Fishing for advice

Places, technique, kayaks, safety, the sea...
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Heather Rainsley
Posts: 80
Joined: Wed May 26, 2004 11:38 pm
Location: Dorset

Fishing for advice

Post by Heather Rainsley » Wed May 26, 2004 11:38 pm

I've tried this before experimentally but with varying success - none at all last weekend.

Can anyone please give a step by step idiot's guide to catching and landing fish from a sea kayak? Any advice welcome, we need to eat next week.

Heather R

Mike Buckley
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Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2002 7:02 pm

Fishing forbeginners

Post by Mike Buckley » Thu May 27, 2004 2:11 pm

Step 1: Using appropriate fishing tackle, ideally with suitable fish attracting / hooky type device attached to the end of the line that goes in the water, drop hooky thing over the side.

Method of dropping depends on desire to trawl gently, with hook trailing behind you (works best in a double) or whether you are planning to "cast" your hook upon the waters and then reel it in.

Step 2: Repeat the essentials of Step 1 until you have tempted / attracted / seduced a suitable aquatic creature (herinafter know as "the fish") to impale itself on the hooky thing (henceforth to be referrred to as "the hook") on the watery end of the line attached to the fishing tackle thingie you hold in your hand while paddling your own canoe.

Step 3: You will have indication of the fish on the hook by the fact that the line will go tight, the rod will bend and you will get very excited!

Step 4: Using the reel thingie, on the rod thingie, wind the handle in such a way as to draw the fish towards you.

Step 5: Now this is where it gets fun :D

Step 6: Assuming (always dangerous to do) you have got the fish to the kayak (or canoe) you now have a number of choices, these choices to some extent being influenced on the class of fish you have lured to its death, the size of said fish and your bravery / hunger / squemishness.

(Options) - VERY large fish, with sharp fangs and/or other dangerous looking bits. Suggest dropping rod, line etc and making like the shepherds and getting the flock out of there! It may have mates.

Generally acceptably sized fish, not intimidating you and one which you feel may suffice as a meal. Suggest lifting out of the water using rod as "crane" and attempt to grab now swinging fish on its arc. Repeat a suitable number of times to grasp fish.

(I have no idea what you do with the rod - I try and lay it over my spray deck, or under a bungee).

Step 7: (With me so far?? :smokin ) I strongly advise putting the fish to death at this point, as it will make the rest of the process ever so much easier!! To do that, wallop it over the heid with a suitable walloping instrument. You did bring a suitabale walloping instrument with you didnt you? A piece of 2x2works. Alternativly, and I favour this method, simply slice thro the neck with a sharp knife, taking extreme care not to slice into your fingers (very easy to do!!!!!), through your spray deck or into that lovely gel-coat.

(Carrying a small chopping board, bit of wood, whatever to act as an anvil is a good idea).

Step 8: Now remove the hook from the dead fish - or, the head of the dead fish :o

Step 9: Where to put the body of the dead fish?? Over to you! Mine go under the bungee's - I have an aversion to fish corpses in the cockpit. |I

Step 10: Repeat steps 1 to 9 as appropriate.

Step 11: Pull up on beach, prepare fish as required (I fillet and cook - some like to cook whole)for cooking process, or prepare sushi - yum yum.

Step 12: Apply appropriate quantity of controlled heat for appropriate length of time in order to alter chemical composition of fish flesh to the state known as "cooked". Apply eating implements and appropriate organs in appropriate manner and enjoy the finest, most delicious meal ever! 8)

(Step 13 - optional - dispose of previously removed fish innards & skelletal remains, ideally with head attached, in a location where small children or sqeamish adults will stumble upon said carcass while building sandcastles and exploring rock pools).

Hope this helps - suggest replacing the rod with a handline btw - also strongly suggest having a pair of pliers handy to help with removing the hook, I personally hate doing so, even with a dead fish. I really hate doing it from a severed fish head.

Enjoy Scotland. Dont depend on catching anything. Been doing it for yeeaarrs and only managed to catch anything last year, adn then only once. Mackrel off Bute - delicious though.

