Only a small one but a nice way to start!
I continued in the same manner to see if I could find more, but that proved futile. I therefore moved onto the outer breakwater to see what might lurk there. I fished the harbour side first and scored a wee Pollock using a 1.5g head and Gulp! Angleworm.

To be honest I didn't even know that Pollock could be caught there, I had heard of other species but never Pollock.

The tide was now ebbing and seeing as we are on a spring tide, the harbour side was emptying fast. I therefore decided to fish the open side of the breakwater and used a 5g Shout! Dangan jig. I knew I was fishing over sand, so I allowed the jig to just bump the bottom in the current whilst controlling the line, with the odd OTD manoeuvre thrown in. This worked well and I had a succession of Juvenile Pollock which amused some of the holiday making spectators.

Nothing big at all, but it was sure nice to catch some fish on jigs again!

I was near ready to go home when I spotted a previously inaccessible feature and thought it might hold a mini-specie. I therefore put on the light Jighead and angleworm again and plucked out another fish I never knew resided here! Possibly my favourite mini - the scorpion fish.

Well, I'll be back there sometime soon, it was actually a nice way to spend a couple of hours, certainly better than surfing the net for more lures I don't need, or chatting on fishing forums!

Tight lines all :)

New Kit.

Over the slow months when I should really be learning to drive (its about time!), I have been buying new kit. For too long now I have been wanting to solve some niggling issues that just make my life a little difficult. Things like containers used for Berkley Gulp products leaking, too many softie boxes and a non convenient bag for strolling through town on my way to a harbour.

However! Before I show off the more practical (boring) products, I shall mention a new Rockfish rod I have purchased. 
Reading this blog you'll know how much I rate my Yamaga Blanks Bluecurrents and really they are lovely rods, which I intend to carry on using. However, I did find myself sometimes wanting a little more power than the BLC-80 has to offer, the 80 is a great rod but has quite a soft blank and is limited in how aggressively you can sometimes work a lure. 
Anyways to overcome this issue and with the help of a friend in Tokyo I bought a new rod;

The Breaden TR85 "PE Special" Houri Island.

Glamour Rockfish

Glamour Rockfish

Its a beautiful piece of kit and I am incredibly pleased with it. The rod is unbelievably sensitive, balanced, powerful and well made. It's exquisite to use with Vibes and Jigs, but is a pretty versatile all round rod with an incredible casting range, I am very much looking forward to using it more throughout the year!

So the rest of my niggling issues!
Firstly I have been using my RBB vest for pretty much all my lure fishing for the past two years and as good as it is, its a bit bulky and cumbersome, its also a pain in the arse always swapping out gear for different sessions. I really needed a decent bag for specifically light game and have found my current solution in the Geecrack Shoulder bag.

Its a pretty cool bag with loads of pockets to store everything I could possibly need on a long day session!

My last issues were sorted out by the best box manufacturer I know of - Meiho!
I became sick and tired of using lots of little boxes to store my softs, I was always annoyed picking through several worm cases before finding the one I wanted. I was tired of doing the same for jigs and vibes too.
Lastly I was becoming increasingly frustrated with so called "watertight" boxes that leaked stinky gulp juice all over the place, the stuff wreaks! 
So, on to the solutions;

The Meiho Feeder Box 800NS.

The Meiho W Form Case.

The Meiho VS Liquid Pack.

Well there you go, stuff that works, at least for now!
Time to get on with some fishing now I think, tight lines :)