EDP report 29/09/10

The weather has been as unpredictable as the fishing  this last week. Gale force northerly winds put paid to sport in the northern half of the region, with heavy seas creating treacherous conditions. It was just about fishable by Sunday, but with lots of sand off the east Norfolk beaches I think it’ll be a little while before things get back to normal. Quite a few bass showed on the shingle after the heavy northerlies over the weekend, most of these fish have been school bass to around 2lb though I have heard of a 4lb fish from Weybourne. The east Norfolk beaches have suffered most with the weather and were largely unfishable over the weekend. It was a different story south of Yarmouth though and the winds created some nice rolling conditions for the anglers. Hopton produced whiting and a few flats and it was a similar story from the beaches down to Lowestoft. A few dogfish too reported from Corton, and whiting at Pakefield and Kessingland. I thought we might see one or two codling appearing in reports, despite it being very early in the season, the sea looked just right for them.

Southwold, Thorpeness, Aldeburgh and Orford have produced their fair share of whiting with more than a few dogfish at Aldeburgh and Orford, I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before we are hearing of cod from these beaches. I have heard of a few codling at Dunwich on the grape vine, not surprising really, it seems to be one of those beaches they do show up early on. It looks like more of the same weatherwise for the week ahead, though the southern half of the region will be seeing the worst of the wind. Gale force south east winds are forecast going into the weekend which will definitely create colour and movement on the Suffolk beats, they should fish quite well if you can time your trip with them easing.

I had an email from an old friend Justin Grapes, who has recently been out to the Cape Verde Islands to do a bit of sea fishing. He told me envy inspiring tales of shore caught nurse sharks to 25lb and a steady stream of smaller sharks and travally, all caught on coarse fishing gear. With our recent weather a bit of light line sport in the sun sounds just the ticket. I remember Paul Kerry going out there a year or so back and battling some huge sharks from rock marks, knocks our shore fishing into a cocked hat, though I wouldn’t mind betting some lucky angler sees a 20lb cod from an East Anglian beach this year!

Picture if you will....’re an old boy sat in a high backed chair in an old peoples’ home. Every day’s the same. Get up, get dressed with a bit of help, and sit in the big ‘day room’, with thirty other old boys and girls, all in high backed chairs, watching crap on daytime telly. And it’s not even your choice of crap.
Sure you’ve tried to alleviate the boredom recently by taking up a new hobby or two (nothing too strenuous), but things ain’t what they used to be.

The mind is as sharp as ever, but the frail old body that carries it about has seen better days.
There’s one thing that keeps you going.

Just once in a while you manage to be awake when that pretty young nurse with the dark hair in a tidy pony tail comes on shift. God, what a figure. On good days she talks to you. On really good days, she might bring you a drink and come close enough so you can smell her perfume. It sends butterflies through your tummy. On really good days, she bends over to pick something up, and you get to see her shapely bum.

Just once, you caught a glimpse of.... what was that? I’m sure it was a stocking top... All of a sudden the frail old body isn’t quite so frail, and stirs for action....

I got a text from Senior Jolly (PK) on Sunday, “I hear there’s some about”. The “some” were cod. There’s been a few reported among the whiting from Trimmingham to Walton, and the Leg End was stirring....

A plan was hatched. Let’s make it daytime, convenient, and deep water. Aldeburgh was the chosen venue, and we left Norwich at about half seven.
A small cafe on the side of the A12 was the first port of call, and the leg end was kind enough to pay for breakfast. Not only that, but he GOT HIS WALLET OUT! This wallet is like UFO’s, big foot, and Nessy. There’s a few people claim to have seen it, but without proof, they’re generally regarded as cranks. We’ll I have to say, I was so shocked I took a photo with my camera phone. I’d love to share it, but alas, I was served with an injunction by some heavies about 20 minutes ago and i’m not allowed to on pain of death, or being dragged to somewhere in Kent on a wild goose chase.....

So to the fishing. We set up in the town and started about half nine. In fairly short order a steady stream of whiting fell to both of us. That was it really ‘til high tide.


I haven’t lost my touch (or the Gary Barlow squint - ED)

The Leg End had an infested dab as a bit of variety, but the highlight of the flood (well all day really) was seeing a spitfire flying up and down the beach at REALLY close quarters.


This pic doesn’t do it justice. An awesome sight, and what a sound...

PK went all misty eyed. I think it reminded him of the war.... Anyway, once we started to pick up some flow on the ebb, things improved no end. A steady stream of schoolies for about an hour was good. Some decent bites, and fish that you could actually feel as you wound them in.

