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About Fiddlehead

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  1. What part of Ireland? My girlfriends family is from Donegal. When I went over in July 2018 I brought a travel rod and spent a couple hours trying to catch mackerel and European bass but nothing serious. I had planned to spend more time trying but we spent most of the time running from one of her relatives house to the next. Still had a great time and I’ll never forget it. When I go back over I definitely want to get a guide, salmon specifically if the time of year is right. if you go to Dublin check out the Jameson factory. I found it to be much more interesting than Guinness which felt like a tourist trap.
  2. Girlfriend and I moved into a new place in August. Last tenants had ignored a squirrel infestation in the attic for a few years. Things were a pain to get rid of and did a lot of damage. Insulation is shredded and stinks of piss, they also chewed some wires and studs. Currently in the process of getting it cleaned up and repaired. They used one way exits to get rid of them. Not the route I would have chosen but not my call. Anyway, this one squirrel visited my basement window like clockwork for about a week once he was evicted begging to be let back in. IMG_4425.MOV
  3. I took a good spill this year for the first time after years without any. I was trying to land a large striper and kind of panicked instead of staying put where I was. One wrong step with korker spikes that should have already been changed. I went down hard on my forearm and shoulder. Luckily nothing more than some cuts and bruises. Still managed to landed the fish. Ordered new spikes when I got home. I got lucky could have been much worse.
  4. @CWitek is there any discussion on moving up or changing the slot limit to protect the 2015 year class? I imagine that in the next year or two the 2015 year class would be in the slot if they aren’t already.
  5. It would be interesting to know I’m sure it is a big number. Most mornings I lose count as they work their way down the beach. I still think it would only be a small sliver of the pie when compared to real issues facing the fishery. Rec release mortality, commercial harvest, and poaching are the main problems imo.
  6. Come on Osprey’s?! I hope you’re being sarcastic. Rebounds of predatory species like Seals and Ospreys definitely add a new variable to the equation. That said people, fisherman specifically, are the problem plain and simple. That and consistent low recruitment are why there are less small bass.
  7. I always got mine inspected on the first of the month. That way i can would get an extra month each time to get any issues fixed before inspection. No more of that, oh well…
  8. I’m sure many of you have already seen the bad news. Not really a surprise the way things have been trending for the last decade. Surprised there wasn’t a thread already so figured I would start one.
  9. Must be the headlamp guys use at the canal blinding me from the other side all night.
  10. Another important note is how you fight the fish. When targeting big fish you need a heavy rod and a tight drag. Playing big fish to exhaustion is a sure way to kill them. I fish the canal a lot for example and use a stout 3-8 ounce rod even when throwing bucktails as light as 1 ounces. I tighten my drag to about 11-12lbs or so. Most guys are probably in the 6lb range. A 20lb fish barely takes any drag even when the current is ripping. You pull a few more hooks but those fish weren’t hooked well anyway and the chance of landing them is low. I see too many guys under gunned playing big fish for far too long. Getting the fish in as quick as possible gives them the best chance of surviving.
  11. This is great advice here and something most guys don’t do. You have to move and actively find bait and fish. Change how you are making a presentation a few feet can be the difference and casting angles matters. This is even more true on an open beach when compared to a boulder field or an inlet. But, even there you still have to move and change how you are presenting your bait or lure. If you just stand in one spot and cast as far as you can making the same presentation over and over again your only chance is to get lucky that fish swim by. That is a bad formula for success. Once you find fish move with them. They usually move down a beach a specific direction. Each beach is different but once you figure out how they move down it most days are similar. As Highlander said everyone takes skunks but following his formula is the best way to be successful.
  12. I find it’s the more experienced guys who should know better that mug the worst at the canal imo. They just scurry down in groups and push you out. I don’t really blame noobs we all start somewhere and they just don’t know better. I try and explain the rotation and tell them what weight I’m using when jigging. A lot of them keep a respectable distance and take to the advice. Most of the newer guys at least try after I explain it to them. A newer kid had half his one piece end up in the water earlier this year. I showed him how to put it on so it wouldn’t fly off. You run into issues if your casting far and they just can’t yet. The timing of the rotation inevitably gets messed up. I don’t like to intimidate new guys though better to try and show them the right way of doing it. Similar with father/grandfather with son/grandson. I’ll usually happily move down or give up the spot. I don’t like to be the dick and ruin what could be a positive memory we can all relate to.
  13. Weightless and slightly weighted hooks such as the owner beasts or similar are great in the right conditions. Don’t overlook jig heads though especially in spots with more current. I like really light jig heads 1/4 and 1/2 with the giant 13” plastics. The jigheads with light rod tremors and a slow retriever give the big plastics a really seductive action.
  14. Hard to keep alive?!? I would consider worms to be one of the easiest baits to keep alive and the cheapest. Compared to baitfish they are a breeze. If your trolling tubes, worms are chump change after all the other expenses of boating and I think not worth skipping to save a few bucks. Pork rinds would work and so would a tube with nothing on it but not nearly as effective as worms. It’s the natural scent imo that makes the tube and worm great. I think the spiral of the tube makes the fish follow and scent of the worm is what makes them go in for the take. Remember, Striped Bass have an incredible sense of smell. Much better than their eyesight. They have two nostrils that can constantly smell that is separate from breathing like humans or other mammals. Something I learned from my dad was to use small pieces natural sea sponge soaked in a ground up chum of whatever bait you want. You can use frozen mackerel, pogies, clams, or mix of whatever you like or have in the freezer. Drill some small holes in the bottom of your tube and stuff a small piece of chum soak sponge in there. Needle nose pliers work great for stuffing it in there and taking it out. Cycle your sponge with a fresh piece every 15 minutes or so as you check for weeds. Put a sea worm on as you normally would or use the gulp substitute just to add length, action and most importantly confidence. I grew up trolling with my dad before seriously getting into surf fishing. Tube and worm, parachute jigs on wire, and bunker spoons are my original bread and butter. I know it gets bashed on this site but there are a lot more little nuances to trolling than just dropping down and putting around.
  15. Not trying to be mean but that might be the single most reckless **** I’ve ever heard. Depending on the tide if you missed devils foot your screwed.