Sea league Final 27 & 28/11/10

Roped in with Geno and too be honest I was really looking forward to it. The shingle has fished well most of the autumn and winter, only last week you wanted 12lb+ to win it and 7lb for a section. It was obviously going to be harder since Siberia decided to descend on us, howling NE winds on the Saturday and fishing at all was going to be difficult. I'd drawn cyanide Salthouse and blanked with over half of my section, the only fish I caught a 3" long pin whiting. The forecast promised to be better on the Sunday, wind and sea easing, back at Salthouse again for another grueller, lots of those 3" pins and 1 dab for 5 and a bit oz. duane lockwood next to me on both days must be hoping he never draws anywhere near me again though he did me by a full 1/3rd of an oz on the Sunday, he like most in the section blanked on the Saturday.

SAMF 2010 National Sea League Final  -  Final Team Positions
Team Name Team No.  Day 1 Points Day 1 Fish Points Day 2 Points Day 2 Fish Points Total Points Total Fish Points Overall Position
PRIME ANGLING 19 12 508 19 744 31 1252 1
GARRY EVANS MATCH TEAM 10 19 313 33 519 52 832 2
ZZIPLEX 12 33 374 32 564 65 938 3
EAGLES 16 32 321 36 441 68 762 4
IMAX TEAM PORTERS 11 35 169 42 434 77 603 5
NORTH NORFOLK LADS 6 42 154 38 466 80 620 6
CASTAWAY TACKLE 15 55 83 29 605 84 688 7
RHONDA VALLEY BIGSWIGS 17 43 215 49 343 92 558 8
AVENUE ANGLING 4 62 107 32 512 94 619 9
GORLESTON TACKLE 8 58 201 47 337 105 538 10
SOUTHWOLD ANGLING CENTRE 5 66 79 43 399 109 478 11
WHITLEY BAY 9 78 77 38 475 116 552 12
ARMSTRONG ANGLING 18 75 62 46 294 121 356 13
HOLT REDS 7 76 38 61 231 137 269 14
HOLT BLUES 1 95 12 56 276 151 288 15
DAD's (ELSAA) ARMY 14 84 27 85 119 169 146 16

My Holt Reds team mates did marginally better though none set the world alight, Geno did well to card both days from Kelling as did Paul Thorburn at Cley. Luggy and John Neave blanked on the Saturday with yours truly and both carded (I think) on the Sunday. Overall our team came nowhere though we managed to beat some halfwits called Dad's Army. Some southern upstarts gave all the local teams a bit of a hiding in our backyard with some Welsh lot 2nd and the Zziplex lads third, not sure if it would have been any different if the wind hadn't have blown, there's a bit of quality there for sure.

Man's fishing 25/11/10

We had planned to go and have a chuck on the shingle ahead of the weekend, but what would we have learned if we had? We know it's been fishing well up until this last icy blow and the match length runs from Cley to Weybourne, some 5 miles of coast. Decision was made to try and take advantage of a superb sea at Bacton, we wouldn't get on the beach at high water so we aimed to start mid ebb and fish it down to low water.

You wouldn't have fished it at high water, this is mid ebb with half the volume of high water

I had to do the school run and on top of that young Aitch wanted me to go and see the head, apparently he's a bit wary of her (rare these days, he obviously doesn't know his rights...), Bobby had eaten his spelling homework and his script for the end of term play. Poor little bugger was beside himself, so I had a word with the "ogre" and everything was cool. I was back home in time to make a flask and put on a couple of egg banjo's for me and the lump who duly turned up around 10:45. He was fuming, he'd been stuck behind a beet lorry being loaded down the lane, one of the joys of living in rural England. The fried eggs soon had him normalised, gear was loaded and off we went.

A Pierce Brosnan lookalike with a meaty flounder.

