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Rookie Bass Angler: January 2012

Sunday, 29 January 2012

January expedition to Wexford

It all began after a few texts to my mate Jay. We were both had a bit of time to kill and so the we nailed out a plan to have a crack at some early season Bass! It was never going to be easy but sure, what can you do but try!

I set off on the Tuesday on what can only be described as an epic train journey from Belfast to Wexford! After 5 hours of travelling i arrived.

Got the stuff back to the house, quick cup of tea and then of course it wasn't long before the thought of fishing entered our heads!

Off we set then to experience my first bit of LRF and who better to show me than Jay!

Rookie Bass Angler? NO! Rookie LRF Angler!!!!

I stood back while Jay pulled out a Herring and a small Pollack, I stepped up to the mark and with some guidance pulled out my very first LRF caught fish, a nice little Pollack.

I was amazed at the feel and sensitivity you get with the lighter gear, I have read alot about it and talked about it but this was a first time for me.

I shall be searching the net now for some gear and standby for some LRF coming your way from my blog in the months to come!

Fishing in Gale Force Winds............

As I had made the trip down for some early Bass, we set off on the Wednesday to try and find a mark or two. This turned out to be no easy task! Rain hammering and the Wind blowing, every mark we looked at was unfishable. . . . we eventually got tucked into a nice quiet corner and our spirits lifted a little as the rain eased..... A sign for better things to come?

After trotting down a few new Megabass X-Layers (French Silver) from Absolute Fishing i switched over to Wave Worms. Cast out and let it cover the ground infront of us. I felt the bump, bump, bump as I kept in contact with the lure.

Then  I felt the weight and I lifted into it....... Off it ran up stream like a train, taking line off the reel .... I shouted to Jay, who came back up towards me and then - slack! Nothing! The fish dropped the lure........ I was gutted.

The sun came briefly out as I had time to reflect on the past few minutes action. Perhaps if I struck things would have been different but that is fishing for you!

We fished on but then had to leave with the wind becoming too strong to even stand in!

Absolute Fishing

First time I have ever been in the shop and it was awesome!

Cian was super helpful and very friendly. Great products and top class banter and a good chat!

I urge anyone interested in Bass fishing who is free and can attend to check this out:


I will be going and I am nearly 100% sure it will be a great event!

A special thanks.........

For this trip and experience I really have to thank Jay for a) letting me stay his place, b) putting up with me and c) for taking me out to some nice marks. It was tough fishing but hopefully better luck next time.

Also I think he has successfully hooked me on LRF and I will be investing in some gear soon. Check out his blog:


The other thanks has to go to the guys at Absolute Fishing - like I said above, a great place, great guys and will be back again as quick as I can!


Signs of things to come!

I have learnt alot from this trip, the basics to LRF, some new marks and as well it has boosted my confidence in using soft plastics for Bass which is an invaluable method to use.

Can not wait for the next trip down in April.

May the planning begin!

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Canon EOS 1100d

We got ourselves a nice new bit of kit which, providing we can catch the fish, should come in useful when we are out.

I am by no means proficient with a camera but Dad used to be all those years ago .... but I know what looks good and what doesn't which is a start.

We didn't get it till late last night, so I charged the battery whacked the card in and got the lure box out!!!

I know they aren't all in perfect focus - but come on, cut me some slack haha

Quick snaps to test it out .... I can not wait to get the right lighting conditions and some nice big scenery shots next time I am out!

Ordering filters soon too!

Monday, 16 January 2012

Annoyance at recent magazine article!!!

I know I am by no means an expert but I was quite concerned at one article i read today by one of the Uk's bass 'experts' - I don't think it is right for me to name this person but if you contact me, i'm sure we can have a chat about it. . . . Perhaps others feel the same?

Anyway the article was in a very well known sea fishing magazine ..... I subscribe, I read, I digest, and I hope it makes me a better fisherman. . . .

Anyway the article was about 'Massive Bass....'

It was the little article at the bottom of the page which angered me ...... In brief the discussion was about how large Bass of 17+ lb are coming to the end of their lives and although they can still produce eggs their breeding life is coming to a close. . . . this next line is what really boiled my blood - 'So keeping them as a trophy fish is not such a problem.'

I am sorry, but correct me if I am wrong here, this is a leading UK Bass 'expert' writing in a hugely popular magazine, that it is ok to kill and keep Bass of this size ......

I think this is madness, a fish that size deserves to go back and fight another day ..... It has survived this long and, are 'we' as anglers really that shallow that we need to kill a fish to have it as a 'trophy'??!!!!! I would hope not! What is wrong with a few good pictures and setting it back to swim off ...?

If you are anything like me and I know a few others will agree, you get a good buzz watching the fish swim off than battering it in the head!

I just thought this was irresponsible to publish such a thing, fair enough there are decent people out there who use their own judgement about if a fish is healthy enough to be put back but there are some out there who do not know any better and to me this article does very little to educate the public....

