Mike Ladle


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Tackle and Tactics.

THINK LIKE A FISH Part 46 Time of day.

My pals Joe and Nigel joined me for a session of fly fishing recently. As far as I knew the critical thing at the spot I took them to was going to be the time of day so they picked me up at half past four to ensure that we were fishing as day dawned. We were armed with both spinning and fly gear and, as we arrived at the cliff top car park it seemed just as well because there was a stiff breeze blowing from the east.

When we saw the surf breaking against the rocks it was a toss up whether to climb down and fish but we decided that, as long as we stayed on the higher ledges it would be quite safe. I did not expect the mackerel to show in these rough conditions but thought that we must stand a chance of other species.

It was still pretty dark so Joe and Nigel decided to spin with spoons while I tried fly fishing. Fish were a bit thin on the ground but I landed one or two pollack and a small mackerel on my fly tackle - the spinning was (surprisingly to me!) unproductive. As it got lighter Nigel picked up his fly rod and baited the fly with a small sliver from the mackerel I had caught. It was not long before he was into a leaping, wriggling garfish - amazing sport on fly gear. A bit later Joe had a pollack, also on a baited fly, only his second pollack ever so very pleasing.

By now it was very light and the fish had more or less finished biting so we packed up and went for breakfast. As we walked up the cliff path we met a couple of blokes on their way down to fish. It was only quarter to seven but, to be honest, their chances of a decent catch were already slim. The time of day really is that important.

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


Think like a fish.

The time of day.

Into a garfish.

These fish are as acrobatic as any seatrout on the light fly gear.

Lifting it up.

When fishing from a high ledge with light tackle a drop net could be useful.

Still lively.

Trying to take a picture of a thrashing garfish is not easy.

Joe's pollack.

Pollack are wonderful fish and take flies keenly - particularly when there is a bit of 'meat' on the hook.