Monday 28 November 2011


On a grey and rather cold Saturday morning I took the dog for a stroll along the Exe. The river looked in good nick with a decent bit of flow and a tinge of colour. I decided to return in the afternoon and throw a dead bait around for a bit in the hopes of a pike or two.

After meeting up with Neil and acquiring some perfect size fresh mackerel from my fishmonger mate Del boy I made my way back to the banks of the river. Ever hope full of a big pike and and a win for Everton (who were playing Bolton) I started the session by trotting a whole small mackerel under a large pike bung.
This tactic can quickly catch any active pike but on this occasion I had no such luck!

A change of swim was made along with the tactics. I switched onto a static dead bait in a slack pocket of water no more than 3ft deep. Again I used a whole mackerel with the neck cracked to release attractants into the swim: the bait was fished a foot over depth beneath a float with a 1oz bullet to hold bottom.
10 or so minutes passed before my float started to gently bob, seconds later it popped right up and disappeared as a pike made off with the bait. I hit the run and was met with a weight on the end, but to be honest she turned out to be a bit of a lazy old girl when it came to the fight. Apart from a crap attempt of a tail walk right at the end of the ordeal she just plodded around around like a fat old bream. Anyway she turned out to be a  lovely looking dark lean double that didn't show any signs of sickness or bad health just a bit of a lazy fighter I guess.

              No more pike for me or Neil but Everton won 2-0 so it turned out to be a crackin afternoon.

                                                               A CHANGE OF SCENERY

The next day Neil invited me to go sea fishing off the rocks at Hopes nose with a couple of his chums Chaz and Todd. I must say I don't really know much at all about the old sea fishing lark, so I was hoping the boys could show me how to catch a few as they have fished this mark a fair bit over the years.

As you can see the weather was spot on, Neil set me up a paternoster type rig with a gripper-lead attached to a rotten bottom to counter the generous amount of snags the sea has to offer. The hook was baited with a small fillet of mackerel and banged out around 70 yards or so. The fishing started off very slowly on the low tide with only one mackerel for Neil. To pass the time we explored the rock pools which held some cute little mullet fry, blennys and all sorts of crabs and such, like little mini aquariums, marvellous!

As the tide started to come in so did a school of whiting bringing lots of action with a bite a chuck. I did try to avoid them after a while by using very large baits but the toothy little gits still managed to engulf the bait every time! Neil also caught a Pollock along with Whiting and Mackerel. Todd filleted and cooked up a couple  of fish and a few were kept as pike baits. Some lucky ones made it back into the sea.
Overall a bloody good fun day so cheers lads.

Til next time
Tight lines

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