The sea was proper hossing in on the back of a stiffening NE wind. We decided to one rod it and share a rest, set up a sexy pink shelter to keep bait and boxes etc. dry and away we went. It was always going to be pretty hard, the wind cutting distances down considerably, I doubt I fished further than 80yards all day, Geno obviously a little further (he's got a thing about feet and inches, compensating I reckon) with his superior technique and long spider crab levers. We had probably 20m of ankle deep surfy run off before the waters edge too, a nightmare if you step when you cast like I do, still it looked coddy and we doubted we'd be "plagued" by pin whiting.

Being plagued by anything would've been something. I was first in with a rather nice chunky flunky, followed by Geno with a sizeable whiting. He's not keen on whiting, I love 'em (not) and managed to avoid them for the whole 3 hours using my vast skill and experience, some must have rubbed off on Geno (what a horrid thought, rubbing off on Geno) as he avoided catching anything else for the rest of the time we fished.

Pierce looking good even with a daft hat on, another chunky flunky, note too self, all that winter gear makes you look fat....

I snared another flounder shortly after the first one, half decent fish as butts go, both around a foot long and in tip top shape. Geno mentioned that they taste great from here, I smiled at her and put them both back. Geno had exchanged a few texts with the leg end, mostly pulling the piss out of me about the school run, but Mr Kerry had a master stroke for us both. He'd had a call from "Actionboy", I can't use his real name incase the Taleban read this drivel, anyway he'd been doing a recce along the coast and phoned Paul for a chat at which Paul told him where we were fishing. Sure enough my phone rang and 10 minutes later this figure appeared wearing a wooly hat and trainers. Obviously not just a hat and trainers, but he was hardly dressed for pretty much continuous wind and sleet/hail.

He found his way to us and was chatting away as only he can when my rod sprang back and the line would've been laying on the beach if the wind wasn't trying to blow it to Norwich. I picked up and wound, and wound, and wound before finally picking up a bit of weight up and that famililar feeling of a fish you can feel despite 6oz of lead and a monstrous sea, don't you just love that feeling? I was hoping I'd managed a codling, they were what we were after but shortly after a pristine schooly appeared, I reckoned around 1.5lb-2lb, Geno reckoned it was at least 2lb though in fairness he hadn't seen a fish since the earlier whiting despite him coping with the conditions better than me. In fairness to him, if they had have been there he would've had them and likely more than me with his extra distance.

1.5lb to 2.5lb it matters not, a few of them over the weekend would be most welcome, so much so I popped him back despite being perfect eating size. I'm hoping he gets up to the shingle this weekend and we get to say hello again.

Actionboy was chuffed to see a bite and a proper fish, like Geno, he usually catches whiting, and with that Actionboy left us to it for the final hour. As low water came the weather deteriorated and we decided to call in at the Duke for a warmer on the way home, a cracking day out in horrible conditions that not everybody can fish, there's some satisfaction in that, and at least Geno's half used to me beating him before it gets serious this weekend...

The sea as we left, looks easily fishable and it was here because there's no volume of water, once the flood got going with the wind it would've been unfishable.

EDP report 24/11/10

Shore sport for the regions beaches has continued in a similar vein, lots of whiting with a few flatfish and an occasional small codling. There’s been a definite upturn in the boat angler’s fortunes though with several double figure fish and a reported 20lb+ monster from the beach at Orford. Historically these tides have been productive, sprats are now showing in large numbers, and the bigger fish are following them shoreward as they do every year, hope yet then for some good fish off the East Anglian beaches.
The shingle ridge in north Norfolk has continued to produce whiting and flats, codling have been few and far between though I know a few small fish have shown on the rougher marks around Weybourne. The weather for the week ahead looks to be getting cooler and with strong winds in the north quarter it could well make the coming weekend’s National sea league final a tough match. Little change either from Cromer down to Yarmouth with most beaches producing a few whiting and flats, the wind this week should help things here though and there could well be a few from beaches like Trimingham, Mundesley and Yarmouth north. Best chances of a codling seem to be on the beaches south of Yarmouth. Hopton, Corton and Pakefield have all produced a few small ones amongst the whiting, down further towards Aldeburgh and Orford and there’s the feeling that a few lucky anglers could manage to land a proper lump off these beats.

