Friday, 26 October 2012

"Auk"ward Fishing.

With the weather and sea state so changeable of late its been hard to get to our favourite sea marks. So when finally we had a break in the weather and an afternoon free Scott and I headed down into East Lothian to Skateraw and the Torness Power Station inflow. The plan for me at least was to continue my drop shot exploration for wrasse at the inflow, Scott wanted to search amongst the shore line and boulders for different species as well as spying out likely looking conger spots. Upon arrival I headed straight for the walkway where I had been catching corkwings and quickly rigged up a drop shot rig on my LRF set up. This consisted of a #8 hook rigged with a section of Gulp! Sandworm attached to 6lb leader via a palomar knot and 30cm below that a 7g drop shot lead was clipped on. Fishing from the walkway can be pretty uncomfortable, the railings are shoulder height (for me at least) and I have to hold the rod at eye level to work the lures properly. Every ten minutes or so my arms went numb from keeping them raised and I had to reel in and get the blood flowing again. I searched through the seaweed in the hope of wrasse but there was a distinct lack of bites from the kelpy areas so I began to work along the gantry fishing the cleaner ground. Bites were much more plentiful here with fish taking the lure on the drop these turned out to be the usual coalfish which kept me entertained!

The coalfish were again present in numbers!

After catching a dozen or so coalies I had a much larger bite and struck into a much more powerful fish. The throbbing of the rod tip quickly told me the fish was a mackerel and they really do fight well on light gear!

Mackerel on light tackle are just great fun to catch, they fight hard and are tasty too!

I carried on targeting the mackerel from the gantry and within about half an hour I had manged to land a further three. I had swapped over to my heavy spinning gear and put on a 14g Hansen pilgrim lure which was doing the business. I was still concentrating on the mackerel when I had a big bite and the rod hooped over, this was followed by a rather sad "awk awk" noise and I caught sight of a guillemot who had become entangled in the line whilst chasing the lure. I gently guided it towards the shore and had to climb over the shoulder high railings to get down to free the bird. At this point Scott, fresh from his gully hunting exploits, pitched up to lend a hand and after a quick photo my little feathered friend was released, a bit ruffled but otherwise ok.

Not the wrasse I was looking for!

Scott had manged to get a few long spined sea scorpions from the gullies including one that he told me had an almost lichen like texture to its skin. He then turned his attention to the mackerel. He decided to give my new heavy major craft rod a go and was soon firing out the Hansen pilgrim in search of them. Pretty soon he had caught a brace of them including a real jumbo which put up a good scrap considering it was caught on my heavier gear!

Coming in a variety of colours this dark green specimen took a Gulp! Sandworm section.
When I saw this photo I realised what Scott had meant about its lichen like skin. Quite odd.
Scott took a shot of it in a rock pool. It shows perfectly the great camouflage the fishes colouration provides.

I meanwhile had continued to drop shot off the gantry and managed to bag a couple more mackerel and coalies before we had to call time. Although the corkwings were not present it was still a fun session with the mackerel providing great sport on the LRF and HRF gear and a tasty meal or two.

Tight lines, Schogsky.

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