Mike.





dougsmith80
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Joined: Thu May 27, 2004 3:41 pm

Fishing For Beginners

Post by dougsmith80 » Thu May 27, 2004 3:41 pm

I tried fishing a few times last year, first with a hand line and then with something a little more elaborate. The hand line worked OK - I caught quite a few mackerel with it, using a pirk and some mackerel lures. The problem came to taking them in - with a hand line it requires two hands, so there are no hands on the paddle. It's only comfortable to do in calm conditions in any boat that's slightly tippy.
The more elaborate solution was to mount a multiplier reel onto a block of wood which was in turn attached to two metal straps that were bent to the contours of the foredeck and attached using the deck lines. When any fish was hooked it was simple to reel in. The fun comes when you hook three at a time.
The other thing to consider is whether to flatten the barbs on the hooks or not. If you do, you stand a good chance of losing fish at the last moment. If you don't there's a possibility of hooking your spray deck or yourself and having a difficult job getting the hooks out. I initially chose the former but got sick of losing fish, so reverted to barbed hooks.
Always carry a knife - if everything goes wrong (like catching something too big - dream on - or getting everything tangled) you can always cut the line.
Fresh mackerel make for good eating; barbecued, smoked or just shallow fried.
Good luck, happy fishing,

Doug.

dougsmith80
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Joined: Thu May 27, 2004 3:41 pm

Fishing For Beginners

Post by dougsmith80 » Thu May 27, 2004 4:45 pm

Forgot the step by step guide. Using the tackle mentioned above, simply drop the lures over the side and paddle slowly. If you are fishing for mackerel (which should be off the west coast in England by now, the west coast of Scotland in a few weeks time and east Scotland by around July) drop the hooks around 15m. If you are after cod or saithe, or don't catch anything mid water, drop the hooks until you feel the weight hit the bottom, reel up a little and "jig" the line gently. Often the motion of the kayak on the waves does this for you.
You'll feel when a fish is hooked. Reel it in, lift over the side and kill it properly, or put it back if it's too small.

Morrissey
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Joined: Thu May 27, 2004 6:20 pm

Fishy fiddlers

Post by Morrissey » Thu May 27, 2004 6:20 pm

'Meat is Murder' as I said once in a previous album when I was in the Smiths.

My advice would be leave the fish alone. Take along some tinned goods or dried vege burger mix which will stay nice and dry in your boat and mix yourself up a meal on the beach.

...........................................
Punctured spray...ay..deck..
on the ocean desolate......
will mackerel make a meal for me yet....

well in this charming cag...
this char..ar..ar..ming fish
...........................................

I just wrote that now, I still got it.

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Jim
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Re: Fishy fiddlers

Post by Jim » Thu May 27, 2004 7:30 pm

Well that confirms what I've always thought about Morrissey!

I've never had any success fishing from the boat, but the reasons are obvious when reading DougSmith's contributions:
> The mackerel haven't arrived in Scotland when I go sea paddling (probably too late for the Cod run too)
> If paddling normally my "lures" bob along on the surface no matter how much line I pay out. I have thought of using diving plugs but I think that's too elaborate for mackerel and I always forget to wind in before I get into shallow kelp (= lost tackle) and tin foil "feathers" are a lot cheaper. I need to paddle slower when fishing!

I once tried taking a rod in/on my boat and found it a nightmare, I just use a handline now. I can wind out and in (without fish) in a little chop but it isn't the easiest thing to do.

As for dispatching the catch, game anglers use something called a "priest" for "delivering the last rites" but I don't really think you need that in a kayak (it's a small club). You should have all sorts of handy things to hand, paddle, split paddle, portable pump, flares, GPS in waterproof case, husband..... which could be use to make the catch inactive.

Hooks are an issue, most patterns are available in barbless, but they are less common in sea fishing sizes. If you use barbless hooks you need to keep the pressure on continually because they are more easily shaken (need to be able to take in faster than the fish might lunge towards you). Barbless hooks really aren't much harder to unhook from the fish, but when stuck in your clothing the barb will always try and pull threads with it. If it is a spade hook or has a small eye you could cut the line and push the hook through rather than trying to pull out. I always keep hooks tied on lengths of line with loops in that I can easily attach to the handline to change rigs. My lures are on wire traces with swivels and snap links that I can easily attach to the hand line, and I have booms to hold the hooks away from the line, although these are a pain when reeling in!

