Blogs 2013

 DECEMBER 2013

Quiet month, nothing much to report on the fishing front as far as I can remember I did tow “Hi Sea Drifter” down to the Isle of Wight and wished I hadn’t !! One session was choppy, but I tried holding out with big baits for a lunker Cod. Lots of small nibbles, so eventually I gave in and fired down some small hooks. What I thought were Pouting turned into some very sizeable Whiting to around two and a quarter pounds. They fought all the way to the frying pan, but while they were OK (I tried baking and frying) you still have a long way to go to beat the taste of a Plaice. I did find the fried Whiting to have a fair bit more taste than the the whole baked version, which surprised me as I thought by baking the entire fish on the bone it would actually enhance the taste. Probably my cooking, but the oven jobbie was pretty bland. Frying for me next time. In fact there was a next time, but other than a Thornback I think it was a mare of a day ….with one pin whiting. Enjoyed using the boat though, and got to blow the cobwebs off the engine, and charge up the batteries. Painted the floor with another coat of Blake’s non-slip paint. Could only buy dark blue, but its peeling off already wonder if the colour is bad luck?? It’s going to cost me another £16 to find out, but if I put in many more duff trips I’m going back to the standard grey. Not that I’m superstitious you understand. Come to think of it I did get another sea trip in, this time with Wayne riding shotgun, and a load of frozen “chum bombs” that I had made up which we tied on the anchor rope and dropped in deep water off the Island. We sat there for far too long and the fishing was also shocking. Maybe that blue deck will be painted grey for the New Year. But then I can’t do that as if you use a broom to sweep the deck/floor on New Year’s Day you “sweep your luck out the door” for the whole year !!! That’s right I told you I’m not superstitious. I even only get onto my boat from the trailer on the same side each time (just in case). With the poor IOW fishing I’ve put the old girl to bed (boat, not the wife!!) as I’ve decided it’s just not worth the cost in fuel and aggravation to knock out a Codling and a few Whiting for what for me is a long day due to the towing. I’m not sure who invented winter but I really don’t enjoy it and can’t see the point of it. I can see why some creatures hibernate till spring. Seems a smart move.

On the website we seem to have had an increase in numbers, nearly up to 1.3 million, which is around 300,000 hits in the last ten weeks. The YouTube films of course far outstrip this and I think we had a new record of over 3000 views in 48 hours on our latest “Pike on oiled baits” film. Of course it’s now Pike time, but a lot of anglers appreciate the tips and techniques I pass on. We whistled past 4 million views and the subscriber base is on the way to pass 26,000. On the filming front there is a “tips on Barbel fishing” coming up, another informative “techno” one on echo sounders and an absolute epic of over an hour with exclusive interviews and footage of one of the biggest sharks in the world. It took a lot of research and work, but I will be the first person to provide exclusive footage of interviews with people who have had first-hand footage of these not-so-rare sharks. Well worth a watch if you are into predator hunting or shark fishing. Here at The Totally Awesome Fishing Show we are always one step in front of others with our films/tips/techniques and exclusive footage. More to come I can assure you.Can’t say what exactly as all those others racing to copy us will now have to do their own work for a change.

Mike found a piece on the “net” about Great White sharks being targeted in Australia by a new law to reduce their numbers and prevent shark attacks? First they are supposed to be a protected species then suddenly its open season and they want them all killed? So how exactly do you specifically target a Great White without killing other species like Bulls, Hammers and Tigers with the same method? I can see all that will happen is another “rogue” shark (if there ever was one) will simply move in to the same spot when its colleague has been killed. I’m more in line with the theory that the increase in chumming to provide the attractor to bring Great Whites up for the cage divers is giving the shark the association that people in black rubber suits are always around when feeding time is on hand, so why not eat them as well? It’s not the shark’s fault, they are being constantly fed in a completely unnatural way. I suppose if I was out chumming for a Great White and it was legal to catch and release them on rod and line then I could be considered the same? But then I’m inside a boat, the shark would never see me in the water so not form that association with a black rubber suit (Also happens to look like a seal, their natural prey?). I’m sure public opinion might stop the culling going ahead, but it may take time. On the subject of conservation it’s interesting to see there are others now willing to release large Bass, which might seem unusual being as it’s such a high value food fish. But those big double figure fish are the year’s main breeders, so as it must be hard to see a 14 pounder swim away I take my hat off to anyone who releases a double figure fish, as it really is the fish of a lifetime. Here at The Totally Awesome Fishing Show we release as many different species as we can so it’s no hardship to us to see it swim away. But when will the time come that we catch something so monumentally huge it will be difficult to put back?? Keep watching our films around next May when there could be a double edged assault on a 500lb Mako shark from Falmouth and a 1000lb Sixgill shark from the Isle of Wight. We’ve already been the first to film HD footage on the biggest Porbeagle and Thresher shark in British waters, and from just a 17-foot private open fishing boat, not a 30-footer with a huge engine.

I seem to have missed out on the River Kennet Barbel this past autumn. With low water conditions prevailing I just couldn’t be bothered to try, and I may have to target them in early March at the backend of the season but that’s depending on us getting some mild weather. As I write, the lows are piling in from the West with wind and rain, yet the temperatures are not yet the horror story of sub zeroes we were promised. Maybe January we will pay the price and my log store is now fully stocked ready for any prolonged cold spell .But I won’t like ordering the next 1000 litres of Kerosene for the central heating and for the time being the thermostat has remained “un-tweaked”. I seem to have been non -stop on property maintenance and other sundry paperwork jobs, but in these challenging economic times you really do have to keep your eye on the financial ball. A long cold spell in the Jan to March period will do nobody any good.

I also had a job with the wife of helping out a 90-year old who was moving in with his family in London, vacating a large country house where he had lived for somewhere around a quarter of a century, as he was now in a frail condition. As I had 38 years running two shops in the furniture business it became my job to refresh my memory (and muscles) on moving furniture and other objects. How to move a double bed downstairs or a 3-piece suite came flooding back easily and we had no less than six journeys with our battered trailer to help move items .While there I did mention my admiration for a large print in his office of a Spitfire in full flight over the English countryside. There were other aircraft pictures in the office, but this one caught my eye for the signatures on it. It turned out that the painting/print had been personally signed by all the Battle of Britain top pilots, including Douglas Bader and Geoffrey Page. Youngsters of 40 or less may not realise the significance of those signatures or the ultimate sacrifices those pilots made, but I did, as this is the reason we are able to walk freely in our country today. Just a few fading scrawls of the pen, but my goodness what an honour to actually touch the Spitfire picture signed by those men. It would be so easy for the next generation to not realise what went on in those harrowing days of the Battle of Britain, deemed by many to be the turning point of the War. It brought to my attention that some of you new to our site might not have watched the film interview I did with Falmouth’s Frank Vinnicombe, a veteran of World War 2,and the area’s top shark fisherman. It’s quite something to hear Frank recount his exploits as an Ack-Ack gunner in that West Country accent, but if you haven’t seen it I got Mike to put the link in.Around Christmas would be a very appropriate time to watch it I feel.

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I’m hoping to get out on the water again though, this time in freshwater, maybe on the River Thames and see if we can’t winkle a pike or two out. I’m just waiting for the clarity to get right and I’m off to try a bit of drifted and static deadbait fishing, possibly using some of our latest “RAPTA” pure fish oil, refining it from a species we don’t think anyone has touched yet. Remember I mentioned in a past blog about Boar Fish???   Nudge, Nudge, say no more. Is it? And on the sea front I checked in with my North Somerset contacts to see if the chance was still on for both shore and boat Cod in the Bristol Channel. Apparently not yet. They have had some good fish, but no solid numbers, just lots of tiny Codlets, a good sign for future years, but it’s the 5/40 pounders that I would be looking at. Bet your life the bigger Cod will start to run, and then the weather will go all white and cold. I  can feel it in my thermos flask!!! A change about to come. Well at least we have a few films backed up to work on in the edit suite.

I rarely watch TV now, except for the news and all those “How to find Gold” films and even they have all got a bit samey. Mike recorded one series for me about a bloke fishing round/up/over the Amazon, but I couldn’t watch it. All been done before, and how many people can afford to go up the Amazon? Not many. I skipped through them on fast forward then deleted the lot. Nothing out there worth watching. The guy never told me anything about techniques/lures/depths etc. Quite why TV companies copy each other with formats is beyond me, and that’s why we put everything on YouTube. At least you guys can watch what you enjoy, whichever species it is. So, let’s hope the New Year brings some usable weather, and whether you fish freshwater or sea, trout or shore, we wish you the best of luck. Thanks to all those who wrote in with something positive to say about us, and thanks to the few Richard Heads and cranks that occasionally contact us and who apparently have the brain and knowledge of a wet Rice Krispie.Without them we probably wouldn’t have any entertainment at all !!!!! Good hunting-Graeme

OCTOBER BLOG 2013

Wow!!! The milestone has just passed, with over one MILLION views on our website, and do I feel any different? In fact I forgot to check the counter, so missed the chance to crack open a bottle of pop, but two more milestones I feel are far more important. As you know I write less, take stills photographs less, but make fishing films like there’s no tomorrow. Obviously I can’t do both, and it seems clear to me that the age of the written word is fading fast as more people want visual stimulation and information on their screens. So our Youtube views have spiralled to over THREE AND A HALF MILLION, which is incredible. And our subscriber base is accelerating so fast we are on the verge of becoming the 3rd biggest fishing show on YouTube with almost 22,500 subscribers. That’s easily the biggest in Britain; it seems you guys are loving what we do. Not bad for a part-time father and son filming/fishing combo. So spread the word people. Tell everyone you know to check out our diverse range of fishing films, and send them YouTube links to their favourite species. Loads out there are still amazed when they discover the world of THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW.

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Well, does anybody know where September went? Has it been stolen? I had lots of plans for some early autumn fishing during what I consider possibly the best fishing month for British fishing. Yet that month seemed to dissolve into nothingness. I do have to concede that this has also been one of the best summers I can remember, not just the heat, but for those bright days that lift the spirits and bring renewed hope on each fishing trip. Yet while the weather might have been first class, some of the fishing was no better than average. Sometimes not even that. I put it down to the fact that we have had very few storms this summer and autumn. As a general rule we get our main strong winds as heavy rain spinoffs from the Atlantic hurricanes. These barrel over the Caribbean, hit land around the Florida area, then work their way up the eastern seaboard of the States to blow themselves out as large low pressure systems on our shores. Maybe this has been the factor that made our weather good, but the fishing average.Three times I have had to shelve plans to run up to the River Severn and make a Barbel film as the river has been low and clear. As I write this some of our rivers are agonisingly low, which makes ideal conditions for predators like Herons, Cormorants and the Otter.

I shall shortly have to start river Pike fishing, but with many rivers still low and full of weed, it will probably be our famous “twitched sprat” method, dropping the baits into gaps in the weedbeds. I feel using lures will only be an expensive one-way ticket as they will have a good chance of getting snagged up. The main well in our garden(normally 32 feet deep) is the lowest I have ever seen it, to such an extent that I have diverted one of my roof gutters into it in the hope that any rain will top it up, as the water pressure helps support the surrounding Victorian brickwork.

On the sea fishing front, “HI Sea Drifter” has not even been to sea since our last trip for a Brill and Turbot film off the Bognor banks of Sussex (good film pending).In fact I have used it far less this year than last year, which is not good. I had a long drive down to Minehead in Somerset to fish and film various ray species off Dave Roberts charter boat “ALYKAT”.I also had some shore Cod trips shelved down that way, and hopefully this might be back on schedule in a couple of weeks. Some of you may have seen our “Tips on canal fishing” film which was certainly a labour of love, coupled to the frustration of continued assaults on my swim by canal boats. It ended up giving us a “fun” bit of filming, which apparently a lot of you out there appreciated, undoubtedly having been in that very same position yourself. I did manage to squeeze in a couple of back-to-back sessions with the flyrod, travelling down to Dever Springs in Hampshire for a film where I had an incredible bit of luck(I may call it skill in the film) where I loaded up on a Rainbow trout that bailiff Stuart later weighed for me at 15 ½ lbs. ! The film is about using the Crane Fly (DaddyLongLegs) and will be up shortly as we have about NINE FILMS already backed up. Plus I had some other rainbows on the Sid Knight pattern fly as well.

The following day I was back down in Hampshire to fish Nigel Jackson’s stretch of the River Test at Testwood before the river season closed. And although I struggled with the spooky Grayling and Browns in the clear, low water conditions I did “luck out” with a new P.B.River Rainbow of 11lbs that took a size 10 White Chomper tied by Sid Knight. This pattern is white, and for many years was my first choice fly for Stillwater stalking, so it was something of a pleasure to see it work again. I also had a couple of other rainbows in the 6/8lb bracket so it finished a good session for filming and fishing on my own. It made me appreciate the good fortune of being an all-round angler where I can switch between species and techniques at the drop of a hat and still get success. It’s why I do it.

Beara shore guide Paul Harris shows off one of Graemes Pollack 300x225
Paul Harris with Graeme’s Pollack

I’m also back from my third trip this year over to Ireland, this time I had a load of gear, plus lead weights, so I took the Stena ferry with my car from Fishguard to Rosslare, which is really the only practical mode of transportation when you have a load of fishing and filming gear. I also found out that it was just a few pounds extra for a private cabin, and that means you can get your head down in a proper bed for three hours, to regain some strength for the rest of the drive. I know I could be in Mauritius in the Indian Ocean in the same time it takes me to drive over to the west coast of Ireland, but given good weather it still makes it worthwhile. After a lumpy fuel bill and 14 hours of travelling I arrive on the doorstep of Ireland’s top shore guide, Paul Harris. He operates from his B&B guest house “Dromagowlane” at Adrigole on the Beara peninsula, and with a gap in clients it allowed him the opportunity to help with some filming as I was on my own with Mike back teaching at School. However, while Britain had Indian summer conditions, I was harassed by low pressure weather fronts delivering strong winds and driving drizzle. Only one day was good, and I did haul up three Thornback rays one day (target species for the film) and possibly the smallest Conger eel I have ever caught! Also the traditional Irish Dogfish.

I had wanted to try a certain quay when I was on the Beara Peninsula back in May, but ran out of time. I am not going to say exactly where the spot was, but it has really deep water, a supply of permanent chum going over the side(100 tons of Boarfish were being sucked out of a trawler while I was there)so the potential for something huge swimming around at night is definitely there. We had four rods down and hauled out a succession of small Pollack and Mackerel under the floodlights. After a couple of hours one of my rods got dragged down the quay. Whatever it was simply picked up the whole mackerel bait and made off at a steady rate along the deep water. Grabbing the rod I knew immediately this was something different to a Conger. Suffice it to say line was ripped off at a steady rate against a tight drag and I never even got to turn the reel handle ONCE!!  It was stripping me out and as I clung on several workers were watching me from behind, when the line eventually exploded like a pistol shot. It was totally unstoppable and I seriously believe this may have been a Sixgill shark that comes in to feed on the trawler washdowns at night, and it was by far and away the biggest crittur I have ever hooked from the shore in Europe. It was like a 300lb Bull shark, and the potential for a shore-caught Sixgill shark of 600lbs or so could be well on the cards. I fully intend to return their again, but will be armed with 50lb boat outfits, and marlin sized 50W reels, plus 80lb stand-up tuna sticks. I have caught big Stingrays off the shore so I know the flapping fight their wings give when they take off. So it wasn’t a big Common Skate. But I have caught big sharks off the Florida docks, and it was exactly like them. So watch this space as I feel sure the Beara peninsula deepwater shore marks could hold Europe’s biggest shore shark. If I say exactly where this is, one of those angling “superheroes” and TV. crews will be over there trying to catch one first. And there have been other claims from anglers fishing the area that they have hooked unlandable fish, so it’s not just me who has a story to tell.

The following day I think I blanked totally on the Pollack (blame the weather) and the day after we got some small fish. Then we had a bit of a scare when we drove round to the north of the peninsula in an effort to beat high winds and horizontal rain. We did get a couple of Pollack, one of which I got in the teeth of a Force 6 gale that nearly blew me off the rocks. It was about 7lbs.I only had the pocket camera as under such conditions there was no way I dare carry the big unit. Paul then climbed on the rocks behind me to see how I was doing when a huge gust of wind unbalanced him, sending him into a small crevasse in a dangerous and heavy fall. He cut his hand and cracked his head on a rock, but in the wind I didn’t really know what had happened. Thankfully he is made of stern stuff (so I didn’t have to stop casting!) but in a subsequent film you may see him sporting a black eye. So rock hoppers beware. The moral should be. Don’t go out on the rocks in bad conditions. Easily said though, when you are struggling to catch fish in hard conditions.

                       I finished the Irish trip with a session up at Cloonee Lakes in the mountains filming loch-style fly-fishing that Paul uses for the wild Brown trout. A fabulous location and with the wind finally dropping we had some halfway decent film conditions. So there it is.Another month gone, and now the weather and temperatures are ready to take a dive into early winter. But we need the rain and while that may shut down the small boat fishing, the fresher water will bring Barbel, Chub and Pike on the feed. Plus the early winter Cod are starting to make a showing. All-round angling?? I love it! Good luck out there ,keep the TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING flag flying band remember to get in early if you want some T/A fishing DVD’s or T/A clothing for early Christmas presents.

Product review-

Got to test out the Storm FS9 spinning rod. It’s a heavy duty spinning rod, and I got one of the 7lb Pollack on it in Ireland, and found plenty of power there. However I feel it has great potential for a light to medium uptide boat rod, as the action throws 20/60gms and would be ideal for say, a 2 ounce bomb or grip lead fished uptide. The 9 foot (2.7 metre) rod has spiral carbon wrap construction, and while I have only used it with a Tok 4000 spinning reel (casts well) it should cast well with a multiplier as well. They should be available through local tackle shops, but check around for the best price. I will hopefully get a better test with it when Cod fishing, so keep watching the monthly updates.

 

ChrisLambert25lb13oz 300x232
Chris Lambert 25lb13oz

Down at Devon’s Angler’s Paradise lakes the catfish and carp have been showing well. One of the anglers to get among them was Exeter angler Chris Lambert with a great common carp of 25lbs 13ozs taken on original Raspberry pop-up bait. If we get a mild spell in the next month there should be a good chance of picking up a carp. And don’t forget to try fishing close in, as the Carp have had all summer to learn that anglers throw their leftover bait in at the end of the day. Any time after about 4pm you should fish a rod right by your feet. Could get you that Totally Awesome bonus carp.

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STENA LINE OFFERS-

For those anglers interested in going to Ireland for some fishing, here is a press release I was sent by Stena that may be of interest.

IRELAND IS FULL OF AUTUMNAL SURPRISES

Ireland is a favourite destination for thousands of people but for many, autumn is the time when she really shows her true colours.

Tourism Ireland has joined forces with leading ferry company Stena Line to let people know about their great-value lead-in fare of just £79 single, car and driver* and their hotel breaks which start at just £59 per person per night*, including ferry travel and breakfast (based on a two night stay).  And bargain hunters take note – you can’t buy the travel and accommodation separately for less.  “Our latest hotel deal is one of our most competitive travel offers.  And if mums and dads are smart they can potentially save hundreds on the cost of their car-cation as we’re also offering kids travel and stay for free on selected hotel breaks”.

Other highlights include the Galway Comedy Festival, 22 – 28 October; Wexford Festival Opera, 23 October – 3 November; the year-long series of events celebrating Derry~Londonderry’s City of Culture 2013 status; and Belfast Music Week, 11 – 22 November, to name a few, as well as the continuing The Gathering Ireland which has been attracting people from around the globe with a link to Ireland or just a love of the country to come and experience some truly unique events.

To book your ferry-inclusive hotel break to Ireland with Stena Line from just £59pppn* (based on a 2 night stay with breakfast) plus KIDS STAY FREE log onto www.stenaline.co.uk/Ireland, call Stena Line Holidays on 08445 768889 or visit your local travel agent.  Or simply go as you please and getaway the easy way with Stena Line’s £79 single car and driver fare – for further information call Stena Line on 08447 707070 or log onto www.stenaline.co.uk. Price valid until 20 December.

 

*Terms and conditions apply. Subject to availability.

A nice Amberjack...and sunshine as well 300x225
A nice Amberjack…and sunshine as well

Mike had a mail and some pictures from Ian Drew who came on one of our foreign fishing trips back in 1998.Where have those years gone? Anyway, Ian has been catching some good gamefish over in Mexico’s Cabo San Lucas where I spent far too many years chasing Marlin and sharks. Great weather, super food, blue skies, cold beers and big fish….Hmmm,why am I not back there this winter ?? Dangling a squid off the Nab tower in December just doesn’t have the same draw. Here’s Ian’s comments…..

Hello Mike,
“ I’m pretty sure you won’t remember me. You were an ‘ankle-biter’ when I last saw you! I’m not sure your Dad will remember me either. Been a while.
I first got to know Graeme when I went on one of the fishing trips to Cabo San Lucas in 1998.Since then I have been coming out here every year and since  2012 I have been ‘living’ out here.I now live in San Jose Del Cabo rather than Cabo San Lucas (cheaper, less noisy and no tourists!!) I don’t get to go fishing as often as I would like (too expensive).
Over the years I have got quite ‘hooked’ on fishing for big Roosters!  Just love that kind of fishing – slow trolling a livebait close to the shore, the rocks etc…Had one about 60lbs a month ago.

