Sea Fishing… it brings out the nutter in some people and last weekend I joined the crazy crew as a few of us arrived at the mark known as The Rock Channel at New Brighton on the Wirral Peninsula, Merseyside at 4:15am. Yes, you read that correctly just past 4 in the morning, I’d left the house at 3am arriving to meet a few of the guys from the Wirral Sea Fishing forum after driving South through an eerily quiet Southport and Liverpool.
This was my second assault (and probably last attempt for the year) on The Rock Channel to try and catch a Smooth Hound so after a quick chat we got suited and booted, waded across the gully and about 30 minutes later were fishing into the last of the ebbing tide as the sun rose over Seaforth Docks on the other side of the River Mersey.
The weapon of choice was a standard pulley rig armed with a Varivas 3/0 Big Mouth hook and baited with peeler crab. It didn’t take long for a greedy little Dab to somehow get it’s mouth round the bait and register the tiniest of bites. As the sun rose this was to be the standard scenario for the trip – the bait would hit the sea bed and a few minutes later the rod would give a little twitch and hey presto – another Dab – there must be hundreds of them.
Considering how many anglers turned up by the time the tide turned, if the Smooth Hounds were there, someone would have caught one but for some reason, even though they’ve been there for the past couple of weeks – they weren’t there on Sunday and after looking at the forums today – the results show they’re not there today either.
Maybe they’ve had their fill of Crabs out of the Mersey estuary this year, maybe with it being a big tide and the weather being so hot recently the waters too warm at low tide as it empties a lot more, maybe we were all just a bit crap… who knows, I know some of the guys I was with are very accomplished anglers and helped develop / discover this mark and they don’t why the smoothies weren’t there either so it just goes to show…
You can be in the right place at the right time, armed with the right bait and have fantastic local knowledge but if the fish aren’t there you’re just plain out of luck.
Anglesey for a couple of weeks in a couple of weeks so I doubt I’ll be out sea fishing till then as I’ve a load of stuff to get ready, although I may just sneak in a trip to the River Douglas to see if I can snare a Flounder or two or maybe go to Mere Beck and have a practice fly fishing before attempting to catch a Bass on the fly on Anglesey.