Northern Bites by Steve Walker – 16th August

by Steve Walker

Mackerel have increased in numbers over the last several days with some quality bags reported from all of the region’s piers where float tackle and lure fishing has produced plenty of double figure bags. The rare shad have been landed at North Gare and Roker piers. Lures and float fished fish and worm baits have accounted for the odd bigger coalfish, pollack, cod, herring and scad (horse mackerel). Those anglers bait fishing on the bottom have taken the usual various flatfish species with small coalfish and whiting during daylight hours. Late evening and night tides continue to produce bigger whiting and dogfish from the piers and Durham beaches.

Boat anglers have enjoyed some productive days out and when mackerel can be found some nice ling have been taken on fresh bait. Cod seem to be present in reasonable numbers this year though ling are still the dominant species from the hard ground marks. The Flamer 2 out of Hartlepool produced a cod of 14lb for Ian Dixon and the trip also saw pollack and cod to 10lb landed. The Sarah JFK out of the Tyne produced a ling of 15lb 12oz for Dave Collinson. Jimmy Cassidy had one of 14lb 5oz on the same trip and pollack to 9½lb and toothy catfish to 7lb were also netted.

Sixteen year old Jordan Evans on his first ever sea fishing trip had a day out on the Erinskay out of Amble and landed a fine pollack of 11lb among lots of mackerel.

Paul Hardy out in his own boat Aquaholic took an excellent trio of ling weighing 12lb, 14lb and 16lb. Richard Roll took angling partners Jason and Dave out on his boat Stingray last midweek taking over 250lb of fish, all over 4lb. Jason had the heaviest with a ling of 11lb 9oz and Richard a cod of 8lb.

Tony Rutherford fishing the rough ground 500 yards off Craster aboard Bon Amy took nineteen cod all around 3lb. During the outing Dave Thompson landed a Pollock of 7lb and Brian Corkhill had a ling of 8lb.

The last Whitley Bay summer league match fished at Newton saw Andy Grief win with two cod for 6lb 2oz, Phil Gee in second had two for 5lb 6oz and Michael Clark finished third with a single fish of 5lb 2oz. The current leader after four matches, with three legs remaining, is Andy Grief with 21lb 2oz and the new heaviest fish is Michael’s cod mentioned above.

Dave Rogers reports cod to 7lb from St. Abbs and Dave Cruddas fishing at Craster landed a specimen dogfish of 4lb. Tynemouth A.C. had an away day match last week with five members fishing at Eyemouth. Doug Spivey won with two wrasse and a cod for 5lb 1oz, Marty Elliott had a pollack and a wrasse for 2lb 10oz and second place while third went to Ritchy Muir with a single pollack of 1lb 14oz. Doug had the heaviest fish with a wrasse of 2lb 1oz.

Tynemouth A.C. also fished Tynemouth Pier on Sunday with three out of twenty-two weighing in on a tough day. Eddie Borthwick had two mackerel for 2lb 2oz, Ian Kerr finished second with a pollack of 1½lb which was also the heaviest fish and Kevin Taylor-Walker took the final place with a cod of 1lb 7oz.

Tynemouth A.C. retired members fished the pier on Monday and had better results. Doug Spivey won with four coalies and three cod, best 2lb 13oz, for a 9lb 4oz total. In second was Tony Taylor with seven coalfish and a whiting for 7lb 1oz, followed by Bob Blackhall who had a dab and a cod for 1lb 12oz.

Seaton Sluice A.C. fished a catch and release match on the river Aln and found plenty of smaller flounders showing. Tony Stanford won with fifteen for 7lb 9oz with Barry Tweddle in second with eight for 4lb 7oz. Third spot went to Martin Pygal who had eleven fish weighing 4lb 5oz and Nigel Gemmel had seven at 3lb 3oz and fourth place.

A recent Northumberland sweepstake saw Barry Tweddle win with four fish for 7lb 15oz from Beadnell, Steve Williams had three for 3lb 13oz and Andy Little had a single fish of 3lb 7oz.

The Ryhope Tuesday evening sweepstake saw fourteen fishing the Wear. Steve Harriman took first with a flounder of 1lb 6oz with Jim Dobie second on 1lb 3oz and there was a tie for third place with Anthony Lowther and Mick Davison each having flounders of 13oz.

Seaham juniors fished for the Fox trophy last Saturday. Jed Charlton won with three mackerel for 3.24lb, best 1.14lb, and Owen Barrass had two mackerel for 1.74lb. The club’s seniors fished for the Richardson trophy on Sunday when Ken Slater won with four fish for 4.16lb, Dave Heron had four for 3.63lb and Robbie Newton three for 3.50lb.

The last Saltburn A.C. match fished in the Gare basin saw thirteen out of the seventeen entrants land twelve flounders, four coalies and a weaver fish. Bernard Westgarth won with five flounders for 113cm, Mike Blott had two flounders and a weaver for second with 50cm and third went to Mike Whincup who landed two flounders and a coalfish for 42cm. Guy Mason had the longest flatfish with 34cm and Nick Westgarth and Paul Lobley tied for the longest roundfish each with coalfish of 12cm.

Flounders also showed in the Redcar Navy and Gentleman club match but only one was size. Dave Allinson took the lone fish to win with 1lb 1oz, the remaining fourteen anglers fishing all had undersize specimens.

Looking ahead to the coming winter season Seaham A.C. are hosting some big open matches this year. October 18th sees the Anyfish Anywhere Open with a first prize of £500 plus a £2000 prize table. Entry is £12. On the Saturday there is an Anyfish Anywhere tackle roadshow where you can try out various rods and other tackle items. On the Saturday evening there will be a talk and presentation by Julian Shambrook and guests. Food and refreshments will be available and tickets are £5 each, limited to 50. Contact the Seaham clubhouse on 0191-5810321 for details.

The 42nd Seaham Open shore championship on Sunday November 29th sees a prize table of £10,000 – the biggest open in the country this year. Sea Angler magazine have donated a complete fishing tackle collection worth £1500 for the main raffle prize. Fishing is from 11am till 4pm between Hendon Groyne and Dene Holm Pipe. Basic entry is £15. Top prizes for the best three heaviest single fish are £1500, £600, and £400. Total cash fund is £2500 with a huge prize table of £7500. Registration on the Saturday is from 10am, and on Sunday from 8am. More details nearer the time, for all enquiries contact

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