On the second of August I decided on trying a rock mark on loch Dunvegan just north of the Castle. It was blowing a strong SSE so I resoned it would be pretty sheltered here. Bait was fresh mackerel fished on a 4/0 pulley rig. Fishing at about 100yds I was in around 50ft of water. Pretty much from the word go it was a succession of small ling ranging from about 1 to 3lbs. Eventually after a few hours one of the bigger brothers turned up weighing in at 6lb. Not a bad day considering the weather everywhere else and I now know where to turn if I want some ling for the BBQ.
With my dad desperate to get back up to neist point we managed to get a day when we were both off work and decided to make a day of it. Unfortunately we picked a day with one of the biggest tides in August a 4.7m dropping to 1.4m. Suffice to say it was like looking onto a raging river. First few casts were futile with my 7oz grip lead being swept past me at what felt like 50 knots. After an hour we approached slack water and managed to hold bottom eventually. My dad was into a fish first and pulled in a nice Spurdog of about 7lb. A few more around the same size came to both of us all on a 6/0 pulley with frozen mackerel. A new species for 2013 made an appearance in the form of a Short Spined Sea Scorpion. Beautiful fish through not the easiest to handle. Kind of like a hedgehog of the sea with all those spines. Impressed it managed to gulp down a 6/0 sakuma though. With a distinct lack of mackerel we were being fairly frugal with the baits. This gave me an opportunity to try a new game though which involved trying to catch as many fish as possible on one mackerel head. I was amazed by my third pollack when the bait was looking a bit sorry for itself but by the fourth I was properly impressed. Halfway through our session a creel boat came by and pulled his pots up literally 50ft from the shore. I have no idea how we managed to avoid snagging his ropes but upon inspection of the rope as he pulled it onboard we could see an array of feathers, spinners, rigs and gripleads. Beautiful sunset on our departure and a few bottlenose dolphins gave us a sendoff.
Following almost a week of incessant rain I grabbed the opportunity on a bright dry day to try a mark on loch bracadale. On arrival the water was still fairly coloured due to the amount of freshwater that had came off the hills. Baited up a 6/0 pulley with frozen mackerel which produce the usual swarm of dogfish. Finally the rod tip started bouncing signalling something better than a 1lb dogfish. Got a cracking fight off this lovely 8.5lb thornback. Im really starting to fall in love with these Sakuma circle hooks, lip hooked every time which minimizes the stress on the fish and makes unhooking so much easier. Once weighed it sat in the water for a bit before gliding back to the depths. After about an hour of nothing I struck into a bite which I would've bet money was a dogfish. No fight all the way in then as soon as the shockleader broke the surface all hell broke loose. After the belated fight I got it ashore and into the scales. Weighed in at 10lb but as you can see by the photo the wingtips were bright pink. This indicates the fish is stressed and needs to be returned to the water immediately but gently. Can only guess that because it spent so long fighting in this layer of freshwater on the surface it was in distress.
Have to say in was nice getting out fishing among the poor weather but I was a bit dissapointed by the state of Neist point. Not wanting to have a rant but the amount of fishing debris there was disgusting. Bundles of line, rusting hooks and bait packets littered the rocks. Along with this there were multitudes of beer cans and juice bottles jammed in cracks in the rocks. I know some of this may have been from sightseers but the fishing gear is definitely from anglers. Unfortunately there no bins at Neist point but when driving back through glendale and dunvegan you pass quite a few bins where you could easily dump your rubbish. I filled two carrier bags of detritus just from where I was fishing and it didnt add that much weight to what I was carrying back up to the carpark. Seriously if you can carry it down with you then carry it back up. Neist point is a stunning place with some of the best wildlife on Skye. I hate to see it being littered by the small proportion of anglers too lazy to take their rubbish with them. Rant over.