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Cameron Harris Sea

Only 2 of These Have Been Caught On This Boat!

So if you read my last blog know that been fishing with a close mate of mine who runs a charter boat, well today we left the rivers and went back to his prime, the sea! Whilst waiting for the punters to arrive we were talking and both know what to expect due to it being October we had the chance at literally anything! my expectations for this trip was NOT what it turned out to be. Upon arrival of the mark we dropped down baits, squid for me uptiding hoping for a late bass or hound, and ever so quickly i was blessed with a slack line bite i knew it was something proper, the tide was ripping and my mind was racing, big bass? hound? ray? blue shark?! When i finally managed to bully the big girl up in the water column Dan did a sterling job of netting her, hook was out in seconds and returned to live another day.

As expected whilst waiting for the tide to sort itself out it went pretty quiet, apart from a super interesting bite on a clients rod, no big head shakes, no line taken but a very interesting bite indeed. As he picked the rod up, an guided him and helped him with the best way to play the fish, the big net was put in hand and we were all on the edges of our seats. When it came up everyone was shocked, this was the first time id ever seen one of these, never mind hold it. It was a Dover sole! in ramsgate! Dans only had one of these on the boat before and a super rare catch for this area. Holding one was something to experience slimy like a snake and moves like one an interesting fish, a very interesting fish.

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A pretty fish non the less

A little bit later on the boat and i got another very heave bite, big rod tip movement, i kept watching it for 5 mins, id seen this bite before i knew what it was so i didn’t want to rush it, but as it just kept bobbing away instead of going solid i thought id just pick it up, as i struck into the fish and caught up with all the slack line i felt it… rod bent in double heavy shakes and a cruising fish, i knew this was a ray so instead of wearing myself out i just applied pressure and waited for it to glide up in the tide, finally netted and landed my first spiky rat since around march nice to get back on track just in time for winter. If you haven’t tried rays on light tackle i suggest it its super fun! i posted a video a couple months ago on it.

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This made a really fun video, apologies about the wind noise but if you’d like to know how to use your time wisely at this time of the year then give the video a watch there might be something for you to learn in there!

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Cameron Harris Sea

Ledgering Prawns for Big Fish!

So on this day, I went out for an evening fishing trip from 16:00 – 20:00, I was out on my buddy charter that runs out of Ramsgate called “better days”. I arrived at the marina early to try and see if there was any mullet and if there was I was going to have a cast for them with my fly rod which is something I’ve wanted to do for ages. Unfortunately, despite the crystal clear blue water I failed to notice any feeding mullet at all!

So off we went the engine roaring to life and the vessel starting to move, Dan called in for permission to leave the harbour and the fishing journey had started! it was a pleasant day to be on the water with the flat calm seas rolling in and lots of fish coming aboard. the first hound came up within a matter of minutes and they just didn’t stop coming! the bite really really improved as the tide started to slacken off. with many hounds showing, a few dogs and one bass and a super pretty gurnard decided to show its face taking 2 prawns. I felt like we did pretty well especially considering the NE winds.

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I made a video on this day covering most of the catches all the way from 16:00 – 20:00 check it out here!

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Bob Dellar Fly

Casting Like A Dead Man: My Feeble attempts At Fly Fishing, Plus A Near Death Experience.


An old college mate of mine called Tony asked me whilst we were wetting a line at the fantastic Bury Hill Fisheries in Dorking, Surrey if I fancied a bash at fly fishing. He was a bit of a dab hand already, he is in fact one of the best all-round fisherman I’ve ever known. “Sounds like a plan,” I said, where shall I cast my first fly? How about Lough Corrib in Ireland?” was his intriguing reply.

Being a great fan of the Emerald Isle I promptly agreed to the trip, scheduled for the following March. I had about five months to hone my fluff-chucking skills. 

As is typical of me, I waited until two weeks before the trip to purchase an entry level fly rod, reel and some little hooks with colourful, tufty bits attached and names like “orange booby,” as well as to book a casting lesson at my local trout fishery.

On the day of my one-hour lesson I was greeted by a Jack Hargreaves’s doppelgänger, the man was a ringer for my boyhood “Out Of Town” hero.

