Steve Dawe is on a mission to catch 52 species in 52 weeks and is doing it to raise money for The Stroke Association following a massive stroke that impacted upon a close angling friend of Steve’s. Steve has agreed to write about his aims on NDAN in a feature that will follow soon. In the mean time above is a picture of the huge 19lb spurdog Steve boated on Tuesday January 30th whilst fishing on John Barbeary’s boat Bluefin.
John Barbeary took advantage of a break in the weather to take a party of anglers out of Ilfracombe where they enjoyed top rate sport with conger and spurdog. Steve Dawe (above) boated a spurdog of 19lb and Andrew Atkinson (Below) a hard fighting conger of 40lb.
The days fishing got underway following the stunning sunrise above Combe Martin Bay ( Above).
I joined a party of anglers on board John Barbeary’s ‘Bluefin’ Last Sunday morning when we steamed out to a mark six or seven miles off Ilfracombe where we hoped to connect with the packs of spurdog that have become a feature of winter fishing off the North Devon Coast. Several trips had been possible to these deep water marks over the previous few days when plenty of tackle testing specimens had been boated.
It wasn’t long after dropping the anchor before a few spurdog homed in on the array of baits on offer beneath the boat. Spurdog are not particularly fussy feeders devouring most fish baits with gusto.
(Above) Simon Blacher with one of the first double figure spurdog of the day.
(Below) One of several spurdog I landed during the day.
As the tide eased several conger joined in on the feasting beneath the boat with Exeter based angler Pete Gregory boating a beauty of 36lb. (Below)
A brace of bull huss ( Below)
Pete Gregory with a fine spurdog (Below)
Over the previous week John Barbeary had taken several parties of anglers to the grounds several miles off the coast when neap tides and good weather gave a perfect window of opportunity.
Below highlights from a productive week on Bluefin
Rob Scoines with two spurdog the best a fine specimen of 18lb 2oz
John Barbeary took advantage of a break in the weather to take a party of friends out fishing aboard Bliuefin off Ilfracombe and they enjoyed a fine days sport with spurdog to 16lb and smoothound to 12lb. They also had bull huss and conger.
Anglers enjoyed a top day out of Ilfracombe aboard charter Boat Bluefin skippered by John Barbeary. Several bass were landed including this beauty to the rod of Toby Bassett. Lures accounted for several of the bass and were supplied by High Street Tackle Ilfracombe.
Andrew Atkinson landed the biggest spurdog of the day at 15lb 6oz when Appledore Shipbuilders fished on John Barbeary’s Bluefin off Ilfracombe. The spurdog packs are still present in good numbers providing welcome sport.
Holsworthy Sea Anglers enjoyed a great day on Bluefin with skipper John Barbeary out of Ilfracombe. This was the clubs last session on the spurdog this season. With Club Members Steve Dawe, Steven McDonald,Brian Hopcraft,Stuart Lockyer ,Graham Verral, Paul Smith, soon to be member John Doswell, and Paul Cozens. The boat went straight out to the spurdog mark this time as we picked a lot better tide and could stay there all day. The spurs started coming in thick and fast right away with John kicking it off with a cracking 19lber on mackerel. Everyone caught steady all day on squid and mackerel baits with equal amounts of spurs and doggies, a token conger to Graham Verral and a lonely bull huss to Paul Cozens.Graham Verral had the biggest club spur at 19lb and second highest bag of them with 20 in total, most spurs went to Steven McDonald who ended up with 25 on mackerel baits and a total between us of 115. The club thank John Barbeary for another good day at sea.
A party of local anglers enjoyed some hectic sport off Ilfracombe aboard John Barbeary’s ‘Bluefin’. Spurdog provided the bulk of fish caught with upwards of 50 brought to the boat. Several quality conger to almost 40lb were also boated putting a serious curve into the anglers rods.
The biggest spurdog of the day was a fine specimen of 16lb 8oz to the rod of Bill Caasar. (Below)
It is likely that the spurdog sport will continue for some while yet with bull huss also likely to increase in numbers.
Josh Atkinson with a specimen spurdog on of several double figure specimens he landed to 14lb 4oz
Pete Gregory enjoyed a good days sport on Bluefin with spurdog still showing with bull huss numbers increasing probably because they can now get to the bait before the ravenous pack of spurdog.
A brilliant days fishing out from ilfracombe with john barbery on board his boat the ” Bluefin ” . About twenty spurdogs landed as we are coming to the end of the season , so not as many as in previous trips , but the shortage of bull huss in previous trips was reversed with lots on this trip as the waters are beginning to warm up . Lots of dogfish as usual and a few congers to twenty pounds . It was suggested that if all six of us put in a fiver for the biggest fish caught this trip , something i tend not to get involved with on most trips which would give the winner a thirty pound pay out . Just as well as it ended with me winning which made the trip extremely cheap .