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Saturday, 22 October 2016

The isle of Skye fishing experience!

Yesterday I met up with my friends Scott and Lee for a full day's fishing. We arranged to meet around 10:00 in a South-facing mark and take it from there. The weather forecast was surprisingly good although there was some indication of brisk South-Easterly winds. The mark we picked doesn't hold masses of fish but it usually provides a few quality-pollock.
On arrival the winds felt a bit more brisk than the forecast and after meeting with the guys we proceeded to the rocky promontory... They informed me that they actually had a few casts at a nearby pier and had caught launce, flounder and plaice! Now that warrants some attention...
We reached the mark just before high tide and we could see that there was a considerable swell that cut off access to the best spot. Nonetheless we started fishing but after a couple hours we had nothing to show for our efforts.. I had three half-hearted takes from better fish that didn't develop and Lee got busted by a good fish. In all, I thought we were wasting our time as we could've had a dozen fish in the Northern marks... Thus I suggested we hit the road and go to Neist Point as we would still get a good few hours fishing there before nightfall.
The famous lighthouse.

After some driving we finally reached Neist and I then realised that the Southerlies had affected this mark as well... We headed for the most exposed part but after losing a fish and getting soaked by the waves, we decided to move to the more protected side. The current was very strong there as usual, but it was nearing low tide and would slow down. I soon got a fish on but it got unhooked, then Lee was in but once again the Scottish pollock played dirty on him and got free of the lure! Things were very quiet and I suggested we move further back to an even more protected spot where I thought our best chances of success were. By then the sun was going down and on the last spot conditions looked very promising. The water was much calmer and straight away I opted for a 6" Hogy on a Crazyg wave deep offset jighead. The lads were fishing mainly metals with Lee utilising slow jigs in particular... I soon got into fish but had two failed hookups (the design of the jighead must have something to do with this) but I kept getting bites while retrieving and was soon into a better fish! It fought hard and took plenty of line but after a while I had him up for a photo. A nice fish of 7.4lbs that went back shortly after the pic.
The lads on the rocks...

A nice fish...

I then realised that Scott was in as well and soon enough he had another good pollock up! We realised that the fish were fairly localised and also were hunting in groups.
Scott is in...

A nice one!

The only one who didn't get a fish by this point was Lee! And he was starting to get frustrated after the consecutive losses during the day.. Soon enough though he was into a fish as well (by that time we had multiple hook-ups) that fought hard. He got the upper hand after a while and we were expecting a nice pollock only to see a dark shape coming up from the depths.. At first I thought it was a cod but then Scott shouted 'LING'!! We were all speechless at that moment and full of excitement! Scott proceeded into securing the fish and got it on the rocks. It was then high-fives and congratulations all around! The fish was weighed in at 7.8lbs! A magnificent fish made even more special by being caught on a lure (slow jig)! Needless to say the Lee was over the moon with this capture and who wouldn't be! This is practically a fish of a lifetime for the shore based lure angler...
Fishing side by side...

Double hook-up!

Another nice pollock for Scott.

What a fish!

We kept fishing after that but the action seemed to subside after a while. We were still getting fish but most of them of a smaller size and they were more spread-out than before. Not that anybody really cared by that point... We all caught some good fish after working hard for them all day and in adverse weather conditions. The ling was obviously the cherry on the cake and really showed off the fishing potential of Skye!
As the sun set, we made the long hike up to the cars and then drove to Portree for a much needed meal and a few celebratory drinks. It was a real pleasure fishing with the lads and I hope we can arrange another trip sometime in the near future...

Tight Lines!

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Pretty colours...

Been taking it easy the past week and only had a couple sessions in nearby marks. Was trying to find some more cuckoo wrasse and I did in a mark that I had overlooked before. Used gulp/inchiku for them along with the usual Texas and dropshot rigs...

Gulp-tipped Inchiku metals are a sure-fire way to catch them...

Such a beautiful species and so full of character! Thankfully been lucky enough to have had decent weather so far... Tomorrow though, it will be back to serious fishing as I'm expecting my friends Scott and Lee for a session!