There’s definitely a growing optimism and I’m sure that some anglers will be lucky during the run up to Christmas, don’t discount the northern beaches either, the weather should provide the right conditions for the smaller fish to feed in here too, it’s worth a chuck almost anywhere at the minute though best chances of a big fish are in the deep south.

Ambition 23/11/10

Work, indifference, and appointments at the clap clinic meant that yet again there were only two of us ready, willing , or able to go. There’s been a few (a very few) nice cod coming out from the south of the region, mostly from boats, but with one or two from the beach, so it was to Aldeburgh we headed. After a superb breakfast on the way we arrived just before eleven o clock which coincided with high tide.
There was a lovely lazy roll on the sea and loads of colour. The plan was to fish all the way down and all the way up.


The leg end in action.

Working on the principal of ‘you’ve got to be in it to win it’, I was being just a tad ambitious with my rigs. 6/0-8/0 pennels on both rods loaded with plenty of lug. A two or three pounder could easily engulf that that lot, but what I was hoping for was that a whiting would impale itself, and a proper cod would take the whiting.


Apologies for the blurry pic. Big hooks-big bait.


There were one or two others on the beach, but not many.

Cutting out all the boring bits, we packed up at about half eight. We had whiting nearly every chuck so half of the plan worked, but there was not a sign of a cod. Highlight of the afternoon was the leg end wandering into the town and coming back with chips, fishcake, sausage, and a bread bun each. Lovely.
Anyway, the clap or cod? Well if you go out deliberately trying to catch the clap, you’ll enjoy the process whether you’re successful or not. You’re highly unlikely to be bored.
Think about it.....

A perfect pair...19/11/10

A trip today with the leg end . We discussed several venues with Aldeburg , Minsmere , and Trimmingham all coming into play, but after about 20 seconds debate, we decided on Hopton.
Two double bacon ‘n egg  McMuffins on the way set us up nicely and we arrived just after first light, and about an hour after high tide.  The beach has changed a bit since my last visit, last winter.


About 4ft less sand than the last time I fished here, but about 3ft more than last week apparently.
No surprises on the fishing front, it was a whiting (or two) a chuck from the off. Anyway, we hadn’t been fishing long when I turned round, and there they were.  A perfect pair.
Now I don’t claim to be an expert, but like most blokes, I’ve seen a pair or two. Some are too big, with strange marking, and tend to sort of wobble when you handle them.  Other’s  are too small and seem lost in your hands.
These were just perfect. These were just the perfect size. They were the perfect shape. They didn’t have any strange markings or anything. A man would do a lot to get his hands on such a pair.
Before they were hidden away I managed to get a couple of quick pics....


What a pair...


The new Daiwa 7HT mag ST. Only for the sponsored, the criminally rich, or the obsessed. Also available on prescription to tournament casters...

All of a fluster, I had to turn away. More whiting, then more whiting, followed by some more whiting. The leg end had a nice dab, and I had a little codling...


Yet another 4lb codling to me (note the massive hands).

Some more whiting followed, and by about 2 o whiting o clock,  I was looking at the cliffs behind us and wishing they were a bit higher, and a bit steeper. Bloody whiting.
‘Til next time....

EDP report 17/11/10

The weather certainly played a large part in deciding the sport on the regions beaches this last week. We had wind from every quarter at one time or another through the week and this seems to have benefitted the lucky ones that could manage to get on a beach in the right conditions. Norwich ace Paul Kerry did just that and managed a nice haul of six codling in daylight, albeit small ones from 1.5-2.5lb, at Hopton last week. Other anglers around Yarmouth and Lowestoft fared less well though they were kept busy with some chunky whiting and a few better dabs now starting to show. It’s pretty much a similar story from Cromer down to Orford, whiting making up the bulk of the catches with a sprinkling of flatfish and occasional codling all along with the codling seeming to be mostly in that 1.5lb bracket.

