I missed out on the Roker season last year, as I found myself dragged off into the Arctic Circle to catch huge Cod. As a result, Ive started this years hunts a little early, but although Ive had loads of fish and several really enjoyable sessions I havent had my target.
Until last night.
It was a lovely evening to be on the beach, but the fishing was both slow and challenging. There were so many crabs about I wound up cocooning my baits in elastic to try to make them last more than ten minutes, and with three rods out I only sat down for about half an hour total in the six hour session. Early on I had a small knock on the braid rod, which was loaded with 6/0s and a kraken, and was horrified when this came out ;
I mean, its considerably smaller than the bait ! How on earth did it get that giant hook in its gob ? Thats the equivalent of me trying to eat a whole cow !
Most of the flood was painfully slow catch-wise, with about half a dozen pins all I had to show for a whole box of squid. High tide came and went, as did the fella fishing a hundred yards or so along the beach from me ( nice to meet you ), and then suddenly the braid rod started rattling again. This was more like it though just the sort of knock I remembered from a couple of years back. I fought the temptation to hit it and sat on my hands. Three or four more knocks over the next five to ten minutes finally saw the tip pull round and keep going, so I wound down and instantly knew I was in. The tide rushes along at the start of the ebb and this, coupled to the braid and the relatively low drag settings I use with that reel, resulted in the fish taking line quite a few times on the way in.
An enjoyable tussle later this arrived on the beach :
A tad under 71/2 Lb of prime Essex Roker meant I was off the mark, and several weeks earlier than I had expected.
Id been toying with the idea of calling it a night, but that capture got the old adrenaline running so I slung leads with renewed vigour. I wound in the Martini rod ( anytime, anyplace anywhere
anything ! )to change that to a roker rig as well, and this was dangling off the end ;
Now Im not sure how well the picture will show this, but this greedy little burger had both top and bottom hook of a 2 hook clip down firmly wedged in its mouth, with both baits virtually untouched. Youd have thought that having got hooked on one of them itd learn its lesson, but no it had to snaffle the other one as well.
The rest of the ebb was a bit of a disappointment with only a few pins to show for a lot of bait chucked in the drink. I need to get my file out on one of my splashdown solos I used a new one on the Martini rod and had three non-releases out of six casts. They definitely dont like 6/0s unless you fettle them a bit. Still, the lack of fish didnt matter too much as Id achieved what Id set out to. Heres hoping the next few weeks are even more productive.
Until the next time