Tight Lines

Sunday, 16 October 2016

A good day's guiding on Skye.

Last week saw me do some guiding with a fishing aficionado! George has a very extensive freshwater match fishing background but only recently got into saltwater lure fishing and wanted to get some tips and also sample the great fishing Skye has to offer... Thus we started our day at first light and the venue of choice was the imposing Neist Point, a mark that I believe everyone who comes for the first time on Skye must visit.
Conditions-wise it was looking like a textbook pollock day... Overcast, a bit windy but with mild temperatures. George told me that he would be happy with some good pollock and also a cuckoo wrasse, both species readily available on Neist.
We had spring tides this weekend which made the currents very strong around the point, thus we targeted the pollock first and when the current became too strong, moved to a more sheltered spot. After catching some fish (but also getting cut off by some very good pollock) the tide was reaching the ebb and the current slowed down. We then moved again towards the deeper water but the cuckoos proved elusive.
More pollock were caught that gave George a good workout and after a while and by persisting with bottom fishing tactics (heavy texas rig) a couple ballan wrasse were caught. The second one was a solid and beautiful fish..
Seeing as the cuckoos weren't in a mood to bite and with the session nearing its end, we decided to have a go with the topwater lures for pollock in a nearby suitable mark.
After demonstrating the 'walking the dog' to George, he made a few casts with the Ima Skimmer and raised a couple fish that didn't take. I then changed the lure to the Tacklehouse Vulture and George proceeded into catching his first pollock OTT!
We kept at it for a while longer and after a couple more boils and splashes he connected to a second fish. This was the end of a very productive day and I believe that my friend thoroughly enjoyed the fishing. For me it was a very pleasant day, George was good company and even though I wasn't fishing, I felt rewarded by seeing someone else catch fish and experience the intense action that the Isle of Skye can offer! Admittedly we didnt manage to find the cuckoos but the combination of spring tides/strong currents and windy weather definitely isnt ideal for these fish.
Next time as they say...

One of the many fish caught..

It was a bit windy at times...

A decent pollock.

Best fish of the day. A hard fighter!

George with a beautiful ballan.

 Next week Im expecting my friends Scott and Lee for a long-awaited joint session! Seems that the weather will be reasonable so I'm hoping we'll experience some more good fishing...

Tight Lines!

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Good weather finally!

Well it seems like we finally got a respite from the crappy weather this season and finally got some sunshine... Ive done a few forays and decided to use the finesse gear to make things more interesting. I have finally sourced a tip part for my beloved KGS 832ST and after using it a few times now, I realise why I like it so much! Managed a nice wrasse the other day on a short lunch-break session and also yesterday on a dedicated finesse session over deep rocky reef. Needless to say that the pollock and the cuckoo wrasse obliged... Some pics and videos below.

A beaut!

And another beaut!

Of course the heavy gear saw some use as well, especially over the kelp forests as I dont know for how much longer the fish will stage on them before the weather turns colder...
For a while I have been interested in some Ocean Ruler Artemis Crazyg wave Deep (what a name!) offset hook jigheads that I though might help me in providing a slug/sandeel presentation that has a slight wobble, is weedless and rises fast over the kelp on the retrieve. I used to achieve a similar presentation with the saltybaits/senko combo but there are times that I thought something subtler may be more productive. Thus I got some of the said jigheads in 20g and 30g and I have to say they worked pretty well. The only issues would be the sometimes missed takes (a softbait-designed rod shoud've been more appropriate) and the susequent dislodging of the lure down the hook (some superglue will see to that).

A very effective presentation in the kelp...

They like it!

Hope this weather lasts for a bit as Im planning to hit Rubh na dunain again soon for a chance of a big girl..

Tight Lines!

Gear used.
Rod: MajorCraft Solpara SPS-1002LSJ, 3.05m. max 50g, MC KGEvolution KGS832ST

Reel: Shimano SW Biomaster 4000XG, Shimano Stradic Ci4 2500f
Mainline: YGK G-Soul Super Jigman PE1.2, Duel Hardcore x4 PE0.8
Leader: Duel Hardcore Powerleader fluorocarbon 20lbs and 12lbs.
Lures: Various

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Wind wind wind...

