Saturday, 19 April 2014

The Adventures of a rubbish Sea Angler!

Dawn saw me back upon the flats in search of those gentle worms. I call them gentle mostly because they aren’t the slightest bit aggressive. I’m referring to the humble lugworm of course, as opposed to its fierce cousin, the ragworm. Too often I’ve used ragworm and wound up with one hanging from my finger after sinking its fangs in. Yes, they wriggle more than lugworm, therefore when using them head hooked in flowing water with a long trace they come into their own, but for scent, juice and gentleness, you simply cannot beat a lugworm.

So, dawn. I arrived rather too early, dug enough worms to fish the tide up and bumped into a friendly chap who was out collecting crabs. We had a natter for ten or so minutes and as I bade him farewell I headed back towards the car. Even then the tide was still well flat and not moving. I did, however spend a few minutes watching a little egret as it quite comically darted around in the shallow water trying haphazardly to spear small fry.

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I drove the ten minutes to the bridge I intended to angle from, but the water wasn’t there, it was still flat low water and didn’t look like moving for a while yet. As I live so close I decided to pop home, see Jessica, make some cream crackers with cheese and have a cuppa. I spent an hour home and left around 10am to finally go a-angling. When I got to the bridge there was clearly more water present. I set up two rods with 1oz leads and long flowing traces ending in a size 1 hook.

With both rods cast out and pointing towards the sun I started dip into my snack. On the bridge I was the main attraction, cars relentlessly drove past, the bridge being one of three ways into the town. I got hooted at twice, whether someone recognised me or whether it was just because I was fishing I don’t know, but I like to think it was a couple of hotties who liked what they saw. Perhaps the old boy does still have it!!

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So, there’s me stood up on this bridge reeling in every five minutes, bumping the crabs off and threading more worms on. The crabs were a bit persistent, they always were, but in the past if I persevered through the onslaught I’d usually be rewarded with a bass. After half an hour the rod tip trembled, this was different and soon it arched over signalling a bass had snaffled the bait. I struck and started to pump the fish towards the bridge, it felt good. I look over and saw a bass of sterling silver, a fish over perhaps 2lbs. I started to reel it in but half way up I felt the weight disappear and heard a splash, it fell off!!

I was gutted, you usually only get the one chance, that first hour of the flood, and I’d fluffed it. I carried on fishing throughout the sulk and was cheered up no end when the tip on the other rod started bouncing away. I picked up the rod and felt a fish kick, although it never felt as big as the last one. This one actually stayed on, and at half a pound it was a perfect specimen shining brilliantly in the sun. With spines everywhere I unhooked it very gently, took a couple of snaps and clambered down the side wall to release it. Half an hour later and the tide was really starting to rage, a change of scenery was needed.

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I dashed to the bridge near to where I dug the bait, the water wasn’t quite as strong here and once settled I cast both rods under the bridge. I’ve sat there in that exact same spot hundreds of times as a boy and I can’t remember ever catching anything, but statistics will never stop me if I have an urge.

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The rods nodded, first to the tune of the crabs feasting upon the lugworms, then, eventually to the tune of the leads being thrown about as the tide rose further and the pace increased. For the last ten minutes I tried one of the odd looking lures that have been in my bag for a while but never got wet. I never caught anything on it, but it was fin trying.

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  1. A good read. Glad its not just us that succeed in enjoying more than catching!

  2. A really good read - looking forward to the rest of the series. Best of luck

  3. Nice post.
    I,m about to start searching for the bass around the Essex coast myself. As well as trying for a stingray when the weather gets hotter, that should be good fun......