Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Bass in the Dragon's Den....

The Molyneux's have been coming from North Wales to Cork Harbour and East Cork, fishing for bass, for years. This year they report that they had the best year since they started coming. They've had such a week that you'd be forgiven for thinking that these Welsh Dragons have found a den of bass!!!

It didn't start that well. They did have a fine bass of 6lb on the first tide. Just after arriving on Sunday evening they decided to fish a favourite shore mark using surface lures. The water was coloured as there had been a stiff breeze over the weekend. Within the first hour Mike Molyneux had a stonking bass on a patchinko....and what a fantastic visual attack it was. The fish literally breeched completely out of the water in its efforts to get at the lure. However, after that they struggled.

The next day the weather deteriorated dramatically and the lads caught no fish. It wasn't for want of effort, though.

By Tuesday things started to improve. James reported that the fishing started to take off. On the Tuesday they had 6 fish. The next day they had 15 bass. On Thursday they had 10 and on the last tide of their trip, on Friday morning, they had 9 more.....but it was the size of the fish that had James raving! In total they had two 3lbers, four 4lbers, twenty-one 5lbers, six 6lbers, a 7lb 12oz bass, five 8lbers, one bass of 9lb 12oz and one 10lber. Wow, that's some fishing....and its great to hear amidst all the reports of relatively poor fishing over the last few months.

James was excited about this trip....'this is why we come to Ireland. We can get plenty of bass at home, probably more than here even, but they're all small with the odd few touching 5lbs. Here you the chance of some really big fish and every year we seem to get one to double figures. That's why we come back every year.'

Thursday, October 17, 2013

47th Cobh International Deep Sea Angling Festival.....the results!

Wreck Hunter heads out on the first day
The first week in September is eagerly awaited by a mixed bunch of Irish, Dutch, Welsh, and UK anglers every year. Many have been fishing the Cobh International Deep Sea Angling Festival for years.....and its easy to understand why! Not only is the fishing good, but the craic and banter is superb. This continues from the boats, back to the pubs and restaurants that sponsor each day's events, where the topic is, undoubtedly, about the one that got away!
Some of that mixed bunch

This year it was hoped that the weather would match last year. Good weather ensures that boats can get out to the angling hotspots off the harbour. Last year's weather was great and the boats got to the offshore reefs every day. This was reflected in the fishing results which were probably the best in living memory. Surely, it might be too much to expect superb weather two years on the trot...but that's exactly what happened. The fishing as a result was excellent again!!!

The Dutch gang
Once more, the skills of the skippers of the Cork Harbour Angling Hub fleet ensured that the anglers were on the best marks. The Cuan Bawn, Wreck Hunter, Lee Star, John Boy, & Naomh Cartha all have a great track record and this year they didn't disappoint.
Eagerly awaiting the off....

On Monday the designated area was to be the Smiths Reef area. The tides were slack but at least they were building for the rest of the week. The fishing was unusual. Ruud Boelhower had a superb day aboard the Naomh Cartha. He had 16 congers for a total score of 690 points; winning the day with the highest score. Ruud was way ahead in his boat with nobody coming near. He just seemed to have the midas touch. It was as if he was dropping into a conger nest each time. 

On the Cuan Bawn, Pat O'Shea also had a good day. Pat had a mixture of conger and pollack but really racked up the score with the pollack in the afternoon. He ended the day with 680 points; again way ahead of anyone else on his boat. This was enough to give him 2nd place for the day. In 3rd place was Milo Burke with 360 points.
Cuan Bawn heads off

Heaviest fish fell to Gerard Gersjes with an 11kg conger. Ironically, that's the second year in a row that an 11kg conger has won the first day's heaviest fish prize!

....and so does John Boy
The Power Head/Pollack Rock Reef was the area designated for Tuesday. The fishing for the day was cracking. Two anglers scored over 900 points! There was plenty of conger caught and good quality fish to boot. Two anglers also caught fish warranting the heaviest fish prize. Both were congers of 17.0kg. However, by virtue of the fact that her next heaviest conger was heavier, at 7.5kg, Sandra O'Shea won. What was more extraordinary was that this fish was caught on the same trace as the 17.0kg conger at the same time. Poor Sandra struggled to haul up over 24.0kg of fish in the height of a strong tide....but she did manage!
Fishing for bait - Lee Star

Winner for the day was Martin Perryman with 910 points, followed closely by Denis Morgan with 905 points. Sandra O'Shea came in 3rd with 760 points. The day's results kept Ruud Boelhower in the overall lead.

