Friday, 16 November 2012


Well folks its been a hell of a long time since I have done a post, a combination of going on a much needed holiday to Ireland (not sure that some people would call getting up at 4 o'clock every morning to go and chase bass as a holiday though), getting battered by big swells making the islands unfishable and work getting in the way but enough excuses!!!!!!

I did venture out on Saturday for an hour but there was so much groundsea it made trying to fish virtually impossible so I have been waiting with the rod set up by the front door for the swells to ease and today it did!

I had been sent some cracking looking new lures from Andy at Jackslrf to trial with Neil and also the new hooks that they will be stocking soon as well. More about them later! For my wrasse fishing, as those that have been following my exploits will know, I have been using and abusing the Major Craft Crostage and having some great fun with it landing christ knows how many wrasse but just recently I have been playing around with the very different Century HPR 7'3''. I will be writing up a long term test review sometime in the future when I have given it a good stig type testing, first impression though is that it has a serious amount of power lower down that could come in very handy if a big kelp donkey needs halting!!! Right, back to the fishing...

I decided to head out around the airport and see what the kelpy gullies I have been fishing looked like on a big spring low water. Always a good idea to really see what you are fishing over and where the deeper drop offs are and what other new ground you can find too. I started to fish with the old faithful Watermelon Hawg Stickbait rigged up with a 7g cone weight, a flick out and the Century HPR was soon bending nicely into a wrasse OTD.

A good start that got better as the afternoon went on! It seemed like the wrasse were literally queueing up, maybe with all the bad weather and big seas they were only now able to get out from the holes and feed and were starving??

It was a bite a cast to start with but the size was down with most fish being under 2lbs with the odd 3lber in amongst them.
A change of gullies was called for in the hope of finding a better stamp of fish, thankfully the whole of the airport is full of gullies and rocky outcrops not to mention boulder fields so I didnt have far to go.

I decided to swap lures and try a new type of soft plastic from Jackslrf that isnt currently available to purchase, as yet. It certainly looks the part, watermelon with red blue and gold flecks throughout the lure which looks remarkably like a small baitfish.

Coupled with a new type of hook, with its slightly longer shank that incorporates a couple of small barbs designed to hold the soft plastic in place. I cast out parallel to a finger of granite and let the lure sink down, closing the bail arm manually a couple of twitches got the lure swimming invitingly. I didnt have to wait long before the first tap tap as an inquisitive wrasse homed in on its meal. It was only a small fish that I may have not caught before as with these new hooks the point of the lure is slightly further back down the lure resulting in a better hook up ratio. I cast out again and this time a slightly better fish grabbed the lure after a couple of twitches.

Another cast on the same line and bang, a much better fish hit the lure!! The Century HPR was absorbing the big wrasse's powerful dives and taking it all in its stride. Christ this rod has some power in the lower tip section and clearly been designed by the wrasse master Keith White with big pigs in mind!! Several times the wrasse tried its best to take me into its rocky lair but each time the rod got the better of it and soon I was able to slip the net under a stonking fish.

Measuring 54cms and pulling the digital scales down to 6.2lbs it was a new pb for a lure-caught wrasse for myself and the best thing was watching her disappear back down to her kelpy den with a big swish of her tail! 

Well I was pretty impressed with both the new hooks and lures not to mention the Century HPR, now I just hope that the weather stays ok so that I can get out again this weekend for some more ''research''!!

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