As winter storms colour the water it’s time to don those waterproofs and get out in search of specimens. Kevin Legge found this near double figure huss on the feed during a recent trip to a rocky North Devon Shoreline.
Combe Martin SAC member Kevin Legge enjoyed a weeks fishing from the shore in Norway where he and his companions from Veal’s Mail Order landed some notable specimens including cod to 38lb, halibut to 32lb and a fierce looking wolf-fish of 14lb 2oz to Kevin. To combat Norways hostile climate the team chose to wear clothing from North Devon based Reeds -Chillcheater.
(Above) Damien Close with a 32lb halibut
Twenty fours hours after arriving home from Norway Kevin was out on the local shoreline where he banked a stunning brace of bull huss scaling 13lb 9oz and 11lb 1oz.
Combe Martin SAC Member Mark Jones landed a stunning brace of specimen fish during his latest shore fishing session. Mark landed a personal best small eyed ray of 13lb 2oz and followed it with a huge bull huss scaling 13lb 6oz.
In addition to the big ray Mark also landed five smaller ray. He was joined by Craig McCloughlin of Braunton baits who landed a brace of small eyed ray to around 9lb and a spotted ray.
Its always far easier to get out of bed on a fishing morning than a work day morning especially on a February day with light Southerly winds forecast and a few sunny spells. Once again I was heading out of Ilfracombe aboard John Barbeary’s Bluefin this time on a trip organised by Keith Armishaw of River Reads bookshop. We had a mixed group of anglers on board most of whom I had met on previous occasions.
A large ground swell was running despite the light winds which was to bring on a touch of sea sickness for one or two anglers on board throughout the day. The steam out to the spurdog grounds around seven mile offshore was an enjoyable journey full of optimism for the day ahead and a chance to chat and catch up.
With the North Devon Coast line fading into the distance the engine note changed as we reached our destination.
This was deep water and with the tide still flooding close to 2lb of lead was required to take the baits to the sea bed.
It wasn’t long before the rod tops started to rattle as spurdog attacked our baits giving a good account as they were persuaded to the boat.
The tally grew steadily as the day passed and as the tide eased the catch rate increased with several spurdog on the deck at times keeping John and his assistant busy with the T-bar.
Whilst spurdog dominated there was the occasional bull huss with their vivid leopard spotted flanks.
By the time John suggested a move inshore out of a raging tide for the last hour we had boated in excess of fifty spurdog to 13lb, a few bull huss and a couple of small conger.
Combe Martin SAC member Paul Lorrimore caught this bull huss of 9lb 7oz on his latest visit to the North Devon shoreline. Shore anglers are catching plenty of small conger and dogfish but those prepared to persist are eventually rewarded.
Boat anglers will be pleased to know that John Barbeary’s boat Bluefin is back in the water at Ilfracombe following a winter refit. The next two months should see some hectic sport with spurdog, conger and bull huss.