Friday, 25 July 2014

Boney but lush!

You can't beat the taste of fresh Sea Bass, it was the final afternoon of this year’s Devon adventure, it was the last couple of hours of the rising tide and I'd already tried the spot where I'd caught a few Black Bream last year and there were no bites. I'd moved back onto the beach where the girls were and the tide was already filling the shallow gully in front of our beach camp.
Breakers were crashing onto the sand bar on the far side of the gully and it was Sharon that first noticed some fish in the waves, she was right, there were indeed silver flashes in these waves, I put a cast just onto the back of these waves with humble lugworm as bait, it was hit straight away and the first Bass was shortly on the beach. this was a reasonable fish and bigger than you would pay good money for at the local supermarket so I asked the question "Do you want it for tea?" there was a "Yes" from the girls and the fish was quickly dispatched for the pot. I'm no longer a fan of doing this but I am from a sea fishing background and regularly used to bring fish home when I was younger, Cod, Plaice, Pollack and Coalie were all regularly seen in the frying pan at our house.
I was getting at least one fish a chuck but I found that if I waited for a second pull the two hook flapper rig was doing its job and bagging two Bass at a time.
Bass, two at a time.

A second fish was kept for the pot as it had swallowed the hook but it was a good sized fish.
Ready for the pot.
When it comes to cooking there’s nothing fancy here, the fish were head, tailed and cleaned, smothered in butter and lemon juice, sealed into individual foil parcels and into a hot oven for twenty minutes. The fresher they are the better they taste and these were only a couple of hours out of the sea.
Boney but lush!

Sharky Shakes!

Fishing’s been quiet again and I still have the duck!
Just had the first of my annual jollies, North Devon again and a spot of Smoothhound terrorising was first on the cards.
It was an early start to catch the last couple of hours of the dropping tide, I think I got it just right as shortly after casting out the first of my soft crab baits, I was busy trying to unravel my second trace to bait up ready for the next cast, the rod ripped off to the music of a screaming ratchet. The tip was bouncing all over the place as I made a lunge for the rest, grabbing the rod before it took off. I switched off the music, flipped the reel into gear and braced myself as the weight of the fish pulled a very healthy curve into the rod and it continued to pull very hard in its bid to reach the far side of the bay. When you only fish for a particular species once a year you forget how good it feels to hook one and this first fish fought all the way to the rocks, every twist, turn and rapid beat of it's tail had left me shaking after lifting the sharky shape onto the rocks, it's fins lit up by the rising sun.
All lit up.
This was a good fish as well, must have been close to ten pound and definitely the biggest I've had from this spot.
A scrap and a half from this one.
I had another common smoothy half an hour later and a smaller Starry Smoothhound at around low tide.
I was back at the caravan for eight thirty, all smiles and had breakfast ready on the table for when the girls got up.
What an excellent start to the day.