With Bass stocks in certain areas being low, then I think we should be doing more to make the public aware of their preciousness and value to the angler, not to promote a trophy hunting mentality!

It made me angry and I just could not help but write about it....

I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions!

Steve N

Friday, 13 January 2012

Oldies ..................

Hunting around on the old computer backup and found some pics which brought me back in time a few years ........ If nothing else they have shown my how little fishing i have done in the past few years. I used to alot with my dad but the past few years the weather in the summer has just made it a little tricky to get out we boat in etc!

Apex Predator!

The might Tope is perhaps one of my all time favorite fish - why you may ask? To hook a Tope and feel that initial surge of power as it runs deep in the water is something else .... And any fisherman will agree, put the ratchet on the reel and the sound is enough to get your hairs standing on edge!

This one above was taken out of our little 8ft inflatable boat, we took it out for a quick 'hit and run' style bit of fishing ..... It was on the second drift that the reel began to scream and we had a fish on ..... we notices the fish was running for a sandbank, we both wondered what would happen next - however nothing had prepared us for it!

The Tope, having nowhere else to go, simply jumped, not fully out of the water but enough to see atleast half of it and then smash back into the water and storm on into the deeper channel.

After our amazement and awe we got it up to the boat, put the tape measure on him and worked out it was around the 40lb mark ... which for us - is a monster .... with our average usually in around the 20lb!!!

Look at the mouth on it ..... the hook is probably around a 6/0 or so .... can't quite remember....

We set it back on its way to fight another day ... and with that we headed for home.

Using a method which dad brought back from his trip to Canada ..... they use this foam ball with blades that made it spin and add life to the dead bait ..... tested it out and nailed a nice little doggy....

One species which we used to try for all the time was the mighty Conger Eel - one little pier is where we took refuge on many a rough winter night trying to entice these fish out of their cracks in the wall . . . .

Whilst fishing the same mark for Conger we kept getting taps and no takes so we down sized the bait and landed ourselves a few rockling ...... first we had ever caught and still never landed another ....

The most typical fishing done for us in the summer is the Salmon, and this influence comes from my dad ......

not a giant, but scale perfect

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Best pike lures of 2011

To be honest I did not catch enough Bass to be writing a similar 'best lure....' article. I know this is the common thing to do at the end/start of a new year but instead I thought I would write up my favorite or at least most productive pike lures.

What made these special to me was it was my own paint finishes which, I think have made them a killer for pike!

They started off life like this, clear, no paint or hooks etc...

I have several of this style on different colours but for me the one that I caught the post on was this:

A predominantly orange body with yellow belly and i used a craft trick involving an onion back to spray the black scaled pattern on the back . . . . simple blob on red nail polish sorted the eyes out nicely . . . . 

Some proof...........

However the lure which caught us the biggest fish last year was the 160mm red/white plug. Also clear when bought i used the very common but effective combo ....

To put this into perspective here is a picture of it beside a normal crystal minnow in a similar style....

This is the lure which caught us the leviathan (well to us anyways) 9lb+ pike on boxing day ..... it wasn't quite a double but not far away ..... we also turned two other fish around the same size on this lure also ..... Does a bigger lure mean bigger fish? That is yet to be seen.....

With this size/style working for us, it inspired me to try another ..... A very mean looking one if I do say so myself....

This is one of my favorite lures I have sprayed ...... it just has that 'i'm going to crunch you' look to it! 

Hopefully 2012 will bring me more luck at the pike, especially with the soft plastics. 

I have a new bunch of blanks coming soon and will be sure to get the pics up once the arrive in!

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

New lures etc

Now that I have finally got things sorted out after xmas and taken advantage of the sale of at basslures.co.uk, I thought I would post up a few pick of the shiny goodies I have acquired.

New Bass toys ............

Famous Tackle House Feed Shallow - Sardine/Red Belly

IMA Komomo SF125 - Magma Candy

Maria Chase - Holo Silver

My personal favorite - IMA Popkey - Orange nose clear cb flashing plate (limited ed)

Onto the Sea Trout lures ...........

IMA Trip 85

Megabass Zonk77 Garatide

Incredibly tiny Megabass Metal X Bubble - 8g


I have already had this on during my festive pike fishing trip.

What can I say that hasn't already been said before? Probably not alot!

Everything is just where you would expect it. Pockets are great, overall very comfy......

Very well made and you got to admit, for all those tackle junkies - it looks pretty damn cool!

Finally - The new reel.....

Got it loaded up with Sunline Super PE #2 20lb braid ...... casts like a bullet, super smooth and hyper sensitive..... Works well with both hard and soft plastic lures .... Can not wait to get a good thrashing from a Bass on this !!!!

What is in store for 2012?

I am beginning to understand the fundamentals to bass fishing now thanks to everyone who writes articles, blogs, or talks to me on facebook. . . . . I had two wonderful trips in 2011 and hope to make many more in 2012.

So lets hope 2012 is a good year for us all!

Tight Lines!