Magic time at last!!! The River season is open and that means Barbel and Chub, plus unspoilt, un-hammered surroundings. Real shame we don’t have the old Close season on all waters, it would make a lot of anglers get out there and try fly fishing, shore fishing or boat fishing. If you are stuck inside a bivvy all your free time you don’t know what other species you are missing out on. I had a pre-baiting session up at a gravel pit outside London, and found more Canadian pond weed using the old rake-on-a-rope job than I bargained for. Will the actual fishing trip bear fruit, or will it be a struggle? Only Friday night will tell.

Then I tried to finish the garden for Mrs Awesome in a day, and…’s still ongoing!! What is it with workloads? I just get finished on the property repairs and then the weeds are back on the rampage again. Still, it’s got to be done if I am ever to take all the weather slots. I was going down to Devon with Wayne for another dose of the big Beagle sharks, the weather was good, but just ever so slightly risky. Anyone who knows the Hartland Point area will be aware it has to be treated with the utmost respect, and any wind against tide can turn it into a wall of water. Then you can find it flat calm at other times. Funny old area. But good fishing. At the last minute I decided to dump the trip as we have already taken the first big Porbeagle shark of the year at over 400lbs, so have nothing to prove. So far we have taken Britain’s biggest sharks 3 years in a row ! Wow….That’s not bad when you realise we do it from our own small 17-foot boats and not from a big boat where the skipper makes all the decisions. Small boat sharking really is the ultimate in sharky excitement.

Beach fishing with Style...

Beach fishing with Style…

So with the toothy critters on hold I took Wayne’s advice and we organised a fishing sesh in Southampton water, running into darkness, but tempered by a barbeque and some tinnies.Warm air, sunshine, what an evening it could have been, but the Smoothhounds just would not play ball. We were in a spot famed for its 50lb beach Stingrays, yet we had not a sniff….well Ok, there was a distinct “sniff” emanating from the Barby, where Chef A’ la Solent Wayne treated me to some mint flavoured lamp thingies on a stick. The taste was well, interesting to say the least. There was that must mint in it I thought I would be better off with my toothbrush!  It was light eating spearmint chewing gum except you swallowed it. At 3am that night I was up and STILL TASTING MINT!!!!

One of the usual burnt sausages was hurled down the beach after falling in the charcoal, whereon a large dog homed in on the scent and to our amazement located the Chipolata sized banger at a distance of about 30 yards! And that was while working upwind of all the other meat sizzling on the coals. We remarked how much like a shark it worked, weaving and tracking until it finally located the Banger in amongst the stones.I asked Wayne what the tasty looking brown morsels on the edge of the grill were? Beef? Turkey? Maybe Kidneys?  He fell around laughing and told me it was stones from the beach holding the silver foil down!! Blimey, I should have gone to Specsavers! Mind you I suppose I could have sucked them.

We missed the thunderstorms by minutes and got back fishless at midnight. Amazing how a good barby and few cans of the amber nectar ease the disappointment of a fishless session. I really quite enjoyed it. Next morning we drove to Selsey Bill, I think they call it West Beach, where we learned from some of the anglers that the Hounds had swamped them in a short half hour just an hour before high tide the previous night. So we sat with five rods out, squid, ragworm and hardback crabs in a perfect weedless section of tide. 5 hours later we still had not a single bite !! Then looking round…Oh no, a monster black cloud that we had no chance of outrunning. We got soaked, and there ended a fishless second session. Nobody can say we aren’t human, but you have to take blank trips on the chin, and just hope for better next time.

Planned trips this week will (maybe) be Tench on the feeder, hopefully a boat session for Pike on lures now the rivers are open, and maybe an all-night expedition in Hi Sea Drifter for Hounds and big Tope in a gully close to shore that Wayne knows. Prior to that a 3-day decorating job has been lobbed at me like an unexploded hand grenade. How long can I leave it before it goes off? I think I’ll nail a couple of days work, then trip off for two fishing and finish it on the 3rd. Should be everybody happy. Good luck out there, and let Mike know what you are catching.

PS-Don’t buy those mint flavoured Donkey Doodahs…..I’m still tasting them now! I reckon that dog had the best of the Barby deal with that charcoal encrusted Banger.


Not much happening fishing wise for me this week. Although I have been filming. The school I work at are doing a “World War 1” Cultural week. The kids get to learn all about life in World War One and one class have to make a ‘silent movie’, which of course was the form of entertainment back in the 1910’s and 1920’s. They watched a few of the classic Charlie Chaplin videos and were doubled up laughing. I must admit, they are very funny and easy watching. So what is my job in all this? I have to do all the filming and editing. It makes a change from the fishing filming and it will be interesting making the edit look ‘old school’ with black and white/sepia gradient tints etc.

I also took a trip to the Isle of Wight Festival on the weekend. And what do I see? As I stood at the bar, in a crowd of over 60,000 people. A bloke to my right taps me on the shoulder and says the words “Totally Awesome Fishing?!”, I mean what are the chances of that? Anyway we had a good chat, he was telling me how he had been catching Bass of a stand-up-paddle board. Pretty cool stuff and a nice chap!

This week consists of plenty of editing, both this weeks fishing episode and all the ‘silent movie’ stuff. I would have loved to be out on the rivers but unfortunately I just don’t have the time right now. If any of you are on the rivers or just fishing in general let us know how you are getting on via our Facebook or Twitter.

Tight lines!