Shore Sport

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Kody Chugg tempted this fine tope of 37lb whilst fishing a North Devon Shore Mark. The next few months of winter  should see some of the years best specimens landed from our shoreline. Take care out there and don’t take risks. Good fishing often follows a big storm with the inshore waters stirred and food in abundance.

Flounder Competition – Round Up

It was an incredibly mild day for mid November and a perfect tide for the estuary. Several clubs held flounder competitions and a large number of anglers were spread out throughout the estuary at all of the tried and trusted venues. I was fortunate to tag along with my good friend and fellow club member Dan Welch and his young son Solly. Dan certainly found a good spot with Dan and Solly catching close to fifty flounder between them to 1lb 10oz.  I also enjoyed some good sport catching over a dozen flounder and a pleasing 4lb bass. One of the joys of flounder fishing is that it is perfect for dads and lads and families with big flounder likely to take anyones bait. No specialist tackle is required and no need to cast long distances. Just flick out a trace of ragworm and wait for that tell tale rattle on the rod tip. The estuary with its many wading birds, ever changing lights and shades is beguiling. I have added a few pics of the day after the results section.

Thank you to Nathan Clements for the Bideford results.

Cyril Petherick Memorial Competition results

1st Nick Braunton Flounder 1lb 12 1/2oz

2nd Andrew Clements Flounder 1lb 11 3/4oz

3rd Dick Talbot Flounder 1lb 11 1/4oz

Congratulations all its been a lovely day for it!!!!

47 angler’s fished a brilliant turn out with some reasonable fish caught 🎣 

BIDEFORD CHRISTMAS COMPETITION ON THE 12TH OF DECEMBER

We have an absolutely massive prize fund for this one so don’t miss it.

More details to follow this week.

All the best and tight lines 🎣

Braunton Small Boats – Annual Flounder Match

1st – Andy Henderson – flounder 1lb 6oz

2nd – Jeremy Long – flounder 1lb 1oz

3rd – Jack Philips – flounder 12oz

Combe Martin SAC – Flounder Competition

1st – Daniel Welch flounder 1lb 10oz

1st = Damiel Welch flounder 1lb 10oz

2nd – Daniel Welch & Solly Welch – flounder 1lb 9oz

Solly Welch – flounder 1lb 9oz
Daniel Welch flounder 1lb 10oz
Two at a time for young Solly Welch
School bass for Daniel Welch
A plump flounder for me
A pleasing double shot for Dan

4lb bass that gave a great account on light flounder gear.

A skien of Canada geese
Solly Welch with a good flounder

Its time to beat the weather with Braunton Based Company –

As Autumn fades and the chill of winter approaches sea anglers are looking forward to potentially productive nights on the North Devon coast. The key to enjoying winter fishing is keeping warm and dry and the correct clothing is essential in meeting this requirement.

Braunton based Reeds Chillcheater’s manufacture an impressive range of clothing for dealing with extreme weather conditions. I visited their premises for a chat with assistant manager Nigel Beattie.

The recent uptake in outdoor pursuits post COVID lockdowns has resulted in a busy time for Chillcheater’s with sales of the companies Storm Jackets and Storm trousers surging. Worn in conjunction with the companies transpire fleece inners they will keep the angler warm and dry in the harshest of conditions. Other items in the transpire fleece range include socks, long trousers, short trousers, long sleeve tops, zipped or unzipped tops, beanies and balaclavas.

Nigel assured me that after sales is an important factor and in the unlikely event that any clothing fails to meet expectations or is damaged then repairs can be undertaken to rectify the issue.

The company continues to develop new products for anglers and outdoor enthusiasts for the UK market and far beyond. With Christmas looming orders will need to be placed in good time to ensure delivery before Christmas. My own Storm Jacket is still in use and repelling water effectively after at least four seasons of use.

Followers of North Devon Angling News can obtain a 10% Discount just enter the code – BC10 when ordering on line.

Bideford Sea Rover – Results

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Flounder dominated the November competition results for Bideford Angling Club. The flounder season has certainly been the best for several seasons with numerous flounder caught over the 2lb mark.
November Rover Results
14 angler’s 8 fish weighed
1st – Nathan Clements – Flounder 2lb 11/2oz 104.687%
2nd- Terry Dymond – Flounder 2lb 0 1/2oz 101.562%
3rd-  Nathan Clements Flounder 1lb 11 1/2oz 85.837%
4th – Julien Stainer – Flounder 1lb 9 1/2 79.687%
5th – Julien Stainer Flounder 1lb 9oz 78.125%
6th – Antony Smith  Flounder 1lb 8 1/2oz 76.562%

A fish to restore the faith

Eleven years ago on November 6th I was with Kevin Legge when he landed his then British Record tope of 66lb 8oz a  fish that broke his own record tope coincidentally landed on November 6th, 2006. Interestingly in November 1979 Combe Martin SAC member Barry Hill landed a British Record coalfish scaling 18lb. These historic captures were in our minds as Kevin and I set out for a shore fishing session on the anniversary of the capture of that record tope.

Confidence is a vital ingredient in all forms of fishing and whilst the fishing has been difficult recently with catches poor it only takes one fish to lift the spirits and restore the faith.

We arrived at our chosen mark in daylight and were all set up with baits in the water well before high water. It was good to be at the shoreline watching the rods and taking in the ever flowing waters of The Bristol Channel. Bites came from the off with the rod tips rattling as we targeted rockling or pouting to use as bait for larger predators. A succession of rockling and small tackle twisting conger were swung onto the rocks. An hour before high water as darkness descended we both cast out fresh rockling baits and set the rods on a shared tripod.

We continued to catch small conger and rockling leaving the rockling baits anchored out in the tide.High tide came and went and the tide ebbed away. On the welsh coast fireworks lit up the sky at Port Talbot and Swansea.  Two hours after high water Kev’s rockling rod nodded slightly raising hope. We intended to fish until 8:30pm and packed away one rod each at 8:00pm concentrating on the rockling baits that had been out for close to two and a half hours.

At 8:15pm there came a rasping call from my reel as the rod tip pulled over positively. We both thought tope and I picked up the rod with a degree of trepidation. For a moment the run stopped and at that same moment my headlight decided to falter! Kev passed a spare and I held the rod until another strong pull came. I engaged the reel, wound down and lifted the rod.  I felt life on the end of the line then for a moment all was solid as I leant back hard expecting a strong run. There came a sickening moment as something gave way then once again I felt a decent weight as whatever I had hooked swam free from a potential snag. Kev scrambled down the rock with net in hand as a silver flank appeared in the searching beam of the headlights. As the fish came closer its head looked huge as it gills flared.

Safely in the net we admired a fine bass that pulled the scales to 7lb 5oz. After weighing and a quick photo I slipped the bass back and watched it swim strongly away. Not quite a specimen but a reasonable fish and a pleasing catch to restore the faith and renew the drive to get out again.

Kev wound in his rockling to find that a small conger had been hooked.