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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since there hasn’t been many Chesil reports considering the amount on the beach…


Agreed to meet up with my mate Cory @challengeFish_ at Chesil last night, the thinking being we’d have a crack for rays before the schools break up and the level of people and permanent camps on the beach goes from crazy to insane.

The journey down. My god. Made it to Honiton in about an hour and was congratulating myself on making good time, when a few miles outside the town I hit a stationary and apparently endless column of traffic.
No accidents or anything but there was just that much holiday traffic that every junction or roundabout created a bottleneck and it was stop start from there all the way to the Bridport roundabout.
I finally reached the West Bay shop about 2hrs 40 after leaving home. All I wanted was some mackie feathers and a couple of floats 🥴

The destination was Abbotsbury. I know it’s much like a refugee camp at this time of year but my ongoing health issues mean a long hike over shingle is probably beyond me. At least here I could walk along the road until I found a gap.
I was pleasantly surprised that the car park was not rammed at all and I set off on the hike.
I was even more surprised to find the area in front of the first cottages we’d tentatively agreed to fish was actually pretty clear.

1369256


I set about spreading out my gear to stake out two pitches so Cory would have somewhere to fish when he arrived about 8pm.

Oh, I also removed as much clothing as possible and still remain legal, as the sweat was just rolling off me.

Tried a bit of feathering, tried a float. It looked like spiders were still about as when the float bait dragged the bottom occasionally it was coming back ragged.

The effort wasn’t too great, I must admit. It was just nice to be out in the sun although the sweat didn’t stop rolling.

About 7pm I began to notice small fish of some kind bubbling close in.
I had one small mackerel, the first of the day, but despite dragging the feathers through the disturbance patches I didn’t hook anything else.
I think the small fish were feeding on whatever they eat but nothing was feeding on them.
Cory turned up and shortly after I had four more mackerel, then we settled down to the main plan which was to fish fresh mackerel for undulates.

It was practically dark when he came over and said there was a patch of water boiling just right of my tripod, I hadn’t seen it.
A couple of quick casts with the feather rod each resulted in four more mackerel and a scad, then it went quiet again.
That was bait definitely sorted anyway.

1369257

After dark we had a few small bites that looked strappy or doggy, but it was pretty slow.

1369258



Cory eventually landed a strap, then a dog. I was still getting the odd strap bite but not connecting (which was fine by me).

It was still warm, in shorts and t shirt at 11.30 at night. Eventually put a hoodie on as the breeze picked up, then it felt too warm again 🙄

We agreed to give it until 1am and eventually I added two straps to my tally. Deep joy.
I did miss what looked very much like a better eel bite on the last cast with a whole scad fillet, but that’s okay, I’m happy that eels of any size stay in the sea, hate the things.

I was also by then feeling absolutely shattered and lightheaded too. My condition seems to take away whatever stamina I used to have, as a couple of years ago this would have been a relatively easy trip. I ache a bit at the end but I wouldn’t ache all over and feel ready to drop.
Let’s hope it improves!

Back at the car park, I spoke to two guys just after Cory left who appeared from the direction of the teeth and said they’d had smoothies, straps, some mackerel and an undulate about 10-11lb.

It does seem as though the mackerel are beginning to appear at Chesil although I have to say apart from those I caught, I didn’t notice any others come in. I wasn’t really looking that hard but some characters were down feathering on the shoreline for hours and hours.

Anyway, if you’ve made it this far, sorry it’s not the most thrilling report, but I did catch plenty of rays yesterday, albeit not the flat sort!

1369260
 

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Nice report and photos, at least you had a few Mackie for bait, but it looks like Chesil is fishing as poorly as most other venues and I would love to know why, I fished did several sessions at Hayling Island which is just 10 mins from me at the end of June and it was fishing pretty well and I caught several Hounds on each trip, but fished it last week and it was dead.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Nice report and photos, at least you had a few Mackie for bait, but it looks like Chesil is fishing as poorly as most other venues and I would love to know why, I fished did several sessions at Hayling Island which is just 10 mins from me at the end of June and it was fishing pretty well and I caught several Hounds on each trip, but fished it last week and it was dead.
Those chaps last night said they had hounds but wasn’t after them, it was very much aimed at ray.
And tbh most of the Chesil hounds seem a bit small. I can get 7/8lb hounds at home easily enough!
 

