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).

Another one for the grafted lure.

I've decided to give my grafted, hybrid, weedless, wriggly-tailed lure a good trial so at present it is my first choice. Of course not all conditions are ideal for its use but I'll only find out by giving it a go. The down side of the business is that - (a) it doesn't weigh very much so it won't cast far (perhaps 15-20m). and (b) on the same tack the tail catches the wind causing it to stall and fall short when there's much of a breeze. However the advantages seem to outweigh any disadvantages - take this morning.

I was down at the shore at about twenty-past-four. It was clear with lots of stars and almost a half-moon so I could see light in the sky but it wasn't too bright. I was quite optimistic. Rather than waste fishing time by walking I decided to go to the first likely spot near the car park. I stumbled over the rocks to the water's edge (as usual no headlamp and poor eyesight). In fact the tide was well out and the water was very shallow. It was flat calm and I could just see in the light reflecting from the surface that there were patches of japweed everywhere. Most lures would have been permanently tangled in weed but I was confident that the Texas Rigged 'Eel' would be O.K.

My first two casts were straight along the edge. I'd had bites there last time I tried but this time - nothing! The third chuck was straight out into the patches of weed. No problem! I could feel the lure sliding back towards me in the gloom, scarcely a trace of resistance from the matted fronds. I knew that the tail would be rippling along like a demented eel, even at this slow pace. Suddenly - wallop! I was into a fish. The rod bent, the clutch buzzed and there was crashing and splashing out in the darkness. For a couple of minutes it was give and take with the fish fighting hard to escape and me desperately attempting to gain control. Eventually I was able to slide my catch ashore and take a picture or two. Of course the camera wouldn't focus in the poor light (must take a torch) but I seemed to get a reasonable picture. The bass was five or six pounds and in mint condition so I unhooked it (easy with a single hook) and slipped it back into the sea. Excellent!

By this time I'd fiddled about for so long that it was now pretty light. I wandered along the shore and tried several more spots with no more joy except for a schoolie. Clearly the lure is very effective in shallow, extremely weedy conditions before it gets too light. I think it would be worth giving an evening tide a go and pressing on into the darkness - if I can find the right time to do it.

Nice fish!

This one took on my third cast only ten metres out in shallow, weedy water.

Time for breakfast.

I never mind packing in early if I've managed to catch something.