Monday, 2 December 2019


After my whiting bash a couple of weeks ago i decided that i fancied another trip out sea fishing but somewhere different to my normal stomping grounds. A venue was chosen and a plan was hatched to take my Dad out for the day to fish Walton Pier as it was meant to be fishing relatively well for whiting, dabs, maybe the chance of a ray, possibly a dogfish or two and even the remotest chance of a 'sea unicorn'. That will do for us i thought and i set about thursday evening tieing lots of different rigs for me and 'old boy' to use.
Friday dawned and as predicted by Metcheck the weather was sunny with a slight breeze, instead of the drizzly rainy days we had prior to this trip. Gear in the van, Dad collected and off we set to the North Essex coastline. Just over an hour and half later we were all set up three quarters of the way along Walton Pier, which i forgot to take any pictures of so here's one i took a few weeks earlier.

Straight from the off we were getting knocks and rattles on our rod tips, indicating that there was some hungry fish swimming around the pier. I proceeded to catch a couple of whiting and the odd pouting on lugworm tipped with either squid or mackeral pieces. Rigs were 2 hook flappers with the bottom hook being relatively long and low on the rig body so as to flap a little better on the sea bed. My aim was to hopefully catch a flatfish or two with this technique as i haven,t had one for a few years now and i do love flattie bashing. Dad and i were only talking about how good the fishing was for flounder and dabs years back and how poor it is now and how they rarely show up in our catching anymore, and that we probably wouldn't see one on this session, as we were driving our way there.

After a couple of whiting were landed i had an odd little rattle on a rod i had cast 50 yards or so out and upon lifting into the fish i felt a familiar rattly, fluttering kind of fight on the end of my line. Could this be what i was hoping for? Yes is the answer, and i was over the moon when i lifted a small dab over the railings, neatly hooked in the lip. A couple of quick pictures and a check on Google just to check, flounder and dab look quite similar when small, and the lovely little thing was sent back to its watery home. After that literally every cast resulted in either a whiting, or two, a pouting or a missed bite as we kept ourselves busy for the following few hours. A few of the whiting were over the legal size limit so they went in the bag for my Mums dinner and the rest went back home to the sea. I also had one rod fishing a big bait of herring and squid cocktail in hope of maybe a ray or even a cod but this didn't escape the hoards or hungry whiting either.

After a while i decided to set up a light carp rod and just drop a small bait down below the pier alongside one of the many legs to see what else might be swimming around down there. I've reading, and watching on Youtube, a fair bit about fishing for micro species and have been getting quite interested in giving it a go. My first couple of drops resulted in the usual culprits, whiting and pouting, then a more rattly bite resulted in me hooking and landing a beautiful little flounder, i,m pretty sure it was a flounder and not a dab. Another species and a cracking fight on my carp rod, i was over the moon. I continued to fish beneath the pier but the tide was on its way out by now and was pushing through pretty hard so i kept having to up my weight to hold bottom. I started to think that maybe i wasn't fishing very effectively, as the tip had been quiet for a while, when the rod tip started to get little plucks. With rod in hand i waited for the next series of rattles to which i replied with a small sharp strike, i was using braided mainline so didn't,t want to strike too hard or i may well have pulled the hook out of the fishes mouth. A little fight ensued, well actually just a few stronger pulls on the rod, and the fish was lifted over the railings and swung into my waiting hand. A beautiful little rockling lay across my hand as my reward. Again i was over the moon as this is another species i havn,t caught for years and another for the species list.

Just before dark we packed up and made our way along the pier and back to the van, knackered and happy from our days sport. I think we landed in excess of 30 whiting, along with a few pouting, a couple of dabs, a flounder and the one rockling, not too bad for a couple of anglers who havn,t sea fished properly for a good few years. I'm getting a bit more into my sea fishing at moment and rather than thinking about braving the cold in search of pike my mind keeps wandering to fishing the cold seas for whatever lives within. I,ll keep you informed on how i get on whatever i may fish for. tight lines guys...


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