Hi Putters, just imagine Your fishing for lemon sharks and scale down a bit!!:roll1::roll1::roll1:
Seriously though a lot depends on the weather in the coming days, if that wind stays and sits in an easterly pattern fishing will be hard.
Our club has a match out there this sunday and this would be my game plan, bait wise- 2 score of blacks, score of yellows,2 score of rag ( 20 large and 20 small) 8 peeler, pack of s/eels ,pack squid, plus some exotica if i can get the time to dig them, like maddies, whites and stringer rag/ rock worm. oh and of course a bread bag filled with 2 loafs mothers pride white, 2 tins of kitty kat (salmon!)and a glug of herring oil !! That would be the ideal bait scenario ,but like as not i will end up with a score of commons and some squid, cos the missus will have sold my bait in a vein attempt to put me off going!!!!
Rigs for the outside of the wall,size 2/0 pennal loaded with yellows/blacks/crab for mr coddie, same rig with crab for hounds, 3 hook flappers size 1,s with the bottom snood coming off a short (3-4 inch) boom ,snoods in general 18-22 ins baited with black,commons,rag tipped with squid strip,used in conjunction with 175 impact uptide leads-usually sorts out dogs, whiting,pout, codling and more dogs!!. Traces for the inside (tide coming up) 3 hook clipped down size 2's or goldsie portsmoth clipped rigs loaded with black,yellow, rag,common tipped thin squid strip,for flats, dogs,pout/whiting, more dogs, occassional hound-leads 150g normal impacts- and belt it as far as f-------g possible!Bread bag down the outside wall for mullet, fine hook snoods-size 6',s short shank baited with the bread from my sarnies, cos when i was loading the bread bag up and putting it in the water i forgot to take out 6 slices of white for bait!!( did this the last 3 visits- caught on all occassions with a mix of m/pride white crust/cloverspread/peanut butter !!!!! hook snoods want to be 6-8 lb b/s as mullet have ultra keen eyesight and can spot and shy away from thicker lines. Take a pollock rest or 2 with you and fish booms down the wall with rag on size 6's for pollock, or near the base of the inside wall for wrasse. Substitute the rag for sandeel/ fish strip /live mini pout for bass, 4-6 turns off the bottom of the inside wall.You could also fish a long flowing trace with a 2/0 on baited with whole squid, live pout or mackarel for bass on both inside/outside of wall. Pollock gear as before on the outside baited with mackeral belly strip for scad.
Slip on a slider float on the inside, again baited thin belly strip for gars.
Plenty of opportunity to try different methods that You may not normally fish out on the 'concrete boat'- do not be affraid to try something different ,You never know it just might work, but if it does, put it on here and share your info, good luck,all the best, mick s.-oh and dont forget to put the correct money in the p/meter or the buggers will clamp you ,be warned!!!!:1a::1a:
'The Knuckle' is the name given to the section from peg 1 to 13 (looking out to sea -the eastern end seaward wall to the lighthouse),You can fish beyond that point on the inside up to the grey 6ft railings that seperate the 'battery's' from the very end of the breakwater, this is the same from peg 213 at the western end.The Dover SAA members were permitted to fish inside these normally 'out of bounds' areas on DSAA all night comps,DSAA 'mini' weekends and the DSAA 'holiday week' but that privallege has now been withdrawn because of the health and safety issues arising from abuse of this privallege by a few mindless individuals ( same old ,same old! ).Although I am sure somebody will rise to those responsible's defence and give another reason altogether !!(Bit of historic and now totaly useless info- but when We could fish these bits at night some prolific bass catches were made under the sodium lights at the Western end and to a lesser extent the Eastern end, using live pout, small pollock , mackeral and scad that had been caught during the day an kept alive in creels in the water!!- best personal catch one night was 7 fish over 7lb-all went back !!)
A pier is not a pier when it is a breakwater completely isolated and only reached by boat.
Few exist around Britain’s coast: perhaps the most famous in angling terms is Dover Breakwater in Kent, home of the current shore bass record. Local sea anglers think nothing of taking the short boat ride out to the “Concrete Boat” or “The Wall”. While many popular beach venues along the Channel coast become more devoid of fish, Dover breakwater remains one of the most productive daylight venues nationwide.
One of the fascinating things about Dover Breakwater is that there is no commercial fishing allowed inside the harbour – a veritable angling paradise un-trawled, un-netted and un-potted , while the non stop ferry and cruiser traffic makes commercial fishing anywhere near the harbour impossible. The absence of pots gives the inside its large population of lobsters. It was the only place around the Kent Coast where the shore-based angler could catch plaice in large numbers.
To reach the wall requires a five minute boat trip with the Dover Motor Boat Company from the Dump Head pontoon Western Docks at 8am and a return trip at 3:30pm. Anglers are dropped and picked up from the western end steps, although a request for passage to the eastern end steps is rarely refused when the boat is not busy. Access via the stone steps from the boat can be precarious when the sea is lumpy. Don’t take mountains of gear and always assist each other getting off the boat.
