Mike Quirke has been guiding lately on the Bellavista boats and has been getting some good results, but he'll be hard pushed to beat this one! On the 15th May he landed this beauty...a fine specimen pollack of 12.5lbs. Now you don't see too many of these nowadays. Well done Mike.
Mike picks up the story himself "...we had two of the Bellavista boats out that day; I was guiding Martin Fellows and his son Rob. On the other boat Jim Clohessy was guiding a few Dutch lads. We had decided to fish together for the day and see how we got on. Jim led the way and to start off the fishing was patchy enough. We had decided to fish the Ling rocks but on one of Jim's marks that are not fished that often. We had a few small pollack but nothing decent. A few moves around the edges of the pinnacles and we started getting one or two decent fish on our boat. The Dutch lads seemed to be having a hard time of it. The weather was fantastic so the lads were enjoying themselves anyway.
We kept on fishing away with my crew getting pollack upto 6 to 7lbs regularly. About halfway through the morning I dropped down with a black and red eddystone worm. I was reeling it up nice and slow when I felt a fish take it. I kept reeling slowly till I felt the weight of the fish and then lifted into him. I wasn't sure what I had to begin with. It wasn't the usual pollack scrap with them tearing off straight for the bottom. He kinda hung there, shook his head a bit and then swam up a little with me. All of a sudden he must have realised he was hooked; he took off, dragging yards of line from the reel. I was fishing a Saltist 30h with a 20-30lb ugly stik, 30lb power pro braid and 30lb amnesia to the hook. The drag was set fairly tight but it didn't stop this fish. He made several powerful lunges but he was well hooked and I eventually got him up. What a sight. As it lay there on the surface I instinctively knew he was a specimen.
We weighed him onboard on a very accurate scales and he came in at 14lbs. Despite several efforts at returning the fish he was gone beyond it; after such a powerful fight he didn't really have much more to give. The bubbles in his eyes were a dead giveaway that it was all over for him unfortunately. I knew he would lose a bit of weight over the day but had my fingers crossed that he would still make specimen. He was such a fine fish it would have been a shame if he didn't. I needn't have worried; I weighed him at Jim's house that evening and he registered 12.5lbs on a certified scales. That was nearly 4 hours after capture and on a hot day at that. What harm! I'm delighted to have such a fine fish as my personal best, especially given how hard they are to get at specimen size. What a great day and to top it all we came across several whales and a basking shark that cruised right under our boat. Its gotta be one of the best jobs going."
If you'd fancy taking one of the Bellavista boats out fishing and if you'd like to book Mike as your guide, contact Kevin at http://www.bassfishingireland.com/