Bass season now in full swing and we can now take 1 Bass each. We've had some cracking days, with some groups catching well over 100 between them, 95% returned to fight another day!
Plenty of these trips have seen fantastic surface action, gulls diving, and lure fishing at its best... what a great season so far!!
May / June 2017
Plenty of Skate still about, but now starting the first of the Bass trips in the Stour (cannot keep any this month but luckily my keen sports anglers don't mind!).... lots of action on bait and lures.
Still enjoying a fantastic run of Skate. Have had some trips where i haven't even had time to make the teas and coffees because the crew have been keeping me too busy with the landing net!
Adrian, Ahmed, Peter and Graham enjoyed their trip earlier this month, it was a lovely calm day - perfect conditions.
This month has seen the return of the Skate in really good numbers! Have had some fantastic days out with my regulars with plenty of nice fish around the 8-12lb mark. As usual, most large females have been returned to conserve the species.
Ed, Peter and Gareth (below) with some of the few we kept.
January and February 2017
Still no cod, but some nice whiting for those anglers who have been keen to get out and get some fresh air.
August and September 2016
03/09/16 Weather may not have been very favourable today with strong winds but fantastic day with loads of Bass on both bait and lure. It has been a 'basstastic' week! Following words from Stephen Ditchy who was aboard this trip.
"I'm completely and utterly blown away- not to mention knackered after today's outstanding trip with Warrior Charters. After bagging up on the worm, all that was needed was to spot a few diving birds and get the lures out. A few? There were scores and scores of them and we finished with at least 120 Bass, around half on bait and the rest on lures. Thanks to Steve, Glen and Dave for a proper good laugh and as always the biggest thankyou goes to John Cooledge- another top job from the skipper." - Stephen Ditchy.
01/09/16 Great day on the banks, at last some good weather! Bass and bait a bit hard to come by until quite late on, then bingo we were away... Our total was 14 Bass, our best being 7lb 12oz. 5 were kept (1 each due to Bass regulations) and 9 returned to fight another day.
June and July 2016
At last, some Bass in the river but obviously wasn't able to keep any until the 1st of July. Still, good sport to be had on light tackle with both bait and some top lure action, Bass up to 4lb. Further offshore, nice to have the Smooth Hound return in numbers, still plenty of Skate about.
Despite a slow and very windy start- with many trips being blown off, we have now begun to have some very productive days! Whilst on a midweek trip, Dave Bowman's group had a great day with 13 spurdog, to 16lb, and 15 Skate. Scott's group were also particularly successful with over 30 Skate and a few Cod around the 6lb mark; I was lucky enough to catch my own PB skate on this trip (15lb) - beating my previous best of 14.5lb.
Smooth Hounds, Skate and surpringly some 4-6lb Cod showing. Plus some quality Bass up to 4lbs from the rivers on bait and lures.
Size of the Bass from the Stour improving, with fish up to 4lbs on bait and lures when the conditions are perfect. Still getting some late Cod from mid range trips.
Bass arrived in the river providing good sport when the water was clear enough and weed not too much of a problem. We managed a couple of wrecking trips when the wind permitted with some nice Cod being the reward. Still plenty of Skate about.
Plenty of Skate still in abundance, and the Codling are putting on weight and now average 3.5 to 5lb. Several Bass being taken already up to 4lb relatively inshore. Smooth Hound have also arrived and there are several nice fish in the 11-12lb size, putting up a terrific fight especially on light tackle as used by some of my regulars.
Watch this youtube clip to get a glimpse of some of the action in May: https://youtu.be/yDqyJcBxTt8
Still battling the winds, but some nice Codling in good numbers. Skate seem to be EVERYWHERE, even very close inshore, and some nice fish to 14lb. Won't be long now before the Bass and then the Smooth Hound turn up.
Loads of Skate and still plenty of Codling about whenever we can beat the weather and get out to try and catch them.
As usual many cancelled trips due to high winds. When we have suceeded in getting out the dreaded Sprats have had the Codling feeding on them in mid water, and not on our baits on the seabed. Early Feb things improved for a while as shown below, then back to the winds AGAIN!! Roll on March/April and hopefully a spring Cod run and the return of the Skate.
When weather allowed tried further offshore for possible bigger Cod but to no avail, however inshore Codling still giving plenty of sport with an average of 2 dozen per trip. Some reports of BIG 20lb+ Cod up in water feeding on Herring shoals being netted inshore, will be trying livebait well off bottom.