The weather, particularly wind strength, is decisive in allowing access to the wall. The boat won’t take anglers out if the Shipping Forecast is over a Force 6 for the Dover region. If you are traveling a long way to Dover you can telephone the Dover Motor Boat Company to find out if the boat is running but remember the decision is made after the 5:35am shipping forecast. The telephone number is 01304 206809. If the breakwater is unavailable then the Admiralty and the Prince of Wales piers can be alternatives.
The current patrolman on the wall is Tommy Preston. He is employed by Dover SAA and is in touch with the Harbour Board at all times via a VHF radio. In case of emergency he should be notified immediately. Getting from the boat to the steps on the side of the wall is precarious and anglers are urged to assist each other and not run off and try to be the first to the best fishing spots. For this reason the wall is only open to able-bodied anglers under Dover Harbour Board rules. There are restrictions on juniors too – you must be over 18 or 16 if accompanied by an adult.
Fishing is only available on the centre section with 213 pegs spaced at approximately two metres along the wall. A short length of the inside wall at each end is also available. Known as the battlements, this area includes the wartime accommodation blocks.
The main problem encountered on the breakwater is the strong tide – there are not many places where the tide runs as strongly, and the English Channel bottleneck around Dover is responsible. From newcomers, both the strength and changing direction of the tide produce looks of amazement. It’s capable of catching out even experienced anglers with is sudden change of direction, just when they have cast “up tide”...Suddenly they find their lead going the wrong way.
Both the flood and the ebb tides surge along the breakwater with the harbour entrance creating an eddy effect.
The 12 hour tidal cycle is as follows: The tide runs strongly to the west during the ebb. The flood tide then runs east for about an hour, two hours before high water. After that it runs west, then east, west and east several times throughout the high tide period, changing direction in minutes. A slack period occurs for a short time after high water before the strong ebb returns. Top times to fish are during the flood run and as it stops, as well as during high tide slack or during the tidal direction changes. The ebb produces the occasional fish. On the inside wall low tide up is the best time to fish.
A good grip lead is of paramount importance for anglers journeying to the wall – it can be frustrating to find yourself marooned on the wall for the day with only breakout leads in your tackle box. Grip leads for strong tides come in many models and you only have to look at the Dover experts to see what they use. A 7oz yellow head Gemini fixed wire grip lead is needed to hold bottom.
Beating the tide means you shouldn’t cast too far. Short casts mean less line in the water to catch the tide, while casting a similar distance to your neighbours prevents too many tangles.
The depth of water also helps eliminate crossed line problems, although the angler casting long or very short can cause problems for others if unaware of the situation. Cast slightly uptide and release plenty of slack line. This ensures your lead sinks quickly and grips the sea bed. Tidal movement on the inside or harbour side is considerably less and a breakout lead or soft wire fixed lead will hold bottom well. The latter helps combat the inside snags.
The breakwater produces a large variety of species from both sides of the wall during summer. The fishing is so varied it can cater for the bite-a-chuck tastes of the matchmen with pouting, dogfish, scad and pollack; the more patient approach of the specimen hunter seeking big bass, smoothhound, plaice or mullet; and the casual angler, who just wants to wet a line with a chance of catching something.
Regular daytime completions used to produce double figure weights and the series of summer night matches would regularly yield 50lb bags. Pleasure catches include bass into double figures, smoothhound to 12lb, plaice to 5lb, mullet to 5lb and the occasional double figure stingray or conger.
Standard beach gear is adequate for fishing either side of the wall, although rods should be rated for the heaviest grip leads required.
Mainline of 15lb is most suitable to combat the strong tide. Heavier lines can be used for the bigger species and for fishing down the wall or on the inside in places where the bottom is snaggy.
The make up of rigs is important when fishing close range, although this aspect is ignored by many to their cost. Because the water is so deep, fishing at close range often means that hook snoods fished up the line are off the bottom. A flowing trace is the best terminal rig for all species when fishing the outside wall or inside at short range in a strong tide. At other times a one up one down is the best all round tactic, while French booms are a worthwhile consideration either down close to the wall to suspend baits mid-water for bass, pollack and scad or inside after flatfish. Flounders can be caught just under the surface on booms aimed at pollack because they swim up the wall.
Railings run along both sides of the wall so you don’t need to bring a rod rest. However, a railing rod rest is used to hang the baits just under the surface or out from the wall. Otherwise rods should be tied to the railings on all occasions. Use a rod bag or luggage straps, not only because the tide can pull a rod over, but fish can as well when aided by the strong tide.
The area to the western end between pegs 1 and 13 is known as the “Knuckle” and is a favourite spot for bass, just as the flood run picks up. The inside here produces pollack on the surface after dark. The other end, where the boat drops off, at peg 213 is also a bass hot spot from the outside wall. You will have to be first on the boat to fish these pegs. For the Knuckle it’s a daily race when everyone gets off the boat.
