Saturday, 20 October 2012

WhatFishUK APP Review & Catch Up

Its not very often I come across something that is so simple to use and a testament to the modern world of fishing, all the fancy weighted casting lures and ultra fine casting PE braids are in simple just upgrades of what has been around for an age, don’t get me wrong though, I love the steps the UK lure fishing scene has been taking over recent years, I wouldn’t trade my Sunline PE lines in for the earth, that’s for sure.

WhatFishUk in essence is an encyclopaedia of detailed angling knowledge that Is completely user friendly, with detailed fish pictures from mini-species to sharks and eels, rig diagrams for both shore, kayak and boat anglers, a simple location map that highlights where species are likely to be caught and a tone of information about when, where and how to target each species.

As a LRF angler myself, the WhatFishUK APP is an incredible tool in my tackle box, so far this year I’ve managed 18 ocean species on lure, 9 of those came in one session back earlier in the summer, I would have been lost if I couldn’t identify each micro specie at the waters edge, being a catch and release angler myself I need to quickly identify each species and return them safely, carrying an encyclopaedia in my back pocket isn’t something I want to be climbing down cliffs with, and flicking through pages with wet fingers doesn’t seems a great idea, some of the goby and blenny species can be identified by a series of spots, a colour band on the tip of their fins or a small tassel at the tip of their dossal fin, to have all this knowledge at my finger tips on my smart phone is a winner every time!

I was contacted earlier in the year from the WhatFishUK team about doing some picture and rig diagrams for them, in the process I have had a sneak peek of a recent APP update that fingers crossed they will be publishing in the next few months, LRF rig diagrams, Picture gallery of recent captures, record list, even Ecogear have contributed by adding lure pages to help novice LRF anglers, which just goes to show that LRF is now well established here in the UK angling scene.

I believe the app costs around the £2.00 mark, and in my opinion it’s a bargain compared to some of the out of date books and internet sites out there, new speceis are being found or re-identified all the time and having up to date information like the WhatFishUK app can be the key to success for anyone who travels and fishes different locations around the British Isles.

Where ho where do I begin to round up the past few weeks in my little fishing world, me an my partner Lolly got asked to work the Tackle & Gun show last weekend for Ecogear, which to anyone like myself is a dream come true, getting to meet some of the most influential anglers and traders in the angling business is an eye opener, meeting the likes of Henry Gilbey and Matt Hayes was an absolute pleasure, I know for myself that those two guys alone influenced my angling huge amounts over the years, I remember as a kid watching Matt Hayes on the TV, I used to dream of catching big carp and float fishing for roach, which if all goes to plan I shall be doing a blog post in the next few weeks about an adventure to catch Lollys first carp on LRF rods, that will get the adrenalin pumping!
Was great to see a familiar face (ugly at that) the Cornish angler Mr Matt Jones and a pleasure to meet John and Melissa Barriball on the Lure Heaven Stand, which I have to say have some incredible looking Graphite Leader an Smith rods coming out next year. Some of the LRF an HRF rods look and feel incredible, again it was notable the growing interest in the LRF market, the Lure Heaven stand had a huge range of lures from the Bait Breath range that look like they will slam the fish out!

The Top Water Lure stand run by Nick Roberts looked absolutely stunning, Im sure Henry must have had an influence, but hats off to Nick for showing off Hard and Soft lures as they should be, each lure that comes from Japan is like a work of art, and to see them being show cased like they were at the T&G show set me up for some quality photos, its actually inspired me to rebuild my summer house at home into an amateur photo studio. Stunning!

One other company that I have to mention is TronixPro for their AquaWave range due to hit the shelves early next year I believe. George Cunningham (top man) has got some serious ambitions where the LRF market is concerned here in the UK, having a top name like TronixPro helping to drive the market forward is fantastic to see. To hesitate a guess where LRF will be in a few years is unfathomable.. But looking like its going to be awesome!
Big thank you to the Marukyu team and Nick Marlow for the opportunity to work the T&G show, was a great weekend, was awesome meeting Wendy Perry who’s an absolute diamond, hopefully she will be joining us for a LRF session in Weymouth soon where me an Lolly can repay her for her kindness. Also Big thank you to Jon Hall who helped us out setting up the Ecogear stand. Would have struggled without you!

Check out the new XL size Isome new for 2013... Awesome!!

Right then, time for some fish, the past few days have been brilliant for lure fishing around Weymouth, the spare few minutes I’ve had have been spent over at Portland Bill trying out the New Major Craft KG Light.. Im not going to say much now, not until I’ve caught and tested this rod through and through, but so far, super sensitive at range for split shot and Carolina rigging, when you first hold this rod you would never know the amount of power in the blank until you have a half decent fish give you the run around! The more im using this rod the more my confidence is growing.

