Northern Bites – 02/08/10

by Steve Walker

Settled conditions have led to an improvement in the shore sport improve from all areas with plenty of mackerel showing from all of the region’s piers, beaches and rock marks. Those anglers bait fishing have taken specimen plaice, dabs, flounders, cod, coalfish and good numbers of whiting are showing on evening and night time tides. All of the rivers have plenty of fish showing with specimen flounders reported from the popular marks in the Tyne and Wear. The lower Tyne has good numbers of smaller cod, coalfish, plaice and whiting present. The Northumberland rock edges are on top form with cod to 6lb, wrasse to 4lb, coalfish and pollack taking bottom fished baits. Some nice pollack are showing to lures and float-fished worm, mackerel and prawn baits with the bigger pollack showing from Eyemouth and St. Abbs. John Hepton had a personal best cod of 6lb plus another of 3lb during a recent session at Beadnell with both fish taken less than thirty yards out.

Mackerel anglers have also taken the rare shad, as well as the odd codling, coalfish, and pollack on both lures and float fished mackerel strip with Roker and South Shields piers producing the greater number of pollack. At Hartlepool it is mackerel all the way with the odd shad showing from the Pilot pier, Middleton and North Gare.

Those anglers travelling over to Cumbria and the Scottish marks on the Solway report good sport with plenty of quality flounders and the odd bass showing. Seaton Sluice had a match at Carsethorne where the flounders were out in force. Martin Pygall had sixteen for 12lb 2oz to finish in first place. Runner-up Chris Guthrie had twelve for 10lb 13oz, best of which weighed 2lb 2oz, and M. Bell in third had ten for 10lb 3oz.

Tynemouth retired member’s fished Tynemouth pier where mackerel were even taking bottom fished baits. Wilf Reed had two plaice, and two mackerel for 4lb 5oz ahead of Ken Robinson who had a specimen plaice of 2lb 2oz, a cod and a coalie for 4lb dead. Third spot went to Dave Hayley with a plaice and two mackerel weighing 3lb 2oz.

With plenty of fresh mackerel boat anglers have been taking some quality ling among good numbers of mainly smaller cod around the 2lb to 6lb mark. Keith Redden had ling of 14lb 7oz and 8lb, plus cod to 6lb while son Dean had cod of 12lb and 9lb and a ling of 9lb on their own boat For Goodness Sake out of Sunderland. Masses of mackerel off the Tyne have made getting down to the bottom for the bigger fish a bit of an ordeal but when possible some nice cod have been reported. Jimmy Cassidy had a cod of 22lb on the Sarah JFK, and the same trip produced ling of 18lb for Alan Black and Brian Warren. The Stingray has been finding the cod shoals again off the Tyne, a recent trip saw Richard Roll and friends take cod to 9lb and ling to 11lb. On another trip Bert Gray, Kenny Gray, and Keith Brown in their own boat landed seventy-six cod to 10lb together with four ling.

South West Scotland is a popular boat venue for those hoping for a bit of sport with the packs of tope that have become more common over recent years. Sunderland angler Richie Porter fishing in Luce Bay released a potential record tope estimated at 80lb with rough conditions preventing an accurate weighing.

August 8th sees the Ian Woods Heaviest Fish boat match being held from the Royal Quays in the Tyne, this is open to boats from any port but they must register at the Royal Quays from 7am or from selected tackle shops the week before. Basic entry is £10, fishing is from 8am till 4pm, weigh in up to 5.30pm. The categories are boats over 20ft, boats under 20ft, and kayak. Cash prizes for the first three heaviest fish plus prize table. Contact Sam Harris at or 0191 5184561.

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