Fish Pie for Everyone Mar01


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Fish Pie for Everyone












A look on the sounder is all it took


A 4.2 meter tide,in between springs and neaps and a flat sea forecast persuded Charlie and I to take his Jeannau Merry Fisher out for the first time this season on Tueday 28 February


Just two people on a boat is real luxury when it comes to motoring 30 miles out to sea from Dartmouth.


We decided to head west to the wrecks off Salcombe where previous reports showed that the cod were beginning show incrediably early this year( did they ever go away?


Ling are always a possibily on the slacker tides and of course the pollack still take if not as strongly as on the bigger tides


On arrival at the wreck a early bird was already fishing the wreck and one of the two anglers on the small outboard driven boat had a healthy bend in his rod,always a good sign.


The sounder showed the wreck covered in fish,how much was bait fish such as sprats I dont really know but it all looked good for the first couple of drifts.


After two fruitless drifts I began to wonder and switched lures to the colour that appeared to be " in  " this year ……bubblegum.


Next drift on the flood tide drifting up channel with the breeze,a perfect combination,. resulted in a 10lb pollack and the next a good cod.



 Bubblegum, the new "in " colour


After that  it was a fish a drift for  me but not for charlie who wanted to stay with other colours.


When I say a fish a drift , these were the fish……….





 A 22 lb Ling taken on bubblegum



Ling are great fish to take on lures and 22lb fish are not easy to come by these days,


This persuaded Charlie eventually to give up on white,blue,rubarb and custard and flouro orange and switch to the bubblegum,,,,


This was the result….



A 29lb fish ,the biggest I have ever seen on a lure


Other fish caught in this period included these cod and pollack


It was also interesting a slow retreive worked better than a quick one




Pollack and Cod came out to play when the tide was flowing on the flood



Eventually the tide slowed and the pout came out to play instead.


This was taken as the signal to use pout fillets and the action with the Ling recomenced




A 24lb fish on pout fillet


All the fish were full of spawn but were of course unreleasable coming up from 70 meters in depth


The spawn is late for all the fish this year but is quite incrediable to see when it happens


The whole sea goes milky with little lines of spawn flowing all around.


Eventually the tide petered away and we thought we would have to wait until the ebb started in earnest


Pulling a pout  fillet up to surface very quickly at the end of a drift however resulted in a sold take and this 15lb cod playing a good imatation of a 20lb Ling




15lb Cod taken on a quick retreived pout filllet half way up to the surface. 


More Ling continued to be taken over the slack and the action only died completley on the return of the tide on the ebb


Squid also worked well with one fish stripping 50m of line before letting go.


I wonder how big that was


Its funny but the fishing being better on one tide and not on the returning ebb seems to happen quite often although a lot of the charter skippers seem to saying the Ebb has fished well this year, but the flood has not.


I think every wreck is different and the wind direction has a lot to do with it.


One of the best days wrecking alfloat I can remember and to cap the day a pod of Dolphins surronded the boat and had a play with us.


I think they are examining us more than the other way round sometimes, any way we left them to have there own dinner on the wreck.


I have said it before but I maintain my believe that fishing the new 8 strand braids really helps


Mine is a special jigging braid from Toray,


It gives great sensitivity, a straight up and down retreive with no line streaming and the ability to use less weight even in big tides.


A small Avet Sx lever drag reel and a Tenryu Spike spinning rod complete the picture.





Succesful lures include the new Eddystones in orange ,bubblegum and black/orange tail and Berkley Power worms in Blue fleck and Firetail.






I use Alcedo Titanium Soft Rig line for my leaders which gives maximium movement of the lure in the water and is thin and supple and I also make sure the trace section is a lower b/s in case( when) you catch the wreck.



I didnt get bitten off once by a ling.


Contact me if you want any advise on this,but do try to go wrecking ,.pick reasonable tides for the Pollack,smaller ones for the Cod and Ling and have some fun.


Now is the time,Dartmouth and Salcombe is the place.and individuals are always welcome by the skippers.,you dont have to have a good friend with a boat.


click here for one