I disagree with Mikes comment about "craning" the catch aboard - it works with wee fish but you can easily break a light rod and the swinging fish can be hard to get hold of. Best bet is to bring it alongside in the water and then dip your hand in the water to grab the fish - wet hands grip fish slime better than dry hands, wierd but true! Hopefully by this point another paddler will have pulled alongside to help you land the catch anyway - you will be excited enough when you hook something to draw attention to yourself :)

Handling and unhooking - some species you can grab by the gills, but some have spines in there and you need to be wearing gloves, so maybe not the best plan. When you have your fish lying still you can think about unhooking.
1) Cut or untie the hook length and leave the job until you are ashore
2) Cut the head off and use as bait
3) Remove the hook. You can do this by hand if you hooked it in the mouth (a sharp tug when you first feel the fish should set the hook in the mouth and stop it from swallowing the hook) - you have to push it sort of in and round to get the bend and point clear and them remove carefully without snagging the mouth again. If the hook is a bit further down the throat you will need to use pliers or forceps (surgical ones are great!) to reach in and do this as fish like mackerel are predatory and have teeth.... If it's really deep hooked (you would fail as a coarse angler) you need a disgorger, or to remove the hook when filleting. A disgorger is a plastic thing that has a slot to slip the line onto, which you can then push right inside the fish until it gets to the bend of the hook and frees it - then you withdraw carefully. I don't think I've seen one suitable for sea hooks mind!

Does all this sound complicated? well it isn't - the hard part is understanding your quarry, when is it around your local waters, what depth does it feed at, what type of area is it found in (wreck, reef, rocks, sand), what baits or lures will it take. I know more about this for coarse fish than sea fish, which is why I never catch anything at sea!

JIM

heatherrainsley
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri May 28, 2004 12:49 am

so long and thanks for all the fish__ing tips

Post by heatherrainsley » Fri May 28, 2004 12:49 am

Lots to think about, thanks folks, I'll let you know how we get on... there's always mussels...

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sub5rider
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Re: so long and thanks for all the fish__ing tips

Post by sub5rider » Fri May 28, 2004 7:39 am

...and harpoons are good, too.... ;)
Nigel, aka Sub5Rider, Onioneer

Steve B
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Location: Taunton, Somerset

Re: so long and thanks for all the fish__ing tips

Post by Steve B » Fri May 28, 2004 1:48 pm

Dynamite.

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sub5rider
Posts: 655
Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2003 4:38 pm

Re: so long and thanks for all the fish__ing tips

Post by sub5rider » Fri May 28, 2004 4:23 pm

Naah, too indiscriminate.
Hmmm ... wonders what the shockwave would feel like through Orion hull :o
Nigel, aka Sub5Rider, Onioneer

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Jim
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Re: so long and thanks for all the fish__ing tips

Post by Jim » Sun May 30, 2004 11:03 pm

Dynamite, that reminds me, there was an accident involving a diver, a cutting torch, and a gas pocket at work the other day, but I don't recall anyone mentioning the effect on the fish - I understand underwater explosions are good for making them go belly up. Quite possible that there are no fish in the Clyde, but seals have been seen so there must be fish....

JIM

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Mark R
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Re: so long and thanks for all the fish__ing tips

Post by Mark R » Sun Jun 06, 2004 12:24 am

The fish on Skye weren't biting. Even though we used a 'total overkill' device, sold to us in a Fort William tackle shop...a long line of feathers and hooks which we trawled from the boats, designed to literally strip-mine the seabed.


-----------Mark Rainsley

Jerry M
Posts: 271
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2002 10:23 pm

blow the fish to the surface

Post by Jerry M » Sun Jun 20, 2004 12:03 pm

I seem to remember when on exercise in Borneo many moons ago we used grenades to provide fish for tea.Throw said grenade into river, put fingers in ears and collect fish from surface. Easy! As for meat is murder, this was!! But really good fun.

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