I don’t usually do any coarse fishing as I love to eat what I catch, but with the bad weather and other duties I haven’t been able to get out to sea for the past couple of months, so I was getting cabin fever.
The weather picked up in that the wind died down a bit, so time to dust off the kayak and head to a small lake not to far away and try for a pike.
Now as I say, coarse fishing is not my thing so I was equipped with just the bare essentials – a rod and a couple of lures. No dead baiting or spinning or any fancy tactics, just lob out my pike lure and troll. This achieves two things – first you keep warm with the paddling and second you get to cover a lot of ground.
So off I headed to Mullagh Lake, just across the border in Cavan. It’s a lovely little lake with a very handy launch site and convenient car park. None of this hauling kayaks across miles of inhospitable territory just to get to the water! I’m getting too old for that shit.
The really observant among you will notice the GoPro sitting just in front of the fishfinder. No self respecting pike angler would be caught dead without his GoPro or other such video camera to make sure he captured that specimen fish and the ensuing battle in all it’s glory!
Which brings us along nicely to my first fish. So I trolled across the lake to the far side. Then tried along a few reedy spots but kept snagging. Then I headed down along a stretch of shoreline that was covered in Rhododendrons where the water was around 2m deep. I felt a couple of tugs which I thought was weed snags but then bang! Fish on!
Once I knew the hook was set I reached over to turn on the GoPro. I have to leave it switched off when it’s in the waterproof housing because it steams up if left on. So I turned on the power and then hit the record button on top. Camera running, I focussed on the fish and a great one he was too. I played him in nicely to the side of the kayak, got my fingers under the jaw and lifted him in. A beauty of about 15lbs and a personal best for me. I unhooked him, held him up for the camera and duly released him, back to fight another day.
Pleased as punch with myself, I reached over to switch off the camera. I pressed the top button to stop recording and then noticed the red light blinking – it had started recording! WTF? I realised that when I first pressed the button to record it hadn’t actually started recording and with the excitement of catching and landing my fish, I hadn’t noticed. Lesson learned.
My reaction when I realised I hadn’t turned the camera on. Just as well you can’t hear what I’m saying quietly to myself……….
So on to the fishing. Another stretch of trolling produced another fine pike. Not quite a big as the first (then the one that got away was always bigger) but still a fine fish. This time the camera worked!
A fine Mullagh Pike.
So that was my catch for the day. I spent about 5 hours out on the lake and it was a most enjoyable day. The little bit of wind that was there earlier died down in the evening and the setting sun threw up some lovely light over the flat calm water.