The weather was kind to us and we embarked at Shoreham, meeting up with skipper, Mark Cove, at 7.30 on a sunny Saturday morning. We steamed to the reef with a cold northerly wind on the point of blowing itself out. This made the water very choppy with wind blowing against the tide. Comfortable enough but not something you would want to continue all day. The She Likes It II is a Shoreham based boat run by skipper Mark Cove – www.sussexfishingdiving.co.uk - an experienced angler with a great local knowledge. he has a number of marks he uses around the reef and we started anchoring up on one where one of his crew had caught a 3lb 6oz fish a week before.
Mark put down a pre prepared ground bait lump, frozen mash up of crab, squid, fish, groundbait and other detritus all bound together by oatmeal. This would create a stream of taste in the tide to attract the fish in. Local angler Reg Phillips recommended using a specific rig – a kind of pulley rig – which allows the bait to “helicopter” in the current with tiny size 4 hook and little bits of squid. He also revealed one further, secret, addition to the rig which apparently makes it irresistible to bream.
For the first hour all we could catch were Pout., some of them quite sizeable, and if I hadn’t been preoccupied with (trying to) catch Bream I would have put one on as a live bait for Bass. Jim Whippy managed to provide some variety by landing a Tom Pot Blenny but after a while Mark decided we should move onto another mark a bit further in to the reef. As the tide slackened and the boat settled we had our first small Bream but the next one was a cracking fish of over 2lb for Jim Whippy then followed by a fish of 3lb 10oz for Reg. Soon all the anglers were in to Bream between 2lb and 4lb with the biggest going to Peter Welford, a fine fish of 3lb 14oz.
We landed 28 good sized Bream landed with at least half over 2lb, plus a couple of decent sized wrasse a bass and countless pout! A great day’s sport and one to remember.