On Thursday it was decided to return to the Pollack Rock reef. With the fishing so good here on Tuesday and the better tide it was hoped that some great scores could be had here once more. However, as is always the case in fishing things don't always turn out as you hope or expect. The winner had about 200 less points than on Tuesday but, at least, the average score per angler was on a par. Hans Vermelis from Holland had the best score with a total of 760 points. In 2nd was Karl Slynne with 645 points and in 3re was Frank Cronin with 620 points. Bob Crebor had the heaviest fish with a 13.5kg conger. Ruud Boelhower had another good day and maintained his lead on the overall scoreboard.

Despite maintaining his lead Ruud had three other anglers pressing him all the way. Martin Perryman, Milo Burke, and Pat O'Shea were all in contention and keeping Ruud under pressure. The final day's results would prove to be interesting.

The final day's fishing area was the Smiths and Daunt Rock area. As was the case on Monday, some boats had good fishing but others fared out poorly. Unluckily, for Ruud, after putting in a great performance all week, his luck ran out. Ruud managed 3 conger but it was not enough. Others had better. Milo Burke had the best score on Friday with 680 points, with Paul Evans following closely with 645 points, and Pat O'Shea in 3rd with 620 points. Heaviest fish was a 13.0kg conger by Karl Slynne.
Naomh Cartha on the way back

Friday's scoring enough to Pat O'Shea to the top spot. This is Pat's second year in a row winning the Festival. Well done Pat!!!

Milo Burke came 2nd and Ruud came 3rd.....

The final results for the week are as follows:

1st Pat O'Shea, Cobh SAC, 2015 pts
1st Pat O'Shea, Cobh SAC, 2015 pts
2nd Milo Burke, Cobh SAC, 1690 pts
3rd Ruud Boelhower, Holland, 1690 pts
4th Martin Perryman, Crosshaven SAC, 1650 pts
5th Paul Evan, Wales, 1445 pts
6th Sandra O'Shea, Cobh SAC, 1445 pts
Outside Kelly's Pub
7th Karl Slynne, Ireland, 1435 pts
8th Denis Morgan, Ireland, 1425 pts
9th Peter Morris, Wales, 1360 pts
10th Paul Tennant, Cobh SAC, 1330 pts
11th Frank Cronin, Cobh SAC, 1270 pts
12th Richie Fortune, Cobh SAC, 1205 pts

Best Pollack, 4.0kg, Karl Slynne, Irl
Best Ling, 7.5kg, Frank Cronin, Irl
Most No. of Conger, 28 conger, Ruud Boelhower, Holland
Best Edible Bag, 95.5kg, Pat O’ Shea, Irl
Some of the locals with the Welsh lads
Most Species, 9 species, Ger Brady, Irl
Best Cod, 6.5kg, Johann Duijts, Holland
Heaviest Edible Fish, 7.5kg, Frank Cronin, Irl
Best No. of Fish, 85 fish, Pat O’ Shea, Irl
Best ‘Out of State’, Paul Evans, Wales, 1445pts
Best Lady, Sandra O'Shea, Irl, 1445 pts
Heaviest fish of the week, 17kg conger, Sandra O'Shea, Irl
Best Skipper, John & Eoin Barry, Cuan Bawn
Fun Team, Steve Williams (Wales), Ruud Boelhower (Holland), Martin Perryman (Irl), Phil Blakey (UK), 5045 pts
Two Man TeamIreland E, Milo Burke, Frank Cronin, 2960 pts.

Pat with some of his prizes
As well as wining the overall prize for the second time this is Pat's 3rd year on the trot winning the 'Best Edible Bag' Trophy and his 4th year on the trot winning the trophy for the 'Most number of fish.'

Well done to all the committee at Cobh SAC for organising such a great event yet again!

Plans are already afoot in organising next year's Festival which will once more be held, as is tradition, in the first week in September. If you fancy your chances and would like to enter then contact club chairperson, Mary Geary, for further information on 00-353-21-4812167 or by email on seaangling@esatclear.ie.

Pat & Ruud reflect on a good week

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

More Autumn bassing......

Robert Frazcek and Tomasz Kujawa were out recently after the bass again. Despite testing conditions in the early part of last week the lads had some success. All day Monday there was a strong south easterly wind which had blown out most outer harbour marks. Robert and Tomasz fished a spot slightly in the lee of the land. The water had coloured up at that stage but that didn't stop them.

