Monthly Archives: April 2014

Kayak fishing here there and everywhere

I havent actually been on a great number of kayak fishing trips this year. But I have mixed it up a bit, and done quite well. The results I have had in just a hand full of trips show just how effective kayak fishing can be. I never could have experienced that level of fishing from either the boat or the shore….

Now, I know you guys love the salt, but I am a bit of an all-rounder, so excuse me for chatting about the “dark side” (freshwater !). I also love lure fishing, especially small plugs and soft plastics. My first trip combined all of these. I took the kayak to the beautiful Llangorse lake in the Brecons. I set up my stall with very light tackle – 6lb varivas braid and wire traces, and a lightweight LRF type rod. I was also using the Tokushima GraphX reel – a very solid peice of kit indeed. To cut a long story short, I never managed to catch the legend of Llangorse (google it… go on !). I did manage to catch a lot of pike.

I can tell you that they don’t half scrap on that gear. I was using weedless soft plastic lures (the pike love to hide in the weed).

Best part of the trip was the capture of a really nice perch, which fought all of the way to the net. A lovely looking fish…

Anyone who tells you that lure fishing doesn’t work in cold water, is talking absolute rubbish. Give it a try and you will find out for yourself.

Next trip was going to be fly fishing from the kayak (Flyaking) at Wimbleball lake on the edge of Exmoor. Another really scenic location. I was lucky enough to be joined by my friend Alistair Рgreat company and a great fisherman. The weather was hot and still, and the water was clear Рnot ideal conditions for trout fishing. But the fish were there, and when they started to bite, the action was intense. You could see every movement of the fish in the clear water.

We had the whole lake to ourselves – not another boat or bank fisherman in sight. It was a special day, in so many ways. One of those trips which cheers you up when you are having a bad day at work.

I ended up with my limit. And the Hobie kayak performed absolutely flawlessly – it was a joy to be afloat.

So on to the salt ! I was umming and ahhing as to where to go. Then my good friend James contacted me to tell me that the bream were in early, and there were some good ones being caught. So that made up my mind, and soon I was driving down South to the bream mark.

I was again blessed with fantastic kayak fishing conditions  Рlight winds, a decent sized tide and bright sunshine. I pedelled the Hobie Revolution 11 kayak out into the middle of the bay, and tied up to a pot bouy. I had been studying the surrounding ground on the fishfinder, and there was a nice mixture of reef, rock, stone and sand Рa nice bit of mixed ground.

I was going to try something a bit different. A swimfeeder containing frozen fish oils and other assorted goodies. This was very similar to the SeaScenter…

…And I was convinced it was going to work, if, and it was a big “if”, the bream were around.

As it happened, I didn’t have too long to find out…. on my first cast, I managed to hook into a huge bream which sadly straightened the hook of the squid baited shrimpers I was using. The fish flapped on the surface for a split second, and then it was gone.

It mattered not, becuase over the space of the next few hours, I managed to catch lots of bream, including a couple over 3lbs. The biggest was a new personal best for me… a shocking 4lbs 2ozs. All those years I fished fromt he shore in Alderney, I never thought I would beat my personal best in the UK – but that’s kayak fishing.

Any fish over 4lbs is a cracker – I was over the moon.

Then just to make it an even better day, I managed a lovely looking spotted ray.

Three very different trips and different styles of fishing. All great in their own way, and why I love kayak fishing so much.

If you want to see more, watch the video Kayak Fishing for Bream.


At Last

Shimano Stradic + Veals FourShore Lure Rod

Nice Bass for Mike Ladle

My fishing has been pretty grim lately. I was beginning to think that there was some sort of curse on me (I’m not superstitious – honestly). Anyway, a few days back my pal Bill had caught several bass on one of his Sluggill lures. The day after he and I went back to the same place at the same time/state of tide – NOTHING! Of course that’s fishing so we weren’t really surprised even though it was a bit disappointing.
Anyway, this morning the ‘drought’ broke when I had a 7.5lb bass on a large ‘Slandra’ (Front half of a 9″ SlugGo+Super Sandra tail). I was using my 4Surespin and 4000 Stradic loaded with 20lb Nanofil. Here’s the story from my website plus a couple of piccies –
It had been pretty rough and the sea was filthy when we made our trip, so two days later, when the wind had dropped and the sea had calmed down I decided to try the same spot on the equivalent morning tide (we’d fished in the afternoon). I stumbled along the beach in the dark andspent a good half-hour flogging away with my biggest Slandra. I fanned the casts out and covered every inch of water as it got light. The sea was still very murky but much calmer than on our previous session. Anyway, once more I didn’t have a sniff. I decided to have a few casts as I wandered back to the car. The first spot I tried was a shallow, rocky gully carpeted with wrack and boulders. In years gone by I have caught fish from that spot but it was just filling with water and there was a fair bit of colour so I wasn’t very hopeful.

I flicked the Slandra out and slowly inched it back just under the surface. Bump! Was that a rock? The clutch screamed and the water boiled as a good fish grabbed the lure almost in the edge of the sea. I was glad of the long rod as I steered the line between the boulders in the shallow water. Eventually I was able to slide it over the rocks and jump down into the gully to pick it up. Success at last! I took a couple of pictures before removing the size 6/0 Hooking Master hook and slipping the fish back into the water. The bass flicked its tail and shot out to sea. Fantastic!

Nanofil lands a good bass

7lb 8oz on a Slandra

Wahoo On The Fly

Justin Anwyl with 70lb+ Wahoo

70-80lb on Varivas Flouro Carbon

Justin Anwyl 70+ Wahoo on the Fly

Justin Anwyl with 70 – 80lb Wahoo caught on the fly out of Christmas Island, stunning capture using Varivas Fluorocarbon tippet. Wahoo for those who do not know are not only incredibly fast and powerful but come equipped with some awesome teeth. Some testament to Justin and to the quality and toughness of the Varivas leader. For those who are keen saltwater fly fishermen, or fancy giving it a try, why not contact Justin His boat is based on the south coast and he offers quality guiding and instruction for UK bass and even runs trips for Stripers in the USA. I had a fine time out with him and just we get out again this year.