Shall start by saying Happy New Year to everyone!
Its been a couple of months since the last instalment so while things are a tad quiet I’ll drop an update in.
Soon after my last blog I had my last guided fishing session of the year. Marcus and Ivan were on holiday in the UK from Singapore and although had an interest in fishing had never given it a try. It was difficult to come up with a plan as they were only in North Wales on days that I was working, and the weather at the time made it tricky to plan a session on Anglesey. I opted for the shelter, and comfort of Llandudno North Shore which although is out of my usual area I was optimistic it would provide plenty of bites. Street lighting was reasonable enough to be able to demonstrate casting and baiting up to the guys during the night time session. It was bites from the off, mostly whiting, but a few small codling and a rocking came to the rods, nothing of any size but it was great to get the guys into some action having planned the session as part of their trip.
My own fishing has been a bit slow in all honesty. My aim was to catch the four remaining “banker” species I was yet to land in 2018, while hoping for a couple of bonuses to help hit the 50 target. I got conger eel out the way fairly quickly into December, but struggled to find a 3 beard rockling on Holyhead Breakwater. Desperate to find a turbot I hit the beaches when it was either too rough or too calm, needless to say that was pretty unsuccessful. A mate had also booked us a trip on the Mersey for cod which turned out to be a slow mornings fishing with a few undersize, and just the one decent fish falling to Arwyn. A couple of us did manage to get a bend from a thornback each which lifted the spirits temporarily!
One of the best sessions I had was with James, a mate from work. He’s mad keen on Carp fishing but while up here on the coast has had a dabble in the saltwater. I picked a mark where I might have an outside chance of that gilthead bream again but at the very least bass would show. What I hadn’t planned for was a plague of pin whiting in the shallow water, stripping all baits within a couple of minutes. Things weren’t going quite to plan until James sprang up and shouted that was a better bite. The rod bend clearly showed a decent fish and sure enough a lovely 5lb bass was at our feet, a great result for such a late night.
I also went on a few missions down the Llyn Peninsula, with numerous tope captures being reported. While it seemed like I was a tide late on most occasions, one session resulted in a run and another decent fish, either huss or conger, spitting the hook on the way up. On the positive side I’ve covered a lot of ground that end now and have a better idea of the ledges that are likely to produce a tope or two. With all those opportunities falling away I obviously didn’t reach the target of 50 species, but 45 species locally in a calendar year (well all squeezed into 8 months) is still very respectable. Now got much better ideas of where to find the ones I missed, and catching these is high on the priority list for 2019!