Monday, 7 May 2012


This weekend the Isles of Scilly held the World Pilot Gig Championships, a great event that was enjoyed by everyone but after driving and trying to dodge all the rowers and supporters (normally there are just over 2000 people here, but this weekend that swells to 5000) I had to escape the madness and go fishing!! It is the only thing that keeps me sane!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Forecast was perfect, tides perfect so I headed back up to Bryher to finally try and nail one of them bruising ballans that smashed me up the last few times!! In fact I dont think that conditions could have been better. There was no swell at all and the water clarity as gin clear as I had seen this year, PERFECT for wrasse I said to myself. It was a couple of hours before low water which was at midday so I left the best spot(the one the locals from bryher said held monsters) to the first of the flood which I was convinced would be the prime time. As it is quite shallow I didnt want to go casting and scaring any fish off before the best time so I decided to fish near Shipman Head at a mark called Mussel Rock.

Before I made a cast I scanned the water and  could clearly see fish swimming over the boulders and through the kelp, fantastic!! Cast out, twitch twitch nothing???? Very strange, as my lure came into view it was being followed by a stunning bright green wrasse of between 4 and 5lbs. It hadnt had a go at the lure but just followed it slowly, checking it out I assumed? No matter what I did to the action of the lure I couldnt get the fish to take it. I tried everything, every colour and every shape of lure that I had brought with me and nowt, just the same result, follows but no bite, not even a pluck-SOOOO frustrating!!!! I decided after an hour of trying to catch that one fish that a move was in order as I was starting to go mad. A move to the next gulley and first cast and bang, fish on!

Not the biggest fish in the world but after spending an hour trying to catch that other ballan I was just pleased that I had caught and my methods still worked!!!!!!

Sport was very slow on the ebb, only managed to winkle out 4 fish which considering the conditions seemed really weird. Maybe they just werent hungry or couldnt be arsed to even bite the lures out of annoyance, I dont know the reasons but I did notice that one of the wrasse coughed up a sandeel so maybe they were courged up on them?? But it was low water and so I made my way to ''THE SPOT''.

Perfect conditions, clear water and no swell with boulders everywhere!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

When the tide floods over these boulders the wrasse will be going mental for all the blennies and gobies that were darting around the rock pools, got to be a lunker in this boulder field later on!!!!!!!

Imagine fishing over this type of ground with normal techniques and gear, the tackle losses would make you cry!!! Fishing texas style, with the lure ''skinned'' (point of hook pushed gently into the back of the lure) no worries- PIECE OF CAKE!!

I remembered the sandeel that was coughed up so decided what the hell and hunted through my lure box and found the closest lure to resemble a sandeel that I had, rigged it up texas style and cast out. It hadnt even descended to the bottom when it was well and truly nailed, fish on!

A better fish that went 3lbs and fought like a much bigger wrasse. What happened next can only be described as MENTAL fishing!!!!!! Every cast and I mean every cast was nailed harder than any wrasse I had caught before, fish after fish falling to the sandeel pattern!!!!

Mental fishing without a doubt, it was hard to keep count of the number as I had never experienced wrassing like it, all better sized fish with most fish being between 2.5 and 4lbs topped off by a better fish of 5.4lbs that fought harder than any 5lb fish that I have caught before!! Total count was 60 fish landed and many others lost due to me trying to bully them!!!

Sorry for the dodgy picture but this is the lure that did the damage!!!! Half way through the madness a shoal of mullet came through the area and cruising slowly behind was no mullet! I nearly fell of my rock with excitement as there in front of me was a bass of 3.5-4lbs!!! Now we dont get bass over here in Scilly for some reason but bugger me there was one right in front of me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I made several cast for it and it did follow my lure on one occasion but didnt fancy the look of it unlike the wrasse and disappeared after a few minutes! Gutted I carried on casting the area it was in for an hour but to no avail, but who knows, maybe with the strange seasons and weather that we had this winter there might be more bass around the islands?? Christ I thought that I said fishing kept me sane..............................................................................


  1. magic once again Del, was fishing up shipmans all day saturday surprised i didn't see ya. after setting up neil with his new boat 'house' off i went. Same story for me as well really, not a lot of fish for an hour or so then madness, didn't even manage to drink all my coffee in my flask i was soo busy the rest of the day. Best was around 4lb on mixture of plastics (jacks lrf) all fished texas style and only lost two sets all day. Better then watching the rowing by far!

  2. well done for getting out fella, those lures you got from jackslrf really are the business for wrasse and pollack rnt they!!!! I was up there on sunday so thats probably why you didnt see me, we will have to get organised and get a trip sorted!!!!!!

  3. yeah lets do it! i'm up there every saturday and we'll get neil away from his boat for a day!

  4. wow, awesome fishing, I am so excited about my summer trip, I didn't make it at Easter in the end :(
    that bass is bonkers... ohh god does this mean I'm going to have to bring some bassy lures with me too this year lol. I think my fishing kit will out weigh my camping kit.
    keep it up, I am chaffing at the bit to get over for some wrassey action.

  5. Nice one mate, such addictive fishing! Me and Jim gotta get down and have a fish with you soon