On Sunday just gone, the 27th March, Cobh SAC held their third light line competition of 2011. As has been the case in every competition since this series started, the weather was ideal. All week the weather was more like early summer rather than spring and Sunday was no exception, albeit a bit hazy. Having said that it was chilly as the anglers gathered on the pier at 8:30am. However, as the clocks had changed the night before, it was really 7:30, so the early morning cold was to be expected.
Twelve anglers signed in and promptly boarded the two boats: the John Boy and the Naomh Cartha. Within twenty minutes of departure the boats were at the first designated fishing area between the forts in deep hole. Everyone was keen to get a good start and those aboard the John Boy, skippered by Donie Geary, weren't disappointed. Baits had hardly touched bottom when the first fish started coming onboard and Donie was soon kept busy marking scorecards as a steady stream of fish came over the gunwhales.
The competition was soon intense as Martin Perryman, Sandra O' Shea, and club treasurer, Pat O' Shea, led the way, with not much between them. Plenty of codling were showing and to a good size too, along with whiting, dabs, scorpion fish, lsd's, and coalfish.
The Noamh Cartha wasn't faring out aswell and made several moves to get amongst the fish. Nevertheless, good efforts were being made by Anthony Austin, James Brandon and Evan McGovern who put a bit of distance between themselves and the rest.
During the afternoon, on the top of the tide, many anglers were getting a few knocks on the way down. It was thought that there might be a big shoal of whiting at mid-water. Curiosity got the better of the club treasurer who left his baits at that depth. He was soon into fish, but not the expected quarry. A brace of mackeral were soon swung onboard.....the mackeral are in!!! The mackeral appeared plentiful and even at one stage were breaking at the aft of the boat. They didn't escape the attention of the resident pod of dolphins who were soon spotted coraling some of the bait fish for too far away.
All too soon it was time to head in. Once ashore we all headed for Tradewinds Restaurant, who had sponsored the day and prizes. A fine spread was laid on with some welcome soup, sandwiches, and goujons of freshly caught cod. With that vital refreshments under our belt, the prize giving could get under way. Newly elected vice-chairman, Danny Kane, did his bit as master of ceremonies. First up was the overall winner, Martin Perryman. Martin had caught 121 fish for an overall points total of 1729. 2cnd was Ozzy Austin, who had won his boat onboard the Naomh Cartha. Ozzy had 50 fish for a total of 745 points.
The fishing had been exceptional. There were 670 fish caught, making it an average of 56 fish per angler. A total of 283 cod were caught, along with 243 whiting, 131 dabs, 9 lsd, 1 coalfish, 2 scorpion fish, and 1 herring. Club treasurer had to console himself that at least he had caught the most cod with 70 codling.
Roll on the next light lines comp on Sunday 17th April....make sure you're there!