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Rookie Bass Angler: April 2012

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

First Bass of 2012

We had been looking forward to this trip for months, it was basically the only thing keeping myself and my dad going through uni and work knowing we would get a chance to get out and try for some early season bass.

The time came and the car was packed and we set off at some silly hour of the morning. After a 4 1/2 hour trip down, we finally reached Co.Wexford. We checked in to where we were staying, unloaded the kit and set off for the first cast for Bass of 2012.

Needless to say the conditions were not great. Huge North West wind made the first mark rather tricky to say the least ..... It was a nightmare to keep a tight line to the soft plastics and the wind made the lures cast like pigs - But we fished on and then moved to a second mark later that day ..... no luck either.

Day One = Blank!

Things were looking a little down, we were tired, we were wet, no fish, but our minds turned to our journey over to Tramore to visit the Cian at Absolute Fishing. We set off the next morning, called into the shop and as usual had a great chat and a bit of banter. It never fails to amaze me how much of a lure magpie I am..... ever time I go in I want to buy something new and shiny .... this time was no different!

We set off anyway to have a crack at a mark over that direction but with no joy ..... 

What I have to say is, if you haven't already done so, check out this blog and if you ever get a chance call in to the shop, great lads, fantastic gear and just a good laugh. 

Also met Alan when i returned to the shop after our first attempt. Nice lad. My first time meeting him. We got chatting about pike fishing and had a very generous offer from him, but things were not to be. Was great though to be able to talk about all kinds of fishing and share stories. Another nice guy.

Later on (Day Two) we headed to fish a rock mark we had half fished before but with a little more insight now we returned. A nice South West wind gave the water a bit of life .... My dad hooked a fish but it got off  and then two casts later he got thumped. 

Things were looking up!

First Bass of 2012

I cast out and began to work the 140mm Maria Angel Kiss back in, steady reel, twitch, pause, reel - BANG! Fish on. Instantly it ran out from the rocks and all I could do was hold. We watched as it came up to the surface, boil and then power away from us once again. Eventually I brought it up to the edge, waited for the wave and brought him up where my dad chinned it out of the water. 

It was by no means a massive fish, but I was delighted. Our first Bass of 2012 and it gave a good account of itself while it stripped line off my reel, boiled and splashed around on the surface. 

As always we got the hook out and the fish slipped back into the sea to fight another day.

We got back home later that night and cracked open a beer to celebrate. 

Day Two = One Bass just over 4lb

The next morning we had arranged to meet up with a good friend of mine Jay la Roche over by a mark and fish it with him for a while. We set off once again at some silly hour of the morning. We met up as planned, had a good old chat about lures, marks, conditions ... the usual. We set off. It was a lovely spot, one which I had always wanted to see but never got out to before. Sadly though, no fish. The three of us tried everything, soft plastics, hard plastics, metals etc .... no luck. However it was stunning and great company. 

We returned to the car, got some food and set off to another mark which was completely new to me. This was more for research purposes than actual fishing. We stood and yet again had a good chat and catch up. 

It really is worth following this lad's blog - great reports, especially if you are into LRF fishing and obviously of course Bass!

Around mid afternoon we went our separate ways and my dad an I headed off to a mark which we wanted to try again. the wind switched from a North to a South West and the water looked perfect. Nice fizz, sun was out an the evening looked lovely.

It was not long before I down working lures across the mark. 

Nothing working so we moved to another mark close enough by. We got geared up and within about an hour the reel began to scream once again. 

Maria Chase BW does the business

I cast out and began to twitch the lure back towards me. I had never got using this lure yet for Bass. This was its first outing and it didn't fail to impress. Whack! The rod lurched over and i was into a nice little Bass of around 3lb. We landed it, got the hooks out and set it back on its way. (It did however manage to flail around and lodge a rather sharp treble hook in my finger, which got ripped out when the fish thrashed around. Sore it most certainly was)!!!!! 

With it getting on for dusk we switched over to red/gold lures and about half an hour later my dad had a lovely little Bass of around 2lb.

We fished on until dark and it was great to pick up some fish as the conditions looked fantastic and the water just seemed to say 'there are bass here'

Day Three = A few Bass around the 2lb to 3lb mark

We got up the next day thinking things were looking up. We set off and hit the same marks that we had caught the fish on the previous days. Nothing. A huge West wind made the swell tricky on the first mark. We then headed to the second mark on a spring low to recce the lie of the land. It looked impressive. We returned at the correct state of tide and began to fish. Nothing. No wind, flat water, it was dead. 

We met two lads who came down to fish the spot as well.

We got talking and it turned out they were two of the lads who help out Danny Meager with his blog etc.

Crevan and Pat stood on with us while we talked about lures and a few fish we had picked up etc. . . we stood on gossiping until well after 10pm.

