Opening the Cod Season on Chesil by Alan Brown

The plan was to fish Sunday 26th August 2018 down at Chesil Beach, I had fresh Blacks ordered at Lagoon Tackle & Bait for Saturday morning, but this plan soon flew out the window when the weather forecast that would make Chesil un-fishable on Sunday. So, a mad dash down to pick up my Blacks on Friday morning and it was game-on Saturday.

Alarm went off at 3 am, up, loaded the car and hit the road, after a traffic free trip down to Ferry Bridge and a walk to the far end of the Bird Sanctuary - I was all set up for first light. Game plan was to fish one rod for the Cod and one for a Ray, armed with Blacks and Prime Peelers for the Cod on Cox & Rawle SCR29 3/0 Specimen Extras and SCR32 3/0 Chinu on a Pennell Pulley and Solent Baits unwashed dirty Squid and large Sand Eels for the Rays on an up running, up-and-over set-up with again the SCR29 Specimen Extras Pennell-style. Sea state was good with a bit of chop and some cloud cover, the only down side was the NW wind blowing straight along the beach. My fear, as the day progressed, was proved correct as whenever the tide pushed right-to-left I struggled to get my gear back, when slack or pushing left-to-right it was fine.

First casts saw bites straight away resulting in 2 strap Conger before the tide changed and I struggled to get my gear back resulting in 4 lost sets over high water and as the tide started to ebb things became easier. Then the little Bream started to attack my baits, luckily, they soon went leaving my baits for the bigger fish I hoped to find.  By this time Mark from Cox & Rawle let me know he was on his way down, just as the tide turned after low water I had a classic Cod pull on my Lug and Crab bait resulting in a 4 pounder, shortly after hitting the beach and just in time for Mark’s arrival. As we said our hello’s the rod went again, this time with another Cod of 3lb14ozs on the beach in front of me. Happy days! But not for long as the Bream returned. Before long the tide started to push just after 8pm and more gear lost so I called it a day. Despite the Cod, sport was very slow unless you wanted to put out small baits and hooks for small fish, but the main thing is I have now opened my Cod account for this season, let’s hope it’s a good year for ALL of us!!

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