It depends a lot on who you are going out with, & what the anglers on the boat are capable of! If you have 6 "rod hires" & 2 anglers the skipper wont put much effort into it, because if you start catching & the "rod hires" dont, they get the hump, so he will be happy to go doggy bashing for the majority.
Most of the skippers are spot on, & know the bay & surrounding water well, but if they are given a boatful of "spewy hughies" they will look for somewhere comfortable to anchor.
To be sure of success, pick a tide that under 38ft, & either high water, or low water, at 0900hrs, that will give you the maximum time fishing the optimum tidal run. You will get 4+hrs of either ebb or flood & a couple of hrs of ebb or flood before you come back in, perfect times but very few of them in the book, book early to avoid dissapointment!
Rigs simple 5/6ft flowing trace with a pennel rig of 4/0 Mustad Vikings, pile the lug on, & tip with squid or cuttle, if its easy to cast its too small!!!!! If you can get the back of the boat & let it drift around the stern thats ideal, & DONT STRIKE, wait until the tip is in the water then just lift into it & reel.
Paul Radford who used to be the skipper of the "Lady Helen" & one of the early Swansea cod legends used to say "striking is for miners not anglers", cruel, but he was right.
Blue do you anlways use a 5/6ft trace when after the cod, cos i sometimes drop down to a smaller say 3/4ft trace if the tide is pushing realy hard. I was always under the impersion that a longer trace would move to much for mr cod to get his mouth around in a fast flowing/brown sea. Or is that not the case?
hope you can help mate, doggy
theres not much coming onto the boats in swansea at the moment, the weather has turned poor and most boats will stay at port i expect for the next few days. But maybe the weather will turn by sat, so which boat are you going out on dw?
Blue Thunder We've been out with Mark a few times last year, few bass/black bream in the summer, and had a few blondes in the middle of the year.
it's just the fact that worm is so expensive, i am just wondering whether as there's no cod showing, should I just keep to plain old mack flappers? For 2lb's of worm, I could get enough fish bait to keep me going for months!
If you are going with Mark on Blue Thunder you are certainly on a good boat, with a good skipper, if they are there he will find them!
Regarding trace length, It depends on the run of tide, sometimes they need some movement to encourage them, but with 4/5 lugworm & a calamari on the hooks I wonder if it moves at all? could be you are right about the shorter trace working better, if you dont fish a "dogs dinner" like I tend to.
Regarding bait, last I heard Dragon Bait in Port Talbot are doing lug at £10 lb thats the best price I have heard of, you can locate them on www.Yell.co.uk it gives you a multimap of exactly where they are in Sandfields Port Talbot.
I've always found youngs boat yard provide top bait especailly the black lug when it's about, £11 a lb, squid £1.50 a box . I Often ring them a few day's b4 a trip for availability( They'll check with thier diggers and get back to you ) and 2 order, always very obliging. Mark on Blue thunder is a top skipper, he's always prepared to move to another spot if it's not fishing and is very knowlegable and always prepared to help experienced and novices alike. I've had a number of trips with him the last three years and caught some nice fish.
on the bait front, i tend to use dragon baits too, but what i will say is if you have the chance to get out there and dig your own lug it will often out fish your "factory" lug. But with working most days i don't get the chance so i'm a lazy fisher too. It looks like the weather is getting rough for the next few days so i think i'll hit the beaches to see if i can find any good shell fish baits to add to my bait frezzer, i normaly find that razor fish and clams out fish your expensive blacks after a good blow, so its worth taking some for any fishing trips on the weekend. best of luck lads.