For most of the autumn and the winter so far, the shingle ridge of north Norfolk has been as consistent as anywhere else. This form seems to be continuing, the latest north Norfolk Sea League match at Kelling producing a none too shabby 135lb total weight of whiting and flats for the nineteen anglers fishing. Northern raider Paul Fenech claimed top spot from Sheringham ace Tony Thomas second, with respectable weights of 12lb 12oz and 12lb 10oz respectively. M Watts came third with 10lb 7oz and you needed over 7lb to figure in one of the five sections, promising signs ahead of the National Sea League final in a couple of weeks. Prospects for the week ahead should see the beaches of the deep south getting some wind, Orford and Aldeburgh need a kick start and they might just get one this week. Failing that it should be business as usual with the flats and whiting on the shingle.

Geno's techie reel bit

Daiwa 7HTmag / Turbo / black – Pinion supports

Recently, one of the chaps shagged (shagged, adjective meaning "broken", alternatives "fooked / wankered / bolloxed") a pinion gear on his 7HT mag , and one or two others  have had the same problem.

I told one of my mates about pinion supports and he thought I was talking rubbish (no change there then), but i've fitted them to mine, and they certainly haven't done them any harm.

Whether you need to fit them, or should HAVE to fit them is a matter of opinion.

Anyway, for what it's worth, here it is....


"A precision engineered Pinion Support Pin which fits in the driveshaft of all Daiwa 7HT models. This part adds support to the pinion and gears of these reels reducing wear"


The business end


These are the parts you remove. Takes about a minute.


Hopefully you can see that the drive shaft isn't sitting centrally...It's definitely more right than left, like the author, it's a better fit in an Abu- ED


The pin slides straight onto the drive shaft. Apply a little grease first.


The pin is now in position. All that remains is to replace the parts you removed MINUS the washer (bottom right in the parts pic) as this is replaced by the collar on the support pin

Hope this has been of some use to somebody. I got mine from Blakdog tackle online. Superb reliable service. If I remember rightly they're about £5 but IMHO if they prolong the life of your reel, and prevent you having equipment failure on the beach, they're well worth it.

Wouldn't you think that £150 worth of reel would have a bush anyway??? - ED

EDP report 10/11/10

According to the forecast we’re going to get all four points of the compass wind wise this week. I don’t think that’s bad news and with a drop in the pressure, as long as you can fish safely I think you’ll have a chance. Catches through the week have been disappointing in as much as I was hoping we’d be seeing codling with a little more consistency now. I know things can change in a tide, but I do think we should be seeing a few more than we have so far.

The form beat has been the shingle ridge in north Norfolk, even producing a codling or two amongst the flats, whiting and pouts. There seems to be a few flatties and whiting from Cley to Sheringham with the chance of a bonus codling, David Overton managing 3 codling between a 1lb and 2lb 9oz in a super little session. Seems a little slower on the east Norfolk beaches from Cromer to Yarmouth, Trimingham has produced whiting and flats and there’ve been a few whiting on most of the beaches though little sign of any codling this week. Anglers fishing off kayaks in Hopton bay have managed to find a few codling and whiting, a promising sign for sure, and with the forecast there’s bound to be a bit of sea on to bring them within casting range at one point or another this week.

Lowestoft north beach has produced a few small codling amongst the whiting though it’s the latter that are dominating catches right round the coast. Thirty two anglers fished the Aldeburgh pairs match sponsored by Angling Mad at Lowestoft. Surprisingly only 1 codling of 2lb 14oz was caught in the match, Jeff Stannard snaring the bonus fish and the heaviest round fish pot with it. Lee and Mark Sherwood scooped top spot with a section win and a second. Jeff Stannard and Alan Doy were second with Wayne Perrin and Ian Guy third. Pretty much anything could happen this week if the wind does what it should and most beaches will get a rough up, let’s hope it kick starts the winter season.

