THERE have been early signs that this year’s boating season is already getting under way.
Rob Myles and Jim Glew, fishing off Hartlepool aboard ‘Darlin’, landed a dozen codling between 4 and 7lb, with pirks baited with squid doing the business. The Rising Sun Rodbenders enjoyed sport on Hartlepool boat Famous, taking 24 cod, two ling, three good coalfish and plenty of good-sized pout, the best fish a cod of 6.5lb.
Ten anglers aboard a new charter boat, ‘Sapphire’ (Peter on 0191 542 0326), fishing out of Sunderland, took reasonable numbers of cod and ling to 5lb.
Arthur Smeaton, fishing off Cullercoats from his boat ‘Lazy Days’, took half a dozen fish to 5lb.
There has been another specimen flounder taken. Lenny Davies, fishing from South Shields Ferry landing, took one of 45cm, estimated at around 3lb. Only a few codling have been taken by pleasure anglers – Trevor Ferry taking one of 3lb from the pipe, with a few to 3lb coming from Dulce Carrs, Hare Point, and Roker pier.
Gary Pye has had the best result in recent matches. During Easington Welfare’s match, Pye took the heaviest fish section with a codling of 4.9lb and heaviest bag with 13 fish for 15lb.
The Tyne giving reasonable mixed bags Ian Hodgkinson won Albert SAC’s match with six fish for 6lb 7oz, Peter Graves taking seven for 5lb 12oz, both having flounder of 1lb 6oz in their bags. With a few whiting hanging around Seaham pier, Dean Furness won Seaham’s Clifford plate with eight for 5.76lb.
Hartlepool pier’s still the best marks for whiting with bags of 30 fish being taken, along with decent-sized flounder. In a good sign for the spring, a few plaice to around 1lb have started to show from Roker and Blyth piers and Lynemouth beach.
Good-sized flounder to 1.5lb are still being taken in the Wear, especially from The Business Park, Claxheugh, and Southwick Promenade, best bait worm tipped with mackerel. The flounders have still been showing in the River Wear with fish up to 1 ½ lb. Congratulations to Sunderland anglers Chris Hossack who took the heaviest fish, a codling of 2465g (5.4lb), winning £2,000 on the first day of the European Beach Championships at Bridlington, and Steve Graham and Ken McCoy who won the overall pairs event with 6755g (14.8lb) winning £750. Hossack and Richie Carr took second place in the pairs with 3565g (7.9lb), winning £450.
Ken McCoy, Neil Cutler, Gareth Gardner and Steve Graham came second in the team event with 11300g (24.8lb). The overall winner of the two-day event which attracted 872 anglers was Stu Voase of Hornsea with a cod of (4885g) (10.76lb) winning £4000.