October/ November 2014
Still plenty of Skate to be caught inshore and offshore. Last of the Bass on lures in rivers first week of October before the left for warmer waters. 1st run of Codling were useful size from 3 to 4lb with the odd 7lb-er. Towards end of November plenty of Codling but smaller fish in good numbers, plus good run of Whiting.
August and September 2014
Still plenty of action with smooth hound a few miles off shore. Some cracking Cod on the wrecks when the weather allowed. Bass both off shore and in the rivers to bait and some spectacular lure sessions when correct conditions present.
Some early Codling and Whiting already starting to show in shore, hopefully a good sign.
Offshore trips have been successful when the conditions allowed, with Bass from the banks and Cod from wrecks caught. Inshore plenty of Smooth Hound caught- great sport on light tackle. Also had some successful lure sessions with Bass.
Super month with loads of Smooth Hound and some nice Bass as a bonus! Skate still very much in evidence. Unfortunately did not get to go out as much as I would have liked to due to eye injury (pressure washing boat!)
At last, signs of a spring run of cod, with some nice fish in the 6-7lb bracket; plus the arrival of the summer species, smooth hound and bass now feature regularly and still plenty of thornback rays.
Good run of thornback, up to 16 lb, average 8-10 lb, plus a few useful cod, up to 13lb. No spring run yet though.
Had boat out for clean and maintainance, plus 5 year coding examination - passed with ease.
Wind and more wind, when we did get out, some very good whiting to be had. But no real run of cod.
Plenty of Whiting inshore and Skate in abundance when the weather allows us offshore a few miles. Towards the end of the month we had our first good trip looking for Cod with five taken between 5lb and 7lb. Hopefully plenty more to come when this relentless wind eases! These fish were in perfect shape and probably my favoured size, I would rather have everyone onboard catching several Cod this size than the odd lunker for one lucky angler! November should be the best month, few weekend spaces still available!
Some lively sessions with smooth hound and bass offshore when weather allowed. Also lure fishing for bass in stour and Orwell preoduced when all the conditions prevailed (time,tide,sunset,gulls)
July has been good for Smooth Hound. We have consisently been able to find good numbers. Squid and Rag combination has been very successful however Chris and Matty (Crab Specialists) proved that peeler does have a slight edge.
May and June have seen some great days out, with plenty of Bass caught relatively inshore. Still plenty of Skate being caught, below Roger's group with their catch- many returned.
On the same trip with Roger, Merlin and Monty, the jammy skipper on his last cast caught this 9.5lb Bass!
Nice mixed bag of Skate and Cod.
Sunday the 7th April- Finally a calm windless day and bingo Stuart's group find some of this years Spring Cod, all in super condition and weighing between 5lb and 7lb. A very welcome sight! Hopefully this is just the start...
Possibly the worst feb/march I can remember, relentless strong north easterly or easterly winds stopping us from going out to sea. When we did the sprats/herring were a huge problem causing any Cod to be feeding in mid water. My thanks to my regular anglers who did venture out once or twice trying to find some fish with very little luck.
Bad start to the year weather wise, with all Christmas holiday trips blown off. Then when the wind calmed down- fog, followed by loads of snow and ice causing dodgy road conditions and therefore difficult to plan trips responsibly. The few trips that have gone ahead have produced codling and some very big whiting inshore, and some nice cod to 12lb and several skate offshore. Still a couple of weeks left so fingers crossed.
When the weather allows still picking up plenty of Codling with some nice fish up to 10lb. Skate are still present, plus the usual Whiting and Dogfish. Unfortunately all trips around the Christmas period were blown off. Hopefully 2013 will be kind to us!
Still plenty of Skate being caught, Cod are a bit patchy, however we did have a super 22.5lb Cod on November the 30th caught by Mick Stone. So there are some monsters to be had, if you know where to go.
Mid october and we have a nice run of Cod coming through, between 5 and 8lb- Perfect fillet size! Also plenty of Thornback ray still showing.
Still loads of bass both offshore and in the rivers lure fishing.
2 weeks holiday in Dorset make this a short month! However a recent offshore Bass trip produced fish up to 8lb on live sand eel/mackeral. River Stour best Bass just under 5lb for Rich. River Orwell bass fishing also very good, lure fishing into a frenzy of diving gulls always gets the adrenaline going. A few miles off the Smooth hound fishing also very good with hounds up to 14lb!
Tope proving hard to find this year. Some nice smooth hound and plenty of skate still around.River Stour Bass fishing has been patchy due to cloudy water and weed. Things improved towards the end of the month with water clarity and the fishing instantly picked up!Offshore bass trips were good when the weather allowed us to get out.