This one fell to PK, an immaculate 2lb+ bar of silver...


Happy new rods...(did he get that bass on a yellow bucket? ED)


A self take of me holding a four pounder. You wouldn’t believe the size of my hands...

More whiting followed, and in what seemed the blink of an eye it was 6 o clock. Time flies when you’re having fun, and although the codling didn’t turn up, I certainly enjoyed myself today. One more thing to report. My 7HT mags made their first appearance. One word. Awesome. I wish i’d bought them when they first came out. Not a single crack off, and some chucks went miles into a slight headwind without a hint of line lift....


Reel porn

The new rods are on their way.... Cracking write up as usual mate, pleased you both had a good day out, new rods??? Discuss - ED.

EDP report 15/09/10

The series of low pressure systems seem to have lifted sea sport a little with fish reported from most beaches in the region. In north Norfolk the shingle ridge has produced a few school bass and flounders and even a late mackerel or two, there have been reports of fish from Cley, Salthouse and Weybourne. One lucky kayak angler found himself amongst some nice sized mackerel after launching at East Ruston, they were only a few hundred yards offshore, if the wind stays off the land there’s a chance of a few off the shingle this week I should think.

The beaches from Cromer down have also produced a few fish and thankfully the weed has held off so far. Catches of flatfish and school bass have been reported from Trimingham, Mundesley and Bacton. I fished Cart Gap last Wednesday evening in a lovely rolling and coloured sea, unfortunately the fish didn’t really play ball, I managed a 2lb bass and a flounder. I think the beaches in this area are definitely worth a chuck for a good bass as this is the time of year they make their annual migration southwards again. The east Norfolk beats around Yarmouth are producing whiting more consistently now, there are plenty of undersized fish but one or two better ones amongst them, weed seems to be a problem above the Yare though Gorleston has produced a few whiting and flats with little or no weed to spoil things.

The beaches around Lowestoft all seem to be producing whiting fairly consistently now. I’ve seen reports from Corton, the south pier, Pakefield and Kessingland which have all included whiting with a liberal sprinkling of soles and smoothound pups. There have been a few school bass, soles and whiting at Dunwich, Minsmere and Southwold too. Aldeburgh has produced whiting with the occasional dogfish and it’s a similar story at Orford. If there are to be a few late mackerel off the shingle then I’m guessing it will be in the first half of this week with the wind off the land. The forecast has the wind going northwest from Thursday which will put a nice surf on the east and north Norfolk beaches, good conditions for a crack at an autumn bass.

It's been a while 08/09/10

Time to dust off some cobwebs. I’ve been on the beach once this spring/summer when I fished James’s sole match at Southwold, in which I blanked.

The H’s have a new member of the family. He’s a Patterdale terrier called Bobby, who I wanted to see, so the plan was to see the new mutt and then go for a dabble. Now most people think Patterdale's can be a bit highly strung. Not this little fella. He came straight over, licked me half to death and then jumped on my lap! Apart from having a nice nature he’s a handsome chap, so i’m pretty sure H isn’t his real dad.

Anyway, times is hard in Norfolk. They’re so hard we’ve done away with currency and taken to bartering.  Deal of the week was me providing the bait in return for a feed. As it was a short  notice session I went and dug some.  Never again. One and a half hours for 100 worms, half a heart attack, and a slipped disc....

Mrs H had prepared a delicious lamb stew and Yorkie puds which went down well, and so to the beach. It’s been a while, probably two years since we fished Cart Gap, but conditions looked good, and that’s where we headed.


Friar tuck, handcuffed and wondering if he could swim using just his legs to get away....

With about six feet of sand missing from the beach, and a bit of sea on we had to fish on the concrete, and with space limited we decided to ‘one rod’ it, and share a rod rest.


A fantastic sunset.

To cut a long story short, we had a slow start, then a slow middle, followed by a slow ending. I blanked again which is no surprise, H managed a chunky 2lb+ bass and a flounder, and we both missed a bite, with all action coming to worm.  We did have some frozen peelers which were totally wasted.

On the plus side, there was very little weed, and absolutely no whiting....

The other thing of note about the session was it marked the end of an era. I’ve decided to retire the lovely Florida Orange Mag elites. They’ve served me well and I’ve had some nice fish on them, but a change is as good as a rest, and I’ve invested in three 7HT mags (told you times was hard, I carried four Abu’s).  Despite the blanks, I’m currently bursting with enthusiasm and can’t wait to get them sorted and have a go. I know an old boy who uses them and he can cast miles with them so god knows how far they’ll go for me...(how far is miles? Is it a 3 iron or a driver? H)

Speaking of casting miles a young chap came and set up to our right. After a while he came to see us. He hadn’t caught but we couldn’t help but be impressed by his casting. He said he had his fixed spool rod fishing short 60-70yds, and his multiplier rod out over the bank at 240-250yds.

