Thursday 16 May 2013

Gordon in Weymouth

With my jeep not behaving too well lately, and the Scottish boating weather being endlessly rubbish this year, I hatched one of my mad plans to pay a flying two day visit to Weymouth over the bank holiday weekend.
I called a couple of skippers and Colin Penny was able to accomodate me for Saturday and Sunday aboard his famous Flamer IV. I got digs booked up at the cheap'n'cheerful sailors Return hotel which is right on the Quayside and ordered some ragworm from Wemouth Angling Centre.

I left work on Friday afternoon and luckily got a fairly clear run down the road, stopping briefly in at the Warrior Boats factory in Leyland on the way and arriving in Weymouth at 11pm. As requested - I called the skipper (Hands free!) around 7pm and got some bad news. The forecast was saying SW Force 5-6 for Saturday afternoon - and Saturday's trip was therefore cancelled. Sunday was looking fine though. I was already on the road and the digs were booked - so I continued.

On arrival - the pub was bedlam and a karaoke was in full swing. I was the only sober person in the place, so had to have a few Guinnesses to blend in :-)
I got up early on Saturday to discover that some skippers were still heading out as normal. This made me feel even more frustrated - so after returning to bed for an hour,  I got up and went for a nine and a half mile run along the seafront, through the next town and over the cliffs - and back. Weather was lovely and sunny, but the wind was rising throughout the morning. As I got back into Weymouth, I could see boats coming back in - with a few green faced anglers on them. My skipper was right to cancel the day and the wind did exactly as forecast.

I met the skipper who told me we would be sailing at 7am on Sunday. This meant being up for 5.30 to organise bait, breakfast, booking out of digs, delivering gear to the boat and then car parking. I found out the pub had a rock band playing to after midnight on saturday - so went back to bed for a bit in the afternoon to stock up on some much needed sleep.

Sunday was a beautiful day with a light SW breeze. The plan was to alternate between plaice fising and turbot hunting as the tides would dictate throughout the day. The turbot didn't show much with only two small fish coming to the boat. I had an excellent day on the plaice though with 21 fish up to 3lb 14oz. I kept ten of these and returned the others. The pic shows how many boats are in one small spot on the Shambles Bank. This happens every single day here from March to November.

I had an easier journey home as I was staying with friends in Cheltenham on Sunday night. This left me five hours to drive on Monday. Great weekend, could have gone slightly better - but just very, very glad to get afloat and get some decent fishing done...............and a thousand miles of driving!