Using a variety of soft plastics Robert was first to land a fish.....after a spirited fight a 55cm fish weighing 1.5kg was brought to the net. This was followed by a better fish of 66cm weighing in at 3.5kg. Not to be outdone Tomasz bettered this with a fish of 68cm, also weighing 3.5kg. Looks like the lads have well and truly been bitten by the bass bug!

It wasn't just bass showing; plenty of pollack were also caught during the session, with the best one coming in at 60cm.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Autumn bassing with Eire Bass....

Richie Ryan's autumn has kicked off nicely. The saltwater fly-fishing guide was concerned that the plethora of mackeral and fry in the harbour during the late summer and early autumn would make bass fishing difficult. The abundance of baitfish had certainly made things difficult in mid-summer. However, Richie was quite happy with results from early September on.

In the first week of September Richie had a husband and wife team, Vin and Sue Heron, booked for five days. The UK couple were anxious to keep one bass during their week's guided fishing as they had their campervan with them and while catering for themselves wanted to taste a bass again.

In fairness to them they hooked up every day. On the day they had designated for keeping one of the catch, the bass caught were all too big for the pot. Richie prevailed upon them to release the large females on this occasion. As can be seen from these photos, it was important that these brood stock breed again and they gladly released all these large bass.

They were eventually rewarded; the next day Vin picked up a fish of about 3lbs, probably the smallest catch of the week, the ideal size for the pan. That night Sue cooked that bass according to one of her recipes and both enjoyed an excellent home cooked meal.

Richie was very impressed by Sue's fly fishing ability. Husband Vin was more happy to use more traditional angling techniques and, in fairness, had a good variety of species during the week. In fact, the couple were so happy with the fishing and scenery in Cork Harbour that they booked Richie again for next year.

If you'd fancy a day's guided fishing with Richie Ryan then give him a call on 00-353-86-1940744. Check out his website Eire Bass here for more details.

Richie's boat, Sea Hawk, is the first boat in Ireland to be licensed for saltwater fly-fishing. On the fly Richie targets seatrout, golden grey mullet, thick lipped mullet, pollack, aswell as bass!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Murphy's mash tempts the big blues.....

Kevin Murphy of the Bellavista Hotel in Cobh and Jim Clohessy report on some excellent shark fishing at the moment…
It is not just the Dutch and German customers that are keen to tackle our blue sharks. Last weekend we had a party of Dublin based anglers that arrived to have some general fishing and also a day at the shark, all done from our self-drive fleet. They were lucky with the conditions and although they did not travel to our normal area they still managed a respectable tally of decent sharks.
There is no doubt but we have had a superb year of shark fishing. Customers from all over Europe as well as all round the country have sampled the excellent Blue shark fishing off Cork this year. The question remains though how long will the blues hang around for. We think we will be fishing for them well into November.
Normally the problem with fishing so late was the hassle of catching enough mackerel for rubby dubby. This is no problem for Bellavista customers – Kevin has a ready supply of frozen rubby dubby available. The frozen dubby takes the pain out of shark fishing and the results from using “Murphy’s Mush” are superb. Many customers are experiencing double figure numbers on their shark safari.
You can take advantage of the weather windows and get some shark fishing before the winter closes in – Contact: Kevin Murphy 086-6029168,www.bellavistahotel.ie

The Squid's in.....

The weather over the last few days has been dark and dreary with those persistant easterly winds....the kinda weather that just wouldn't encourage you to go fishing. Nevertheless, John Geary had a few brave souls who were willing to venture out.

John took his crew on the Lee Star to Power Head and the Pollack Rock reef grounds....and they were soon into the usual suspects; cod, pollack, whiting, etc.,.... Then one of the lads couldn't make out what he had - what's this! A squid! Sure enough, he had just caught a squid on his baited hokkai rig. Within another two minutes another was landed of the same size. Scrumptious....that's tea sorted.

Squid do tend to turn up at this time of year and have been caught accidentally both inside and outside of the harbour. It might be worth someone's while to try to target them with specific squid jigs. If you do, let us know how you get on.

If you'd fancy a day out on the Lee Star give John a buzz on 00-353-21-4812435. Check out the LeeStar website for more details.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

....and even more cod on Wreckhunter!

During the recent run of good weather skipper of the Wreckhunter, Joe Lynch, reports good fishing. His clients have been getting a good mixture of fish with pollack, ling, and conger featuring. Joe is still managing to put his clients on the cod and there has been a good stamp with fish averaging 7-8lbs. This is great to hear as other skippers are reporting that cod have been somewhat elusive.