I wonder if he gives casting lessons?


TEA! Note H’s right hand. A thumb and three fingers. It’s a Grimsby thing.


Some sort of Flattie. I care not which sort. It’s the smug grin that gets me....

That’s it. A lovely night which we rounded off with a swift pint in the Hill House and a decision that we must get back to fishing Norfolk more often. We know the next two or three months are probably going to be spent on the beaches of Suffolk, but next spring, summer and autumn we’ll be closer to home...

A cracking write up from my old mate, who knows with a few more sessions and a hand writing the drivel, there might be more than newspaper reports on in the future! It was very kind of him not to mention exiting the beach, I struggled to climb the short distance onto the ramp, mainly because I haven't got legs like a spider crab. By the time I saw him fumbling for the camera, I'd belly flopped onto the concrete and was rolling around like a beached whale.

Bobby, I'm going to have some fun with him, watch out rats and rabbits.

It was a lovely night, windless, a pint, hammering the opposition, the end of the gaudy orange reels etc. The future's not bright and it's certainly not orange, it would seem it's blue now, like a bruise or the colour of sadness.... H

EDP report 08/09/10

It’s been a funny old week on the regions beaches, changeable weather patterns seems to have brought a few good fish on one tide with the same beach bereft of life on the next. With more of the same in the weather forecast I’m expecting sport to be hit and miss through the week, some lucky anglers will find a few bass and maybe even an early codling whilst others will struggle for bites. Things should improve though from here on in and it’s worth a go this week I think.

In the south of the region a few whiting are starting to show on evening tides, Brian Heritage getting amongst a few nice ones at Dunwich, tipping worm with fish and fishing during darkness maximises your chances. A friend fished during daylight at Aldeburgh and blanked, which was surprising given there seems to be a few whiting about, you would expect them here and at Orford before they got as far as Dunwich, and although not everybody’s cup of tea, they do at least herald the start of the autumn and winter season and the long awaited returning cod. The beaches around Lowestoft have produced a few small whiting and flats and there are still a few sole showing off the south pier, with the wind going southerly this week there should be a bit of surf and colour in the water in the south of the patch which will help things along I’m sure.

Yarmouth and the east Norfolk beaches up to Cromer have been relatively quiet, though I think there’ll be a few bass caught through this week as soon as the easterlies ease. The shingle ridge in north Norfolk has found a bit of form, at least for the kayaking fraternity. Neil Webb managed 40 odd bass between 1 and 5lb in a frenetic 4 hour session, all the fish falling to feathers and lures. Although not too far offshore it would seem that the fish are outside of casting range from the beaches with most anglers struggling for a few bits and pieces, Paul Coulthurst did manage a nice sized sole at Cley and there have been a few school bass but nothing to match the sport enjoyed by Neil a little way offshore. It’s nice to see a few reports from the Wash too with anglers fishing around Hunstanton and Brancaster managing a few school bass and flats. With the changeable weather bound to put some life and colour in the sea, sport should improve throughout the region, as long as the weather plays ball, and  I think it’s definitely worth a chuck this week.

EDP report 01/09/10

Sport was wiped out by storms during the latter part of the weekend and early part of this week, particularly badly affected was the shingle ridge and the sandy beaches from Cromer down to Yarmouth. With a bit of luck these heavy tides will clear some of the weed that has been dogging sport all summer in this area.

A few did manage to fish north and east Norfolk before the storms hit. Catches of school bass and occasional flats were reported from Cley down to Sheringham. Reports further down were less encouraging with weed reported at Trimmingham and Mundesley, anglers toughing it out were not being rewarded for their efforts either. The current northerlies will clear the weed a bit and if you can get in as these winds ease there should be some sport on these beaches.

Below Yarmouth there’s been more opportunity to fish as the northerlies have less effect round the corner, those fishing have found a few whiting amongst the bits and pieces reported from Gorleston and Hopton. It’s a similar story at Lowestoft, the south pier has been popular again with a few soles and smoothound pups amongst the pouts and whiting. Whiting again in catches at Pakefield and Dunwich, with some school bass at Covehithe also. I’ve not seen any reports from Aldeburgh or Orford, it’s hard to imagine they won’t be holding a few whiting and they are the places likely to produce the season’s first cod, it wouldn’t surprise me to find one or two creeping into reports during September.