The middle numbers can be more productive and less snaggy for plaice from the inside wall. Snags are a problem and the worst place for hook ups is around pegs 20 to 30 on the inside wall, also around pegs 65 and 110 on the inside, although snags do tend to come and go with rough weather and variations of angling pressure.
Smoothhound regularly come to pegs between 50 and 150 on the outside wall. Top summer match draw is in the 30’s on the inside. Here you can cast to a hole in the sea bed caused by the ferries turning. Note the depth of the weed fringes at low water because this is the hot spot for browsing bass, mullet and pollack at high tide.
When pleasure fishing it is difficult to decide which side to fish. A rod either side is the answer.
A good days fishing can depend a lot on the weather, if the wind stays and sits in easterly direction fishing can be hard work, but can be good after a prolonged easterly blow will churn up the Goodwin Sands colouring the water from deal and sends the sediment round to Dover where there will be lots of colour in the water and hopefully lots of fish.
Cod travel the outside wall immediately following the short, but strong flood run. The tide runs to the left towards Deal. The start of the flood tide run is a hot time for bass, time to fish a fresh mackerel head alongside the wall in summer and autumn.
Watch the waves – once the tide starts to slack after the strong flood run, they start to slap against the wall. This is also the time to keep a careful eye out for the odd rogue wave because when its rough these freak waves can breach the wall and threaten tackle.
Scheduled trips are Wednesdays and Weekends only. Call 01304 206809 to check the boat is going out.
Park in the marina car park behind the RNLI station, just off The Esplanade. It will cost you around £5 a day.
The return trip to the breakwater costs £6. A days fishing for a member of DSAA costs a further £6 or £7 for non-member.
Bait and tackle
There are four tackle shops located across the road from the marina at Snargate Street.
Brazils of Dover
162 Snargate St, Dover, Kent CT179BZ
158-160 Snargate St, Dover, Kent CT179BZ
146 Snargate St, Dover, Kent CT179BZ
Bills Bait and Tackle
121 Snargate St, Dover, Kent CT179DA
You can fish any day of the week if you’re in a club and can get at east 12 people fishing. Call number below for details.
For more information on Dover SAA and the Breakwater, contact DSAA on 01304 204722.
Some fishy facts
The biggest conger eel landed from the wall was caught by local angler Nigel Brice in 1990. It weighed 60lb 8oz and was 7ft 3in long.
The former British record bass came from the western end of the breakwater during the 1988 holiday week organized by Dover SAA. Caught by David Bourne, it weighed 19lb.
Hi Coxey, You say when you went to fish the knuckle it seemed to be for members only, when you paid for your peir ticket the first time you automatically became an associate member ,so no one had any more right to fish there than you!, unless of course it had been pre- booked for a comp by a club. if anybody tells you this again have a word with the patrol man, sounds like they were pulling yer pud mate!
This weekends tides are fine for the breakwater, if you cannot hold out on outside -fish the inside!! do not forget that the tide will change direction 3 or 4 times on the outside on a spring but will only realy run right to left looking back to the beach ,on the inside, plenty of oportunity to try different rigs/methods on this tide fishing both sides-Read the post again m8!:sun:
After all you help and advice we had a meeting the tuesday night in the torential rain storms in essex, and after speaking to the guys at the boat, and them telling us that the boat had not taken anyone for over 5 days and that the forecast was getting worse we decided that we would not come down and maybe do a day on a reservoir pike / trout fishing, anyway the boats were not allowed out on the reservoir due to the wind, ended up on a local canal, had a small jack pike about 4lb, and then we hear teh boat did go, agghhhhhh not a good day.
Did anyone go yestareday and make my day worse by telling me what was caught?
Hi Coxey, 'The Knuckle' is the name given to the section from peg 1 to 13 (looking out to sea -the eastern end seaward wall to the lighthouse),You can fish beyond that point on the inside up to the grey 6ft railings that seperate the 'battery's' from the very end of the breakwater, this is the same from peg 213 at the western end.The Dover SAA members were permitted to fish inside these normally 'out of bounds' areas on DSAA all night comps,DSAA 'mini' weekends and the DSAA 'holiday week' but that privallege has now been withdrawn because of the health and safety issues arising from abuse of this privallege by a few mindless individuals ( same old ,same old! ).Although I am sure somebody will rise to those responsible's defence and give another reason altogether !!(Bit of historic and now totaly useless info- but when We could fish these bits at night some prolific bass catches were made under the sodium lights at the Western end and to a lesser extent the Eastern end, using live pout, small pollock , mackeral and scad that had been caught during the day an kept alive in creels in the water!!- best personal catch one night was 7 fish over 7lb-all went back !!)
hi i was wondering if the break water is open this saturday ie 26th sep, if so what times to get there and how much, and what would i likely to be catching, is there a good peg or are they all good, im after a cod or codling, did not manage to catch one last winter season lol, dont ask why, think i just had some bad luck, bait will be fresh lug and frozen squids and help or advice, would be greatly accepted, thanks in advance