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).

Mullet only.

The spring tides have just come and gone. Although they were pretty good (high) we were not optimistic about the prospect for mullet fishing. The reason for our pessimism was the fact that most of the weed middens had either gone (washed away) or dried up. Only one or two very short stretches of beach promised a faint possibility of maggot feeders. Over the tidal series my pals Nigel, Stewart, Phil and Richard fished in various ways, so it had a good bashing. Richard and I took the pictures.

In fact, there was so little weed that, on my first evening session, I was fully prepared to fish only for bass and regarded the fly gear as superfluous to requirements. I couldn't have been more wrong.

When I arrived at my chosen spot there were no fish to be seen so my first task was to check for maggots in the weed (I found one little patch) and then to chuck a few armfulls of rotting weed into the sea. By the time Nigel arrived (five minutes after me) the fish were already turning up and within ten minutes they were feeding madly all the way along the beach. There were mullet of all sizes and we set about trying to tempt them with the usual baited maggot flies. As always it was frustrating. Wherever you stood the fish moved away and even if you got a fly into their midst they tended to ignore it.

I started off with a Rapala but the bass seemed to be almost non existent. I caught one tiny fish on the plug but neither plugs nor flies seemed to be tempting them. Clearly it was to be mullet or nothing. Between us we had one or two mullet on the fly and, as usual, lost several more. Things did not change over the next couple of days - bass, such as they were, came only rarely and all of them were small. Several good mullet were caught, most of them round the five pound mark. My best one came as it was getting dark. I'd changed to a bouncy ball rig with a little white Delta eel behind it. After missing a few bassy snatches I had a good solid bite and following a long battle beached a fine mullet with the little plastic eel well inside its mouth. Unfortunately it was, by this time, too dark for a decent picture but I've put one in just to show the fish.

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 -


One of the very few schoolies that took my Rapala.

Nigel's in.

A good mullet surges out to sea stripping line from Nigels fly reel at speed..

Got it!

Nigel's mullet slides onto the boulders.  The fuzzy patches on this picture and the previous one were due to an undiscovered mackerel scale on the lens.

One for me.

I'm playing a mullet on the fly with Stewart spinning in the background.

Nice fish!

I was well pleased with this one - just on the five pound mark.

Well hooked.

The maggot fly is well embedded in the 'soft'???? mouth.  I had a job to get it out.


Richard's into his first mullet of the session and it's living up to its reputation as a battler.


The fish boils on the surface as it makes another bid for feedom.

Nearly there.

With care you can usually slide the mullet up between the rocks on a wave.

Ready to return.

Another stonking fly-caught mullet.

My last fish in the dark.

I was trying to get a late bass when this mullet took the plastic eel but I wasn't disappointed.