EDP report 03/11/10

Neap tides this week may not have helped the sport in the region. Catches seem down generally over those of the last couple of weeks and even the form north Norfolk shingle didn’t produce in the same quantities as it has. Aldeburgh and Orford have produced occasional codling amongst the hordes of whiting, though these have been generally small, a codling over 2lb seems a good one at the minute with most fish in the 1-1.5lb bracket. There are still a few school bass showing too though the numbers being caught further north seem to have dwindled, perhaps a sign of fish migrating? Thorpeness and Southwold have been similar, anglers fishing the pier at Southwold have done marginally better but there’s little to choose between the pier and the beach in reality.

Lowestoft has been fairly consistent with whiting a plenty from Kessingland up to north beach. Yarmouth has produced a lot of whiting too, Paul Carter won the Lowestoft Sea Anglers latest match at Hopton with 5lb 10oz of whiting and a solitary dab, the next nearest weight being 3lb odd. Gorleston and the town beaches have produced whiting also. The Eastern Leisure Sea Anglers Alliance held an inaugural open match on Yarmouth’s central and north beach pegging from just south of the Britannia pier north to Waterways. As in the Mark Alsop memorial a couple of weeks back, it was the Waterways end which fished better, Adrian Crane taking a respectable 5lb 11oz from peg 35. Second place went to Stephen Boyce with 5lb 5oz from peg 17 and Keith “Pompey” Mountfield in third with 4lb 14oz from peg 6. A teams of three was fished within the open, the winner being joined by his team mates, Alan Kettle and Justin Grapes to scoop the team pools too. All reports are of a fun match fished in a friendly way, long may they continue!

East Norfolk has been generally slow, with only whiting and a few pouts and flats being reported. Trimingham had yielded a few codling, but typical of these beaches you need a bit of a surf on for them to fish properly. Jamie Bale managed a few nice flats and whiting at Trimingham whilst out with his uncle, unfortunately the cod remained elusive for Jamie this time. The shingle has dipped in form slightly but taken in the round it’s probably as consistent as any other beach in the region right now. You’re more likely to catch bass than codling and there’s a few more whiting showing with the flatfish. Tides building into the weekend should help, unfortunately I don’t think the wind will help with a westerly or southwest forecast, still I’d rather be out than in!

Doctor Matt writes 02/11/10

I had a hectic session at Kessingland at the weekend but couldn’t face feeding the Pirates' huge fresh blacks to the whiting hordes there so saved a wrap for a session in the week. I wanted a crack at a codling or two and planned a session at Trim with Mr Aitch who was up for it. I even asked/pleaded with his good lady to get him a pass out. Geno was going to join us and it was looking like we'd have a nice little social.

Tuesday morning and things were looking bleak, Aitch at deaths door with man-flu and babysitting on the horizon for Wednesday for me and the forecast of rain putting Geno off. It was a last minute decision to get out Tuesday. Problem was the 30mph south westerly wind and rain in the air threatening to make the sandy beaches east of Cromer uncomfortable and there’s always the nightmare of red weed. I wimped out, and decided to hunker down in my beach buddy at Cley, being my favourite low water shingle venue. Arrived at 20.00 with an hour of the ebb to run. Casting short was impossible, and there is a nice sandbar running parallel to the beach at 90-100yds, so I opted for distance. Getting the distance was easy once the lead was airborne, the back swing a hideous lead swirling fiasco. On the first two casts I had plump flounders of 14 and 15oz respectively followed by a stream of small dabs. Once the tide started to flood I picked up more flatties and another flounder of 12oz. The dabs were fit too, with a sprinkling of quality fish to 27cm

Nice butts mate

Final tally was 3 flounders, 8 dabs and a couple of pin whiting. I know you hate the shingle mate, but that was a treat and I’d only used 10 worms. Must be because they were French blacks making the difference, the fish at Cley must have sophisticated Michelin star tastes! Matt. I don't hate the shingle mate, I just find it hard to cast on because I step round when I cast, though if it's only 90-100yds it's just an easy overhead thump like what you do, anyway did I mention I have a cold? Ed.