Catch fish with Mike Ladle.

Catch Fish with
Mike Ladle

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SEA FISHING

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).

Pollack.

Dave Baker went fishing with me last weekend. It turned out that he was down my way for a few days so I was not surprised when he rang me a couple of evenings later. He said that he'd just returned from a lone fishing trip to a rocky ledge. During a walk, earlier that afternoon, he'd spotted a large shoal of sandeels in a small cove in the rocks. Dave put two and two together and that evening, just before dusk, he ventured out with the spinning rod to see if there were any predators about. Dave fished with a shallow diving Maria plug (hoping for bass) and an uptrace red and white teaser fly (in case of mackerel). As it turned out he'd had a beano, several bass and garfish plus large numbers of decent pollack which got bigger as darkness fell.

Dave asked if I fancied joining him the following morning and I, of course, said "Yes"! We met just after six and drove down to the clifftop. It was cold and the northerly wind had a biting edge to it but once we were on the ledges in the shelter of the cliff it seemed quite pleasant. Dave used the set up which had been successful the evening before and I started with a large leaded Redgill. The hook in my lure was much too small (I'd changed it myself) and after a couple of missed savage bites I took it off and replaced it. Dave, meanwhile, was already catching pollack, mostly on his fly.

My new lure was a plug (rarely a good option for pollack), which the fish ignored for a further spell, and then another change to a lead headed rubber jig. Now for me to change lures twice in ten minutes is almost unheard of but Dave was still getting lots of strikes and I felt that I was missing out. The jig 'did the business' and I immediately started catching pollack. The fish were not as big as the previous evening but we both hooked up every other cast even as it got light. Dave had a garfish for variety and I switched again (what was I messing about at?) to a bibless minnow (simply out of curiosity this time) - it was just as effective as the jig. Before packing in I put on a wedge and again I landed a pollack.

Although neither of us had a big pollack we both enjoyed the session and caught lots of fish. It seemed that any lure that got down far enough would catch. The sandeel shoal that had been there the previous day seemed to be absent. Dave said he was going to give it another try that evening so I look forward to hearing whether the bigger fish turned up again.

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 - docladle@hotmail.com

Dave.

Dave spinning.  Many of the pollack were close to the big rock in front of him.

A catch.

This one took the plug rather than the feather - unusual.

Better safe than sorry.

Even with pollack it's worth avoiding the trebles.  Note the uptrace red and white feather.

On the bibless minnow!

This lure looks as much like a small sprat as anything.

Colourful.

Pollack may not be the hardest fighters but they are wonderful fish.