Now this really is a big Roosterfish 300x230
Now this really is a big Roosterfish

Bigger ones about but not easy to catch (quite hard to hook Roosters).
As you are probably aware the Yellowfin Tuna fishing over here has been amazing last 5 years or so. There was a 396lb caught in the Los Cabos tuna jackpot tourney in 2009. I was here for that – big fish!
2 days after I came back to England last (Sept 2012), some guy went out deliberately targeting the world record. He caught a 427lb Yellowfin!!  Not stupid though, he won $1,000,000 dollars through some kind of offer Mustad were doing!!  Nice work if you can get it!!May have a go for a few myself later in the year. They catch them using Kites? Something I’m sure Graeme knows all about. I’ve seen it done but never actually caught one doing it so something to look forward too! Tuna around the 300lb mark aren’t that big a deal anymore!!  Amazing!!

Looks very much like a Mexican Mako shark to me. 225x300
Looks very much like a Mexican Mako shark to me.

Well Graeme, my whole life has changed, and I guess I have you to thank for showing me the wonderful fishing in Cabo San Lucas. I see you focus a lot on Sharks these days. Not sure the last time you were over here??If you ever decide to pop back, let me know. Maybe catch up on a few things? All the best
Tight Lines Ian Drew”

Well, what can I say??????? Ian has now painted a picture unlike that outside my office window as I type. Grey, drizzle, cold, a heap of paperwork, utility bill increases, property hassle, and not a chance of a fish. Not a hint of sunoil.Thanks for the report Ian, keep them coming.

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Ashley Way with his 38 8 Cod.Biggest Cod for Steve was 44lbs.All taken within a mile of port. 300x225
Ashley Way with his 38-8 Cod.Biggest Cod for Steve was 44lbs.All taken within a mile of port.

COD SEASON- For those of you wanting a crack at a double figure Codlet, or even a twenty pounder, or with a real “throw of the dice”…. A thirty, look out for a trip aboard Steve Yeandle’s  charter boat “Scooby Doo Too” that berths at Watchet on the North Somerset coast. He gets a lot of cod in the Bristol Channel, and some big fish as well. There should be an upcoming feature in Dave Barham’s BOAT FISHING MONTHLY magazine, so look out for it.They get various runs of smaller fish so there is every chance of going home with something for the freezer, plus you have to admit the outside chance of a thirty must be a draw. Often these Cod are right in close to shore, and Steve will also do shorter, half day trips to get the best of the tides, so no long runs to the marks. You’ll barely have time to thread the line up the rings!!

A big Watchet Cod 150x150
A big Watchet Cod

Another one to look for is Matt Coker’s new boat build down at Dover, in Kent. He really is the Cod King in that neck of the woods, and his new boat is due to be launched any day now. It’s a state of the art vessel that will surely be providing the anglers with great fishing in a really modern boat. Check him out. The top guy out from Dover.

JULY 2013

GRAEME’S BLOG

At long last our delivery of T-shirts, Hoodies and Polo shirts have arrived, but take note, this order has to be on a first come, first served basis as a lot of people have been waiting a long time to get hold of one. Contact mike via his email with your enquiry first. Tell us where you are based, we then get an individual price for your postage. As some may want a T-shirt and a polo shirt (one for fishing, the polo shirt for casual wear) so it will need a different postage quote. So if interested contact Mike first at mikepullen@totallyawesomefishing.com  We are also going to give the first buyers an amazing deal on this new product. Buy a T-shirt, polo shirt or hoodie and we will throw in a DVD of our “Giant Catfish of Caspe” priced at £9-99!!!!  That’s an amazing deal, and remember you can only get this exclusive line of clothing from Totally Awesome Fishing. So get in early if you want to be out and about with the very latest in smart black fishing apparel. The very first T-shirt in the range is already proving lucky for 14-year old Sean Maxwell, who is crewing aboard THE “Lady Louise” charter boat out of Courtmacsherry,Ireland. On his second day he nailed a superb double figure Pollack on light tackle. Way to go Sean, a Totally Awesome catch in our first T-shirt!

Sean Maxwell
Sean Maxwell
T SHIRT
T SHIRT – £12.99

 

POLO SHIRTS
POLO SHIRTS – £18.99

 

HOODIE
HOODIE – £22.99

On the fishing front it seems the blue sharks are well in so they will be the largest of the predators to target. If you are not sure whether your tackle is up to the job check out our best selling DVD-“The Ultimate Guide to Blue shark fishing”. The chances are good that your regular boat tackle could double up for a shark session. They average 40/50lbs with a 100 pounder still being a good shark. For years they have not been killed in the numbers 40/50 years ago, and that has to be a good thing. I believe they were getting 6000 a year around the British Isles which is a heck of a lot of sharks. Back then a 150 pounder (weighed on gantry) was almost shark of the year. But for some reason, using the weight-for-length formula to guess a weight has suddenly seen 130-pounders plus, all over the place. You have to ask yourself why a shark that has probably visited our shores during the summer for millions of years has suddenly seen such a huge rise in average weights. And remember, there are less food fish in the sea for them to feed on than ever before.  I personally take with a pinch of sea salt all the formula weight-for-length stuff. I know it’s inaccurate as I have proved that by measuring various species of fish and cross referencing by taking the actual weight. Every single fish was out. Plus of course it does not take into account the body density of that fish. If a shark has eaten 20lbs worth of food in the last night it will still seem the same “weight” using the measurement formula, but obviously be a totally different weight than one that hasn’t eaten. But I guess if all that measuring keeps the modern angler happy, and if all these “big” fish are coming in way above what for thousands of years may have been an average weight for the species, then does it matter? At least they are getting returned, which is good.

We seem to have missed the Tench again for another year. I did enquire, but it seems the traditional Tench stocks are just getting squeezed out more and more by carp. I do like catching carp on floating baits but they can get pretty trying when you set out to target another species living in the same water. I also drove down to Dorset to look at the River Stour and Royalty Fishery on the Hampshire Avon. Mike wanted to go there for some visual chub fishing but I had a bad feeling about the lack of rain, and lack of weed cutting. It would make a couple of day tickets £20 plus, with fuel on top (£25) a total waste. So I checked it out first. How right I was. I saw just one angler, and he said there were barely any chub shoals of small to medium fish left. It was just big Barbel, fished carp-style with boilies and pellets. The weed on both fisheries used to be cut manually, and bailiffs Ernie Leah and Glen Sutcliffe had the middle reaches of Throop fishery looking like an underwater Augusta Golf Course. Clear gravel runs were cut for float anglers to trot baits, and the trees/bushes were cut back to keep swims clear. I have always said they only need to cut small strips in weed beds to allow the angler to run baits through, or at least get feed in to attract the barbel and chub out. Mind you, it probably cost me more going round the Christchurch charity shops with the wife than it would to have gone fishing. (Do you know not ONE charity shop would take her .Said she was unsaleable!) Years ago you couldn’t move for anglers on either river. Today it seems to me they are a shadow of their former glory days.

Many anglers will be on holiday at this time of year and if you are a coarse angler venturing out to sea don’t forget you can still get in on the action using your regular pike/carp gear for beach fishing. Off estuaries, harbour walls, piers, floatfishing for Grey Mullet using bread etc. Check out some of our shore films. You might only have to buy a few small grip leads as your carp hooks will do for fishing ragworm, sandeel or lugworm .Or use your pike gear to go spinning off the rocks for mackerel and bass. Buy a few small sea lures, maybe some sets of Hokkai/shrimp mackerel feathers and away you go. Check the best tides at the local tackle shop and you could have a win-win family fishing holiday, with maybe a bit of fishing squeezed in.Many of the rivers will be tough the end of July into August with low water/oxygen levels, so generally the last couple of hours of daylight is the only bite time. In August gravel pits and stillwaters in general can go stale, making many species lethargic. I hate to say it, but your best target species may well be carp off the top. Mike did a film on it recently with a few basic tips to get beginners started, so if you don’t mind the same old species, surface fishing for carp might just produce over the next few weeks.

carp
Mike with a double figure CARP

A last minute call from Mark Gannon over in Courtmacsherry, Southern Ireland saw the Totally Awesome film crew making some last minute travel plans. As I take everything but the kitchen sink in fishing and film equipment I decided on the Stena Lines ferry from Fishguard to Rosslare as I would drive over.Hey what’s a 16-trip non-stop travel stint for fishing ? Mike, in the meantime had a booked a flight to fly into Cork a few days later, then I could collect him with my car. Flying is OK, but you still have weight restrictions (40lbs of lead weights for wrecking?) and then have to hire a rental car. So it’s the Stena ferry for me as the sailing time is just a tad over 3 hours and I then have the car to drive about shore fishing as well. Mark’s “Lady Louise” was the charter boat, where we took spaces with his regular party of Dutch anglers. The reefs produced Conger, Pollack and Ling. I did try for a 1000lb Six gill with a deep dropping technique for a whole day, fishing out past the wreck of the “Lusitania”. I took my 80lb Calstar stand-up stick that I had already taken a “grander” shark on from the Canary Islands, so had no doubts it could do the job. And strapped to that was my 50 wide Triton reel and 50lb test mono that I have taken many 400lb plus sharks and marlin on. As the Yanks say…”I was loaded for Bear”. Alas, the baits at 220 feet were neglected, but at least I had tried something different. First day out on my own in Mark’s self-drive dinghies saw me put a full day (and evening) in, trolling unweighted Redgill Sandeels I got an amazing 9 Bass and 12 Pollack, but filming on my own with the tripod in a boat while moving around was nerve wrecking as several times the tripod rocked and balanced wildly. When Mike arrived we could double up on the filming and with the great weather actually came out with a staggering FIVE new films! That means with what we already have pre-loaded on our shore films, there are about TEN brand new films to go up. The Porbeagle sharks and Tope off North Devon will be in full swing by now, but we are hoping to plod along with “Mr Blue”, probably down at Falmouth, where I still live with the misguided conception that a 350lb Mako is swimming around with my name on it.I’ve caught some 20 Makos so it’s no big deal if I don’t catch one, but it would still be great to get one using my tiny 17-footer rather than a big boat. Once you have a small boat there is a huge sense of satisfaction in doing everything yourself. If you want to have the ultimate high, buy a 17-foot dinghy, head 10 miles out to sea on your own. Then solitaire a 350lb Mako on your own. “Old Man and the Sea” stuff. Now that really would be something. Oh yes, and smother the boat in cameras so you get some footage of your boat being destroyed for your insurance claim!

We’ve just taken delivery of the brand new Tokushima HK4000 spinning reels. Time to start moving on from my ancient Shimano baitrunners and Aeros’s which must have caught me literally tons of fish over the years. I cannot fault Shimano reels for durability and trust me, I rarely service them. The baitrunners I never use with the baitrunner system much and having been used on my boat (saltwater environment?) they seem to be ageing fast. So what is there about this new HK4000? Its small and I like small reels. It has a nice audible drag, and with 13 plus ball bearings means it is a smooth runner. The oscillation means the line lay gives you longer casting (not that I cast far, lots of my fish are close in), and it comes with two spools.

Fishing reel 1024x673
Tokushima HK4000 – Soon to be available from The Totally Awesome Fishing Show

A deep one, which I will use for pike fishing, loaded with Sufix 5kg mono.I don’t like braid for twitching pike baits, too much slack line for tangles. The shallow spool I put 4kg Sufix mono on and it will hopefully get stretched by carp/barbel and pike. But of course here at Totally Awesome the 4000 is going to get punishment by serious saltwater species. I quite fancy seeing if it will take out a small blue shark aboard “Hi Sea Drifter”. It should also make a great barbel reel and it has almost a 5 to 1 retrieve ratio. Will it last as long as my old Shimano’s? Only time will tell, but they are going to be used for fish pulling very shortly. Watch out for them, and check the latest carp film going up 7pm Thursday 25th July, we managed to squeeze some shots in of the new reels so you will probably be one of the first people to ever see them. Good Fishing, and let’s hope the weather stays good for boating. Lots of plans…….Graeme.

 

GRAEME’S BLOG

Well, it’s here at last. Blue sky, sunshine and warm temperatures. Of course being Brits we get 2 days of hot weather then start moaning that we can’t sleep at night as it’s TOO warm!! Think of how long last winter was, that will soon dispel any thoughts of “Too warm”. It seems the warm weather has also brought the saltwater toothy critters out….Yeesss!!! Sh…Sh…., Sh…, Sh…SHARKS!!!!

The Blues are in as Wayne reported from his Falmouth trip in the last blog, and the Porbeagle have started to make a showing. There are lots of people interested in trying shark, fuelled we are told by the capture of that 500-plusser we had on “Hi Sea Drifter” last year. I’ve had several charter skippers contact me for info on how it’s done as they are now getting asked by their clients for shark fishing trips. That’s great, as up to a couple of years ago the shark scene had died a death and few anglers were interested in dedicating themselves to their pursuit. Listen, I’ve done it for over forty years and I have fished for them at some stage every year. But now I’m moving up a gear, and have targeted Thresher, with Mako in the sights and yes, one step short of the “KRAKEN” out of Pirates of the Caribbean…The 6-Gill shark. Venue? South Coast. New technique of baiting, can’t say what it is yet as it will immediately get copied by others trying to move in our action…(Or lack of it…last 2 Thresher trips a blank !) But at least I invested in my own time and fuel to try. Wayne is even worse, he went out with Jeff the same day and tried to drive off the planet. He went so far I put in an order for a case of French wine! I could smell the garlic from the Nab Tower!!  But again, listen, Wayne and Jeff are out there doing it. If someone doesn’t pioneer new places and techniques how are we ever going to move forward? Or course I have always been dogged over the years by pioneering places then in move the cameras with the angling superheroes of the time and get all the gravy. Easy way out for them I suppose. Information/area/technique all supplied no need to spend loads of time pumping blank trips in. Far easier to let someone else do all the work. Well hopefully by about late September we will have learnt a lot more on really big fish ,and who knows, maybe latch in to something monstrous ?? If any of you are interested in getting a Blue shark, you really have everything you need to know in our special DVD, “The Ultimate guide to blue shark fishing”. It’s just £9-99 and should give you everything from tackle, to a load of tips, and some great action, including a blue shark taken using just a TROUT ROD. It’s not until you get a big shark from your very own small boat that you really appreciate the sense of achievement. No need for a huge 38 foot boat, I’m waiting for guys to do them from Kayaks!!  Blues …Yes! Porbeagle? If only small to 150lbs or so …..Mako….Don’t make me laugh….Minced Yaks I reckon!! but good one any small boat guys or Yakkers for at least trying something “Out of the box”. Actually Yakkers could get all the info from the shark DVD to at least take a crack at a blue, and remember you can only buy this from us, here, at “THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW”.

                           So what else did I do? Had a last minute run down to fish with Craig Butler of West Coast Tackle at Minehead. I’ve had the Somerset shoreline in the crosshairs of my camera for the last couple of months as I know they get some good anglers and great shore sport down there. I rammed in the hours, put my knee out on some of the beach/rock “excursions” and drove home with two great shore films in the bag. So you guys are in for a treat if you like fishing off the beaches. I also got some great action on the finest shore angler for Smoothhound I have ever seen. Courtnay Creech. What a pendulum caster, and an absolute machine on baiting and casting out. Mike will have a couple of superb silhouette shots of his immaculate, full-length pendulum cast. So good it almost brings tears to your eyes. I can’t wait for Mike to finish the school teaching term as he has not had a hound off the shore and there could still be time down in Somerset, plus we have a lake to try filming for bream where there’s every chance of the two of us bagging up and maybe reaching the magic “ton” (over 100lb of the silver finsters) using just a float rod. We are keeping off the rivers as there’s no rush to fish them, but if the weather holds you can believe we will be out there trying.

We have paid for the first delivery of T-shirts and Hoodies, but we will have to make contact with everyone who wants one first as there has been such demand for our branded clothing that out of courtesy it has to be a first come, first served basis. At last we hope to have found a reputable supplier so should have no trouble. If you want to get an idea check out the brand new film Mike is putting up Thursday (7pm, 11th July) and you can see the logo. These are on our own personal BLUE T-shirts, the ones we are selling are the more popular black, and there are hoodies as well. Get in and contact Mike if you want one, and we’ll put a hold on one, and you can pay via Paypal later as we have to check all the different postages worldwide first). We’ll do our best for you anyway. There’s also some new tackle in the pipeline, a brand new reel, and we hope to be able to review them, possibly the first in the country. Finally,look out for a new trout on fly film going up. It should be impressive, where I get to do the guiding and fish spotting for Mike, who is still pretty new to flyfishing. He likes it though, and enjoys the visual aspect of the casting, and excitement of the induced take. Does he get anything good? How about three new P.B.’s in a row….Hey, with me acting as the guide what did you think he was going to catch??? And one of the runs is a reel-dumper of a take, but we still end up with a fish.

Over in Ireland we have a report from Paul Harris. Read it and weep. A far cry from struggling on the south coast for 3 Rockling and 2 Dabs!!

FISHING ON THE BEARA-Paul Harris reports

I think specimen rays are like buses, you wait all year for them to appear and then two come along at once. Well done to Gavin who was the lucky angler with 6lbs 2ozs and 5lbs 4ozs Homelyn (Spotted) Rays. Along with fellow anglers Jason, Mark and Paul who were on their annual ray hunt from the UK  to the Beara they caught plenty of Thornback Ray throughout the week at most of the usual marks. Not sure how many they finished up with in total but they had them to 13 lbs and on the last day finished on a high with nineteen ray. Arthur and Stephen were down from the north and found some nice Bull Huss to 7 lbs. and Pollack on lures to 4 lbs. Jim and wife Pat crossed the Irish Sea looking for a first ray for Pat and she achieved that on the first day with 2 fish of 3 and 5 lbs. They also had wrasse and Pollack to 4 lbs.

The Bay is currently full of sprat and sandeel with mackerel following them in for the best mackerel season we have seen in years so plenty of fresh bait available.

Anyone looking for information on fishing on the Beara can contact me at dromagowlanehouse@eircom.net or ring me on 00 353 27 60330.

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Thanks to Paul for that rock report. I bet there’s a lot of guys who wish they could have fishing like that from a boat, never mind just walking up to the shoreline ! Anyone interested in seeing what Paul’s area looks like should check out our following videos up on YouTube-SRF, LRF and PIER CONGER. Should get you reaching for the “Send” button to get more info from what is turning out to be a great shore fishing area.

Took “Hi Sea Drifter” up to Kings Marine in Chertsey after it zonked out three times when I was filming the Black Bream episode with Mike. The engine died each time Mike pressed the “down” on the tilt button. In fact all the electrics went .Luckily it turned out to be a faulty earth connection Wayne assured me I could have done myself had I checked it.But the fear factor was high, and it had to be serviced by Kings anyway(retains warranty on my beautiful Yam 60,so I’m back in action ready for plenty of boat fishing. I ran way out for a Thresher shark drift, started beyond the South Pullar bouy? And drifted right into Sandown Bay, then towards Dunnose Head. Had a run back to Northney Marina, and still had loads of fuel left in the first tank, never even got near to the second tank. Great fuel consumption, which at today’s prices is greatly appreciated. Let’s hope the good weather keeps up and good fishing for everyone.

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MIKE’S BLOG 

One more week of work left and then two months off! I hope to be knuckling down to some serious fishing and editing! Hopefully a re-vamp of the website and improve our online shop (hopefully with the new edition of clothing that will be coming your way). Had a great session catching carp on floaters at bowsaw lake this evening. Only a 3 hour session caught 7 carp to 11lbs! not bad at all and hopefully some great footage and another film for you guys. Starting to enjoy being the other side of the camera!

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THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW BLOG – 1st July 2013

GRAEME’S BLOG 

Well, it’s been a question of making the most of any gaps in the weather in order to have any chance of success with the fishing. First stop was an attempt to get Mike a double figure rainbow trout, but using ultra-light gear. In fact I had a couple of 4-weight fly rods, so with a halfway decent day we drove down to Hampshire to a fishery I had never fished before. Pressure on. Well not really, as with a well-stocked trout water and cloudy conditions you should always been in with more than just a chance of getting a few to take. Our problem lay in the fact this fishery has few trees on it so there is little in the way of darker shadow lines that allow you to see trout swimming through. Add to that what I think the weather people call “White cloud” and it gives a glare on the surface that even the trained eye scoping the water with a good pair of polarising glasses has difficulty seeing through. After walking the lake a couple of times without a rod, we made a start. How did it finish up? well, we got a film from it, and certainly the light 4-weights were folded over, but you’ll have to wait for the YouTube film to learn how Mike did. Could be impressive stuff.

