FISHING THE BEARA

Beara Shore Angling Report 2013

2013 was the strangest fishing year we have had since moving to the Beara 10 years ago.
The season started normal enough with Shaun and the guys arriving for their April bash. A few showers and cooler weather during their visit but it did not slow them down as they took huss to nearly 16 pounds, conger in the 20’s. plenty of pollack but this year no ray.
Expected the ray to start showing as the weather warmed up but the weather stayed stubbornly cold and by end of may we still had not caught a ray, or even a wrasse – unheard of from previous years. Suddenly in early June we took a leap from winter to summer, up went the water temperature and wow did the fishing take off.
Kev and Shaun from the Isle of Wight were on their first visit to the Beara and were soon into thornies to 10 pounds along with all the usual pollack, wrasse, conger, huss etc.
Regular visitors from Holland Tonnie, Petra and Edwin have a good record of finding specimen fish on the Beara and this year was no exception as Tonnie had a specimen Spotted (Homelyn) Ray and a specimen Ballan Wrasse both weighing nearly 6 pounds.
Specimen Spotted Rays were also the order of the day for another regular Gavin with 2 fish of 6.2 and 5.5 pounds. Fishing partners Jason, Mark and Paul also took some great catches of ray with up to 20 fish in a session.
After a bit of bad health it was good to John Young from Yorkshire visiting us again and he made up for lost time with a great session of variety landing huss, ling, ray, conger, doggies and his first ever bass all at the Airport. He then tried has hand at the famed Beara conger and landed a huge fish which took a set of 40 pound scales to their limit. Still he knows where it lives and this year could see him with a bigger set of scales.
After the slow start fishing was now back up to speed with visitors picking up plenty of fish and suntans as well.
July saw the arrival of Clive and son Liam who had a fine days sport at a new mark with 30 pollack to 7 pounds and 12 wrasse to nearly 5 pounds. They also added double figure ray to their tally for the week.
Harry and wife Christine arrived in mid July and were soon in action with conger to 17.5 pounds. After hearing of the exploits of Harry his brother Anthony arrived for a few days and stole the limelight with a cracking conger of nearly 30 pounds, not sure if he will receive an invite for 2014.
Kev, Mike and Jim, son, father and uncle (I think) were on their second trip to us and put all they learnt in the first year to work with some excellent catches of rays and huss and especially the pollack with up to 60 fish in a session.
Father and son Barry and Greg were looking to emulate the previous year when Barry took a massive specimen huss of 17 pounds but sadly although no specimen huss they nearly had a specimen mullet just an agonising 2 ounces short of the magical 5 pound mark.
Special mention must go to 9 year old Alex Martin who along with a little bit of help from father Karl caught conger to 20 pounds, huss and ray to 6 pounds, wrasse to 3 pounds and on his last day 20 pollack to 5 pounds. I think we have a star in the making.
The year also threw up some fine bass with fish to 8 pounds taken on lures at several venues and as I write this we have plenty of bass showing – but few anglers fishing for them.
That Dublin fishing machine Mark Noble was at it again catching pollack with some magnificent fish to 14 pounds. He really has got the method for nailing these big pollack from the shore and is reaping the rewards for his hard work.
Another man who got amongst the pollack was Richard Garvey from Dublin who had a great session at Dursey with 60 fish for the day to double figures and the best fish of the day lost as he tried to slide it onto the rocks which he estimated at 14 pounds plus. Richard also had some good bass to 7 pounds.
With the season starting late it carried on well into October to make up for it but what was to happen in November quite literally took our breath away.
During October my good friend of many years Graeme Pullen came over to do a bit of filming for his Totally Awesome Fishing Show series and one evening I took him to a mark I had not fished for years but where I had previously caught some good conger. We caught no conger that evening but Graeme had a take from something which we soon realized was no conger. This fish took off at a rate of knots and despite a clutch wound hard down had no intention of stopping and the inevitable end came as the line broke with a sound like a pistol shot leaving two anglers wondering just what the **** had just been hooked.
Now Graeme is no stranger to big fish having landed 1000 pound plus marlin as well big shark from the shore. These were taken in slightly more exotic locations than the Beara Peninsula but the loss of this fish had fired his imagination and he vowed to return loaded with the right equipment.
In November he did indeed return and armed with tackle that had previously landed 1000 pound plus fish all seemed well. To cut the story short Graeme did indeed hook up not once but six times on the first evening. No fish were landed because they were simply unstoppable. The first take before it set off on a several hundred yard run was seen and estimated to weigh at least 500 to 600 pounds. Landing a fish of this size from a boat is difficult – from the shore it is nigh impossible.
This is only the beginning of this story as we intend to locate, and hopefully land one of these leviathans during 2014 so as they say in all the best places – watch this space. And to all those guests who over the last ten years have returned lamenting the loss of a big fish now you can truly start to wonder what you were attached to.
My apologies to the many people whose memorable catches did not get a mention, it is impossible to name everybody but may we take the opportunity to wish all a happy and fish filled 2014.

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