Friday, 12 December 2008

Fishing Report: 6th December 2008 - Bateman's Tower, Brightlingsea

I didn't really have the time to spare for a proper session this weekend but on the spur of the moment decided to have a few hours on Bateman's Tower once it got dark. Given that it was a neap tide (which traditionally have not given me good results in the river at this time of the year) and there was likely to be an awful lot of freshwater in the river, courtesy of all the rain we have had lately I wasn't expecting to catch too much and ultimately my hunch was right.

Things were much as I expected. I fished two rods reasonably hard for about 3 hours (1 hour of the flood, about 2 of the ebb) with Frozen Blacks, Squid and Ragworm and struggled for a bite in stark contrast to more recent results at Clacton. Despite the lack of action I stuck at it and eventually, about an hour on the ebb managed to take two fish in quick succession to save my pride, 1 small Whiting about 2 inches long and an equally small Flounder of about 4 inches. Despite having already replaced the camera that died on me during my previous session I was feeling the cold to the point that I really couldn't be bothered to take photos of my minuscule specimens and by 9pm, quite frankly, I'd had enough and headed home to warm up.

On the plus side the session did give me the chance to try out an old 1990 Black ABU 6500CT Ultracast that I have recently added a mag brake upgrade to. Its an old favourite that I've hardly used of late simply because I've got used to the ease of use of my Mag Elites which give you the opportunity to adjust the braking to suit the conditions, something that centrifugal brakes don't offer unless you fancy taking the reel apart on the beach. The reel behaved impeccably and the single magnet of the upgrade and two small centrifugal blocks gave me just the right amount of flexibility I needed. Despite having cold hands I had absolutely no problems casting it all night and if the reel is usable in the cold and the wet then I'm unlikely to have problems with it in the warmer weather.

As a footnote to this post, a few pals fished a match held at Brightlingsea (in freezing fog!) the following night. Results were similar to mine with only small stuff coming out and I wouldn't really expect this to change until better tides appear with the freshwater out of the river. If anybody is intending fishing this side of the river over the next week or two I'd suggest targeting the Flatties which should be just starting to gather up now for their pre-spawning feed up - they are probably going to be the only thing of any consequence feeding in the current levels of freshwater with the best bait for them being a good sized bunch of Maddies. Fish in the daylight to target the bigger fish.