Then came a weather gap for the “Hi Sea Drifter” boat. We had to take it, as it was Mike’s day off and the “yellow peril” had barely seen any service this year. We needed to blow the cobwebs away. Target species were Black Bream, which we got, but Mike lucked out with a cracking Undulate Ray as a bonus fish. All in all, another film done, and a good day afloat. On the way back in to Northney marina the outboard cut out every time Mike hit the “down” on the trim and tilt. Luckily the engine restarted and we made it back, but three cut outs is fine in the close proximity of mudflats. But not so handy in leeward waves breaking on that rocky North Cornwall coastline. So as it was due a service anyway, I thought I had better drag it up to Kings Marine at Chertsey for a going over. The electrical fault turned out to be a bad earth connection on the battery (which Wayne thought it might be), but other than that all other connections appear OK. So all we need is some decent weather and I’ll be able to get rid of all the chum I’ve had in the chest freezer since last October!! One thing I do worry about and that’s the threats of power cuts? I’m old enough to remember them as I had my two shops running at the time and couldn’t sell brass oil lamps fast enough. But then I had no computer. A)-what is going to happen to everyone when they can’t watch TV or their computers? and B) – Where do I hide when the chum in my freezer starts to thaw out!!!

undulate fb

Also had a day out with Wayne to finish off a film about getting Smoothhounds on crab. We had done the crab collecting sequence so just needed some fish. Luckily they obliged, along with a nice tope. To be honest I haven’t enjoyed a day so much for a long time. Lots of fish, good weather, and the pinnacle of the day….A full roast beef carvery for just £4-49 at one of Wayne’s local pubs. At that price it’s not even worth buying the food and spending the gas to cook it. So you can doubtless gather that the fishing films are getting backed up in the edit suite. I’m doing what I can, but it needs Mike’s final touches before we can start loading them up. Oh, I nearly forgot. I couldn’t make a beach night trip for Hounds to Selsey, but thought about trying the following daytime. Would it be a wasted journey? Undoubtedly hounds fish better on calm night sessions, but my first fish was straight in with a new P.B. at 14lbs, on a pulley rig and a hardback crab and squid sandwich. It wasn’t so much a bite as the rod nearly came off the tripod. Good job I had slacked off the drag just in case an event like that should happen. So, yet another shore film to go up. Have you seen the monstrous numbers our weekly splurge of 5 new rock films are getting? No doubt we have hit a whole new audience, not just with the trout and fly-fishing fraternity, but there must be a whole lot more shore anglers out there than people realise. Plus we hear from lots of you that are actually returning to “all-round” fishing, trying different species/different techniques etc. As the old saying goes “Variety is the spice of life” and of course fishing for different species gives you new targets to achieve, new surroundings, and different techniques. I feel a bit sorry for the guys staked out in their bivvies week after week. I’ve done it, and of course it will get you the bigger fish, but frankly it’s just so ….well, boring. For me anyway, as I have a short attention span. The fish hooks itself, the alarm goes off, and you get up to wind it in. No sleeping halfway down a 20-foot rock with the waves crashing up. Or the uncertainty of exactly what has taken the bait when sea fishing.

14lb smoothound fb
14lb smoothound

From what I hear the river fishing has been patchy. I don’t personally do any river fishing early on. An old barbel angler on the Royalty once told me that he never started Barbel fishing until mid-July. Let the other anglers throw lots of bait in so the barbel get used to it, then they will be ready to expect yours. Makes sense.

Our Irish rock films have been the centre of attention and as I type this had pulled in an incredible 12,000 views in under a week. And Mike’s stats have shown we get a staggering 315,000 views on our films EACH MONTH!! That’s way over many fishing mags, and just goes to confirm that we are pioneering the “AGE OF THE ALL-ROUND ANGLER”. They were about when I was a kid, then they got bludgeoned round the head by carp info, but it looks like maybe it’s going full circle, as we pile out films covering all sorts of fishing, so thanks to our faithful followers that are continuing to “Spread the Totally Awesome” word. I even notice on one of our big-hitter pike films that we are getting ads from the likes of MacDonald’s, which is indeed a big name to have so I guess they know our stats are rising dramatically. We suddenly have loads of films passing the 20/30,000 hits mark, so if they take off like our big hitters, we are deffo looking to be the biggest all-round fishing film maker in the world!!!

We have found a new T-shirt supplier who does seem really efficient, so I’m guessing as soon as Mike finishes all the marking for end of school term, his attention will be turned to those. We’re going to run some small sizes as well for you juniors. Everything takes time. I don’t often spout off about tackle, but if you recall we renewed a few bits of ageing equipment for shore fishing, and the reel that seems to really stand out is that Akios Scora. It’s not cheap, but after giving it a good bit of use I find it really does seem a class bit of kit. It hasn’t caught me more fish. It’s not a magic bullet. But it is nice to use and makes me feel confident that I could take a really big lunker on it.

Over in Ireland, Paul Harris, the Beara’s top shore fishing guide has been finding his customers plenty of fish. Thornback Rays, Pollack, good Wrasse. He’s had Bull Huss to 10lbs, Thornies to 8lbs, and wrasse to an enormous…6lbs! But he also found time to go “upcountry” and do some fly fishing for brown trout. He’s obviously extremely good at this as he caught no less than FORTY of the little beauties on his team of flies. So you may be aware that we hope to return to Paul’s domain and do a film on that, as he is using a special fly fishing technique and here at TOTALLY AWESOME we want to be the first to film it!! Paul’s guest house is at Adrigole, about halfway along the Beara peninsula. Should you wish to see what it’s like check out the S.R.F. (Serious Rock Fishing) film, and there’s a few clips in there of his pad.

Wayne Comben managed to get in a “fix” for the terrible state he has been in all winter with his uncontrollable urge to crank down on some big sharks. He took a last minute trip down to Falmouth to fish with Jeff, who had dragged his boat down for a sesh at the “Blue Boys”. They had a 2-day weather window, but made the most of it. Look for his report in his blog below. Wayne also dropped in to see our hero, 90-year old Frank Vinnicombe, a top shark hunter. (He landed around 8000 sharks in his long fishing life).  A Mako shark enthusiast…As far as I remember Frank hooked the last known Mako right by the Manacles reef on his commercial mackerel gear, in April about 2/3 years ago. The 300lb Mako smashed his gear, but to be the last known person to encounter one of Britain’s big Mako sharks must really have been something!! I know Wayne certainly had a mean Mako at the back of his mind when he set out from Falmouth. Congrats to Wayne and Jeff, nothing would tickle me more than to see two guys in a dinghy go out and be the first to rod and line a Mako shark from a dinghy of 17/18 feet. I reckon it would break the boat in half!! But it would be worth it just to wind up someone we both know who has the ego of a concrete mixer!!  Laugh?? I think I’d have it stuffed. It was good fishing from a small boat so early in the year. And please don’t think this is a fluke. There are more “Big shark from small boat trips” planned. And a lot of you small boat enthusiasts want to join in.

Also down in the West Country, all sorts of carp and catfish have been coming out of “Angler’s Paradise” fishery in Devon. Might be worth a check out to see if they have any spare holiday lets, as it’s just a few yards to some of the lakes. But equally as important I heard today from a tackle shop in Somerset that there is a West Country fishery where you can do 100lbs of Bream and Crucians….wait for this…on the float. Not a boilie in sight. So I’m already pencilling that puppy in the diary as lots of you coarse anglers out there want more films on that sort of method from us. And as a main event I hope to be down in deepest Somerset as you read this, angling from the shore with that same Tackle Dealer, who will hopefully be revealing some of his favourite rigs and baits for all the big beach fish that swim past that stretch of coastline. If it means fishing into the night then I’ll do it.They get some really good shore specimens down that way, and it will hopefully be a pleasure to bring back some film from there. For those of you following Mike with the T/A Facebook, keep checking in, as I will file Mike a short report on each session.

Over in Courtmacsherry, southern Ireland, Mark Gannon’s charter boats are also getting among the fish. Pollack, Thornback Rays, and some good Ling are coming over the gunnles of his two vessels. There should be inshore bass starting to show by now, though everyone I talk to tells me of a shortage of Sandeels, one of the main food sources of Bass and other species. Even some of the seabird populations are beginning to suffer due, allegedly to the shortage of this important food source. Coupled to the shortage of Mackerel from commercial overfishing, it might again prove a challenging year for the inshore bass angler. It’s also about this time that Mark will start fishing for the Blue sharks, which regularly top the 100lb mark, and those giant Common Skate, which have taken to over 200lbs.With luck, we might get back over there and make a film about the Irish inshore bassing scene. It’s overdue, but we need luck, and some favourable weather. That’s about it for now. Weather not great as I write, so I may as well fry my brains in front of the editing equipment. Once you start on that timeline it’s difficult to get off. Good fishing-Graeme.

MIKE’S BLOG

So there is only 2 more weeks left at work (I work as a pe teacher, benefits of being a teacher – lots of holiday!) After which I will have nearly 2 months off work! Which means 2 months of fishing and editing! Im really looking forward to it, just hope the weather holds up like it is at the moment!

The Ireland Adventure Series was a huge success as Graeme has mentioned in his blog above, from the feedback I have heard most of you really enjoyed having 5 episodes put up in a week. We wanted it to have that feeling like you were watching a TV program, except that you wouldn’t have to wait a week for the next episode, you only had to wait 24 hours! Now that’s Awesome.

I have been in contact with a clothing supplier as we have had a big demand of people wanted to buy some of our clothing as seen in our videos. So look out for updates on our facebook page: Totally Awesome Fishing and the first of our clothing range should be available to purchase from our website.

Keep sending in your pictures on facebook, it’s great to see so many people getting inspired by our videos.

WAYNE’S BLOG

The first Shark outing of the year down off Falmouth turned out to be a successful one with eight Blue Sharks to 100lb boated over two days aboard Jeff Smith’s Warrior 175 Export  ‘Jupiters Moon’.

This trip had been a few months in the planning, Jeff had contacted me with a view to fishing for Sharks aboard his own boat,  and Blue Sharks are an ideal entry into the world of big predator fishing in our own waters.  A good amount of Graeme’s ‘magic soup’  Trout rubby was frozen down,  it disperses far more evenly if frozen, and the tackle, chum bucket, traces, floats and just about everything else was accumulated ready for the trip.

Jeff had already towed his boat to Cornwall a few days prior in the hope of a session on the North coast but the weather put paid to that,  not wanting to miss an opportunity I drove down a day earlier then planned to make the most of a two day window that was appearing.

As it turned out the forecast was spot on,  nice change that,  and the first day we headed out to our chosen spot and got the scent trail going. Pretty soon we had a good slick out the back of the boat

Chum Slick
Chum Slick

 

and we tried our luck finding some fresh Mackerel baits, we had been informed that they had arrived in numbers only that week and although on the small side, we soon had enough feathered for a days drifting.

Around two hours passed and as the tide eased and then picked up again we sat and chatted in the sunshine,  suddenly my TLD burst into life…. fish on!  A 70lb’er, perfectly hooked, pic taken and released at the side to swim off strongly.  It’s always a relief when after all the time and effort it comes good and that first fish takes the pressure off.

Jeff’s modified Penn reel was the next to sing out and the skipper had his first Blue Shark taking line and putting a decent bend in the rod. A similar sized fish was bought aboard and unhooked and once a few photos had been taken it was released none the worse for its encounter.

I had a 60lb fish and then Jeff hooked into what we really hoped for, a proper Blue.

Jeff with a pb Blue
Jeff with a P.B Blue

We made sure the fish was well played before bringing her over the gunnels,  it’s important to do this with any Shark of this size as some are easily led to the side and then go crackers when aboard.  Also it’s worth remembering that fish of this size possess plenty of power,  both in body and jaw,  so unless you know exactly what your doing it is wise to release fish at the side. It’s quite a chore bringing a big fish over the gunnels and it helped that Jeff is 6ft 3″,   its fair to say I have a bit of bulk but even then any Shark bought aboard requires everyone involved to know their part to get the job done as smoothly and as quickly as possible.  Not only do you not need damage done to the boat and yourselves but the fish itself should be treated with respect.  Incidentally all the Sharks swam away strongly.  Finally a 70lb Blue took one of my suspended Mackerel baits and gave a really good account of itself before being t-barred at the side.  At last knockings two Sunfish gave us a great view as they lazily swam past our transom to end a thoroughly enjoyable first day.

Day two was another good one with two Blues of 70lb for myself and a nice 80lb’er for Jeff.  We also had a bite off on one of Jeff’s wind on leaders as the fish came around and chewed the float and I had some plucks on a free lined bait and a few follows,  considering we had less rubby it was another decent days fishing.

Perfectly hooked on a home made trace.
Perfectly hooked on a home made trace.

For the trip I also made up my own traces and knocked up a chum bucket which worked a treat and Jeff prepped all the Trout rubby. The satisfaction of catching Sharks from your own small boat is enormous.  You can’t whack it as Del would say!

I feel very fortunate to have had the best mentor for my Shark angling career in the shape of Graeme Pullen,  Graeme has been extremely generous with both his advice and time and has answered the many questions I’ve fired at him about the sport,  and believe me I can bend an ear!  I know Jeff asked me to pass on his thanks also.

Now for one from our own neck of the woods…

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10th June 2013

GRAEME’S BLOG

Long time, no blog. And that’s because we had a week over in South-West Ireland, fighting the elements in the shape of high winds, in an effort to get some films made on shore fishing. In fact it turned out pretty well. We fished every day of five days, plus four of the evenings as well. Our guide was Paul Harris, who runs the Dromagowlane Guest House, on the Beara Peninsula.  I have known Paul since I was knee high to a Peeler crab, and fished with him in Ireland covering both freshwater and sea. The Beara peninsula was somewhere I had never visited before, so with Mike on his teacher’s break, we grabbed a Stena ferry from Fishguard to Rosslare which normally takes about 3 ½ hours .The wind was howling, and all our intro shots on the Stena ferry were later unusable due to the sound level coming out like we were standing behind a jumbo jet on Heathrow airport. With nearly 9 hours of solid driving behind me I was glad to hit the sheets that night I can tell you. I won’t say what we caught as we aim to hit YouTube with a staggering FIVE brand new films in a straight FIVE days!! That’s a bucketload of editing, and I don’t think anyone else has ever done this before, but of course all you Facebook followers will have been notified anyway so will be aware of the start of the release. And then of course there came the long drive back home. I always push my fishing trips to the last minute, and we fished the last morning with Mike and Paul after filming an interview with Paul on LRF (Light rock fishing), jump in the car, drive 4 hours to the Stena ferry, 2 hours sleep in the cabin, and a 4 hour drive home through the night was not the most enjoyable experience, especially as I dropped my driving glasses down through boulders on Rosslare pier while messing about with a monster spider crab for a Facebook photo. I had a spare pair in the glove compartment, out of date and FIFTEEN years old, so in the dark they made a mini car look like Eddie Stobart’s huge trailers! I should wear them while fishing to make the fish look bigger.

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A Totally Awesome Fishing Trip – Shore fishing in Ireland!

Finally, we have just passed our final “subscriber” target and have overtaken everyone to become the biggest all-round Fishing Show in Britain, thanks to YouTube. I remember we were excited to get 1000 subscribers, and now we are over 11,000 in a matter of months. The views are rising on a global scale as we now cover shore fishing, beach fishing, rock fishing, fly fishing etc and have had over TWO MILLION views!! Mike tells me we have just overtaken the last big tackle company to now be the biggest all-round fishing show on YouTube, in Britain. We are about to take Europe in a matter of months, and then it’s…..THE WORLD!! That really would be something, a father-and-son part-time fishing & filming combo, beating all the commercial and sponsored sites to be the biggest Show on the planet. We have another record breaking film in the shape of “Beach fishing tips-Part 1”, now shaking the world with 104,287 views in a matter of months. But still a way off from the ultimate big-hitter of Pike fishing on lures, at 229,838 views. We have plenty of other films now crossing the 50,000 views barrier, and we can get 1000 views in just 48 hours on some.

To celebrate breaking the 10,000 subscriber barrier we put up another competition to our Facebook followers. I found a pristine copy of one of my 16 books in a Yeovil, Somerset bookshop. “Go Fishing for Bream” written 23 years ago, immaculate, I just had to buy it for a prize, and I’ll autograph it for the winner. You won’t get many copies in this condition, and personally autographed as well. Plus some DVD’s on Giant Catfish, Carp trilogy, which is three brand new “how-to “films on carp, these are not on YouTube,plus the sold out once and reordered, “Ultimate guide to blue shark fishing”. I’ve bought another bulk batch in, and have managed to keep them at the same price. Check them out on our site shop, or join our Facebook followers and try winning something. Free to enter.

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Join in on the competition giveaway over on our Facebook.

Also…….hot off the press. How about a competition with a free shore fishing holiday for two lucky people??? Sounds good? It should be if it all comes together, as we will take the Totally Awesome cameras and film the lucky winners and what they catch on the trip. This should come together in the next week or so, but again you need to be a Facebook follower to enter.

Although sea and air temperatures are still down, it does finally seem as though both sea and freshwater species are on the move .The problem is for me down South, and high pressure = good filming skies also = easterly winds locked in. So the “Hi Sea Drifter” is still sitting sheeted up, waiting for a decent weather slot. I’ve actually been tied up shore fishing and fly fishing as I don’t really like fishing for coarse fish in what was the traditional close season, maybe a couple of trips and that’s it. I have really enjoyed getting back to how it used to be, and our trout fly fishing section has seen loads of people mailing Mike privately to thank us for giving them renewed enthusiasm to get into the sport. A far cry from the constant bait-flogging everywhere. I still get a kick out of going into the supermarket and seeing what I can catch on all the old fashioned stuff we used years ago.

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Trout fishing

I have heard of giant Stingrays coming off the south coast beaches with some regularity. Congrats to those lucky anglers, but watch the “sting in the tail” from those fish. I’ve had one plant its barb two inches in the base of my foot on a boat in the Florida Keys. It makes a visit to the dentist seems like a massage in comparison of pain levels. If you do get clipped make sure you don’t put ice on the wound. It  increases the toxins/pain level in the poison. Use hot water as that dissipates it. Trust me I know!! I’ve still got the limp.

On the subject of big flatties. Over on the Beara peninsula Paul Harris the shore guide there mailed me to say two guys from the Isle of Wight turned up. He sent them to a local mark on their first session of the holiday, and in a few hours they hauled out a staggering EIGHTEEN Thornback Ray to 8lbs. That’s enough fish to make me consider selling the boat. But,yes it is Ireland, and they do have loads more fish there than our trawled-to-oblivion shores. Our latest fly fishing film up is about Farmoor Reservoir near Oxford. You should get some good tips from that, and if you fancy a day there make sure you talk to ranger Mark Loughray and he can show you the exact setup with sight bobs,droppers,and fly patterns, plus tell you how to fish them, and most important, where to fish. If you are considering going to a big-trout venue in search of maybe a double or your P.B. then I would do it sooner, rather than later. The sun is high so you get good light penetration for spotting any fish, but many waters will suffer from algae and weed blooms by about July, and it makes for harder stalking conditions.

I got to test out that Akios fixed spool reel which does indeed seem to be a quality piece of kit. I liked the large ball handle for retrieving, and it cast really well, even with the big chunky conger baits I was heaving out off the cliffs. I had filled it with braid, and while the thinner diameter does indeed allow you to cast further, and detect bites better I am still not sold on braid. Have you ever tried to break out 50lb braid from a snag? A nightmare and risk of deep cuts. Take a small piece of wood with you to wind it round. Yes I use a mono shock, but I still have to pull on the braid for a break if snagged. I have seen a lot of big fish lost on braid, plus Mike lost a good conger on it at a pier. Loose coils in the wind are a superb way to lose your rag completely and attack it with a filleting knife just so you can get fishing again. So I think I may respool the Akios with mono line, maybe get a drop in distance, but at least enjoy the fishing a bit more. I think the really fine braids are only good for fishing small worm baits over clean ground for smaller fish, or ideal for small/medium fish on a boat, and even there you must keep the line tight at all times. And when it tangles with other anglers lines?? Well, don’t even go there. I think for the new SRF (Serious Rock Fishing) which I have “invented” for big fish only, 4lb is the joining weight, then mono is the way. But hey, if I hadn’t fished rough ground SRF with two lines, mono against braid, I would have been none the wiser.

While we mostly get compliments on our hard work putting up the Totally Awesome films, we do still get the occasional mouthy crittur, keyboard warrior I believe they are called who hides in a basement somewhere and decides to post some bad language. Hey, military training with camera and fishing equipment carrying means there are plenty of obscenities I know of, but as we have a following of youngsters I don’t see any reason to allow forum-type abuse. So don’t be surprised if your comment gets removed by Youtube due to the huge number of dislikes against you, or me, or even Mike will not only remove you, but you’ll be blocked as well. If you don’t like what you see, then hit the “x” button. But don’t give us a load of lip while hiding in your room. You rarely find this type of person will “man up” and tell you the same comments to your face, and if there’s one thing I can’t stand, its bullying. I assure you there’s one man we know that might convert you back to “normal”, and put you on the straight and narrow, but you really don’t want to meet him.

On that very subject of military “training” the first day out rock fishing we took everything we could lay our hands on. Double tripods, bait buckets, camera bags, more fishing rods than we could ever use, and other items of “just-in-case” stuff. Well, as I am of advanced years I decided to weigh all the equipment I had just carried over rocks, hills, ravines and sheep droppings. I was not entirely amazed to see the scale total register over SIXTY POUNDS !!!!  That’s nearly the payload for an SAS training exercise, and I was probably carrying as much lead as 10 mags of NATO 7.62mm rounds! Probably more. But it keeps me in good shape, so next day I dropped the weight to…….FIFTY POUNDS. Well, you never know when you might want to iron that T-shirt.

