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The Matchman Letters #3

Written by Tony Geal

Trident Comp last Sunday 14/6/2011
Sorry I have not been able to write this before but they put me in a funny jacket that had no arms.  The men in white coats with their electric probes were very nice and polite!

Last Thursday night our beach Secretary rang me for my opinion on the match on Sunday as the forecast was a little inclement, gale force winds and heavy rain, but Monday was better so we decided that if that was the case we would move the comp on to Monday evening.

Sunday morning arrived I spoke to Paul after checking the forecast (40mph winds and heavy rain) and as requested posted the forecast and the alternative we had discussed. He posted for other members' opinions - two replied and they wanted to fish. I could not believe my eyes when I read that the comp was on.
I am up in the shed sorting out my last frozen Peelers, last Mackerel, last box of squid and my heavy beach gear when my Wife looked though the open shed door.

Very astute woman my wife.

Steve picked me up and at 6.30pm found our little group peering at the maelstrom that was the sea at Hove.

To our relief Paul decided that that was impossible to fish but a few minutes later found ourselves at Kingstone beach. The walk off was a complete hash and most fished out of position.

As an afterthought I had chucked in my Flattie fanatic which unfortunately was just not long enough to lift the weight over the sea defences in front of me. That and trying to keep my Beach Buddy in contact with terra firma as the full force of the southerly Gale and heavy rain hit us removed any pleasure of fishing - it became a fight for survival (I wondered what the motorists thought of us there, I know what I would have thought).

Out of the corner of my eye I saw the rod jump which resulted in a 20cm schoolie. A couple of casts later I had a good bite and it felt like a fish on, but it was hard to tell by now as it was blowing particularly hard and the weed was becoming troublesome. The line was going down tide and then over a submerged breakwater...first set of lost tackle, two more complete sets followed in short succession and I had a broken hook on the breakwater I could see!

After about 3 hours Steve arrived. He had packed up, wet through and not being able to keep a bait out he had come to his senses and informed me he would wait for me in the car. That was the excuse I was looking for to get out of the madness. I took my score sheet to Paul who informed me he had enough too!

Back at the car Glyn had won the comp with a 32cm flounder, well done that man! That is what I formed the club for! Dave and I had a 20cm Bass which was enough to give us some reasonable points.
Last night I found out that the match had been declared void...perhaps it had all been a bad nightmare!

But, no, my Beach Buddy, clothes and tackle is still drying in the back garden and of course there are the men in white coats with their probes...





Pollack on the fly

I know  good place...where the rocks are gradually exposed on the ebbing tide and it's possible to hop from rock to rock until you are able to get far enough from the shore to cast a fly into water beween twelve and twenty feet deep even at low tide. There's location in particular where there are two jagged fingers of barnacle encrusted rock that rise up steeply from the crystal clear water and the fronds of kelp growing over the submerged reef.Between these two outcrops lies a bay where pollack heard together shoals of bait fish and they set about them with great ferocity as dusk begins to fall. This, of course, is a great time to be casting a fly or using a light spinning rod.

In other places within this cove they lie in ambush on the down tide edge of the rocks waiting to pick off the small fish as they are swept along with the tide. Pollack will very often sweep upwards through a shoal of bait fish, taking as many as possible before crash diving back to the bottom.

If a fly or lure is fished too high in the water they will totally ignore it so you have to be prepared to risk losing tackle by fishing as close to the kelp as possible. But as the light fades they move closer to the surface and this presents the best opportunity for some exciting action.

When a pollack hits your fly it will dive for the bottom at speed

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