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).

Reuben's first bass!!!

I think I've said before that the bass have been rather thin on the ground so far this year. I've had a couple of blanks and in fact I've only heard of two bass and one mullet caught from my local coastline as yet. However, we are into May now and it is time that something was happening on the sea angling front.

The other morning I met my pal Rob in the car park at about 04.30hr. We had not arranged to meet but clearly we were thinking alike. It was a pleasantly mild morning and as we trudged along the shore the first pale light was appearing in the eastern sky. Both of us were armed with spinning rods and shallow diving plugs so when we arrived at our chosen spot we began to fish at once. For the first half hour we flogged away and after a while another angler arrived and also began to fish. It was still pretty gloomy and I'd just paddled back to the shore to dump my bag when I noticed that Rob was into a fish. He was wading backwards, four-piece rod well bent, to try and beach his catch. I grabbed the camera and started snapping. I should have realised it was rather dark and that the range was too great for the flash to work but anyway, I managed a few pictures. The close ups of Rob's nice bass turned out fine. After hed slipped his fish back into the sea (hopefully it didn't swim straight into a gill net), we fished on for some time and were joined by a fourth spinner but that was that for the morning.

On the following day I had an email from my friend James to tell me that his son Reuben had caught his first ever bass. Now, young Reuben (he's seven) is going to be a 'dyed in the wool' angler. He drags his dad down to the shore at every opportunity and he really fishes. After only a few sessions he's already a competent caster and he works his lures like a veteran. In case of accidents Reuben is still restricted to using single hook lures (multi-trebles are never a good idea if you might mis-cast) but clearly it doesn't stop him catching fish. On this occasion he was fishing with a soft plastic Slug-Go with the hook shielded in the groove on top of the lure. First chuck he was into a fish and he landed it - just under four pounds - what a fish when you're seven! He took his fish in murky, weedy conditions - just right for that type of lure. His dad tells me that the fish took only a few yards from the shore, which underlines the point that you don't need to be able to cast far and even the most basic tackle can catch a decent fish. It's the wizard not the wand that puts fish on the bank.

He's in!

Sorry about the poor picture - Rob's just beaching his bass.


What a cracking fish. It was taken in murky conditions on the old, reliable, J11 Rapala.


Like me Rob rarely gets a picture of himself with a fish - so this was a bonus.


This is a real angler in the making.  Picture by dad, taken on a mobile phone but you can still see how pleased he is.