He even had a pipe clenched between his teeth and that patient, amiable delivery that Jack was famous for. I never mentioned this uncanny resemblance to the man, I suspected he was reminded of it all the time, I just enjoyed the moment as best I could in between my utterly fruitless attempts at casting a fly. The Jack lookalikey even chuckled “you’re casting like a dead man” when it became apparent to him that I was a no-hoper. At the end of the lesson he was even reluctant to take my twenty five quid as I’d made no progress whatsoever. And this, sadly, was to be the my fate. Despite several trout, sea trout and salmon fishing sorties in England, Scotland and Ireland, I never got the hang of casting, despite catching numerous trout and an 8.5lb salmon. It was made worse by the fact that I was accompanied on these trips by anglers, including my mate Tony, of enormous technical and entomological skill that could cast to the horizon, or to a tight spot no bigger than a dinner plate, and could “match the hatch” with enviable accuracy. But they were good friends and never once mocked my fly fishing inadequacies, not to my face anyway!

My first trip to Corrib, a vast glacial lake covering an area of sixty eight square miles, was a highly enjoyable, but fairly frustrating soirée into the deep and windswept end of wild lough fishing. We’d rented a lodge on the northern tip of Corrib in a hamlet called Cong and the king of Cong was the lodge owner Roy, as Celtic as a man can be. Roy was as big as a house with a shock of fiery red hair and a matching thicket of a beard that cascaded almost as far as his chest. He had piercing blue eyes that spoke a thousand words, which was just as well because he barely said a word. If he’d turned up to greet us naked to the waist, covered in wode, wearing a kilt and swinging a shillelagh around his head it wouldn’t have surprised me.

In stark contrast was his wife Sorcha, a diminutive, dark haired lady with a sweet nature, a sharp wit and renowned creator of some the best packed lunches I’ve ever had the pleasure to eat. One night after a exemplary dinner enlivened by the odd glass of Black Bush, I called her Scorcher instead of Sorcha, a slip of the tongue she found most amusing. Roy, however, just stared at me from a dark corner of the dining room. That night I wedged my bedroom door shut with a chair, just in case.

Fishing Corrib is wild fishing at its wildest. The quarry was pristine brown trout pursued from a nineteen foot Irish fishing boat, allowed to drift with the wind to cover as much water as possible.

I’ve no recollection of the names of the flies we used to fish for the brownies, but I do know they strongly resembled the multitudinous hatches of flying insects emerging from the shallower water surrounding the Lough’s many islands.

I fished every day for four days from one of those boats, and I never caught a thing. My fellow ship mates, however, often caught fish into double figures. It was a bit humiliating, but then I couldn’t cast far enough to fish effectively. 

Despite my complete ineptitude, the trip was great fun, and on one occasion, dramatic. The anti-English sentiment still simmers amongst a very small Irish contingent, and a member of that contingent decided to drive his very fast motor boat through all of our lines one day, simply because we were English. He lived to regret it though, because when Roy found out what he’d done, he persuaded him in no uncertain terms to never do it again, so Scorcher said anyway. 

I’ve no idea if it was the same guy but during a visit to a tiny local pub alive with laughter, music and excellent Guinness, I was threatened, up at the bar in front of everyone, by an extremely scary Irishman who stood well over six feet, with a bushy black beard, a battered donkey jacket and a look in his eyes that screamed death to the English. It was like a Western, the music stopped and everyone looked our way, there was total silence. I could feel my bowels turn to water, (the four pints of Guinness didn’t help), but in a flash Tony was by my side and we fronted the guy out best we could. He was obviously pissed and, thankfully, unintelligible, but his guttural voice held real menace. The landlady, with a quiet word and a hand on his arm, diffused the situation and he slammed his pint down and left. Instantly, the laughter and music flared up again as if nothing had happened. Two pints of Guinness, on the house, were placed on the bar for us and not a word was said. As I say, it’s a wild spot, Corrib. 

Despite my near death experience, I had unfinished business with the place, so exactly a year later I returned to redeem myself. My casting skills were much the same but due to the concerted and kindly efforts of an excellent ghillie called Tom, I managed to catch twelve brown trout over the course of four days, which resulted in a congratulatory grunt from Roy, the most the man had said to me in two trips!

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Heading out: Lough Corrib Brown Trout Fishing
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First ever brown trout from Lough Corrib