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).

Bass galore (but no monsters).

The other day Bill rang to ask if I was up for an early evening's fishing, and of course I was. He picked me up on his way to the coast and Nigel also joined us for the session. When we arrived on the shore we had mixed feelings. There was a much stiffer onshore wind than we expected and it looked as though it might put paid to any fly fishing that Nigel and I could have had in mind. However, undaunted, we set off on the long slow trudge to our prospective mark. When we were about two-thirds of the way there we were joined by a hare which had somehow made its way down the cliff and onto the beach. The little animal appeared to be unhurt and it loped along ahead of us until its path was blocked by rocks and we were able to pass it by.

Now, it was fast approaching high water and the sea was pretty rough and distinctly grey coloured. Our spirits were lifted when we saw a few fish moving on the surface close in - probably a mixture of maggot-feeding bass and mullet with certainly one or two decent sized bass present. My pals stopped to have a few casts but I plodded on until I reached our projected goal. Sure enough, when I arrived I found a few more surface feeding fish. The others soon caught me up and we all began to fish. A few casts, with the fly tackle frequently resulted in a line draped with loose weed. We were soon convinced that it was to be an evening for spinning. All three of us began to cast and retrieve our lures. Bill and Nigel were using weedless softbaits with nose weights and, because the weed was mostly in the edge where the waves were breaking, I stuck to a Pearl Evo Redgill.

For perhaps half-an-hour we were all more or less biteless. We tried a couple of different lures but soon reverted to the ones we had started with. Although we could now see a fair number of (mostly) bass feeding on the surface, they weren't showing much interest. Bill opted to walk perhaps 100m further along while, in my contrary way, I decided to go back, in the opposite direction, to see if the fish that we'd seen at first had 'thickened up'. As I walked slowly along the cobbles I had the odd cast, and glanced back a few times to see if 'anything was happening'. After a little while I noticed that Nigel had moved along to join Bill, so they were now fishing more or less side by side. I should have got the message, but being pig headed I continued as far as my objective to find nothing. So, I turned and set off on the return journey to join my pals. Altogether I must have lost (wasted) half-an-hour of fishing time. When I returned to where they were fishing it turned out that the bass were now there in numbers and each of them had already caught several. Bill kindly suggested that I might fish between him and Nigel (the concentration of feeding fish was pretty small in extent), so I did.

Bill and Nigel at the 'hot spot'.


Nigel's in but I'm not, yet.


One of Bill's catch.


My Redgill seemed equally attractive to the weedless soft plastics that had been doing the damage for the others and, before the bass moved away and we packed in, we'd totalled about two dozen fish between us (I had the least - I should have stayed with the others). Most were between two and three pounds with the odd one a bit bigger or smaller.

This one swallowed my 18cm Redgill completely but I managed to release and return it easily.


On the way back along the rocks we came across the hare again. Bill picked it up and carried it past the places where it would have had to swim. Hopefully it has now recovered and made its way back to its relations in the fields. All in all an interesting, excellent, but rather wet, evening.

Bill's little furry friend.




Written with Alan Vaughan. NEW PRINT OF THE ORIGINAL: IN PAPERBACK. Copies available from all good book shops RRP 14:99 - "Waterstones"


Copies can now be ordered (printed on demand) from Steve Pitts at 34.00, inc. Royal Mail Insured UK Mainland Postage.

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Written with David Rigden. Copies from "The Medlar Press"


Written with Steve Pitts this is a SEQUEL TO THE BESTSELLER "Operation Sea Angler" IT'S AVAILABLE ON PAPER FROM - "Veals Mail Order" AND ON PAPER OR FOR YOUR KINDLE FROM"Amazon"

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