I’m just back from Portugal where I spent a week with my old friend Clive Richards fishing the many rock and surf venues around Cape St Vincente. Hairy cliffs and huge Atlantic sea were the order of the day and with the wind blowing the fishing was difficult. Our guide informed us that 15 anglers had been killed in the previous months of the year and after visiting some of the venues I can see why. However, it’s a fantastic fishing destination and I can’t wait to go back and catch that giant bass, because I didn’t manage it this time and instead made a meal of the bream family catching golden, black and the local sargo. More about the trip in Sea Angler magazine in the New Year.
Sea fishing back home has really picked up, the cod season is getting underway and has been well and truly christened with a 13lb cod coming off my local Admiralty pier at Dover to Ashford angler, Keith Hopson. There have also been a sprinkling of 3lbs and the odd fish to 6lb plus the usual hoards of whiting and fewer dogfish which is a plus for the codders although the match anglers just love them. Its now that the weather starts to change for the better, or the worst, depending upon your perspective. I personally love the dark mornings and evenings, the cold and most of all the departure of the feathering hoards and part timers. More room on the venues for some serious fishing and it’s a time when the Tee shirt brigade just can’t hack it!
Wind chill and stair rod rain are perhaps the two most difficult aspects of winter sea angling to combat and I make no excuses for giving the TF Gear range of fishing clothing and shelters a plug. You just cannot fish with a good fishing suit and the two-piece Delta Marine suit really is the best I have worn, its waterproof and warm and provided you do not put it through the full washing machine cycle too many times will stay so! But I could not really fish without a shelter (when I do neoprene waders are a must) Fortunately most of my local venues are short tide beaches where a high water mark shelter solves all the problems and the Hurricane beach shelter keeps me dry. But for those low tide venues I still use a brolly with the Force 8 which has wings a really roomy shelter and the hardware brolly ideal for lots of moves up and down the beach when its showery. Pier anglers should check out the Hardware fishing shelter because you can place your tackle box and bucket etc inside it to keep it down when fishing piers and promenades where shelters are difficult to erect or brollies are holed when the wind rubs them against walls and railings.
My biggest news this month is that my son Richard won a bronze medal in the World Sea Angling Championships fished in Holland. This event organised by CIPS (The Confederation International de la Peche) is the true World Championships and not like some just a competition with the world name. Teams are selected and in the case of England they are selected by the Angling Trust. The UK anglers did particularly well this year, perhaps because the fishing in Holland is similar to ours with special congratulations to Alan Price of Kinmel Bay in North Wales on another World gold medal and to team Wales for finishing with a silver. Alan has adopted the Continental style of fishing completely using a fixed spool reel, long tippy rods with light lines and small hooks. Richard too is very into fishing continental style having fished as a junior international in Europe. UK shore angling is moving towards the Continental style as the shore fishing declines and that’s why more and more long rods are available. I foresee heavy shock leaders becoming a thing of the past as our anglers adopt softer longer rods, micro braid lines, fixed spool reels and overhead casting styles, especially for competition fishing. Checkout my Delta All Round three piece Continental style 15 footer on the TF gear website – That’s what I caught all my bream on in Portugal, although I also use the now extinct Fox Nemesis and a similar model is on my mind for the TF Gear rod range!
The full result of the CIPS World Championships was:
Team. (16 teams)
1st Holland 14 points
2nd Wales 15 points
3rd Ireland 21 points
4th England 22 points
5th Italy 22 points
1st Alan Price 52 points (Wales)
2nd Mohamed Larbi 67 points (Tunisia)
3rd Richard Yates 69 points (England)
1st Holland 11 points
2nd France 15 points
3rd Germany 18 points
4th England 19 points
5th Spain 20 points
1st Cindy Gambier 17 points (France)
2nd Janet Verlinde 27 points (England)
3rd Christelle Oosthuizen 38 points (South Africa)
Finally, details are available of the Irish Winter Beach Festival which is being fished on January 24/25/26, 2013: Venues are the Wexford beaches. First prize is 1000 Euro and a full accommodation package is available at Sean Ogs, Kilmuckridge. The man to contact is Warren Doyle Tel: +353 (0) 12828769 E Mail: email@example.com
Alan Price Wales gold medal (team second silver)
Richard Yates England bronze medal (team fourth)