Oh baby it’s cold outside!

On the eve of what I consider the winter months in my fishing calendar, the temperature has taken a rapid dive.  This morning we even had a bit of a snow flurry although shutting the kids’ school did feel like an overaction.  But it certainly marks the start of the winter season and the changes in the fishing that come with it.  There’s still lots of good fishing to be had but there’s no doubt it gets a little bit harder and being smart with time is more important than ever.  I recently got my little notebook out and jotted down some ideas of what I might fish for this winter, where I might head and if there was anything a bit different on the cards.

To be fair, it looked fairly similar to most of my winter fishing in recent years but because that differs so much to what I was doing 6-months ago ago of even a cuople of weeks ago, I don’t mind that it looks a bit like last year.  I only go Grayling fishing a couple of times a year and I really look fishing to it when I do.  Big Roach and Perch can be caught all year round but I look forward to doing it when other species simply aren’t an option.  I’ve never really fished for Mullet during the winter months but here in Cornwall where sea temperatures remain that bit higher than else where in the country they can be caught all year round with some larger fish being present during the winter months so I’ll be giving that a go for sure.

Then there’s always the winter jobs to do at the lake, on the boat, in the garage etc.  When a bite really doesn’t look likely the sensible thing to do it gets the jobs list out and try to tick something off.  Even with all the years of experience under my belt and with my little plans I like to write doen there’s still days when I’m torn between getting the chain saw out and doing those jobs and getting a rod and some frozen prawns and trying that lake down the road because for half an hour on dusk, just as the light is getting dimpsy, there could be a chance of a winter giant!

I have been out fishing a few times in November although coughs and colds in the house have made us all feel a bit rotten.  I got out in the surf when the sea calmed down between gales and the good old small eyed ray where there to make it worth it.  Fishing in the surf in years gone by would have been all about bass.  But in the last couple of years I’ve caught way more ray than I have bass.  I don’t know if the bass numbers are poor or the ray numbers are high, possibly a bit of both, I don’t know.  They are great sport though and always put a smile on my face when you feel that lead stop rolling in the surf and then that gentle dull tap before that first run makes it clear, it’s not weed on the line, that’s a fish!

Small eyed ray fishing in Cornwall

There isn’t a day goes by when I don’t look at the weather forecast looking for a window that might coincide with a weekend when I might be able to get the boat out.  There’s some good fish around at this time of year until just after New Year normally.  Getting a small boat out in those weather windows can be so frustrating though.  For the past few days this coming weekend has been looking great but in the last 12-hours that charts are starting to wobble and what was looking like a really calm 48-hours is not looking like a possible window on Sunday morning as the sun comes up until maybe lunchtime before it all breaks down again.  That could of course change again, and it probably will.  To make the most of any window I trya nd keep the boat and the engines ready to go at all times.  Receently this has meant a bit of an overhaul for the auxilary engine.  I’m not mechanic nor an engineer but I do like to tinker and learn where I can.  With loads of tutorials and videos online, plus a mate that can get me out of jail if I really screw up, it’s great to have a go, learn a bit and keep the engines running sweet so that when the opportunity finally does somce I can get out there and make the most of it.  Who knows what will happen this weekend but as ever, fingers and toes are crossed!

Keeping the engines ready for that weather window