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Those chaps last night said they had hounds but wasn’t after them, it was very much aimed at ray.
And tbh most of the Chesil hounds seem a bit small. I can get 7/8lb hounds at home easily enough!
I think that 7/8lbs is about average and last year they were even smaller because they are only just starting to make a comeback after the trawler [email protected] almost wiped them out, One of the largest shore caught hounds (23lbs) was caught from Sandy Point on Hayling about 6 years ago and the average size was around 12lbs, hopefully they will ger bigger every year if the trawler [email protected] leave them alone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I think that 7/8lbs is about average and last year they were even smaller because they are only just starting to make a comeback after the trawler [email protected] almost wiped them out, One of the largest shore caught hounds (23lbs) was caught from Sandy Point on Hayling about 6 years ago and the average size was around 12lbs, hopefully they will ger bigger every year if the trawler [email protected] leave them alone.
Yes fingers crossed, you do get some big ones on the south coast.
I’ve just noticed a lot of the Chesil ones are like 4/5lb which to me is ‘meh’, not worth going out for.

We’ve been lucky up on this coast that we haven’t had the trawler slaughter like you guys did.
 

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Yes fingers crossed, you do get some big ones on the south coast.
I’ve just noticed a lot of the Chesil ones are like 4/5lb which to me is ‘meh’, not worth going out for.

We’ve been lucky up on this coast that we haven’t had the trawler slaughter like you guys did.
I don't think anyone avoided the Hound slaughter as they first appear from the Western Approaches and move East during the Spring until they get to the Dover Straits and they were hoovered up through the Solent, Hampshire and Sussex Coasts in their thousands, most were sold in France who we already know will any old sh!t :(

The net result was that there were hardly any hounds left to return the following year and that's exactly what we saw and I remember going out to good hound marks on my boat and blanking, even now they are not as easy to find as they used to be, but I'm very glad to say they are starting to make a good comeback and as a sporting fish they are very popular, nothing like a double figure hound ripping line of your reel on the boat, although a big tope is is even better.:D:D
 

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I have been coming to Chesil from Suffolk every year for over 15 years but this year I just can't get motivated to come down there. The fishing up here has been so much better and I never dreamed of ever saying that. We did Sussex / Hants in the spring and had hounds but no rays which again is very unusual and disappointing. Now we're planning a trip to South Wales. It's very sad what's happened to Chesil over the last few years as it's so beautiful down there and the mixture of species is so good but it's no longer as awesome as it once was.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I don't think anyone avoided the Hound slaughter as they first appear from the Western Approaches and move East during the Spring until they get to the Dover Straits and they were hoovered up through the Solent, Hampshire and Sussex Coasts in their thousands, most were sold in France who we already know will any old sh!t :(

The net result was that there were hardly any hounds left to return the following year and that's exactly what we saw and I remember going out to good hound marks on my boat and blanking, even now they are not as easy to find as they used to be, but I'm very glad to say they are starting to make a good comeback and as a sporting fish they are very popular, nothing like a double figure hound ripping line of your reel on the boat, although a big tope is is even better.:D:D
In Devon, or at least my part, we didn’t have the sudden dip in hound numbers you guys experienced on the south coast
 

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I have been coming to Chesil from Suffolk every year for over 15 years but this year I just can't get motivated to come down there. The fishing up here has been so much better and I never dreamed of ever saying that. We did Sussex / Hants in the spring and had hounds but no rays which again is very unusual and disappointing. Now we're planning a trip to South Wales. It's very sad what's happened to Chesil over the last few years as it's so beautiful down there and the mixture of species is so good but it's no longer as awesome as it once was.
The last few years the Ray fishing on Chesil has been fantastic when you compare it to what it was like 20 years ago. Before getting 2 hernias most weekends I used to travel from Southampton to Chesil on the train just to fish for Rays and often stayed there 2 days at a time. Its the only place Ive had double figure rays of 2 species in the same night.
 

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Since there hasn’t been many Chesil reports considering the amount on the beach…


Agreed to meet up with my mate Cory @challengeFish_ at Chesil last night, the thinking being we’d have a crack for rays before the schools break up and the level of people and permanent camps on the beach goes from crazy to insane.