Keep watching. Keep sharing, and we’ll try to keep filming. There is a positive Fish-Fest of films coming down the pipe, so make sure you keep checking in, or hit the “Subscribe” button for immediate notification of what’s cooking in the Totally Awesome fishing camp.

Graeme

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MIKE’S BLOG

I have been flat-out the last week or so since I have been back from Ireland. A mixture of editing and teaching kids sport. Thankfully the weather has been good this last week which is great given my job involves teaching outdoors. The Ireland series is almost complete! I made a trailer last night which seems to have gone down well and got everyone excited. The episodes will be scheduled to upload for one a night for 5 nights in a row starting next Monday at 7pm, Tuesday 7pm, Wednesday 7pm etc. The aim was to make it feel like you guys were watching a TV show where you wait for the next episode the following night. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Mike

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WAYNE’S BLOG

The boat fishing here on the South coast is almost in full swing with many of the expected species now patrolling our waters. The Tope are about in decent numbers and the average size of fish is good with specimens to 50lb already taken.  The big Tope are generally female and often in pup so any caught should be handled with care.

Along with Tope the Smoothounds are also around,  hardback crab is a killer bait and when the Hounds are in the area they often smash a crab bait in double quick time so always set your drag light and don’t leave your rod leaned against the gunnels.

One species that is a little patchy are Black Bream,  a few boats have bagged good numbers but many are finding them difficult to locate and the average size is down on previous years.  Along with many other species Bream are under a fair bit of commercial pressure so if you are lucky enough to find good sport its prudent to take only a few for the table.

A local charter skipper saw a huge shoal of Mackerel South of the Nab this week,  it would be nice to find them in the sort of numbers that were around a decade or so ago although again the way the factory ships have been hoovering them up im not holding my breath.

For those who like their wreck fishing now is a great time to search out the sunken vessels that hold the Cod, Pollock and Ling.  It may take a bit of fuel to find where the fish are but the rewards can be well worth the effort. Alternatively there is always the option of booking a charter which is just what SCSF member Keith did and a good move it was too with successive PB Ling.

Keith with a good wreck Ling
Keith with a good wreck Ling

The warm spell has seen some very nice Stingray coming in from West Solent beaches,  a cracking 40lb+ specimen was caught last week and there are bigger ones out there.

A good Stinger
A good Stinger

It goes without saying though that you have to be very careful when handling these impressive fish.

The rise in water temperature has also seen the Mullet becoming more active and if you can get them feeding they are fantastic sport.  Iv been doing some work in Chichester marina and although you can’t fish for the Mullet there its still nice watching them soak up the sunshine,  oddly enough the marina is also full of Jellyfish at the moment which surprised me a little.

Its been a week of maintenance on ‘Taryn’ with new batteries fitted,  water seperator renewed and trailer wheel bearings replaced…  and there is still the service and impellor to go.  Whoever said boat stands for ‘bring on another thousand’ wasn’t far wrong,  but at the end of the day when that ratchet sings out and the rod bends double its worth every penny!

Good angling.

Wayne

THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW BLOG – 9th May 2013

GRAEME’S BLOG

At long last the weather came good for at least a week and few of us would complain even if it was a tad breezy. It seems the sunshine and warmth finally brought a few fish out on the move. Of course, as I type it’s all gone pear shaped with a big low barrelling in. The thing about low pressures coming in fast means that at least there is a chance they will go through quickly, with the hope of some clear weather behind it. Coupled to the May bank holiday I trundled off with the caravan and good lady to Yeovil in Somerset, from where I wanted to strike out on photographic raiding parties. Mike and his girlfriend went camping down in deepest Dorset, but they were also intent on a spot of wrasse fishing. More from Mike in his blog. My first set of problems was checking the caravan was roadworthy, as I used to leave it down by Bude all summer as base camp for any giant Porbeagle trips I took. Two years by the seaside air had obviously given all metal parts underneath a good coating of rust. So it was sand down and hammerite paint, plus check grease in hubs etc. After half a day of solid graft, I hitched up the next morning and was just about to pull out when I realised I hadn’t checked the light circuit. Good job I did as nothing was working. Removal of the light covers revealed standing water and rusted contacts, which added another hour of sorting. No different to boating really. If you leave your toys just standing you can expect problems when you want to bring them out to play. First afternoon was spent shopping in Yeovil. A female pastime that I have yet to see the point of, but there you are, I was banned from fishing so that’s that.

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Second day it was a mega drive over Exmoor to get various countryside shots for our film files, then on to Ilfracombe in North Devon for some stills, and round to Minehead for another session of pics. 3rd day I had to film an interview at a trout reservoir, and although I had written about it maybe thirty years ago I was still mesmerised by the tranquillity of the venue. Of course no wind and blue sky also helped, but I got some really good film shots for the interview. No fishing again for me, but quite frankly I got a much better film done as I could move around and pick the best casting, boating and action shots. Hopefully I will return and have a fish at a later date, but look out for the film which Mike should get up soon.
Some of you may have seen our “TANK FEEDER” film, where I make gigantic swim feeders out of large size women’s haircurlers, then trip off to Watmore fishery to see if they actually work. They certainly did, even though we only had the usual Totally Awesome short session we got the carp, and Mike even had them taking on the drop, so that’s a good, cheap method that you can try for tench, carp and many other species.

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The AKIOS fixed spool

We got another two reels. One for Pollack fishing and general light boat work, the other a jumbo fixed spool for posting huge baits to the horizon in search of a really big shore fish. They are made by AKIOS, a company renowned for marketing quality equipment, so details will appear in the products review section, plus you’ll get to see them in action on upcoming films. The Akios Scora 80 fixed spool reels come with two spools, so you can load up with lighter line like 12lb if you are looking to get distance with smaller worm baits, or if you want big bull Huss, rays or conger you can opt for the deeper spool and fill it with 210 yards of 17lb line. It has a big circular “easy-grab” handle for cranking in, and coupled to a retrieve ratio of 4.6 to 1 means you should be getting the bigger shore fish up and away from the sanctuary of any snags. It has M-stroke power gear system, a front drag system that is easily adjusted, and a good oscillation to give an even spread of line over the spool. That means smoother casting. I’ve loaded one with some “Pitch black” line, ready for a trip down to the lunkers of the north Somerset coastline.

 

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akios multiplier

The multiplier on the Akios S-Line should be perfect for Pollack fishing or straight downtiding for all species with its 5.3 to 1 gear ratio. It takes 300 yards of 15lb or 250 yards of 20lb test.I put some Sidewinder Silk braid on this one. It also has 3 ball bearings. Many anglers use it for shore distance casting, but I want to keep it for lighter boat fishing. It comes with a level wind, and while many anglers like these, I may remove mine as it lets me lay “touching” coils on the spool, essential for smooth long casting, but a lot smoother when fighting a big boat fish .I will have to look after these two as they look like quality bits of kit .Watch out for them in use on our films. The Scora 80 fixed spool has an rrp of £124-99 and the multiplier 656 CSM reel has an rrp of £121-99.Available from your tackle stockists.
A new film up is a D.I.Y “How to” on trips to unblock a sink drain. We also get people complaining about it should be a fishing site. No, we do all this at our own cost/time/expense/involvement, often until midnight and I pretty much do what I want. It is our site after all, and with something that’s free most people would be grateful. Of course there are those that just want Carp all the time, but this is an all-round fishing site, so that’s never going to happen I assure you. We’ve now got a good base following of fly fishermen, plus lots who enjoy going shore or beach fishing. So we try to spread it around, and the same goes for D.I.Y. Many people are grateful for the odd tips I do as it makes a change from just viewing fishing .There is always the “off” button if there really is a species of fish you hate intently. And I must give praise to almost everyone who puts a polite comment on the YouTube films. What some out there must remember is that this is not one of those forums where you can pile abuse on, write what you want, hide behind the keyboard or dish out verbal bullying or deride others. Stay on the forums if that is all you want to do as I have the “block” key right here, and as those who put abusive language will have learned (or maybe not ?) that I will get that comment removed and block them from us completely (and have !!). So don’t bother with abuse etc as we will nail it down faster than a hedgehog crossing a motorway. On the subject of the “good guys”, there must certainly be a lot of you out there as our subscribers are over 8,828 and rising fast, so thanks for those who are passing us over to their friends. Let’s face it there’s not much on TV so why not pull up our shows and at least watch a sport you enjoy? And numbers, WOW, we are going off the scale with views. As I type, it’s well over 1.7 million, and these huge figures have brought about another form of problem as many out there will be envious of our galactic climb in the rankings. Unfortunately we have a company in the orient trying to steal our title “totallyawesomefishing” and market it for their own use. It’s a very sad fact that after all our financial input we look like getting ripped off, but I’m afraid I started TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING back in the 1990’s and have the vhs tapes to prove it ,but nevertheless it seems we are likely to be under attack from another part of the world. We’ve already been notified by a domain company of this, telling us they have a client wanting to take our name .It does not seem to be a polite request from that company. Just, they want it, and they get it!! It looks like a tackle and clothing assault using our name, but we have to see where it goes legally and I will of course keep you posted. Our hosting company said there is no chance of them taking our dot com domain, but short of me buying every domain country in the world it does seem a pointless exercise and I will of course keep you posted on this blog. Of course when Mike first started the site as a 60th birthday present for me we had no idea that in a bit over 18 months our film views would have rocketed to over 1.7 million views, or that we would be turning into the top all-round fishing site in Britain . It would have been nice to be approached by one of the “big boys”, rather than just have them walk up and take away what we have built.
On the boat fishing front we did manage to get “Hi Sea Drifter” floating, and roaring around off the Eastern Wight on a test day with some fishing. The boat was great, the weather was great, but the fishing, eeerrrr….don‘t even go there. Small pouting, a garfish, a black bream and 2 dogfish for 4 hours fishing with a bunch of rods and four chum blocks. I did try salting and freezing down some left over ragworm from a beach trip, knowing that it was doomed to failure from previous attempts. You can oil, salt and freeze black lugworm, but Ragworm?? Well, I unrolled the paper on the boat and these dry, powdered pieces of shoelace tumbled out and blew away in the wind. Like those films where the skeletons turn to dust and blow into the sand. So take my advice, don’t bother freezing ragworm, it just doesn’t happen, for me anyway. Unless of course one of you people out there knows a secret technique they want to pass on??
We have a few more “vintage” films left to go up, so will trickle-feed them onto the site when the regular films slow up. I’m hoping the trout reservoir one to go up shortly will be having some nice shots in it.I took a bit more time than usual, and I have just been mailed that I have permission to interview some other reservoirs, so for the fly fishermen there are hopefully some good things going on in the Totally Awesome pipeline. For those of you who want a good view on your TV screens via one of our DVD’s let me tell you the “Ultimate Guide to Blue Shark Fishing” with exclusive interviews with veterans Frank Vinnicombe and Martin Bray is almost sold out!! We have only THREE COPIES left. If you want one contact Mike or just order one from the site. I’m sure they will become collector’s DVD’s. Also only 20 left of the popular “A Carp Trilogy”. This is in fact three programmes, all new, on one DVD. Covering one of the “Old School” top baits of forty years ago, you won’t believe what it is….my secret floater rigs, so simple you’ll fall off your bed chair, and tips on exactly when to fish. You’ve only got to tap into one of the tips or techniques and it will be worthwhile. Remember it’s not tackle that catches the most fish, its knowledge. We are OK on the “Giant Catfish of Caspe” DVD, currently still going out. Fish to….well….really big. And still at just £9-99 plus P&P. Mike recently told me he paid about £4-20 for a pint of beer, so I reckon our DVD’s are still great value for money.
Met a guy down at the Somerset trout res who says he has a good contact for doing Bass on fly films down off Portland in Dorset. That sounds interesting, so given the weather we might get the cameras down there. Also got contacts for Barbel fishing on the River Wye, which I reckon will be in a superb setting. I was very taken with my trip to the River Severn for Barbel, so the Wye would be something new for me. Plus, another guy I talked to about E.A. work on electro fishing said they had netted Roach from a southern river to over 4 ½ lbs !!! No, obviously I’m not going to tell you where it is as all the angling heroes will steam in there trying to grab the headlines first. If I get the chance to film a fish that size I will still be shaking, never mind the chance of catching it.Mind you I think I would be a nervous wreck if I saw a Roach that size sliding towards the net. Seems there are still a few hidey holes that haven’t been decimated by the cormorants, crayfish, otters, and cook-it-on-site people.
This is a longer blog than usual, another 2500 word plusser as fish are deffo on the move a bit. Paul Harris over in Southern Ireland runs the Dromagowlane Guest House on the Beara peninsula, and specialises in shore fishing. Good, mixed species stuff, where if it blows up, the various peninsulas, inlets and bays can give you a shot at fish. Already his clients are kicking off in style, with huge double figure Bull Huss to 15lbs 12ozs,what a cracker, and Conger over 20lbs,plus bigger ones lost. The Pollack are starting to pile in, and with these running to double figures off the shore you can’t imagine the bend they are going to put in your rod. Paul was telling me about the LRF (Light rock fishing) where the exponents of the art are hammering the wrasse on artificials.And I thought a lugworm was unbeatable. Apparently it is very beatable, and I care not as just think of all the lugworm digging I now DON’T have to do. I have been meaning to get over to Paul’s for several years, but now it seems I have no excuse with catches like that. They are catching more off the shore than I am off the south coast in my boat!!! (And giant mullet and big thornbacks and..and…)

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Huss 15-12

And…change the species and venue and we hear from Zenia down at Anglers Paradise down in Devon. The big carp are on the bite for those anglers on holiday down there. With plenty of lakes to choose from, and also big catfish thrown in the mix you can be spoilt for choice. Also plenty of exotics, big Koi and even some trout. However it’s the carp and cats that are on the move now the weather has warmed up, so here’s a picture-fest of some of the carp and cats that A/P have been throwing up. As the water temperatures keep rising I can only see the catches getting better. If you fancy a crack at some of those Catfish, get in touch with Zenia.
Good luck with whatever you go fishing for-Graeme.

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ianfowler26lb2oz

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Ianfowler26lb15ozLeather

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Jonathon Boulton 24 08

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Matthew Colegate 23lbs 8oz

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WillTanner 22lb2oz

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WillTanner 29lb12oz

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MIKE’S BLOG

I managed to get a good few days camping with my girlfriend over the bank holiday. We decided on Swanage and the stunning Purbeck countryside. A great area for walking, camping (AND FISHING of course!!) and it wasn’t long before we were on the rocks fishing for Wrasse. Using a simple rig of just a small lead, swivel and a small hook we managed a number of small wrasse including two very decent sized ones! Luckily I had my camera with me and we managed to get some good footage which will be in an episode hopefully coming out soon so watch out for it. In the mean time I’m pretty busy teaching kids how to play sport at the moment so the fishing and editing has slowed down a notch, that’s not to say we won’t be producing an episode more or less once a week! Thanks for all your support and keep spreading the word.

THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW – BLOG - April 25th 2013                                                                                                                    

GRAEME’S BLOG

Few will have missed the only decent sunny day last weekend. The UK’s answer to spring I guess. Lasted barely 2 Days, then they tell us to watch out in the garden as there could be frosts returning the end of the week .What?? It’s almost May???  Am I in Greenland or Hampshire, in Southern England?? Actually, I cannot really complain, as while the sea reports, both boat and beach have been nothing short of dire, I really have had great success with the flyrod and trout. Which is why I push all-round fishing. One species drops off, so I just change tackle and tactics and trundle off to catch another. I must have made the right decision as I just got back from chatting to a big Carp nut I know, and he has now put in EIGHT nights for not a single fish. Worse still, he said he was going out again tonight!!  Now he is after big carp admittedly, but I cannot help wonder why he doesn’t even get low doubles taking his boilies in EIGHT sessions. Surely that’s the fish telling you something about low water temperatures etc.

At the end of the last blog I mentioned my last minute hunch to grab a few hours with an ultra-light flyrod and film on my own – well now it’s up for you guys to watch! For some reason I couldn’t find the latest Blog, so don’t make the same mistake as me. If you want the current Blog on the home page click “Blog” at the top. I kept clicking Blog 2013 as that is what we are in, but it was the older version. So ignore the tab Blog 2013 unless you want to scroll through previous stuff. Just click “BLOG” I expect many of you will have seen the “catch –and-release” trout film up last Thursday .It’s going great guns for views, currently over 2,500 views in the first few days. It was filmed at Frensham Trout Fishery, with an interview on Richard Twite, the owner, giving us an insight into why he has been so successful with his catch-and-release options at the lakes. It’s popular for sure, and sure to get other flyrodders wanting to try it.

Well we got those new Storm beach tripods, and now have the replacement reels coming through. With Mike being new to beach fishing, and the fact we have to film as well, I saw no point at this stage in trying to show him how to cast with a multiplier. So we have opted for some Totally Awesome fixed spools, smaller models for close in fishing, and big boys for a bit of distance casting. It can be a minefield of choices out there, but the model we went for was the Firestar 50 which will probably double up as carp and pike reel as well taking just shy of 200 yards of 14lb test mono. For the distance work, maybe throwing chunky baits, clipped down we have the Firestar 65. This takes 475 yards of 15lb mono, which is a tad more than I am ever likely to cast!!  Check out a bit more on details in our products section. Both these reels are available from your local tackle dealer under the brand name Storm. I have to tell you later in the year I will be planning the make-or-break ultimate test on the larger Firestar. A blue shark! Can’t be many taken on a beach reel that’s for sure.

storm reels 1024x682

Firestar reels

On the work front I have been jet washing a patio that is far too big, then re-pointing where I had blasted the original pointing out with the jet. A point worth noting if you don’t want to do two jobs. Pot painting, Wall repairs, FOUR FILMS base edited ready to Mike to finalise ,Furniture sanded and varnished, lawns on properties cut, out film making, then just crash into bed, get up in the morning and start all over again. And they call it retirement?? My priority is to keep grinding the job list down in the hope that when the weather (and sea fishing) finally does come good I can get out there with the cameras.

The number-crunching is continuing apace. As I write the subscriber base is about to pass 8000. I can remember how excited we were as it passed 1000. Now look where we are, overtaking everyone like an F1 car on nitro. The total views on the films have passed 1,600,000 and according to the demographics we have been discovered by the Americans. We knew that anyway as quite a few have been contacting us via email. The popularity of our films appears to be spreading faster than an outbreak of measles!!  And here’s the one that really pleases me, there has been a huge increase in female viewers, which surely can only be attributed to my good self,……mature(good looking) suave (changes clothes weekly) debonair (no walking cane, just a shovel and broom) vocally fluent in two languages (English, and foul ,especially when I lose a fish or snag up) tastefully scented with only the finest hint of aftershave (fish blood, bream slime, old squid, and trailer grease) with that female base rising to 12.4% .What a number. Move over George Clooney. We do have a bit of female following on my soon to go viral “How to build picket fencing from pallet wood”. It’s going crackers and has shot to almost 30,000 views since November, and that does have a female following. If you haven’t seen it yet, take a look, it really is the ultimate way to save yourself a few bucks, and we all love getting something for nothing. With the success of “pallets” we are just about to film another one, and ladies…this one is for you….you’ll never need to call the plumber in again, or disturb your hubby from his slouch in front of the football on TV. You will be able to do the job yourself, and never again have to ask 14 times for the job to be done. Coming soon, to a YouTube screen near you.

Did I mention that April 24th is St. Mark’s Day? And that is traditionally when the Hawthorn fly makes its first showing, together with the blossom on the Hawthorn tree. The Hawthorn fly is a terrestrial that “shoals” up and then gets driven on to the waters like reservoirs by the wind. It is one of the first flies to get the trout into feeding mood, and coupled to that rarity, a warm spring day, can give you some good surface film and dry fly sport. For those fly fishermen who go to the smaller stillwaters in pursuit of their quarry why not have a day out on a reservoir? You can get bank or boat tickets, have plenty of space to practise your casting, and possibly get some great action on the early season fish, many of which will be overwintered, hard fighting, and in pristine condition. You might have to go to an intermediate or slow sink line to find the fish, with lures taking the bulk of the trout, and buzzer/surface action just a week or so away.

We are still holding off from the coarse fishing through the traditional close season. To be honest, it’s great to get away from the constant barrage of carp etc and I find, once you get into May then thoughts start to turn towards species like Tench. Although I don’t like fishing in what was the traditional close season I am sure we will be lured into one of the commercial day ticket fisheries for a “fix” of fish. But it’s the river season that I am looking forward to. Clearwater chubbing, and hopefully some barbel on the float. “Hi Sea Drifter” is still retiring on her trailer. I have a feeling it might be one of those years when I miss the tides down at Bude for the bigger Porbeagles,but it does only take one really big shark to make a season. I am trying desperately not to get side-tracked with trip-changing boat trips catching just a couple of rays and a tiny tope this year. I want Black Bream. I want Smoothhounds in shallow water. I’m just going to concentrate on them at what I hope is the right time and not trundle off to other, reliable species. Same with marks. I want to have a good go at an area very close in to shore at Bracklesham Bay, where I think the netters might not go, and also outside the mouth of Chichester entrance, using a full-on shark slick. Not for shark, although I guess you never know, but more to see what other species would come into the tide flow for chum particles. That’s it.End of blog. Off to do more painting.Weedkiller (I use salt in a watering can, cheaper than weed killer) and lawn mowing. Then I’m ready for a fishy assault if the weather is good. Stay lucky. And don’t forget to check out this week’s brand new film, it could be one of my best “solo” efforts yet. Graeme.