What a month! I thought this was summer, but more strong winds stopping us from getting out far. However the one or two trips that have taken place have produced excellent fishing with bass up to 8lb for Daves group. A successful tope trip produced just under a dozen medium sized tope for Roger's party.
Skate are still plentiful with many fish up to 14lb. The bass are starting to show in numbers, both a few miles off Felixstowe and in the Stour, when the water clarity allows them to visually home in on drifted rag worm. Still catching some Codling to 4lb or 5lb inshore.
Some great sport this month with plenty of skate, several very large skate up to 18lb have come aboard and as these fish were all female they were returned. Also we have had a good run of spring Cod/ codling between 5lb and 12lb.
March has seen the arrival of plenty of thornback rays, to take over from the codling a recent trip produced 20 skate up to 18lb average size being 8-9lb
Glen's 18lb Personal best (returned)
January has seen the sprats finally disperse. This has improved the cod fishing dramatically, we are now catching a reasonable number of Codling between 2.5lb and 4lb(Nice filletable size) plus the odd huge Cod. Several large fish around 20lb have been caught and two 26lb.
Rogers group with some of the two dozen cod caught on the day.
Ken,Jim,Vic,and Gareth with some of their catch.
October hasn't been as good as we'd hoped from a codling point of view. I think the high water temperature has delayed their arrival. Still plenty of Skate and whiting. We were one of the 21 boats taking part in the national police competition (135 anglers) the weather nearly cancelled the event but we managed to fish inshore, catching 138 whiting between 4 anglers on board in six hours. Overall we came 6th in the match.
September, a good mix of summer species, plenty of bass and a few small codling showing plus good sport with whiting and still good numbers of thornback. Not to mection Dogfish. The late indian summer made several trips very enjoyable, it was great to see so many anglers returning bass these days keeping the odd fish for the barbeque!
August proved to be a good month for smoothhound and bass, however several offshore bass sessions were cancelled due to the strong winds that we seemed to experience more and more this month.
July has been another terrific month with plenty of bass. Ranging from 2-3lb taking lures in the river stour on very light tackle, to bass up to 11lb on sidewinder lures or launce further a field. As usual the weather has played a major role in the type of fishing we have been able to do. The smoothhound fishing has been very good with plenty of 10-12 pounders being caught on most trips with some better fish in the 14-18lb range also making an appearance. The successful bait is usually squid/ rag worm, but hardback crabs or hermits are also excellent. There is certainly no need to spend a fortune on peelers.
When the weather and some small tides coinsided (which isn't often!) we managed to have a couple of good Tope trips with fish up to 35lb being caught on mackeral head on a 150lb mono hook length and 9.0 circle hooks. This set up really does stop any deeply hooked fish.
Check these out on our photo gallery (Summer 2011)
The Bass have definitely arrived!
This month we've had plenty of bass in the 4-7lb range, but our best so far is this fine 11lb fish for mark. His personal best. His previous PB was also caught on Laura III- But only half the size of this one. Very sportingly Mark returned this Bass to grow even bigger!
Just part of a catch of 45 bass up to 10lb (most returned to fight another day)
Dave Barham (left) and Jim Midgley from boat fishing monthly magazine featured in the november edition. Also take a look at the youtube video in the gallery page.
Tuesday 10th May 2011
Plenty of Thornback Ray around at the moment. Vic, Pat and Andy with some that we kept. Most Of our catch of 14 on the day were returned, which is very nice to see. Today's anglers are conservation minded.
Saturday 16th April 2011
Vic, Pat, and Ken with a good mix of Skate, Cod and Bass. It is nice to see the bass seem to have arrived early this year(Only last week a 15lb 4oz Bass was caught off the felixstowe coast) Several more skate were caught on this trip and it is great to see anglers returning the majority of these fish.
Friday 19th November 2010
Following a successful trip on Monday when we had 11 Cod, best 7.25lb we returned to the same location hoping for a similar result. However this was not to be, as we had an even better day. This time our squid baits were taken by a 15lb, 12.5lb, 10lb and an 8lb Cod, plus several around the 3lb mark and plenty of whiting! An additional Bass of 3lb finished things off nicely. The weather had made life interesting with thick fog refusing to lift all day!
PERHAPS THE COD HAVE FINALLY ARRIVED!
Saturday 20th November 2010
Steve's Group of light tackle anglers fancied a go at Codding using their Pike rods and braid (3lb test curve rods) Steve proved that it could be done even though I had my doubts, by catching this magnificent 17.5lb Cod!!! It took squid on 6/0 pennel. Needless to say the fight lasted a good 10 minutes!