Portland rocks marks are firing on all cylinders at the moment with decent Pollack plenty of wrasse and from what I gather there are plenty of bass being caught, its strange how even after I am told about the bass, I cant get away from the lighter rods and tackling the mini species and wrasse, that’s not to say I don’t catch bass on light gear but I have absolute no desire to. Im just having to much fun!
Today I was woke up by a call from my brother to tell me that the governor my dad was coming to Weymouth for a coffee and a fish, now I don’t know anyone that works harder or is busier then my old man, working 7am till 7pm 7 days a week on the farm and running a building business.
Has he for the first time in my 27 years finished all his work? I doubt it.. But if there is anyone out there that I couldn’t wish to fish with more it would be my old man. so a quick trip to Portland Bill was planned, he didn’t say much to start, but compared to the beach casters we used to use he must have thought I was mad handing him an LRF rod with a 2500 size reel.

Breaking out the LRF gear between us I think we must have hit up and over 15 fish in a matter of an hour, not bad going for an introduction to LRF.

Im sure he’s now got the LRF bug and will be back soon for some more rod bending action, check out this photo below.. he loved it!

If anyone wants a lesson in LRF please get in contact, im FREE.
Until the next time tight lines!

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

A Change Of Seasons?

I can’t remember us having an Autumn this year, but its sure starting to feel like winter, the East winds have stirred up the water good an proper and most marks especially the rock marks are proving hard work, water clarity is making most methods of lure fishing a nightmare and Baits and lures like the Ecogearaqua range and Isome are proving their worth with the added scents and attractants.

With all the poor weather conditions being thrown at us, I have to take my hat off to the Weymouth LRF crew, with heavy rain an bitter winds driving us into the harbour we are all still turning up every Tuesday and we are all still catching, unless your me this week and lent your Zalts to a newcomer, only to find that the majority species feeding are micro gobies and Pollock, the only spare rod I had in the car was more suited to cast and retrieve with small jigs and metal Vibe Baits. Do you think I could find a big enough fish to slam a larger LRF lure... No chance! But hey I can admit to a blank.

So while I’m on the subject of blanking, I don’t think I’ve blanked so tremendously as when the legend Matt Jones suggested we go on a 12 hour long fish hunt in the poorest conditions I’ve seen this year, typically we had our hearts set on a monster bass or a Wrasszilla to grace one of our lines, but every direction we turned from East Dorset to West we faced big swell, milky water or waves of weed. By end of the day I was being gloated at by the Cornish Angler for his tremendous Surface lure caught Sprat! Check out Matt’s blog HERE for his high octane accounts from that day.
So to redeem myself on the no fish problem, I took a trip down the Harbour with the Girlfriend Lolly, in a matter of seconds we had Pollock and Sea Scorpions gracing our lines
I lost a belter of a fish at my feet all due to lack of concentration, It was one of those moments when the mini species quieten down and bites suddenly drop off, you just know that there’s a bigger predator lurking around, soon my rod jolts and a few feet of line strips off the spool... and then out of nowhere some guy comes up behind me asking all sorts of questions.. most people that know me, know I love to have a good chat when fishing, but when I’m into a bigger fish on light gear, whether it’s a mackerel or a big Pollock.. Concentration is key, when that fish spat the hook, most likely because I didn’t loosen off the drag, I swear this guy must have seen the frustration in my face, after a short and blunt conversation with the chap I got my lure back in the water and soon pulled out my first Whiting of the year. It wasn’t a big specimen but it’s another species added to the 2012 lure caught species list! Bonus!
At the beginning of this post I mentioned that we have had a few newcomers join the LRF meets, one guy that I never thought would come and try Light Rock Fishing but I’m so glad that he did...Mr Paul Burridge!
Paul is the founder of the rapidly growing Portland Sea Angling Group, I talk to Paul once or twice a week and the future plans for the Club are incredible, with future lure teaching days in LRF, HRF and Plugging, bringing the schools and youth clubs on board for both lure and bait fishing lessons, Its guys like Paul and the Portland Sea Angling Group that sustain the future of UK sea fishing, offering their time to organise such events takes a lot of effort, just keeping up with the Tuesday LRF club can be hectic for myself, and that’s nothing compared to the running’s of a growing club.
I’m sure Paul got a good feel for LRF and added 2 maybe 3 species in a matter of hours to his personal 2012 species count, I’ve got to mention that Paul is a hardcore bait angler through and through with years of experience under his belt, and I know this post might cause a bit of stir in his angling social scene, but I keep having to remind people that as much as most of us are using lures, or lure/bait hybrids like isome, there is no reason why we can’t use bait, small harbour rag is deadly as a LRF bait or when the water is coloured a small sliver of squid on a 2g jig head might prove trumps over any lure. At the end of the day we are fishermen and share the same passion whether its catch and release or searching out mini species or specimen Bass.
Last night we also had another newcomer, Mr Rob Holwill! I bumped into Rob earlier in the week while fishing the inner harbour, from what I gather Rob has a fly fishing background, so picking up LRF will most likely come as a breeze for him. Fingers crossed he can make it next week!
Here`s Rob with one of his first LRF caught species, a belter of a scorpion fish!
Hope you enjoyed the read, next post will be a review on the ever successful WhatFishUK APP, trust me if you haven’t downloaded this APP on your smart phone, do so! It’s awesome!
Tight Lines!!