On a recent foray one of his anglers fished banana skin for a bit of a laugh and joked with his buddies that he'd out-fish them. He certainly had the last laugh, when to his mates' surprise, he hauled in this nice coalfish. Guess we'll all have to give it a go!!!

If you'd fancy a day out on the Wreckhunter give Joe a buzz on 00-353-87-230-2362. For more information check out the Wreckhunter website here.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Reports from the Bellavista Fleet.....

Ties Ittman, a regular visit from Holland, has just returned after a successful week's fishing at Bellavista. Fishing aboard one of Kevin Murphy's self-drive fleet, Ties and his buddy targeted bass and pollack with soft plastics....and landed some cracking specimens of both species, aswell as some surprise species! Pictured here are the two lads with some good fish.

Kevin has added a 24ft vessel to his self-drive fleet this year which can fish upto 6 anglers at a time. That now brings the fleet upto 7 boats, with a mixture of Warriors and Raiders. Kevin also has added a fleet of kayaks for those clients who prefer this option.

If you'd fancy booking one of the self drive boats or one of the kayaks then give Kevin a buzz on 021-4812450. Check out the Bellavista Angling website here for more information.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

A real Bassy tale......

For those avid bass anglers amongst you this is a good 'un. Last week skipper of the Cuan Ban, John Barry, had a group of Dutch anglers out for a few days. Unfortunately, the weather didn't play ball. Strong easterly winds made for uncomfortable conditions. John brought the gang to the Pollack Rock reef but even here the short chop that these winds always generate soon had a few of the lads turning green around the gills. John had no alternative but to take the anglers to a more sheltered mark.

Fortunately, John has a wealth of experience and has a plethora of marks built up over the last 40 years of charter skippering out of Cork Harbour. John made for the lee of a headland to a spot he knew would guarantee good sport with some hefty congers. Under the shelter of land the colour soon returned to their cheeks. Soon enough the guys were landing a number of congers and spirits were high once more.

While the Dutch lads were fishing away John decided to have a bit of fun and set up a spinning rod with a jig head baited with a long strip of mackeral belly. John was hoping to pick up pollack, mackeral, and garfish but John was in for a surprise. Not long after starting John's rod doubled over and line stripped from the reel. John was into something big. Although, in relatively shallow water, less than 20 feet, John reckoned he was into a massive pollack as this reef can produce some biggies. However, this lunker turned out to be a super bass and no one was more surprised than John to see this species at the end of his line. One of his Dutch clients did the dutiful and netted John's prize catch....and what a prize catch it turned out to be. The fish measured 80cm and weighed in at 10lb 8oz. What a fish!....and what a surprise!!! You can bet that John will be trying this style of fishing again!

If you'd fancy a day out on the Cuan Ban then give John or Eoin a shout on 087 - 2363566. Check out the Cork Harbour Boats website here for more details.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Autumn bassing.....

Bass fishing this summer & early autumn has been tough. What's the reason....there has been plenty of speculation; high water temps? A plethora of baitfish? A long cold winter? Offshore netting? Poaching? Numerous explanations have been offered....but it's not all bad news. Some anglers have been bagging a few.
Cork Harbour light lines competitor, Robert Fraczek, is one. Robert has been fishing some of the inner and outer harbour marks and has been happy with his results. Concentrating on lure fishing Robert has had some nice fish and lately he reports that the average stamp of fish has improved. On his most recent foray Robert has had two nice fish; one of 60cm and the other at 62cm. Well done Robert, keep it up!

Friday, October 4, 2013

September Blues with Deora De.....

Skipper, Jim Linehan, has had a great run of blue shark fishing during the month of September. Most of his clients were looking for good blues and the skipper of Deora De did not disappoint. Jim reckons that the grounds outside the harbour, between the Old Head of Kinsale and Ballycotton, are probably the best sharking area in the North East Atlantic. 

Jim's record certainly backs that up. Only two years ago Jim had a client that landed a blue shark estimated at over 250lb. It took three of them to lift it. Now that's a monster!!! 

Back to the present and the sharking in the last month has been exceptional. Most days a number of sharks were brought to the boat but there were a couple of exceptional days when more than a dozen or so were landed. Plenty of gars were also caught!

If you'd fancy a day out sharking with Jim give him a buzz on 00-353-86-4091389. Check out the Deora De website here for more information.