MIKE’S BLOG

Been another very busy week at work for me again this week. For those that don’t know, I am currently a Physical Education teaching assistant coaching children ages 5-13. Hopefully this time next year I will be a fully qualified teacher! Hope to get away fishing next tuesday providing the weather is good, Dad has a few films backed up which I need to edit. Our numbers really are flying! Over 8,000 subscribers, we had over 1,000 in this month alone….AWESOME! Keep commenting and sharing our videos and help us be the biggest fishing youtube show out there!

Tight lines,

Mike
THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW – BLOG - April 25th 2013                                                                                                                    

GRAEME’S BLOG

Few will have missed the only decent sunny day last weekend. The UK’s answer to spring I guess. Lasted barely 2 Days, then they tell us to watch out in the garden as there could be frosts returning the end of the week .What?? It’s almost May???  Am I in Greenland or Hampshire, in Southern England?? Actually, I cannot really complain, as while the sea reports, both boat and beach have been nothing short of dire, I really have had great success with the flyrod and trout. Which is why I push all-round fishing. One species drops off, so I just change tackle and tactics and trundle off to catch another. I must have made the right decision as I just got back from chatting to a big Carp nut I know, and he has now put in EIGHT nights for not a single fish. Worse still, he said he was going out again tonight!!  Now he is after big carp admittedly, but I cannot help wonder why he doesn’t even get low doubles taking his boilies in EIGHT sessions. Surely that’s the fish telling you something about low water temperatures etc.

At the end of the last blog I mentioned my last minute hunch to grab a few hours with an ultra-light flyrod and film on my own – well now it’s up for you guys to watch! For some reason I couldn’t find the latest Blog, so don’t make the same mistake as me. If you want the current Blog on the home page click “Blog” at the top. I kept clicking Blog 2013 as that is what we are in, but it was the older version. So ignore the tab Blog 2013 unless you want to scroll through previous stuff. Just click “BLOG” I expect many of you will have seen the “catch –and-release” trout film up last Thursday .It’s going great guns for views, currently over 2,500 views in the first few days. It was filmed at Frensham Trout Fishery, with an interview on Richard Twite, the owner, giving us an insight into why he has been so successful with his catch-and-release options at the lakes. It’s popular for sure, and sure to get other flyrodders wanting to try it.

Well we got those new Storm beach tripods, and now have the replacement reels coming through. With Mike being new to beach fishing, and the fact we have to film as well, I saw no point at this stage in trying to show him how to cast with a multiplier. So we have opted for some Totally Awesome fixed spools, smaller models for close in fishing, and big boys for a bit of distance casting. It can be a minefield of choices out there, but the model we went for was the Firestar 50 which will probably double up as carp and pike reel as well taking just shy of 200 yards of 14lb test mono. For the distance work, maybe throwing chunky baits, clipped down we have the Firestar 65. This takes 475 yards of 15lb mono, which is a tad more than I am ever likely to cast!!  Check out a bit more on details in our products section. Both these reels are available from your local tackle dealer under the brand name Storm. I have to tell you later in the year I will be planning the make-or-break ultimate test on the larger Firestar. A blue shark! Can’t be many taken on a beach reel that’s for sure.

storm reels 1024x682

Firestar reels

On the work front I have been jet washing a patio that is far too big, then re-pointing where I had blasted the original pointing out with the jet. A point worth noting if you don’t want to do two jobs. Pot painting, Wall repairs, FOUR FILMS base edited ready to Mike to finalise ,Furniture sanded and varnished, lawns on properties cut, out film making, then just crash into bed, get up in the morning and start all over again. And they call it retirement?? My priority is to keep grinding the job list down in the hope that when the weather (and sea fishing) finally does come good I can get out there with the cameras.

The number-crunching is continuing apace. As I write the subscriber base is about to pass 8000. I can remember how excited we were as it passed 1000. Now look where we are, overtaking everyone like an F1 car on nitro. The total views on the films have passed 1,600,000 and according to the demographics we have been discovered by the Americans. We knew that anyway as quite a few have been contacting us via email. The popularity of our films appears to be spreading faster than an outbreak of measles!!  And here’s the one that really pleases me, there has been a huge increase in female viewers, which surely can only be attributed to my good self,……mature(good looking) suave (changes clothes weekly) debonair (no walking cane, just a shovel and broom) vocally fluent in two languages (English, and foul ,especially when I lose a fish or snag up) tastefully scented with only the finest hint of aftershave (fish blood, bream slime, old squid, and trailer grease) with that female base rising to 12.4% .What a number. Move over George Clooney. We do have a bit of female following on my soon to go viral “How to build picket fencing from pallet wood”. It’s going crackers and has shot to almost 30,000 views since November, and that does have a female following. If you haven’t seen it yet, take a look, it really is the ultimate way to save yourself a few bucks, and we all love getting something for nothing. With the success of “pallets” we are just about to film another one, and ladies…this one is for you….you’ll never need to call the plumber in again, or disturb your hubby from his slouch in front of the football on TV. You will be able to do the job yourself, and never again have to ask 14 times for the job to be done. Coming soon, to a YouTube screen near you.

Did I mention that April 24th is St. Mark’s Day? And that is traditionally when the Hawthorn fly makes its first showing, together with the blossom on the Hawthorn tree. The Hawthorn fly is a terrestrial that “shoals” up and then gets driven on to the waters like reservoirs by the wind. It is one of the first flies to get the trout into feeding mood, and coupled to that rarity, a warm spring day, can give you some good surface film and dry fly sport. For those fly fishermen who go to the smaller stillwaters in pursuit of their quarry why not have a day out on a reservoir? You can get bank or boat tickets, have plenty of space to practise your casting, and possibly get some great action on the early season fish, many of which will be overwintered, hard fighting, and in pristine condition. You might have to go to an intermediate or slow sink line to find the fish, with lures taking the bulk of the trout, and buzzer/surface action just a week or so away.

We are still holding off from the coarse fishing through the traditional close season. To be honest, it’s great to get away from the constant barrage of carp etc and I find, once you get into May then thoughts start to turn towards species like Tench. Although I don’t like fishing in what was the traditional close season I am sure we will be lured into one of the commercial day ticket fisheries for a “fix” of fish. But it’s the river season that I am looking forward to. Clearwater chubbing, and hopefully some barbel on the float. “Hi Sea Drifter” is still retiring on her trailer. I have a feeling it might be one of those years when I miss the tides down at Bude for the bigger Porbeagles,but it does only take one really big shark to make a season. I am trying desperately not to get side-tracked with trip-changing boat trips catching just a couple of rays and a tiny tope this year. I want Black Bream. I want Smoothhounds in shallow water. I’m just going to concentrate on them at what I hope is the right time and not trundle off to other, reliable species. Same with marks. I want to have a good go at an area very close in to shore at Bracklesham Bay, where I think the netters might not go, and also outside the mouth of Chichester entrance, using a full-on shark slick. Not for shark, although I guess you never know, but more to see what other species would come into the tide flow for chum particles. That’s it.End of blog. Off to do more painting.Weedkiller (I use salt in a watering can, cheaper than weed killer) and lawn mowing. Then I’m ready for a fishy assault if the weather is good. Stay lucky. And don’t forget to check out this week’s brand new film, it could be one of my best “solo” efforts yet. Graeme.

MIKE’S BLOG

Been another very busy week at work for me again this week. For those that don’t know, I am currently a Physical Education teaching assistant coaching children ages 5-13. Hopefully this time next year I will be a fully qualified teacher! Hope to get away fishing next tuesday providing the weather is good, Dad has a few films backed up which I need to edit. Our numbers really are flying! Over 8,000 subscribers, we had over 1,000 in this month alone….AWESOME! Keep commenting and sharing our videos and help us be the biggest fishing youtube show out there!

Tight lines,

Mike
THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW – BLOG

GRAEME’S BLOG                                                                  

It’s been a bit late going up this time, but I make no apologies as with Mike off on teacher’s holidays I have to get as much work done as possible. So we have been cracking on with fishing, new fishing films, editing older ones, scheduling and compiling new ones. Some of you might also notice the “ticking time bomb” in the corner of the home page, giving a countdown exactly to seconds for the time we have scheduled the loading of a new film. It should give everyone something to look forward to, and we wait with baited breath for others to copy our new techniques. We are the leaders in do-it-yourself marketing, as we sponsor ourselves, but it does get a bit trying when you see bits obviously copied straight away. We’ve got more new stuff lined up, so hopefully we will always be ahead of the game. No doubt all our Facebook followers will have seen the brand new epic film we recently put up How to float fish a river”. It is the longest film we have ever put up, and brimming with tips and more fish than you could shake a stick at. Everyone seems to be loving it, and we have others stacked up to load automatically as we have many different films lined up for you. I don’t think anyone will ever watch television again!!  Why would you as we cater for the all-round angler and try to cover as many different types of fishing that our sport has to offer.

We have a brand new trout film up, and a world exclusive film of the stocking of an elusive species, and with a possible British record swimming around, it could well be the place to have a day fly fishing. I found the fishery quite by accident last Sunday as on a drive round the Hampshire countryside with the family I spotted a finger sign with the name of the fishery. As I had written up articles on about 65 different fisheries over the years I simply had to drop in on this one and see what it was all about. 24 hours later we were back with the Totally Awesome camera equipment and ageing fishing gear. Suffice it to say Mike got a really nice Rainbow trout towards the end of the day, plus a bonus brown trout. Bearing in mind he is a beginner at fly fishing, he seems to have picked the casting up pretty well, and does appear to have a bit of luck on his shoulder for winkling out the better fish. To stop others copying us we won’t say where it is yet, you’ll need to watch the film which is due up for 7pm Monday 15th April. After that, grab your rods and get down there!!

Mike rainbow 682x1024

Mike’s Rainbow of the day at 7lb

Also, just two days later I thought about covering an angle of another fly fishery, with a different set of rules, to see how they were doing. I probably have not visited that fishery for about 15 years, and it was a lucky last minute phone call that set us off on a trek to the Surrey forests, where once again we lucked out on a great film, with stunning action. I’ve seen it several times now, and all you trout enthusiasts and fly fishermen will be getting a double dose of TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING FILMS, dedicated to your sport. This one should have the “ticking time bomb” loaded just as soon as Monday night’s film has gone up.Then, just wait another 72 hours, and yet another “Trouty treat” will go up Thursday 18th April at 7pm.This way it will give you something to look forward to. April is traditionally the month that most serious trout fishing starts, so I will be targeting them, as I like to see the poor old coarse fish get a bit of a rest for a couple of months. Years ago, when we had the close season in force it was great, as all the banks got a chance to recover, the species got a rest, and many anglers turned their skills to Stillwater trout fishing, shore fishing, or started the boat fishing in earnest. I personally wish they would bring the close season back, I have no problem adapting to any type of fishing, and it keeps you fresh and excited trying to learn about new species and how to catch them. All I can say is this second trout film will surely have the fly fishermen craving to get a piece of the action. Where is it? You’ll have to see the film. If we mention it here someone is going to move right in on it and try to steal all the groundwork of filming we have put in. And once again, Mike came out on top with the biggest Rainbow of the day. So all in all we’ve had a hectic time over the last week, and sad to say we have both had some major stick from the senior lady of the household, as at one stage the edit suite was switched on at 8.30am in the morning, and by rotating between Mike and myself, it never got switched off until 11.30pm THAT NIGHT!!  It’s shocking really. I keep telling Mike to take a rest from it, and then do a straight 3 hour shift on it myself. It’s almost like we are “fishy” drug dealers. Obviously you people out there will have no idea of the number of congratulatory emails we get, but many of them are “hooked”, begging us to get more “AWESOME” films up, often within 30 minutes of watching the last one. They are sold on them, and to be honest so are we, unable to keep away from camera or edit suite as we are well on the way to becoming the biggest fishing show for the all-round angler, on YouTube. In fact we might have that title already, as our Subscriber base is flying; the site is YouTube hit list is about to pass 1,508,000 and our “Pike on lures” film has grossed over 200,000 hits now. There’s no doubt its largely down to our basic style, which you anglers seem to like, and the way everyone out there is “Sharing” to help make the “TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW” the BIGGEST IN THE WORLD  !!!!! Thanks people. We’ll keep sponsoring the films ourselves, you just keep sharing and hitting the “SUBSCRIBE” button. And all free. It costs you nothing. I have just had a glance at our analytics as that is a side I generally leave to Mike. My goodness, no wonder we are getting lots of people wanting to advertise with us and see us go commercial. That latest film up “How to floatfish a river” actually had 1000 views in 24 hours making it our ultimate speed-hitter. It’s also longer than some of the commercial fishing programmes on TV. And remember, other than the odd re-run, once the TV film has gone, it’s gone!! With our Awesome Fishing Show you can tune in and watch anything of 130 odd films, 24/7.It’s got to be the way forward. “How to catch Pike on lures”???? Eeer…how about 30,000 views in 5 weeks? That’s more than many fishing publications have as a circulation figure. “Beginners tips for beach fishing”?? Well, quite frankly it’s shocking us every time we look. Now standing at over 67,000 views in 13 weeks!! The website itself has had over 600,000 hits, and when I checked the huge increase in subscribers since the last blog a couple of weeks ago, we had an extra 1,812.And our increase in YouTube views?? Remember, this is just from the last blog date, and at the time of typing, so it will be even bigger. An absolute mind-blowing 352,000 views in just 14 days!! Yeehaa.Way to go guys. I could say blow the opposition out of the water, but it seems we don’t even have any opposition. The greatest all-round fishing film site ever constructed. And by just two people. A 22-year old Sports teacher and a clapped out (almost) 61-year old fishing journo. I love it.

Right .Onto the saltwater. It’s not been good the last ten days. The sea temperature is down, I’ve heard some shocking fishing results, and even the crabs are not coming inshore to peel, and the Black Bream have not moved in. If the crabs aren’t peeling due to the cold water then I fear the Smoothhounds will be late in, and what Plaice have been caught are apparently very thin. I’m still looking at “Hi Sea Drifter” and wondering when she really will hit the water, but there are better anglers than me out there fishing, and if they are not catching then there’s not much I can do. I think I’ll save all the fuel money, and just hit the fish when they move in and the weather settles (if ever).Got to be the longest drawn out grotty grey winter I’ve ever known, and remember I am old enough to have played snowballs in the big freeze up, I think in 1963. Snow was about three feet deep for 6 weeks in our garden. Our snowman was there so long I thought we’d have to register him as a tenant.

Some of the carp are on the move though, and down at Angler’s Paradise in Devon they have been getting a few 20’s. Zenia sent me a report and some pics,so maybe if we do get a few days of warm weather the lakes will warm up quicker than the sea, and this is my main worry. I have only three sets of spring tides left for a shot at a 4/500lb Porbeagle shark, so the clock is ticking for another giant shark catch. I’ve got a freezer full of chum, in fact I’ve had it all winter, so I’m ready to go, but I dread the next electric bill with a freezer AND a film edit suite running non-stop. Wayne came up yesterday to collect my swaging tool for crimping his shark traces (he really has got shark fever bad!!! I think it’s untreatable), and showed me some cleaning compounds for revitalising the yellow upper half of “Hi Sea Drifter”. We had both noticed that the colour on the yellow Wilsons doesn’t seem to hold well, and go faded. Is it the sunshine? We don’t know, but thanks to Wayne and some old fashioned elbow grease,”HSD” is now gleaming and ready to hit the water with her new logo emblazoned along the sides. I also heard there are quite a few people selling their boats as they have not been able to use them much (tell me about it) and I know there is a 17-foot Wilson Flyer on Hayling island with a 40 on the back. Don’t think it’s been advertised yet.

Hi Sea Drifter after the Wayne Comben spring clean 1024x768

Hi Sea Drifter after the Wayne Comben spring clean

Having made a few shore films for the beach anglers Mike was disgusted at my ancient lumps of wood and bent-coathanger-plus-aluminium poles that I have used for rod rests for the last 30 years. Of course they fell over, that’s what happens every now and then. I could see where he was coming from, so while it went against the grain, I did see a lot of shore anglers using some pretty handy looking beach tripods. Further investigation revealed that they really are not that expensive. From £20 to £50 depending what version you wanted, but I did like the STORM make as it had a British flag stuck on it, plus I like the way the rod butt holders can be adjusted to hold the rods higher off the ground. This was really handy if the waves were breaking where your line enters the water and continually twanging the rod top like a bite. With this adjustable cup holder you can keep the rods well up, and some of the waves then break underneath where the line enters the water. So the change has been made, and they are currently awaiting their first outing. I will report on their success.

The new STORM tripod are ready for use 1024x768

The new STORM tripod are ready for use

With the upgrade to STORM beach rests we decided the 35 year old egg-whisk reels should be consigned to the scrap heap. In honesty we are still looking around for suitable fixed spool reels, but I’ve located some of the new PITCH BLACK mono line, in 15lb and 20lb breaking strain. It seems really fluid if that’s the word to use, so I can now spool up with the 20lb on the light reels for boat fishing for species like Pollack, while keeping the 15lb for beach reels as I have several ideas for films from the Bristol Channel where I used to do many articles years ago. If anyone out there is getting some good shore fish in that area and wants to help us make a shore film, let Mike know. Of course no marks will be revealed if you want to keep them secret. We respect that. I just want to get some info on rigs and tactics from the local beach experts, and film a few fish to pass on that knowledge to the newcomers to shore fishing. If you have been following our first” Beach fishing for beginners” film you will realise that the shore guys want more….and more…..and MORE We’ll do our best to supply, but we’d like to film some of Britain’s better shore fish now that we have a huge following of shore anglers.

Ready to loadthe new PITCH BLACK line.Watch out shore fish  1024x768

Ready to load,the new PITCH BLACK line.Watch out shore fish !

So there you have it. As well as the “How to floatfish a river” epic film now playing, there are two more fly fishing for trout films going up, and even more are planned. Trouble is Mike will be back at teaching so that means a 50% reduction in our staff ……..Uh-oh. Sounds like another busy week for me. And I’m supposed to be retired????

Good luck with your fishing-Graeme.

STOP PRESS- While cleaning the company boat yesterday I did notice some Hawthorn flies about, as the bright yellow attracted them. Presumably they thought it was a giant daffodil. Anyway,with the Hawthorn blossom starting as well I have a hunch to dive out and try an ultra-light 3 to 4 weight fly outfit to get a nice brown trout film. Browns can be notoriously difficult, but my reasoning is that with a harsh winter there have not been many insects about, and with the terrestrial Hawthorns landing on the water it might just mean they feed with their guard slightly down. It will be the usual Totally Awesome last minute trip of a few stolen hours, but acting on a last minute hunch has paid me dividends many times in the past. Watch next week’s blog !!.

MIKE’S BLOG

Well the benefit of being a teacher is you get school holidays. I made the most of the good weather slots these past few weeks and set a target to improve my fly fishing skills. I managed to get two very good trips fly fishing in this easter and have noticed a good improvement in my fly casting. When speaking to a very knowledgeable trout fisherman he told me about casting a “D” shape. A term used quite frequently in Trout fishing, to put in simple terms, it means on the backcast keep the line away from your body to form the curve of the “D” and on the forward cast keep the line closer to your body to form the straight line of the “D”. Difficult to explain really, maybe it calls for another fly fishing tips video…

Anyway I did manage to catch myself a nice 7lb Rainbow and a good few more in the two days that I did go fishing. All will be revealed in the next few episodes! As Graeme has said I have put up a countdown timer on the homepage of our website so that you can check in and see when the next video will be uploaded. Numbers are rising well and our subscribers on youtube are really flying! Pretty good considering we do this all on the part time and just for fun! Keep sharing and spreading the good word.

Back to work for me now but I will still fit in the time for editing some more AWESOME videos for you guys!

Tight lines,

Mike

WAYNE’S BLOG

Unsurprisingly the main talking point recently has been this manky weather that just refuses to move on.  A check on the water temperature tells its own story,  this time last year here on the South coast the water was 6.0 °C warmer then it is at present,  that is a huge difference and it does appear to have adversely affected the fishing both from the shore and from the boat.  The Plaice have been about in decent numbers mind,  and there have been some good fish in the 4lb bracket landed although in general the are very thin,  and I think not good eating.  I know some people still enjoy them but for me the flesh of a recently spawned Plaice is watery and I find the taste and texture improves enormously once they have fed up for a few months.  It’s just as well the Plaice are providing good sport as there doesn’t appear to be any sign of the Bream appearing just yet.

