Posts Tagged ‘Ed Fahy’

Bass Fishing in Ireland, Seasons Opener.

Sunday, June 19th, 2011

A chance phone call from marine scientist Ed Fahy was the precursor to an enjoyable days bass fishing in Ireland’s showery south east. “I have a mountain of bait and nobody to share it with”, enough said “I’ll meet you in Gorey” and with that a sort of plan was laid. Strong southerly winds had backed around to the south west and decreased 4 – 5 making the beaches north of Carnsore point worth a pop as the big offshore swell would create a nice surf. There was no point in trying the south Wexford strands as these would have been blanketed with weed and so it proved.

A nice early 2011 season bass from a south Wicklow strand.

First port of call was Ballytrent strand, as expected a nice surf was running and initial evidence pointed to a weed free zone. Ominously though weed was evident about a quarter of a mile up the beach to our left. Unfortunately on casting our lines got snagged up with wrack and smaller pieces of weed. After half an hour we called it quits deciding to move further north and fish in the vicinity of Blackwater.

Ed Fahy surf casting on Ballinesker strand, Co. Wexford.

The weather God’s were kind, although hit with showers all day in between it was warm and sunny the wind staying in the west. A move to Ballinesker north of Curracloe, the stage for the awesome opening scene from “Saving Private Ryan” looked promising but again our hopes were dashed. A crumping surf hid a myriad of broken half rotten weed, a bi-product of the recent south easterlies. This time we persevered for an hour but again fishing was impossible. “Third time lucky” says I, “we’ll find a beach out of the main tidal current”.

Awaiting that bite, beach fishing in Co. Wicklow.

On arrival a nice rolling wave promised bass. Having never blanked on this beach I was confident that it would deliver. Baiting up with double fresh razor clam and popping the rig sixty meters out, the rod was barely in its rest before a lively pull down signaled our first fish, a schoolie promptly returned. From then on things were slow, not unusual for this mark for it has an all or nothing nature, but as stated it always delivers. So it proved an hour in when a good heave on the rod followed by a slack line resulted in a spirited fight with a three pound plus bass. Not the biggest from this venue but welcome nonetheless.

A school bass from a Wicklow beach for marine scientist Ed Fahy.

I was delighted for Ed, as the full time whistle sounded on his last cast he landed a small bass with which to christen his new surf pole. He will catch bigger this year but importantly the fish provided scale samples from which Ed will be able to continue his fine work in trying to understand the biology of this wonderful species. On packing up I thanked Ed for his morning call, we both agreed it was a fine day out and certainly will plan a repeat performance or two before the summer is out.

South Wexford Bass and Mackerel

Tuesday, October 19th, 2010

A planned trip to fish bass in south Wexford with marine scientist Ed Fahy finally came to pass. Recently retired, it is a pity that there are not more people in the service with his passion, intellect, and desire to do the right thing instead of pandering to vested interests, our inshore waters would be in a far better state if there were. I digress, Ed and I arranged to meet in Gorey before driving on to dig lugworm at Rosslare. Through contacts Ed had a supply of fresh razor clam, along with the lug and a few bonus gaper clam collected while digging we hit the chosen beach and were fishing by noon.

A plump four pounder from a south Wexford shore.

A force 5/6 westerly wind created a nice rolling sea, the water was clear and there was no floating weed. Grey and chilly we were in no doubt that winter was not far a way, however once wrapped up we never noticed the elements on the windswept strand. High tide was around four pm, our chosen beach fishes well during the middle stages of the rise and two casts in to the session a slack line signaled positive interest. Grabbing the rod while striding up the beach contact was made, its fighting curve and the thump thump resistance screamed bass. A run to the left, into the breakers a spiky fin, silver thrashing and that big eye, moving forward in unison with the receding wave, beached on the following a grand bass of four pounds.

Waiting for the bite, south Wexford.

Taken on razor at forty metres two casts later in a repeat performance bass number two hit the beach this time on lug. Recasting with razor on the bottom and lug on the top no sooner had the rig settled on the bottom then bang bang in again. This time a spirited but lesser tussle signaled a good schoolie touching two pounds returned to fight another day. Shortly after that a flounder flapped up the strand and with that everything went quite. Not unusual for this particular beach, it is all or nothing. In saying that the strand is very consistent and I have never not caught fish on it and the quality is usually good.

A late season mackerel for Ed Fahy.

With the lull Ed broke out the spinning gear prompted by a mackerel that grabbed my lug baited hook on the retrieve. In summer mackerel run this strand particularly in August, but October, we were surprised. Soon after another hit the shoreline contributing a welcome brace and a nice supper to look forward to. Ed and I fished on until six pm before calling it a day. Chewing the fat and landing a few fish a productive and enjoyable day had passed quickly. We promised to repeat the exercise before too long.