I'd spoken with local boy Chris about giving me and Conc a few pointers with regards to good marks, tides, etc , on fishing his Dorset patch. He was more than helpful and at the last minute decided to join us for a session on the rocks after undulate rays and conger.
Conc and me jumped in the camper, set off at first light and were scoffing a rather good breakfast in Wareham by nine o clock. We then set off along the coast path to catch a few mackerel for bait in the evening and in no time had caught twenty or so. Great start.
Chris turned up in the evening as arranged and answered the usual questions. It went something like this.....
" What's the access to the mark like? "
"Oh, not bad, as long as you take it easy walking down the cliff, then a bit of rock hopping"
Great, I thought. Let's jump forward two minutes.
We reach the cliff, look down and see a hundred plus foot drop, extremely steep, with ropes to prevent you falling to your death at the base of the cliff. Hmmm. We ain't going to be "walking" down this cliff. This bloke would probably describe Everest as " A bit steep in places ".
Anyway, we made it down, bumping and sliding down on our arses and eventually made it to the mark. A lovely spot, provided you didn't fall down the holes with a fifteen foot drop to the sea either side of us,
We caught a few ( well, bloody loads actually ) more mackerel and scad before casting the bottom rods out. The mackerel shoals were incredible, hitting anything and everything. Good size and great fun. I love makkie.
Rods cast out and we were getting rattles and pulls, which Chris told us were probably bream. In no time Conc had a take on a whole mackerel fillet and landed an 11lb plus undulate, a great start. About an hour later he was in again and another undulate of similar size was bagged. Bites increased and we both had conger, albeit very small straps.
Chris shouted across and told us he was in and a few minutes later Conc took up landing duty and managed to shake Chris's ray off the hook. He'll do anything to stop anyone else catching. Chris just grinned, or grimaced, I couldn't tell. He now refers to the incident as "Ray Gate".
Anyway a while later Chris was in again and had a very nice ten pounder. it was turning into a good night.
The tide was now rising and the swells were getting bigger, with the bigger waves crashing into the rocks and occasionally soaking anyone unfortunate enough to be in the way. It was a bit, well, not frightening, but it certainly made you realise how you were at the mercy of the elements.
Next it was my turn, Conc shouting to me that my rod was just about to leave the rest, I grabbed the rod, which took a satisfying curve and in a short time a nice ten pound undulate was safely landed. All down to our ( slightly mad ) guide.
It then got a bit cold and we ( I ) got tired, as we waited for the tide to recede enough to make it back to the base of the cliffs, ready for the big climb. As we watched Conc clamber up the ropes, we turned round and looked across the bay as the sun was just starting to rise. What a sight. And we were alive. Mission accomplished.
We grabbed a few hours kip in the camper. Conc had approached the warden and asked if we could leave the van overnight, etc, etc. " Do what you want " she said. "But please stop talking". The boy doesn't know the meaning of brevity.
Later that day we went down to another mark and had fun spinning and float fishing and catching garfish, mackerel ( of course ) and wrasse. Damn good fun in the sun, but rather tame after the previous night.
Conc sunk to a new low by fishing in the rock pools on his "species hunt". Having said that he did catch a few litluns.
All too soon it was time to get in the camper and chug off home. Hopefully we'll be back soon.
A really enjoyable few days made possible by Chris, who went beyond the call of duty in putting us on the fish. What a fine fellow. He has got a screw loose though.