Catch fish with Mike Ladle.

Catch Fish with
Mike Ladle

Information Page


For anyone unfamiliar with the site always check the FRESHWATER, SALTWATER and TACK-TICS pages. The Saltwater page now extends back as a record of over several years of (mostly) sea fishing and may be a useful guide as to when to fish. The Freshwater stuff is also up to date now. I keep adding to both. These pages are effectively my diary and the latest will usually be about fishing in the previous day or two. As you see I also add the odd piece from my friends and correspondents if I've not been doing much. The Tactics pages which are chiefly 'how I do it' plus a bit of science are also updated regularly and (I think) worth a read (the earlier ones are mostly tackle and 'how to do it' stuff).

31 August 2006

Three sessions - same place different results.

Sometimes you have one of those days. I'm sure it happens to everyone. Anyway, Dave Baker rang to say he was coming down last weekend. His idea was to fish a local beach in the evening. Park overnight at Studland and we (Ben and I) would meet him next morning for a session at the mouth of Poole Harbour. I was up just before four o'clock and just picking up my rods to go and meet Ben when the phone rang. It was David. It seemed that - along with countless camper vans, he'd been given a ticket for parking by the police - two o'clock in the morning - what a downer. Anyway, our plan had to change. It was dead low water of a decent spring tide so not many places were fishable. We decided to try a rocky ledge where there were a couple of metres of water.

Actually I should go back a couple of days earlier. Ben said that he'd been fly fishing from the same ledge and had excellent sport with small pollack. We were hopeful of repeating the exercise. When we arrived the sky was just beginning to lighten - perfect! Ben stuck to his fly fishing with a black eel and a white one in tandem. Dave used his favourite Maria Chase plug and I persisted with my popper.

Nothing happened for a few minutes then we had a few bites. I had three bass, David had another then Ben hooked two at once on his flies. A good start. After that the mackerel arrived and we all began to catch them. Fly fishing was the most effective technique and Ben landed a load of fish including numerous double headers. The mackerel were feeding hard and even drove shoals of sprats high and dry onto the rocks. At the end we reckoned that we'd had at least sixty between us. To finish off Dave had a pollack on the plug and I had another bass on my popper. After that we went home for breakfast.

Oh! There was one little incident I didn't mention. As the tide began to rise a few of the bigger swells really crashed up against the ledges. As usual I was taking pictures for the website (and losing out on fishing time). I slipped the camera into my jacket pocket to save time for the next picture. You can guess the rest. A big splashy wave wet me and wrecked the camera - saltwater and electronics don't mix. You'd think that by now I would know ALWAYS to put the camera back in its bag between shots. Ben landed a garfish on his fly I switched on, pressed the shutter and - nothing! That's life! So no garfish picture.

Two days later I decided to try again on my own. This time I took the fly rod and the popping rod. In summary, I landed five bass four mackerel and two pollack. As far as I could gather conditions were similar on all three sessions. Obviously the tide was a bit later each time but essentially we were fishing around low water. First trip loads of pollack. Second trip loads of mackerel. Third trip provided less hectic fishing but the majority of the catch was bass - there's always something to learn in fishing.

If you have any comments or questions about fish, methods, tactics or 'what have you.'get in touch with me by sending an E-MAIL to -

Ben fly fishing.

The light is just about reaching the state where bites begin to come fast and furious.

Double header.

These two really zuzzed the check on Ben's fly reel.

TD Pencil.

Note the non-slip loop knot used to attach the lure.  Just as easy and effective (and cheaper) than any clip.

Popped bass.

Even small bass take these lures fiercely

David's bass.

The Maria accounted for lots of fish.  This one took the mid-body treble but was hooked in the gill cover on the tail hook.

Another double.

I had this pollack (hidden by the rod butt) and the mackerel at the same time.