 

Jamies 4lb 6oz Plaice

Jamie’s 4lb 6oz Plaice

Another flatfish that anglers target at this time of the year is the Turbot.  For me they are a truly stunning looking fish,  the markings really are a thing of beauty and of course they make for great eating.   With this in mind i booked a rare excursion on a charter boat to try to catch a monster from that famous mark the Shambles bank.  The week before a trip was cancelled due to the weather but fortunately a window finally arrived and we headed out of Weymouth aboard Flamer skippered by Colin Penny.  The first drift produced a nice chunky fish for Ashley Ferguson.  Unfortunately we only found one more which was smaller and duly returned and a solitary Brill.

As the tide eased we headed to the mussel beds to fish for Plaice and managed a half dozen or so (I had one on but dropped it and blanked for the day!)

Colin did his best to put us on a few more but listening to the radio things did appear a little quiet,  there were thirty or so boats around us and the ones we spoke with had a similar day.  Despite the slow fishing we had plenty of laughs and the weather was spot on for a change.

 

  

For my part I’ve been preparing for what I hope will be a predator Summer.  I’ve been picking Graeme’s brains for info on everything ’Sharky’,  and slowly but surely I’ve been acquiring the gear to do the job.

I’ve got a few bits still to sort,  I want to knock up a couple of grapnels out of scaffold tube and re-bar and rather then use sacks for the rubby dubby I’m looking for a strong, lidded bucket that I can drill holes in.  I’ve sourced a couple of Shimano outfits,  TLD 25′s which are currently being serviced and iv matched them to TLD stand up rods. New 50lb mono for the reels,  decent 49 strand wire  (cheers Gra)  and Owner swivels, heavy mono, good quality 8/0 and 10/0 hooks and crimps for the traces, shoulder harness, extra fuel tank plus an array of other bits that i felt i may need.  One thing is certain,  I intend to be as prepared as possible should I be fortunate enough to hook a good-un.

To be honest I really have become ‘Shark Infested’ -  im sure if you spoke with anyone who knows me they will tell you iv been boring the socks off them talking about it but there is something about Shark fishing that has got hold of me big time…   I honestly can’t wait to get out there and get that scent trail going.  I can hear that reel screaming already…

Tight lines.  Wayne
THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW BLOG = 28th March 2013

It’s going to be a short blog this week, and you can understand why when you walk outside the front door. Freezing temperatures, strong easterly winds dropping the chill factor even more, but I guess that’s not bad for early January……except that it’s the end of MARCH!!! You can’t even do anything in the garden. The ground is waterlogged (we’re on clay) and many of the sheep in the fields are starting to develop foot-rot, and right in the middle of lambing season. I can also see the surrounding fields cannot be ploughed up for crop planting, as that too would just clog the blades of the plough. So the fact that I can’t go fishing is a minor setback compared to the problems facing many of Britain’s farmers. Livestock and arable suffer equally, and I dare say the poor farming returns will be reflected in prices at the supermarket. Or else we import more food and that will also be expensive with increased fuel costs in shipping and the poor rate of exchange with our currency. Caught between a rock and a hard place springs to mind.

I did take a successful filming run down to interview Tony Kirrage at his Eastbourne tackle shop. Managed to get a good few tips on fishing from piers, plus some of the latest tackle, and Tony’s best shore rigs. He has been at the forefront of shore match fishing for over thirty years, and we did manage to grab a few hours after filming down at the pier where Plaice and Bullheads made a showing in the biting easterly wind. I toughed it out into the dark, and now wished I hadn’t as you can probably guess who it was that had the consistency with catching the Bullheads. So that was the only fishing I did this past week. I then took a run down to get pictures at Folkestone and Dover and could see just how quiet the seaside towns get during the winter months. I’m guessing they all pick up trade at Easter, but with this year’s non-ending horrible grey winter, will anyone bother going out? You can certainly see how they need the seaside dollar from April to September in order to get through the winter months.

I thought it might be a good time to service all the big sea reels, but was a bit taken aback at the amount of mould growing on the butts and blanks. It showed just how damp this winter has been, but while this was easily washed off, the lack of  reel servicing was about to rear its head in an expensive way. One Shimano Speedmaster high speed beach reel was totally seized and looks like being a bin job. I always hose down my sea tackle from any beach or boat trip with freshwater, but admit to not having stripped them down for at least two years. The TLD’s had “sticky” drags, but I tried washing the fibre drag plate in hot water and washing up liquid, then drying it in front of a fire. Then I polished the shiny pressure plate that pushes on to it when you push up the drag. It worked perfectly with a smooth drag again, but I could see some lines or “scores” in the pressure plate that might mean replacement in the future. The problem lies with just how much you want to spend. There’s the postage charge to a service outlet, both ways, then the labour charge, then the parts, probably all plus vat. Suddenly you aren’t a million miles away from buying a brand new reel. So I hope this bit of servicing will get me through another season, after which I shall have to consider replacement of all models very carefully. The moral of this tale is, you might stop servicing work on your reel, but the salt water never stops work!!

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Now is the time to service those reels

This bit of work soon got me onto sanding the rods, which have been absolutely hammered with fish over the last two years, and varnishing them again. But make sure you do a good job sanding down, otherwise you get a poor finish when it dries. I did a couple of coats of fast-drying varnish, which I hate, but it was a spare leftover tin so cost nothing. At least it sealed up all the whippings which was the main point. I have also developed a habit of leaving my sea reels permanently clamped on the rods, so I could just pick up and go at short notice. Bad idea. Even though I hose down every trip that darn salt still stayed under the reel seats. You just can’t trust it!!

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And varnish the rods as well

And give everything a spray of WD40, taking a careful look at the rollers rings should your rod have them. Get some on the winch fittings as well, otherwise you’ll open the door one day and find the lot fused together. I’m also going to try and get another year out of the fishing line on the reels. You can always reverse it on the spool if you haven’t already found that method. There’s a run down on how I do it in our films Link……How to spool a fishing reel.

And on the subject of our films. While Mike has been away a few days I have been hard at work base editing not just our vintage series, but pier fishing tips, the big Thresher shark (on a mono trace), surf fishing tips for Bass, I mean there should be loads going up right through the week as Mike has his easter holiday break, so there’s no excuse in getting material up. In fact I really don’t know what I would do to amuse myself without all the film work. The vintage is…well…vintage, and I’ve tried to edit only the usable stuff as I can see I was lucky to get even ANYTHING off the old VHS tapes as everything was degrading. Much was salvaged thanks to the digital transfer company efforts and at least you will get to see different species, albeit some are approaching a quarter of a century ago. Good job I filmed what I did. I only wish I had done filming when I was really on my big fish crusade 30-plus years ago. I could have got some amazing fish catches, but alas they are now only viewable in my own memory files, and they aren’t accessed too easily now either! And the one VHS tape I do regret dumping, was over in Tralee Bay,Ireland,when I recall hooking no less than 12- big Monkfish to over 40lbs on a practise day for a filming session the following day. What a session that was, but I dumped the tape because I thought I would never watch it again.

NUMBER.NUMBERS.NUMBERS ……. Yes we have passed two famous milestones in our very young career of websites and Youtube. Our SUBSCRIBER list is continuing to rise, so thanks to everyone out there who must be “sharing” or passing on links to THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW. We have now passed the 6000 subscribers mark, in fact as I type it’s at 6,095.Total views for our awesome fishing films, draw a breath, 1,288,661.Not a bad total for just over 18 months. I was told by a leading carp tackle manufacturer that I could consider we had “arrived” if we ever got to 100,000 hits in a year. We look like doing almost TEN TIMES THAT AMOUNT, and have even passed his site as well. Our “shock film” has been a real eye opener. Beach fishing down at Hayling Island has been up just 10 weeks, I say again,10 weeks, and its already passed  fifty thousand views !! What is going on here??? It stands at 50,439, and is way faster in views than our biggest hitter, Pike fishing with lures, which is just about to pass 190,000. There is little doubt in my mind that our site has been totally responsible for promoting the aspect of all-round angling, just like we had 40 years ago and that surely has to be a good thing for our sport. So keep watching, as we have loads of films back logged including an epic, super-long floatfishing one that Mike might even put up quickly, as you guys must be champing at the bit with all this bad weather. This brand new film could be one of our best, is crammed with tips (not tackle) and of course our techniques, all I can say is on the day we filmed we had rod bending action for as long as we wanted. Keep watching, keep hitting the SUBSCRIBE button and we will continue our solo funding of the best all-round angling site going.

Our sale of DVD’s is increasing as more anglers become aware that they are exclusive. “Catfish of Caspe” is our biggest seller, but I have to tell you we are almost out of stock on “The Ultimate guide to Blue shark Fishing”, and even “A Carp Trilogy” is also running low. Take advantage of our current low prices as when we order another batch I have a feeling the prices will have an increase.

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The 3 feature length DVD’s from The Totally Awesome Fishing Show

Totally Awesome’s – ROCK TRACK OF THE WEEK-Group-THIN LIZZY.From their album “Live and Dangerous”. Track-JAILBREAK. Soft and sloppy it ain’t. Fast paced, great guitar and Phil Lynott on vocals. PLAY-IT-LOUD!!!!!

The Totally Awesome– READ OF THE WEEK –“Sportfishing for Sharks” by Captain Frank Mundus and Bill Wisner. All about sharks. What they are like. When they attack. Where you can find them. Hook them, boat them, and 366 pages of all stuff associated with sharks. Published in the early 1970’S By The Macmillan Company. New York. It’s well work tracking down a copy from a second-hand book seller if you are into shark fishing in any way. One quote made me smile in the section on small boat sharking, which is what I do…”Stay away from heavy gear in this tiny boat fishing. Withheavy tackle either you’ll be yanked overboard or the boat will be turned over”……But that’s why I do it. I like to be right on the edge. I don’t want a shark caught from a 30-plus footer? Get out there in a 17-foot dinghy, do it all yourself and get that adrenalin going. It’s what keeps us going!! But I do agree not to use 80lb trolling rods and huge reels, otherwise what they say might become a reality. I use Calstar and Shimano Beastmaster rods, and only 50lb line to TLD 20 and 25 reels. Two sharks of 500lb in 17-footers have shown it works. One was a Porbeagle, the other a Hammerhead. Both filmed. I’ve got to stop writing now I’m onto sharks, or I’ll be away with the fairies and sharpening shark hooks (Again).

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The Totally Awesome Book of the week!

GRAEME’S GRIPE OF THE WEEK- It’s short. It’s the xxxxxx JETSTREAM!! Why can’t it get back to its normal position of feeding us the traditional south-westerly airflows? That way even if I do get blown off for a boat trip, at least it will be warmer. My blood’s too thin for all these biting Siberian easterlies.

Good Luck-Graeme. (Did I say earlier this was going to be a short blog?)

MIKE’S BLOG

This year I decided to make a fishing diary of my catches, locations, weather etc. I’m managing to fill up the pages already and it’s only March! Having said that, not including today, the last time I went fishing was the 5th March! I knew it was a while. Today I managed to get out on a carp lake, in freezing conditions, to try and do some winter carp fishing (I say winter, it’s the end of March! Let me be more specific “to try and do some ENGLISH WINTER carp fishing”). Yes it was cold, but much to my surprise, I managed to catch 3 carp up to 7lbs 14oz, and was very happy! The rigs and methods will all be described in a video in due course. In the meanwhile, I have put up two TOTALLY AWESOME videos that should give you guys plenty of watching, Another one is already edited and ready to go up!

Hopefully I will get another chance at some fishing over the easter weekend before I have a 5 day swimming course next week icon sad keep sending in your catches to our facebook page!

Tight Lines,

Mike
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TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW BLOG – 19th March 2013

GRAEME’S BLOG

Well, no point moaning now as the coarse season has finally closed and that’s that. We’ll be moving straight on with the rest of our filming schedule, and would like to thank all those guys who “shared” thus boosting our subscribers. Now running at over 5,500 and I remember how excited we were to break the 1000 barrier!!  Just shows how galactic our rise in making good, informative, and occasionally amusing fishing films has been, and it looks set to continue when Youtubers see the next couple of films to go up. We actually make them so fast we have to hold them back in order to trickle feed them to you. Nice position to be in for everyone. I think Mike might put another one up around Thursday night.

So how did the Totally Awesome Fishing Show season end?  I had invented a variation of my Plaice fishing rig for Pike fishing, using an uptrace plastic picnic teaspoon as an attractor, much like we put a teaser in front of a marlin lure. Would it work? Only one way to find out, so we filmed the rig make up and trucked off down the river, which unfortunately was running high, coloured and pushing. Don’t you just love this winter? Having burnt 80 miles up we had no choice but to try. Suffice it to say we got fish, but it was very hard. Biggest pike on my new “Bitchin’ Twitchin” rig? Check out the link to the film now up and you’ll see

Then I decided to use up the last of 5 sprats which we used for filming and had been in and out of the fridge so many times they were almost mummified. I had just a couple of hours in a tiny river, which some years ago had apparently suffered from pollution. I got two pike to 7lbs in the dying hours of the season so was well pleased with the way the river fishing had come to an end. I personally feel it’s a shame that on some stillwaters you can still hammer away at the fish. They don’t get any respite, and small wonder some of the waters get hard. When I was a kid we all welcomed the close season as you could check and repair tackle, all the banks (and fish ) got a rest ,and of course that was the era of the true all-round angler, as many went off fly-fishing for trout, beach fishing, or booked a charter boat for a day out on the briny. By the end of May we were all getting twitchy, clearing and dragging swims, then pre-baiting every 3rd or 4th day for the build up to the glorious 16th and big bags of Tench. Then pressure came to bear that forced the close season to be changed. Maybe I’m cynical, but it seems a lot of matches get held then? and that means tackle sales? Naaaah, that can’t be true can it? No point me battering on that door, I imagine soon some bright spark will have year-round fishing on the rivers and canals with the proposition that “it’s good for the fish, they get used to being caught”. Whatever.  I’m off shore fishing, maybe the odd session on a Stillwater, so I’m hypocritical in that sense, but I’ll try and leave them alone till at least May as they deserve a rest. Plus I would be missing Plaice, hard fighting Smoothhounds, early Tope, and Black Bream. Also April is a good time to hit the reservoirs for trouting. Get your casting arm in shape and put on some new leaders.

Avon Springs down in Wiltshire has been throwing up some good trouting if anyone wants to try it. On one day anglers there had somewhere over 80 trout from the two lakes. The bulk of them came from the club lake, the others from Willow Lake. One good point to remember is that 80 new trout will be stocked back in so I suggest a trip there might bear some fruit. Biggest on the day in question was a 7lb 10 ozs, so not small fry either. Many trout anglers are now going for half day tickets at lots of waters due to the economic climate, or 2 and 3-fish tickets. That’s understandable, though I think it won’t be too long before you could find a trout water that allows say a 3-fish kill ticket, then allows fly fishing to continue on a barbless catch-and-release basis. The downside of trouting is that sometimes if the trout are on the bite you can get your limit in thirty minutes, and then have to go home. There’s always been controversy about releasing trout, and the problem lies in the fact that they don’t hold up well out of water. If you release them in the net they can still twist and wrap up, and a trout sinking to the lake bed upside down does nobody any good. Hard one to call, though C & R on 1lb to 1 ½ lb trout seems to work OK.

I’m driving down to do another shore fishing film with master matchman Tony Kirrage, who has agreed to give the Totally Awesome enthusiasts some of his match winning secrets. Then I have to do a couple of jobs for Boat Fishing Monthly (April issue of later this week) as I’m in the South-East area. No fishing, just interviews, but already been hearing some good gossip from the skippers and tackle shops. Apparently down by Brighton Pier they have been getting good Plaice fishing off the shore, so might be worth a phone call to the local tackle shop.

As the boat season starts (if ever) I have a couple of new jigs to try from the other side of the pond. They are called Nu-jig and feature a weedless plastic pair of spikes. I’ve used similar of course, but I’m interested in the plastic weedless part on the hook, as maybe it could be used on our Bitchin’ Twitchin’ deadbait rig, and then I could afford to twitch baits through a bit deeper and not get hung up in weed. Plus the jig itself, which is head-weighted and would be totally engulfed by the Irish reef Pollack. It’s the ideal lure for popping or jerking back on the retrieve as it looks like a geriatric Tarantula.

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NuTech Lures

The advantages of Mike being a  Sports teacher is not his tutorial skills or his dexterity at the keyboard on the edit suite, but the fact that teachers get ALL THAT PAID HOLIDAY TIME!!!!!!!!

He finishes the end of this week (for 3 weeks) and we hope to hit Zyg Gregorek’s “Angler’s Paradise” (but I said earlier I didn’t agree with the close season??) Well I don’t but we might be able to interview a top carp expert down there. Plus our main reason is to try and sort some good shore material from the North Somerset coast. I have done quite a few articles down there, but need to tap into the “experts” of the week to see how my old marks are producing. Brean Down. Lilstock Beach. Hinckley. Minehead harbour. They get some very good shore specimens down there in the spring, as does much of the Bristol Channel, a far cry from the saddo fish species puttering around our south coast beaches during the same period. Plus, I quite fancy a run at the early Black Bream in my boat. Can’t be more than a couple of weeks away, though I hope I’m going to see less nets smothering the reef than I saw last year.. Only this past week I saw on a foreign TV channel that Argentinian penguins are believed to be starving from the huge loss of baitfish by the commercial overfishing squid etc. You can’t keep doing this sort of thing and expect no knock-on effect. The purse seiners have decimated our own mackerel stocks, but until the fish are threatened with total extinction the politicians just smile and sit on their hands. To me it makes perfect sense. Go out with a massive net, close it around a gazillion tons of prime ,high protein eating fish, then instead of marketing it as food, why not dry it, grind it up and give it as feed to…….other fish ??? Or better still make fertiliser out of it, that helps grow….Food? But we had the food. It was in the net. We just let it get mushed into fertiliser or feed. If aliens are out there and watching they must think the human race is a complete basket case of wasters, and would they be wrong?

And here’s another one, as it’s raining outside again, grey and miserable and all this naff weather is only conducive to griping. What about the Cypriot banking fiasco. Seems to me you just give a load of overpaid bankers living in another country, a load of money. They lose it, hide it, spend it or waste it on wacko schemes. They go broke. Now you and I would be in deep doo-doo if we went broke. But these people decide the way to get another load of money is just to walk into your account and “steal” about 10% of all the savings you have been careful enough to build up over years of hard, low interest saving. Sounds a no brainer to me. A license to do what they want. You complain that you have already paid all your taxes and the savings are all that you have left to show for a lifetime of work. But do they care? Why would they, if they want to do it they will. And could it happen here in Grey (t) Britain?  Don’t be surprised….it could be coming to a Bank near you. Just make sure you have the keys to the vault before they do!

And finally, I see more and more Carp with splits in their mouth. Now this was never a problem years ago because we all used mono lines/hooklinks.But today, you have to get the “latest”. Braid lines. And worse…braid hooklinks, coupled to a carp rod that is so stiff it could launch a cruise missile, and a reel bigger than I use on a beach. That means heavy drags, the poor carp can’t run anywhere, and the braid cuts right into the mouth. Think I’m wrong? Take a length of braid, wind it round your finger and….no don’t, but  I think the time has come to go full circle and return to mono,or the fish’s sake if nothing else. It’s stopped raining now, so I’m off to sort out my pier fishing gear for a session that will have me hauling fish up so fast they will have to remove the railings on the pier!!  …I wish. And to finish on a good note, a message from a Totally Awesome follower….”You’ve helped me catch at least 12 Pike this winter thanks to your tips. This was my first season after 25 years of retirement from it”.

That’s what we do the site and films for, to help others catch. Good luck with whatever you fish for.

MIKE’S BLOG

The end of the river fishing season was truly epic for me. I broke numerous P.B’s, a Pike of 16lb 6oz, my first grayling, a big roach and a number of other nice sized pike. It was a TOTALLY AWESOME end to the season. The next few months will see us focus a bit more on the sea fishing but don’t worry, we still have some coarse fishing films planned that will be happening soon! As Graeme says, I finish work at the end of this week and have a few weeks off (it might be crap pay, but being a teacher has it’s benefits!) So I will be focusing on improving my editing, filming and trying to give you guys the best fishing videos we can!

In last weeks blog I reminisced one of our light tackle Pollack fishing epics in Southern Ireland a few years ago. Well here is a video (from the same trip) that shows that Ireland really is one of the best places in europe for variety Sea fishing. In this video you will see: Conger Eels, Ling, Cod, Pollack, Wrasse, Dabs and more. It was one of our first films so that camera and filming quality is not as good as it is now, but with over 14,000 views, 42 likes and only 3 dislikes, need I say more…….

TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW BLOG – 10th March 2013

GRAEME’S BLOG “Last of the coarse season”..                                                                       

It’s gone TOTALLY AWESOME CRAZY!!!   Yes, we actually got our act together and have cranked into big fish and films in equal numbers.  9 days, over six films on file and going up on the site as fast as we can feed them. And what about the site numbers????  We just passed an incredible…HALF A MILLION HITS !!   currently running at 514,615!! Who would have thought so many people would end up following an all-round fishing site when Mike first set it up just over 18 months ago. But it’s our filming success that has shocked everyone. By investing in good quality edit gear putting our own TOTALLY AWESOME style into each episode our films are being followed with cult-like status, and have flown past the MILLION HITS mark, currently as I type the numbers are at 1,134,609 views!!  Quite incredible, so thanks to all the people that have told their friends to watch the huge variation of films we put up. Lots of that will be down to Mike, as he runs all the Facebook/Twitter side of things, and our Youtube subscribers have raced into galactic figures, with some 5,236 subscribers. That’s bigger than many commercial angling interests have, and wait for this, its growing rapidly, every single day. All this enables us to redouble our efforts to keep filming, and pass on some of my tips, which incidentally others are already trying to copy. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery they say, so we should be happy that others are trying to copy us. Unfortunately they can never be TOTALLY AWESOME, it takes a very dedicated type of fishing and filming crew to do that, and so, with our Show’s interest increasing, let’s move on to what has been going on in the fishing section.

It was a simple choice really. Weather goes mild. No wind, low drizzle, low cloud and low pressure. Ideal backend piking conditions. We loaded up the camera kit, but yes, yet again we roll up at the lake after lunch, and only have a few hours to get Mike a pike. His float hits the water and I’ll tell you what I think the float just kept going. In fact as we were unsure I think we missed the first take entirely!!!  From then on it was manic filming and manic fishing, especially for Mike as we were trying to get him his P.B. pike .I think Mike finished with 6 or 7 pike, the largest being a cracker of 16lbs 6ozs !! If you have not yet seen our tips and the action here’s the link-

OK, so we were flying high and went straight down to finish some filming with Mike on an old school rig that I resurrected called “THE WESSEX RIG”. It was a popular rig to use for beach fishing about fifty years ago, and of course with all the beads, bangles and bobbins currently available on the modern tackle front…this ain’t one of them! Basic, to the point, it’s ideal for beginners to beach fishing, as you can fish a small hook on the top dropper for virtually anything, but still put a bigger hook on the running leger part, with the aim being for the bigger fish. A sort of cover-all-bases scenario. We were told the fishing was not just grim on the beaches, it was well….nothing, with blanks predominating. Hey, what do all those other guys know?   Unfortunately it was indeed very cold, five degrees below (but we never knew that as we took wood for a fire), flat calm sea, no waves, and I had read the wrong part of the tide table so we had to walk out 200 yards at low water. It was such a walk I expected to pick up a pint from the Isle of Wight. Two mighty Dabs hit the beach, were filmed and returned. So a success with the rig, which if you are a shore man you should really try, but under better conditions than we had. Link to –“THE WESSEX RIG”-

With the end of the coarse season closing in I was desperate to get out and do more river stuff. Mike had a day off from teaching so we went to a Yateley tackle shop, bought some maggots, and I stopped off at Morrison’s supermarket for, yes you’ve guessed it, a couple of loaves of bread. Venue was the Upper Avon, and again, we ended up with just an afternoon session. I don’t know why it happens but we have yet to do a full’s day’s dawn to dusk fishing. By choosing what species and when, we seem to get what we want without spending huge amounts of time on the bank. This trip was Mike’s first at trotting with the float. The river was pushing, and just off clear. Man, what a session we had, the film should be an epic. Better order in some more popcorn and soft drinks when this one hits your screen. I guess we had over 50/60 fish, including whacking FOUR of Mike’s P.B.’s straight out of the ball park. I won’t say what they were but at one stage we were getting double hook-ups of everything, suffice it to say one of the species was Grayling, but watch out for the Youtube film on our site. It could be a goodie.

Then finished a small stream film, can’t say what it’s about as other sites will just copy the idea straight away, but I then thought about doing a review on one of the Polar craft aluminium boats that we filmed up at the London Boat Show. It was low cloud, low pressure, barely any wind, but….rain. I still decided to go up as one of the sales manager’s, Etienne, had lots of info that I thought you people might be interested in. It was on the River Thames and the thought of getting out on the boat was, to be honest, one of my main targets. Our own boat “Hi-Sea Drifter” hasn’t been off the trailer for months, and once you own a boat you will always have that craving just to get out on the water. I never have problem fishing on my own, but a wobbly boat and a camera tripod aren’t best bedfellows. So after getting the interview done with Etienne I left the tripod in the car. The idea was to have a run around in the Polar Kraft, but of course I had a rod and some leftover deadbaits from the piking film with Mike. The river was flooded and had a tinge of colour in it, but I had been watching the weather forecast and reckoned there was a 3 hour window between rain bands that I might just fit into. Yet again, a cobbled-together, 2/3 hour trip was all I could do. Some people seem to make a huge thing out of making a fishing film, with sound engineers, cameramen, producers, researchers, and several days fishing for one shot. Eeeeerrrr, no, not here at THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW. I just pile bait, rods and cameras into the car and see what I can come out with at the end. Most of our films are done in a few hours. Anyway, cut to the chase. I pile off in the boat, head upstream, the first camera runs out of battery. I forgot to charge it. Oh well, another three cameras to go, so I know I had coverage. Inside an hour I had a 5/6 pounder, then 30 minutes later I got eaten by a croc!!  By luck and misjudgement I managed to get at least some footage of the netting, but I came Sooooo close to losing the big camera over the side! It’s not difficult really. I just need 3 arms. Rod arm, net arm and camera arm. How about 20lb 12ozs of prime river pike??? And on my last bait I hooked an animal that I couldn’t stop that drove me straight into snag. Now that really was a big Pike. Interest of the day was the shocking depths I recorded with the Garmin fish finder. How about 37 feet?? In the River Thames?? Well, I’ll tell you how impressed I was with the area that I am now trying to track down something like a Dory or Dell Quay cathedral hull boat that I can convert to make into a river fishing boat. Could be a lot of river films next season if I find something. The main reason is that the brand new Yamaha 4-stroke outboard I have as a wing engine to “Hi-Sea Drifter” is ideal for work on a small boat on a river. Watch this space. So you have lots of good action stuff, plus an interview on the Thames that will have you craving for the new season to start.

Yes, we are still waiting for our clothing and car stickers!! But should be worth the wait. And then there’s the last of the converted Big Game VHS tapes to digital of which a portion have tope, bass and flounders, even wrasse if I recall. So I’m really hoping the boffins can get the best copying they can from the originals. They might be vintage, but the surf fishing one I did in Ireland was a cracker. End of the week they tell me. Then days and days of editing.

Final notes on the fishing, and this covers some of the fishing articles I do for various mags.If you are after a Turbot as your target fish or a P.B. then you could do no better than check in with Steve Porter aboard his 11-metre Cat “TRUE BLUE” out of Poole. Steve specialises in Turbot, and he sent me a picture of a 26-pounder…what an impressive specimen. Steve’s on 01202-665482, and his boat has an amazing 104 feet of fishing space. Good bass fishing with Steve as well. Then I phoned the bailiff at Aldermaston Mill, Peter to see what had been going on as it had been quiet for a couple of months. Yes, you’ve guessed it. One angler nearly broke the fishery Barbel record with an enormous 16lb plus fish, and other anglers had netted them to 11lbs. It gets better. Another angler trotting the “point” at the bottom of the fishery had 4 chub, but also a 6/8lb Sea trout. What a fish. So I tootle over there, and Peter already had a 7/8lb Barbel, but I see the rivers in flood. Other guys had barbel to 6lbs, and Brown Trout to over 4lbs. I had a mare, and could only roll my luncheon meat bait into snags. What a session. What a blank to have, and nobody else to blame. So we’ve had some great filming and a couple of duff sessions, which is what it should be like. They can’t all be good sessions, and at least it shows we are human. Mike has one more gap in his teacher’s schedule but boy, it will be cold. I might sneak a 3 hour session in after those Kennet Barbel on the last afternoon of the season, then that’s it.The coarse guys will be putting their river rods away, while here at T/A we will be cranking up the pressure on the shore fishing, boat fishing and trout fishing. Can’t think what I would do if I wasn’t an all-round angler? Golf? Naaaa…done that. Too expensive losing balls all the time. I won’t say I take a long time to finish a round but they hire me the golf cart by the week.

Good luck with whatever you are fishing for, and send Mike in a picture of any last minute catches. Finally, email and Facebook your pals to get them onto that “SUBSCRIBE” button, so they get notified immediately the new films go up. And it’s all FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE !!!!!!!!!!!

MIKE’S BLOG

Mike pollock

Ultralight Pollock fishing, it’s TOTALLY AWESOME!

Well it’s been a pretty epic last few weeks of fishing for me. Smashing my Pike P.B with a chunky 16lb 6oz fish. As well as my PB Roach and Grayling. Even better – it’s all on film!!! We have some TOTALLY AWESOME videos coming your way in the next few weeks, some of the best we have done. I was thinking recently about some of the fishing trips I have had to Ireland with Dad. Some incredible fishing to be had there, and some stunning scenery! One of the days back in June in 2011 where we had some great fishing conditions, flat calm see, bright blue skies, we decided to do some light tackle pollock fishing. We had no idea what we had let ourselves into, we had some crazy fishing on ultra light tackle – fish after fish after fish, it was fishing heaven! Thankfully we managed to make a TOTALLY AWESOME FILM out of it, and here is the link:


Blog-25th February 2013 – THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW!   

OVER 1 MILLION YOUTUBE VIEWS !!!!!!

GRAEME’S BLOG

Yes, its official, the greatest all-round fishing website in the world has just flown past the magic 1 million hits barrier.

As I type this the figure has added another 20,000 hits and stands at a staggering 1,020,431 views, which quite frankly is astonishing. It just shows that a totally unsponsored site, run by just a father and son couple of filming dimwit fishing nuts can smoke loads of other competitors and present a whole series of films that anglers enjoy watching, and more important you don’t even have to pay to watch them. Anything on TV is virtually out of date as soon as it’s been screened, but our films on the “Tube” are watched over and over again 24/7 ,as many times as you can take it. Our old school tips have been taking some of the world by storm. Fabulous high tech rigs hitherto unseen and spoken of in hushed whispers. “Did you see the Pullen’s last film? They were using a fishing hook. That’s right, nothing else, just a hook. Oh, and occasionally a split shot!” And what about our huge following of high tech, stupidly priced baits? Yep….that white stuff they call bread. We catch loads on it, and sometimes you even have to pay 50 pence for an entire loaf. That’s ridiculously cheap. And then, dare I even mention that hallowed word in the pike fishing scene? Yes, I’m talking about our single handed launch to stardom of one of the most sophisticated pike baits in the world. The humble TWITCHED SPRAT. And yes, we even add a split shot to those as well, so you get the most complicated rig you could want. But then do you really want to spend loads of money on tackle and bait? Or do you want to get out there with basic approaches, but refine your actual technique and watercraft so you are actually skilled in the art of fishing.

Remember, we have only been going 18 months, and as the “new kid on the block” you would think nobody would be interested in all-round fishing. But of course when I was a nipper years ago we were in the heyday of the old “ANGLING” magazine (My first article published in it in 1968) and they covered all manner of species and techniques. Everyone I knew fished the big 3.Coarse, Sea, and Trout. A few of us did Big Game Fishing as well, but were always in the minority. So I shouldn’t be surprised to see that our film views are going off the scale, as I believe many out there are simply bored to death with bloated belly carp on self-hooking bolt rigs, or the umpteenth 30lb pike. Most guys don’t catch the top end fish. They probably don’t have the luxury of time, and just want a day out fishing, enjoyable, with the chance of learning something and maybe getting the odd fish to make the trip memorable. I am convinced that incessant tackle-babble and the “instant success” cult have killed off many an angler, and certainly a youngster’s, enthusiasm for the sport. So now we move in to the big boy’s league with over 4,500 subscribers (growing daily thanks to you guys spreading the word). We even have anglers from the far flung corners of the globe watching our site and films, and that’s what makes it worthwhile. Certainly when Mike first built the website for me as a birthday present I thought it would be a millstone, but in fact, aside from the huge workload I do get a certain kick with some of the comments from youngsters and inexperienced anglers when they contact us to say their catch rate has gone up. Not because of some fishing tackle. It’s from basic bait or a technique I used 40 years ago (Or more). We can see other writers trying to get in on “our” act of back to basics fishing, and even other filming websites trying to copy us. I should be flattered, but one site put a film up just two days after we did, and copied loads of my personalised tips!! I just wish they would do some work off their own back rather than just suck straight off the ice-cream cone. But that’s life today. Take the easy route. Don’t do anything too hard. That’s why we are the leaders and pioneers and I am sure there will be loads more trying to follow us. The main thing is they can’t be one of the TOTALLY AWESOME crowd. You need to be a dedicated follower to wear that Cap. Some watch every film. We even had one youngster who said he watched one of our films….100 times !!! No wonder our views are so high. (Cheque is in the post)

Blockbuster view is our predator film “pike fishing on lures”, currently running over 172,000 hits in barely over a year, and another pike one running over 40,000. But it’s our recent “Beach fishing tips for beginners” that is on the fire trail of views. Barely a month old, and it’s what? 15,000 views? Some fishing magazines don’t even make that for a month’s circulation. Don’t worry guys, we already have a few more sessions of beach fishing in the pipeline, and with the best shore men in Britain, so keep watching. It’s just a question of waiting for big tides to arrive and cold easterly airflows to leave. Looks like this week is a non-starter, but we did nip out to make “Canal fishing tips for Pike”, freezing our bits off in an icy wind, under a blue sky and previous hard night’s frost. Good film, but I did tell Mike it would be a blank fish trip and it was, but boy have the numbers skyrocketed on those tips. Currently running over 1000 in days. It’s worth a look at, as some of the fish holding areas I point out apply to lakes as well. I’ve never been one to get obsessed with casting long distances. I would sooner target the fish close in where I reckon they live. Far too many think you catch more fish when you cast to the other side of the lake. Why not just walk round the lake and drop your bait in?

The coarse close season is currently looming closer, and there must be many an angler waiting for some mild weather to get out for the last few sessions. They can certainly be the most productive of the entire season if conditions go right. But alas, I hear the River Kennet is still high and pushing, and the Thames is also swirly, pushing a big volume of water and clearing very, very slowly. One Thames Carp expert said it was pretty well stuffed right to the 14th of March as he thought there was still a large volume of water coming out from a soaked landscape. I fear he may be right, though someone somewhere will always latch into a big Barbel, Chub or Carp, even in classic heavy-lead conditions. Not my idea of light tackle fun, but you can’t dispute a large bait on heavy gear in the edge of a river slack still has a chance of getting you a really big fish.

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River Thames near Henley on Thames, still pushing.

I hear there are some Plaice being caught from the “Blocks” just off Southsea, so that is at least a sign that spring cannot be too many weeks away. Plus Plaice off Chesil Beach. I don’t know which end, but last year some sections had loads of the flatties, so I’ll keep an ear open for info. Would be great to do a shore-Plaice film. In a couple of months the first of the Black Bream should be inshore and then I really do hope to be afloat in “Hi Sea Drifter”. You see that’s the beauty of all-round angling. The rivers close down, but you look forward to fly-fishing for trout in small lakes or large reservoirs. Or maybe a beach fishing session on a perfect night when the lugworms haven’t frozen to the beach. Or light tackle boat fishing for shallow water Smoothhounds. By which time its summer and the rivers are back on form, and the Tench are bubbling in the margins. That’s if I don’t spend the month of June in the Canary Islands trying to film Blue Marlin and Bluefin Tuna.

We are still waiting for our T-shirt order and car stickers, but the graphics got put on “Hi Sea Drifter” and look really great. All ready for some low winds and decent sunshine. The new car stickers should look good as well, after we juggled around with the graphics a bit. So that’s it for this week. Last week was all work on the new properties, hopefully I’ve trouble-shot the lot (doubtful) and I can get away to sneak a short session in. Even if I have to fish with the easterly I think I’ve got to at least try. Almost the end of February and then it’s a 14 day countdown to the end of the river fishing. Good luck and keep checking out our DVD’s and films on YouTube. It’s….THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW!!!!!

Graeme’s Book read of the week……”Tales of freshwater fishing” by Zane Grey.

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Zane Grey’s Tales of fresh water fishing

An ancient copy published by A.S.Barnes & Co the ISBN number is 0-498-07789-6 . Now for those unfamiliar with the author, Zane Grey was one of the pioneers of early Big Game fishing, publishing many books on fishing. These are the freshwater stories, with 100 black & white pictures taken by the author and it covers everything from Trout and Salmon, right up to the mighty Steelhead .Now there is no doubt Mr Grey had the very best of the fishing at that time, and in amazing places, but I can always take a refill of his descriptive writing, which has been totally lost throughout all British journalism today. The press just want “Billy Bane bags big Bream bag on the Bure”, and eloquent sentences like that, as though everyone is a complete dipstick incapable of understanding any longer words. Zane Grey tells a story and transports you to the spot. One particular passage he writes about how he stood on a huge boulder overlooking a large pool on a river and below him, lying like piscine logs in the swirling current, were stacks of monstrous Steelhead. I was longing to be there and having travelled to British Columbia and Vancouver Island the remoteness and pure waters teeming with fish made it a photographer’s paradise. And how about the catch of an enormous Chinook (King) Salmon of 57lbs.Well, I’ll leave you to locate a copy as its well worth a read. 277 pages that should have you reaching for the spinning or fly rod.

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Graeme’s rocker of the week  …….You go through phases of rock groups and  having had Eric Clapton and “Cream” as one of the all-time favourites I’m back with the gravel voice vocals of Nickelback. Fed up with the grey clouds and cold winds? Furious with the increase in your electric bill? Up in arms as you realise you will have to shell out shortly for another rod license? Where did that last year go? Well load up and crank out Nickelback’s track off their album “The Long Road” with the track “Because of you”. Should lift your spirits a bit. And why the heck can’t we get “KERRANG” radio off the TV and into a radio set? It’s the only station that plays decent rock music yet I can only hear it through the TV. What a shame. Especially when the wife’s out and I can wind up the volume so the plaster falls off the wall.

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Graeme’s gripe of the week……I wasn’t going to have a rant this week, but only last night Mike showed me a copy of an interview in one of last week’s angling papers. It was about a guy who seems to have a serious attitude and as I read it was popularising poaching on club waters? Here we are at The TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW, trying to put out free, informative films to promote basic angling baits and techniques to hopefully get a few youngsters on the right track in life with the sport of angling as the medium, yet this “angler?” advocates, and I quote-”party, get drunk and sleep with as many women as possible”. I don’t mind a glass of wine or a beer but I’m not about to implode my liver with alcohol, or indeed pick up a case of Aids by spreading my favours as far and wide as possible. Risks are risks and I find it might be best to minimise them if you want to live a reasonable length of time. What sort of signals is this sending out to younger anglers? And remember this was in a fishing paper, not on some obscure website forum. You’ve got programmes like Mr.Crabtree trying to promote youngsters into the older methods of fishing and then they read this guy’s diatribe. I must confess I’ve never even heard of him, but then I’ve only been fishing, writing and photographing for 50 years. To any youngsters who read his interview, don’t worry, the majority of adult anglers don’t hold the same views. …………Rant over.

MIKE’S BLOG

This week we had our facebook competition winners announced. Congratulations to Dave Cox with the first prize of a signed DVD, car sticker and pack of free lures. Second place went to Lee Kucyj with a free signed DVD and car sticker and third place went to Aaron Maguire, also with a free signed DVD and car sticker. So remember guys if you don’t have us on facebook, then “Like” us, just type in “Totally Awesome Fishing” and there you will see what we get up to, a number of different photos and competitions to get involved in. Once you join us, you become a true member of “THE AWESOME ARMY!!”. Hopefully me and Dad will get out fishing again this week. Last week I had a trip up to Newcastle to see a friend of mine and I must say there are some nice looking rivers up there! If anyone knows of any good river/lake fishing spots do drop us an email and you might find yourselves starring in one of our YouTube videos! I found this picture the other day of me with this Blue Shark from Ireland. We went out with Ireland’s top skipper Mark Gannon, hooked 20and boated 14 Blue sharks up to 100lbs this day, it was non-stop fishing and a great adrenaline buzz. There are few things in this world that are better than the sound of the rachet slowly ticking away as the blue shark creeps off with the mackerel flapper. TOTALLY AWESOME!!

blue shark
blue shark

Keep sending your catch photo’s into our facebook!

Tight lines,

Mike

WAYNE’S BLOG

Recently I paid a visit to the the boat yard that adjoins the ECA.  The Southsea Club has some very good anglers and in particular a few that specialise in fishing the wrecks that litter the sea bed off the South’s coast.   Many of the sunken vessels have rusted out to little more then broken plates and bits of scattered wreckage,  others are far more substantial and hold good numbers of Bass, Cod, Pollock, Ling, Conger and a whole host of other species, including some you might not necessarily associate with wreck fishing.  Depending on the time of year there can be clonking Bream, Wrasse, John Dory and even Turbot in amongst the metalwork and in the case of the latter, lying in the scours that occur off them. What interested me in particular were tales of played fish being bitten in two,  heavy takes that couldn’t be stopped,  and in a few instances,  big shapes coming up behind hooked fish..  in other words – Sharks. A number of the wrecks at certain times of the season appear to have Porbeagle’s residing on them, not surprising really considering the steady source of food contained around such a feature. Large reefs are also a good location for much the same reason, one was pointed out on the Southsea club chart that looked perfect for an early morning ebb drift. Fortunately our neck of the woods also happens to be Thresher territory,  although these hard fighting Sharks are sadly much rarer then they once were we still hear reports of fish breaching spectacularly,  what is certain is that we will be giving it our best shot at filming one.

