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9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For the last two weeks in August I'm going on holiday to Croyde Bay with the family. I've been there before but that was before I started fishing. But from memory I would think that likely spots that I can see for fishing are Croyde Bay itself (but probably only at night because of the surfers), Wollacombe Bay (same thing as Croyde with the surfers), Saunton Sands (only seems to have surfers clustered around the car park end so probably could be fished throughout the day) and the other end of Saunton Sands at the eastuary to the River Taw or the beech at Westward Ho.
Does anyone know how or if any of these areas fish and if so, what can be caught there? What baits are best ? What times of tide? Day or night ? And if someone is willing to swim out and hook a fish on the end of my line that would be a bonus. :D
I know I'm asking a lot but I've not seen a single post about any of these areas so I can only assume that either they don't fish at all or they are the best kept secret in the West.

9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for that lads.

I'll try both beaches while I'm there. I might also give the estuary to the River Taw a try as well, I walked along that area when I did the South West Coast Path and it looked quite interesting. Either the spit of sand behind Braunton Burrows or the other side of the river at Appledore.

As those are such nice looking sandy surf beaches I'm just a bit surprised that they arn't fished more than the lack of posts about them here would seem to suggest.

7,017 Posts
Hi mackeral Man
I'll be in Barnsaple in the 1st week of Sept so good luch and please post your results early.

7,017 Posts
Just back from a family week in Barnstaple, N Devon.

Been there a number of times over the years and have never found anywhere
profitable to fish until yesterday. (Friday)

I did escape with the rods on Thursday for the day, but on the way to
collect some bait got my car totalled by a blind teenaged local in an almost
empty car park.

It took the rest of the day arranging recovery to Kent and a replacement car
so no fishin' that day!

Friday I took the wife out for lunch and found an award winning little café
on the north bank of the River Taw.

Although it was low tide the view over the railings shouted FISH HERE!!!!

To me it looked very Bassy.

Although bank to bank there was over a mile of exposed sand and gullies, the
primary course of the river was about 50 yds out and there was a fantastic
eddy to within 10yds of the quay wall.

Loads of mud close in showed the usual marks of a lot of bait digging.

Ever hopeful I called in at Tesco for some mackie and those raw prawns and
sallied forth for the evening - high water at 22.00 hrs.

I fished with an easy lob into a beautiful eddy which got even better as the
tide pushed up the estuary into the river.

7pm a couple of local guys arrived and fished from a little pier and
proceeded to wind in a stream of small fish

By 8 pm I had done my bit feeding the crabs, it was dark and pouring with
rain so I wandered up to the two guys to chew the fat and see what they were
catching, on what and what rigs.

The bait was what I would call Harbour Rag - about 2 to 3" long hooked in
small bunches and fished off a paternoster with about a 10" snood and 6 oz
of lead.

I was holding bottom with 2 oz.

They were each catching a 6" bass per cast.

One of them very generously gave me a large handful of his rag and wished me

8.30pm and still pouring with rain I went back to my rods, a quick change of
rig to a 2 boom paternoster and blow me a bite within seconds of the bait
going into the water.

Missed it , and the next two as well.

Next cast a rattle and then a nod and the rod actually moved in my hands and
I was in to something larger than the tiddlers.

The bass of a lifetime perhaps?

As I drew the fish towards the wall it started to get very bullish and I had
to give it line.

Eventually the beam of my headlamp showed a large silver fish on the
surface, but still with plenty of fight in it.

Still the bass of a lifetime was still on so take it easy and consider how
to land it.

Shouts for a drop net brought loads of laughter from the two guys and also
from another couple of guys fishing further away.

When they realised that I wasn't joking they all wandered over, by which
time I was at the head of the old stone steps leading down the side of the
little pier.

Two guys went down the steps, one to hold onto the other while he lifted the
fish out of the water and a third held my rod so that I could climb under
the safety chain at the top of the steps to stay in contact should things go

All went well and a fine grey mullet of about 7lbs was safely in my hands.

My first mullet, my largest fish ever from a beach and a lot of "was that on
those worms that I gave you?"

There were also lot of other comments about lucky holidaymakers as the fish
was safely returned to the water.

If any of you guys read this and recognise yourselves, thanks a million for

You made a good holiday a fantastic holiday.

Oh and to finish, there was also a 6" bass on the top hook which was also
safely returned to the water

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