As per the title the weather has been atrocious the past couple weeks and I only found opportunities to fish here and there, mostly in the more sheltered areas. The fish have obliged but its been difficult to get to the larger pollock as the coalies are in huge numbers and truculent right now! Even the usual up-sizing the lures that used to dissuade them has little effect now!
Nevertheless here's a little video from last week.

Today I had a quick session before the expected gales started and managed a couple average fish (among hordes of coalies) on topwaters of all lures! I kept one fish as I wanted to try out a ceviche recipe for pollock that I thought it might work. Well it did and its now my favourite way to eat them!
A decent fish on the vulture.

Scottish squid with gram flour and pollock ceviche. Tasty!
I was surprised to find the fish very willing to come off the top even though the water was 'lively' and the wind strong. If only this weather calmed down abit...!

Tight lines!

Monday, 19 September 2016

Serious fishing time...

Well fishing has been fantastic the past couple weeks and even though the weather does its best to ruin it, the pollock keep coming!
First, I tried a new mark that has been unexpectedly productive, then had an LRF sesion on the local mark were I was busted by some better fish before (only this time I caught the culprit!) and to finish my days off I had a session on Neist Point. The conditions were rough on the latter with big tides and swell coming in, but after fishing slightly deeper and closer to the bottom, I located the fish and had a blast!
Some pics and videos below.
Normal stamp of fish..

First couple casts on the new mark...


On a 6" Hogy - 20g darting jighead

They are in superb condition and fight the hardest now!

Hopefully the weather stabilises a bit so that I can go for some light tackle sessions and also have another go at Rubh na dunain for the big mamas there!

Tight Lines.

Gear used.
Rod: MajorCraft Solpara SPS-1002LSJ, 3.05m. max 50g. Majorcraft Crostage CRK-T782AJI
Reel: Shimano SW Biomaster 4000XG. Shimano Stradic 1000fc
Mainline: YGK G-Soul Super Jigman PE1.2. Unitka Night Game PE0.3
Leader: Duel Hardcore Powerleader fluorocarbon 20lbs. YGK Nitlon DFC fluorocarbon 12lbs.
Lures: Various

Monday, 12 September 2016

Holiday fishing!

Recently returned from a week and a half back home in Greece. It was my cousin's wedding but of course the fishing rod came along with me.
As I was travelling down to Glasgow for my flight, I thought a good idea to checkout the sea-lochs as I want sure how much fishing I would manage to do back home. On the drive down the weather was relatively good with sunshine interspersed with light drizzle.
First stop was Loch Leven and then Loch Linnhe. Both marks produced and it was good to get some more of the variety found in the lochs. Cuckoo wrasse, codling and pollock showed up in the usual sizes.
Such vibrant colours on the sea-loch fish!

I miss codling a bit...

Usual size of pollock down

On a Vassalo with Savagear prawn...

Back home I only managed to fish twice! Once in the breakwater of Kavala's harbour where the painted combers wouldn't leave me alone and then on a more serious session, where I introduced my friend Stelios to the joy of fishing for freshwater perch!
It was Stelio's first time fishing in freshwater and our venue was the Thisavros dam in Drama prefecture. This is my go-to place for perch, but on this occasion it took us a while to find the fish, as I haven't fished there in years... I managed to locate the better fish towards the end of the day, feeding aggressively at the base of a rock-filled dam and we thoroughly enjoyed our fishing then with multiple catches! It would've been worthwhile to stay the night and fish the sunrise but time was very limited...
Below pics and videos of both sessions.

Kavala breakwater.

So greedy! If only they got bigger...
Thisavros lake.

Usual size of perch...

My friend Stelios with a perch.

After arriving back to Scotland I drove to Loch Etive and managed some pretty codling before continuing my drive back to Skye..

Well conditioned codling..

A re-caught codling.

Now I'm back to the lovely Skye weather! Cant complain about the fishing though...
Im back!

First cast...

Tight Lines!