Check out the blog and see for yourself:

Top lads, really nice and was great to meet them.

Day Four = Blank!

This was now our last day. Would we be able to end the trip with another fish?

We set out to our chosen mark and again the wind made it hard to fish. We stayed for around 2 hours then called it quits. We got back to the car a little deflated. We then decided we would try a mark we had never been to, but heard some good info about. We set off for it. This was the last fish we would have of the trip.

Arkansas Shiner Slugo!

We hit the spot and got the gear out. I rigged up with a slugo and we began to fish. It looked not to bad. Some sea trout jumping and the odd mullet around messing about in the shallows. 

Then the sky went black, the wind picked up and the rain started. The rain got heavier and heavier. Could it get worse? Yes! A huge shower of hail stones hit us. We had to cover. All we could do was stand there and brave the elements. 

I was getting ready to leave, but dad was insistent we stayed on and I am glad we did. Around 10 minutes after the storm passed i flicked the soft plastic out . . . bumping it along the bottom with the odd twitch and then the rod lurched the line zipped out of the reel. I had my first Bass on a soft plastic. 

It fought well out in the current and we eventually got it into our feet, the gripper in its mouth and we had landed the last Bass of the trip!

I was delighted not only to get a fish on my last day but also to get one on a soft plastic, a technique which nearly worked for my in January but something I had tried with no success until now.

A lovely conditioned fish. It swam away and i could watch it in the shallows cruising. 

An image which made the trip. 

I know it isn't a great picture but it was the best we could do!

Day Five = One Bass around the 3lb mark

Some Lures that I was impressed with.

The Angel Kiss and Chase both caught me Bass on the trip. A lovely action and also they do not break the bank!

Another lure which I bought just before I left was this Komomo II in Asango Flashing Plate . . . recommended by a good friend. Not only does it look great in the water but it has a killer action. Sadly no fish on it yet though.

And obviously the Megabass X 140 in Hama Shirasu (above) it looks lethal and can not wait to get it out in the water again!

Last but not least, the 4.5 inch Slugo in Arkansas Shiner. Mounted on a 7g jig head it really pulled the cat out of the bag on our last day.

Sad to be going home

It was a shame to be leaving after some nice days fishing. We met some great guys: Cian and Alan from Absolute Fishing, Crevan and Pat and not to mention Jay la Roche (who i am eternally thankful for the info and help he has given me)

The scenery was stunning, the weather was a bit strange but when it worked, you wouldn't want to be anywhere else. . . I can not wait to return in July for the Bass festival where I hope I will meet more great guys and get some more fish too!

Stay tuned for some more angling adventures ......

Tight Lines


Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Cracking April Surf Fishing .... or Not!

Conditions were pretty much blown out for everything other than a crack at the local beach for some surf fishing. . . . . The hope was to see if there were any bass around, however this was a slim prospect as I have yet to hear of a bass around my bit of the coastline - however the conditions looked worthy of at least wetting a line . . .

Rising tide, corresponding with dusk ..... sandeels and lugworm - it all looked promising.

I have to say, it was breathtaking if nothing else. We fished for around 3 hours I guess and then called it a night. The surf was roaring and it certainly stirred the soul! You have to love standing in surf with the rod in hand waiting for the bite, but it was not to be.

An experience thought, that I was glad to have had. . . .

I just wish we had bass around that part of the coast, I mean in terms of fishy looking coast it rocks! We just don't seem to get them, which is a shame, but it doesn't stop me trying...

Maybe next time eh?

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Pike: Spawning Aggression

Since the beginning of March I have noticed that whilst out Pike fishing I have had very little success. . . . And before anyone has a crack at my fishing skills - I have a theory.

Now, I'm sure this has been said a million times before but I thought I would stick it up here anyway.

We have fished some of the same ground that we were catching pike over earlier on in the yearm however recently this has changed.

Using similar lures and plastics we have found a lot of pike have been swirling at the lures but not actually hitting them.

For example, yesterday we went out and fished a whole day . . . . we had over a dozen fish swirl at the lures and some pretty large ones but only one actual hook up - which you will agree is rare for pike.

Unless they are not feeding. Here is my point I guess.

I think since it is in the middle of spawning these fish are merely attacking the lures due to them invading their territory and not in an attempt to feed? I would love to hear other peoples thoughts.

I had the same fish swirl at various lures 5 times and not once did it take the lure . . .

My theory is anyway that they have switched off the feed and are now just becomming territorial until their spawning has been successful.

I didn't google this theory, I simply thought about it on my journey home yesterday. So I am sure it has been done before, I am not trying to claim this in any way - just thought it was interesting, or worthy of note.

Anyway .... Lets hope they wise up soon and start hitting the lures again.

Love to hear your thoughts and opinions ....

Tight Lines