Peas in a pod
Peas in a pod

The latest news on Marine Conservation Zones is that there will be none in the Eastern Wight area.  At first glance this may appear a good thing for anglers, I know further East the Kingmere Rocks is in the frame and it looks like an actual no take zone will be enforced during the Black Bream nesting months.  Just how the powers to be go about enforcing this remains to be seen,  I would not be surprised if recreational anglers would be the first to be made an example of should any flaunt the ban.

What concerns my fellow club members is the fact that the Overfalls has been declined as an an MCZ.  The Eastney Cruising Association have been instrumental in the past in protecting this area, the fear is that without MCZ status, aggregate companies could apply for, and get, mineral extraction rights.

The idea that this unique area of shingle banks rich in marine life and formed during the ice age,  could be destroyed forever, simply for a short term profit is quite simply scandalous. It becomes especially galling when you consider vast amounts will be sold abroad to countries that have had the foresight to ban this environmentally catastrophic practice off their own coastline. We are on the case and are currently awaiting a reply from environment minister Richard Benyon,  watch this space as we may be calling on the support of our fellow anglers. Onto the fishing and i had a run out with Mark Argyle a week or so back on a 4.0 tide. Mark is a top angler as a 14lb 7oz Bass and a 30lb 12oz Cod in the past few months will testify. We tried a spot South of the Nab Tower and considering the fishing has slowed recently we did ok. Both of us had a Cod each, at 10lb apeice they were like peas in a pod and I also managed a decent Conger and a Thornback. There were the usual Dogs, Pout and Whiting plus Mark hooked a tiny Smoothound pup. It was snowing in patches throughout the day but with plenty of layers under a floatation suit I was actually quite toasty, plus Mark is no slouch with the kettle and a hot cuppa helps no end.

I was eyeing a window Saturday last which was just on the end of the small tides, unfortunately I had other arrangements but a boat from the yard headed to the same mark we fished and had three Cod to 26lb,  good to see they are hanging about although typically the weather this week has curtailed any thoughts of getting out.

Tight Lines

Wayne

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

29th January 2013 – THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW

GRAEME’S BLOG

Well, it seems all hopes of great weather in the New Year has borne absolutely no fruit at all. December wasn’t the greatest. Then the white stuff and frozen hosepipe session. And now, as I write, the smoke is too scared to leave the chimney stack due to the high winds and rain and is trying to get into the lounge. I mean, it’s just one low after another piling in off the Atlantic, and while I would sooner have this mild airflow than the cold stuff it all settles into the same frame….NO FISHING ! Not that I’m a fit person to brave the elements with a body constantly assaulted by all the viruses known to medical science. I’m now finishing a 2nd set of antibiotics and they haven’t even had the slightest effect on whatever bug has been pummelling me for 10 weeks. This year it’s not just the weather that goes on and on, it seems all the nasties are nastier, the viruses are more virulent and everyone has had a “man flu” story to tell. And a programme on TV confirmed it recently, the male of the species really could be getting it worse than females. It’s all that hunter/forager in us, trying to put the meat on the table. But for me the only hunting and foraging has been paracetamol hunts, and gathering in front of the log burner. They even say there is an “A” and a “B” strain of influenza. Wrong!! There’s also a “C”, as I’ve got it exclusively!

On a chirpier front it seems I haven’t missed a thing on the piscatorial front. Those that ventured out didn’t do that great and while I admire them for trying, I’ve done it all before, and quite honestly, this time of the winter is generally tough for everything. THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW has been going from strength to strength, largely thanks to all you guys who hit our “SUBSCRIBE” button, and who have passed our whereabouts on to others. We are growing really quickly now and here are some interesting stats. Our Youtube “big hitter” is “Pike on lures”, barely a year old, yet it has rocketed past a staggering 150,000 views, which is absolutely amazing.

How to catch Conger eels film has shocked even us as it has just passed 17,000 views, and we don’t know why. Beach fishing tips for beginners is up past 6000 and it’s only been up a few weeks so there are a lot of shore fishing guys out there who must like it. Keep sharing guys. The bigger we grow, the more films we will make.

The Totally Awesome website is now well over 400,000 hits and our subscribers are creeping towards 4000. Don’t forget that to “subscribe” it’s all free. By hitting the button it just means you get notified when we put a new film upon YouTube, and there have been a few recently. Latest to go up tonight was “Carp on bread”, which we had actually forgotten about and stumbled into when looking through our files. There are reviews on both Garmin and Furuno plotter/sounder products that we filmed at the London Boat Show and an interesting one of the Aluminium Polar Craft freshwater fishing boats. Plus if you are thinking of a new outboard check out our interview with Jeff Turner on the new 200hp Yamaha. Quite an animal, and at 25% lighter is going to be a great piece of equipment for your fishing boat. We have plenty more reviews to go up, but like to space them out a bit.

The other Sunday we had a booking for a relative’s wedding to film, our first attempt at such a project, so we ended up with around 2 hours of film to edit. That one won’t be on Youtube however…have to protect the innocent etc, especially those of a certain age trying to be Michael Jackson on the disco floor after a long day. Not a pretty sight. Made a difference to filming fish as there was guaranteed footage. We just had to get everything set up with tripods etc. Mind you it’s been an epic to edit, as you have to leave all the relatives in as they will want to see themselves, plus who was wearing what etc!

Thanks to those followers who have been kind enough to say how much they enjoyed watching our new DVDs. They love the “Giant Catfish of Caspe” and the “Ultimate Blue shark” DVDs, especially the big blue shark I get on a trout rod. We still have a single box of both DVDs left so if you still want to buy one check in at the shop on our website and with each one you’ll get a free Totally Awesome car sticker.

Hopefully we should be hearing about all our new clothing and boat logo stickers. They should be through fairly soon, so that will all be ready for the next filming session. I’m still unsure whether to tow “Hi Sea Drifter” up to King’s Marine for its annual service yet, as she hasn’t been in action for over 2 months. If this weather keeps up I might just take a half day off and drag her up the M3. I bet the minute I unhitch her for the service the wind will drop and the skies will clear. It’s been so grim, especially with my parasitic friend clinging on that I haven’t even had the strength to get out cycling. But I do know how may pallets I can burn in a single day in my log burner…..A lot!

Hopefully over the next week or so we’ll get a couple more “Vintage” films up. One on Panga fishing for small gamefish, the other for Giant Tarpon, where I get a 160 pound Silver King in a self-drive boat a night. No guides, just a bunch of us out in the Florida Keys for fun on our own. Boy,did we get some good fishing back then, and I often put my hands up to the screen to feel that warm sunshine. Let’s hope the spring is going to be warm and windless as I quite fancy a short hop over to Ireland for some shore fishing films. That’s the benefit of being an all-round angler. You can jump from species to species and still have a great chance of catching.

Been crawling to some of the properties to work on them, and it took two of us to eventually work out a two-way switch with a live neutral and three live feeds. Sad really, but when the bulb came on it was satisfying. Never work on electrics when you have the lurgy is the moral behind that one. Or plumbing. Or carpet laying….ooopps! the blade cut a bit too much there. Oh well, let’s hope the tenant’s haven’t been to Specsavers. Good job we know the Estate Management Company really well.

That’s it for this blog I’m afraid. Keep watching the Subscribe/Youtube channel for new films going up, and as soon as I eradicate Hermin the Vermin that is currently raging around my bloodstream I aim to be out Piking, as I have had a secret tip of a couple of small lakes where a monster pike has never been previously fished for. It was seen eating 4lb fish no less, so it could be a real biggie. In fact I have a second unfished lake as a backup, but the Pike in that one is so big it ate the local postman, so I need to have someone with me for safety. You think I’m joking???? Watch this space. All the angling superheroes will be desperate to know where these waters are. Good Luck.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

10th January 2013 – THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW

GRAEME’S BLOG

Well, it has become apparent from our sales dept that covers our three DVD’s that we have a far and away best seller in the shape of the “Giant Catfish of Caspe” and we are well into our third box of this great film. I read that some people take up to two years to complete a film. Most of ours are done in one day, and the Catfish DVD took just three days. Are we doing something right in the fishing and filming dept? It certainly seems so. Then our next big hitter is “The Ultimate guide to Blue shark fishing” and finally “A Carp Trilogy”. All great views, and the Carp Trilogy is the one with all the latest “old school” tips in, which once others realise how good it is are sure to start copying it.What many cannot do in the fishing/filming world is turn their hand to any kind of fishing, and in this respect we can see the huge success we are having with the films in actually influencing anglers to try different species, techniques and rigs. We have carp guys catching nothing in the winter, who are now trying pike fishing and really loving it .That’s how it was thirty or forty years ago. Many anglers would change species with the seasons and of course it keeps you fresh tackling different species. Quite how some anglers can retain any enthusiasm sitting year-round in a bivvy catching carp is beyond me. Hats off to them, but I just can’t do that, I’m far too hyperactive. I’d feel like I was a hibernating bear waiting for the spring!! Whereas piking can be active. Hey….and what about the guy from America who is loving our basic techniques and has been hammering the carp. He’s delighted, with carp to 22lbs and grass carp to 29lbs.On bread.Haha.I love it.Not a boilie in sight. Great to see that Totally Awesome Fishing Films are found useful across the “pond”. Another youngster just mailed in to say he met me at a fishery two years ago, I gave him some easy tips and he has now hammered out up to fifteen good carp in a session. Rock on buddy. Bread deffo works. Also, anglers of all ages are getting out there and either twitching or legering sprats to great effect. A cheap bait, a mobile technique that keeps your brain active, and some fish in the net in the middle of winter. Way to go guys.

We have been cranking films into the edit suite like nobody else and just filled up a 1Tb drive unit, and then starting on another.110 films in what? 16 months? And covering all-round angling? You can see why we have the fastest growing fishing following on YouTube with anglers hitting our “Subscribe” button daily. Mike tells me we’ve shot past 3000 subscribers, and that’s more than some of the biggest tackle suppliers !! Keep sharing. We are the way forward to promote the sport of fishing.
We seem to have a “speed hitter” in the shape of our beach fishing for beginners. Only filmed it last week, it’s straight up, and as I type this is passing 800 views in 36 hours. Astonishing numbers, so the shore anglers have finally twigged that they will be getting some coverage as well. In fact as this is going to “press” Mike is putting up a second beach film done just three days ago, with an exclusive interview from Britain’s pioneering matchman,and he is extolling the new rage of distance casting with new 15 and 16 foot super-long rods, fixed spool reels and 10/20lb braid. Now even ordinary anglers are pumping the lead out within a few yards of the top match guys. I tried it myself Sunday, and had to get someone to catch the Dover to Calais ferry to get my lead back!! Awesome, plus a load of new terminal rigs for beginners to try. Watch out for it.Also a sequence of casting with these new 16 foot giant rods, and the famous pendulum cast as well.
I still use an old Anchor pressure lamp for fishing at night off the beach, and the old girl (about 25 years old) still pumps out 350 candle power. But I need some spares to fine tune it, so here is a great contact for all manner of spares and lamps, with a very good service.Tel-01692-581541 or email sales@hurricanelamps.co.uk and you can also get a breakdown of what could be wrong if your lamp is not running at 100% efficiency. I also use a cheap Petzyl lamp just for tangles (yes, I do get those) and baiting up.
There’s another film going up in the VINTAGE series, species are Roosterfish, Jack Crevalle and Yellowfin Tuna on light tackle. Plus we put up another “Sea Hotspots “up on site for those who like a website read, and if the rain doesn’t come the rivers might start clearing and we will be out trotting with the float and a match rod, showing different techniques. Plus of course clear rivers will mean….PIKE!!! But since doing the beach films I’ve got back into that a bit more as it was something I used to do right through the winter years ago. That was when you could try for a Cod from the shore and actually catch one. Now it seems very much a lottery and this when the anglers can cast even further than before. In the winter you really need to daytime beach fish after a blow has stirred everything up, or just fish into dark. It was illustrated in our “Beginners Beach Fishing” film, when in daylight Mike had just one Dab, then as soon as it got dark the Whiting came in close and we finished the film session with NINETEEN!! And that was on a falling neap tide. A filling spring tide will doubtless bring more fish, so those anglers wanting a beach cod, better get out there in the next week to fish those big tides into dark. It may be the last chance of getting a cod from the shore. And the Kent coast is apparently the hot area to be.
Mike hopes to get some more articles up on the website, and I want to open a new tab called “General reading”. There seems to be a lack of good general reads in the angling press. Having written since 1968, the vogue back then was to use the skill of descriptive writing to transport the reader to wherever I was covering .That would hopefully generate enough interest for them to want to try it, but today it seems to be just sell, sell, sell. Advertising was king, and obviously all the modern articles were weighted towards some form of tackle or bait. So I reckon a good general read will bring even more people to the site, and I will be dropping in some non-fishing material as well. I did have a load of material in files, but gave them away to a tackle auctioneer, who actually told me I should keep them. He was right. I also had some backed up on a second computer that I used for scanning pictures off my library of 35mm slides, of which I had about 15,000 .Then I kept pulling out external usb devices without the protocol of clearing it with the computer first, and of course the old thing decided to shut the door on me.It was down to the local computer store, who said it was unsalvageable, so I lost all that work, pictures and writing. And now the scanner doesn’t like being married to the replacement computer and has apparently gone on permanent strike, which is a pain to say the least. Don’t you just love computers? I may one day take them out on “Hi Sea Drifter” and see just how good they are at swimming.
The best of the boat Cod season seems to be dwindling away, and by all accounts the Needles big fish have not shown up in the numbers they used to, while the Kent coast has been lunker city .Whether those Kent fish will migrate past us going west nobody knows, but I have a feeling they may all be on their way back up the North Sea, and not skirt the South coast at all. Getting a Cod over 20 seems very much a lottery, and getting a 30 plusser is akin to doing the lottery. I was lucky to get my 30 many years ago, and I remember getting three 20’s in a day on artificial sandeel while drifting for Pollack off Looe aboard the famed “Lady Betty” with skipper Alan Dingle. On that summer holiday the smallest I had was 18 ¼ lbs. Now I can’t even get the enthusiasm to chase them anymore. I hope to take another crack at doing a beach film, and when I think of what I used to catch down on the North Somerset coast, or in Ireland, I can see that what the shore guys are getting along the south coast of England is pitiful. Overfishing by commercials has finally taken its toll. In Ireland I fished with a couple of long distance casting experts years ago from a mark on the west coast called the “White Lady”. In one day I think the total number of Thornback rays we landed was SEVENTEEN!! Now that’s what I call shore fishing. So never give up on all the types of fishing and keep plugging away. Thanks for all the offers that are coming in from anglers wanting to get us out fishing with them for films. Some are just too far away, and the rest it’s a case of finding a good weather slot. Good luck with whatever fishing you are doing, and send Mike a picture to our Facebook page. Plus of course, keep telling others about the greatest fishing show of all time!
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Graeme’s “BOOK TIP FOR THE WEEK”.

“CRUNCH & DES”.Classic stories of Saltwater Fishing. Written by Philip Wylie.Its stories covering a tough American charter captain, and his sidekick crew mate as they take customers out to fish the blue waters of the Florida Gulfstream. These are stories written by a master story teller. Not like some of the rubbish you see around now, this is just the type of publication I told you about previously, where the writer creates characters, scenes, and epic battles with fish. Not constant gibberish ramming tackle or bait, but words that capture the very essence of the sport of fishing. I gave it to Mike to read some time ago and he simply couldn’t put it down, and remember he is of the younger generation of today who don’t get to see this style of descriptive writing. Published by Lyons & Burford of New York around 1990.A quality read, it covers all the species of pelagic gamefish from tuna to marlin, sharks to wahoo.If I start reading it I want to go through my big game tackle immediately, and start booking up trips to warmer climes. See if you can track a copy down with your search engine, but try antique booksellers or book collectors first.

A great read 768x1024

A great read

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Graeme’s” Rock track of the week.” Writer Chad Kroeger.Nickelback Album “The Long Road”.2.02 run time. “FLAT ON THE FLOOR” This is the one for January when the nights are long, temperatures cold, the bills have been piling up, and everything that can go wrong, does. Nickelback are a top group, and that guitar and gravel rock voice can often be the ideal pick-me-up, especially if the wife is out and you can crank up the volume. There’s only once sound level for guitars and throbbing base and it’s loud. I SAID IT’S GOT TO BE LOUD! ….Sorry, I seem to be going a bit deaf.
Over and Out

MIKE’S BLOG

I managed to have a few days on the Isle of Wight on the weekend. A christmas present from the girlfriend (and I was allowed to take the fishing rods – result!!). We managed to see pretty much most of the Island. Particular highlights for me was the small fishing town of Ventnor, a tiny little harbour and a great pub called “The Spyglass Inn”, a pub of real character, with lots of old fashioned sailing equipment and that dark but warm atmosphere. From there we set off to St. Catherine’s Lighthouse. Unfortunately tours weren’t available during the winter months but we managed to take some pictures of the beautiful scenery surrounding the lighthouse. What a place to live!

We then went to Brighstone Bay, a great spot for surfers with a large open beach. Finally we headed into Totland where our B&B was located. After all that travelling we still managed to get out for a few hours fishing on Yarmouth Pier. Using Ragworm for bait and standard 4oz beach gear with a basic paternoster rig I managed to catch a few small Pouting.

The Saturday night proved a different scene all together. We were at the pier by 4:30 and already 10 anglers were there. Sadly we only managed a whiting, rockling and a pouting but given that we only fished an hour it wasn’t too bad. Especially given the conditions, Yarmouth is renown for a very strong ebb tide, the grip leads were only just holding.

Although very little fishing was done on my trip, I did managed to speak to beach fishing experts Martin Kennedy and son-in-law Adam Landy. I wanted to get a video interview done with them to see what gear and tactics they use. Unfortunately, the low light conditions meant that I couldn’t get the interview done with the camera I had. Nevertheless it was great to meet them, two very nice chaps and me and Graeme hope to get over there in the Summer to fish with them and hopefully get some more beach filming done!!

I did manage to film a good amount of our travels around the island and hope to make a video documentary of it for the YouTube channel. With the help of Martin and Adam of course!!

As for the book that Graeme has mentioned in his BOOK OF THE WEEK. I can honestly say it is one of the most captivating books I have ever read. I have been fortunate enough to do quite a bit of big game fishing with Dad, but I think even for the non-sea angler, the way the author describes the fishing battles is incredible and you will be hooked as soon as you read the first chapter, some great humour in it too.

So I hear the cold weather is coming in thick and fast – guess that’s more editing for me then!!

Thats all for now,

Mike

WAYNE’S BLOG

Unfortunately I’m starting this blog with some sorry news. A number of outboards have been stolen this week from a club in Poole including a DF90 and a DF70. A fence was cut down and boats moved to gain access and police believe that an Eastern European gang targeting boats and yards UK wide are responsible.
Whether you keep your boat on a mooring, a yard or on the drive at home the need for vigilance is essential if you want to keep your property safe. It should go without saying that if you have a valuable item, and let’s face it boats and engines are not cheap, then it really should be insured with a reputable company. Outboard locks are useful and many insurance companies insist on them, the problem is that often thieves simply chainsaw the engine straight off the transom, but at worst an outboard lock may act as a deterrent. Equally trailers benefit from good quality wheel locks, after all an outboard security fitting is not going to be much use if the boat can be towed away, and along the same lines a hitch lock makes it harder for someone to make off with your whole package.
Alarms are useful although powering them may be a problem. Trackers can be disabled or blocked by determined thieves and smart water whilst a good idea is only useful if the property is recovered, it won’t be too helpful if your outboard is on its way abroad and often that is exactly where they end up. At the end of the day all the deterrents available are unlikely to stop a really intent thief – but anything that makes it harder for them to steal your pride and joy has to be a good idea.

Right. Now on to more cheery news. The Kent boat anglers are having some fantastic Cod fishing with the best to date being a 42lb beauty! I’ve heard of more 30lb plus fish this season than any I can recall and January can be the month when the biggest Cod are taken. Huge scale busting fish can be packed with as much as 5lb of roe and whilst the numbers thin out I would not be surprised if something bigger gets caught on rod and line before the Winter ends. Another good news story are the Whiting – there have been plenty of them and more to the point the sizes have been impressive. There have been shed loads of 2lb+ Whiting taken and their delicate flavour make them good eating. The important thing when taking Whiting for the table is to clean them soon after capture, the same goes for most fish really but Whiting and Pout in particular spoil quickly so a whack on the head, guts out and a rinse in sea water will help keep the fillets firm and untainted. I always take the cool box if I intend bringing fish back, pre chilled with either flaked ice or 2 litre bottles filled with water then frozen, it keeps the fish in top nick. Essential in summer of course but I bring it along in the colder months also as I like any fish I eat to be in absolutely the best condition possible.

Right I’m off to tie a few traces as there’s a weather window appearing!

Good fishing-Wayne