The journey down. My god. Made it to Honiton in about an hour and was congratulating myself on making good time, when a few miles outside the town I hit a stationary and apparently endless column of traffic.
No accidents or anything but there was just that much holiday traffic that every junction or roundabout created a bottleneck and it was stop start from there all the way to the Bridport roundabout.
I finally reached the West Bay shop about 2hrs 40 after leaving home. All I wanted was some mackie feathers and a couple of floats 🥴

The destination was Abbotsbury. I know it’s much like a refugee camp at this time of year but my ongoing health issues mean a long hike over shingle is probably beyond me. At least here I could walk along the road until I found a gap.
I was pleasantly surprised that the car park was not rammed at all and I set off on the hike.
I was even more surprised to find the area in front of the first cottages we’d tentatively agreed to fish was actually pretty clear.

View attachment 1369256

I set about spreading out my gear to stake out two pitches so Cory would have somewhere to fish when he arrived about 8pm.

Oh, I also removed as much clothing as possible and still remain legal, as the sweat was just rolling off me.

Tried a bit of feathering, tried a float. It looked like spiders were still about as when the float bait dragged the bottom occasionally it was coming back ragged.

The effort wasn’t too great, I must admit. It was just nice to be out in the sun although the sweat didn’t stop rolling.

About 7pm I began to notice small fish of some kind bubbling close in.
I had one small mackerel, the first of the day, but despite dragging the feathers through the disturbance patches I didn’t hook anything else.
I think the small fish were feeding on whatever they eat but nothing was feeding on them.
Cory turned up and shortly after I had four more mackerel, then we settled down to the main plan which was to fish fresh mackerel for undulates.

It was practically dark when he came over and said there was a patch of water boiling just right of my tripod, I hadn’t seen it.
A couple of quick casts with the feather rod each resulted in four more mackerel and a scad, then it went quiet again.
That was bait definitely sorted anyway.

View attachment 1369257
After dark we had a few small bites that looked strappy or doggy, but it was pretty slow.

View attachment 1369258


Cory eventually landed a strap, then a dog. I was still getting the odd strap bite but not connecting (which was fine by me).

It was still warm, in shorts and t shirt at 11.30 at night. Eventually put a hoodie on as the breeze picked up, then it felt too warm again 🙄

We agreed to give it until 1am and eventually I added two straps to my tally. Deep joy.
I did miss what looked very much like a better eel bite on the last cast with a whole scad fillet, but that’s okay, I’m happy that eels of any size stay in the sea, hate the things.

I was also by then feeling absolutely shattered and lightheaded too. My condition seems to take away whatever stamina I used to have, as a couple of years ago this would have been a relatively easy trip. I ache a bit at the end but I wouldn’t ache all over and feel ready to drop.
Let’s hope it improves!

Back at the car park, I spoke to two guys just after Cory left who appeared from the direction of the teeth and said they’d had smoothies, straps, some mackerel and an undulate about 10-11lb.

It does seem as though the mackerel are beginning to appear at Chesil although I have to say apart from those I caught, I didn’t notice any others come in. I wasn’t really looking that hard but some characters were down feathering on the shoreline for hours and hours.

Anyway, if you’ve made it this far, sorry it’s not the most thrilling report, but I did catch plenty of rays yesterday, albeit not the flat sort!

View attachment 1369260
I was there over the weekend ,blanked,,lol ,from Brighton to Weymouth was done in a nice 3 hours ,but going back well it was a pi$$ take over 4and a half hours becouse the a27 was closed down from Southampton to Arundel traffic was down to single land no faster than 10mph in stretches ,god never
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I was there over the weekend ,blanked,,lol ,from Brighton to Weymouth was done in a nice 3 hours ,but going back well it was a pi$$ take over 4and a half hours becouse the a27 was closed down from Southampton to Arundel traffic was down to single land no faster than 10mph in stretches ,god never
Bad luck on the blank Mike. Yes there was some crazy traffic. The good weather has brought them all out!
 

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Us locals have to live with the M27 and A27 roadworks, 50 mph & 40 mph average speed cameras and the closing of complete stretches at night and over weekends, all in the name of a Smart Motorway :LOL::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO: sorry excuse me while I have a laughing fit.

It's been going on for years now with no sight of a completion date and all the locals are totally p!ssed off with it and the most annoying thing is that when it is completed it will be another death trap motorway and will have to converted back to the way it was, what muppet came up with these Smart Motorways ... what a total [email protected] 😡😡😡😡
 
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