Dog day at Bracadale

The Runner

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Tried another new mark today over on Loch Bracadale near Ullinish. Its quite a boggy and rough walk in but only a bit more than half a mile so not too bad. Was armed with my last three mackerel fillets from last year's supply, no sign of them so far for me this year on my normal spot for them, some squid in case couldn't find any mackerel, and small selection of lures for spinning rod, and would fish tide three hours up and three down.
Was just setting up when a small boat puttered round the corner, bloke on it stopped about 20 yards out for a chat and helpfully informed me that the loch was full of mackerel at the moment. Even more helpfully when setting his crab pots, he left a fifty yard gap in front of me between the two lines so I could fish without worrying about snagging the pots or rope. Put a decent sized strip of mackerel on a 1/0 and punched it out about 80 yards, 4oz lead took about 15 seconds to hit bottom so a good depth. Was just setting up spinning rod when water close in erupted with 2 to 3 inch fish scattering everywhere so changed rig to have a couple of tinselly lures above the usual little paddletail on a 10gm jighead .
First three chucks, nine mackerel...So thats the bait sorted, good fun on spinning gear
Beheaded, gutted and fresh mackerel on the hook; dropped a bit shorter as reckoned any better fish might be following the mackerel closer in, hit bottom, tip slammed round, another mackerel. And for a while that's how things continued, looking like might be hard to get through to anything bigger. Switched to squid on the hook, stopped the mackerel bites, after half an hour had a three foot twitch that somehow missed but nothing more. Tide running quite hard now so switched to a grip lead and let it fish itself while I had more fun with the mackerel. Put a small Dexter Wedge on and decided to see how many consecutive chucks could get a mackerel on. Answer, 29....near the top of the tide now, no more bites on the squid , so up to a 4/0 and put a much bigger piece of mackerel on, waited about ten minutes and the tip banged a few times, resulting in a dogfish. Missed the next two bites so back to a smaller hook and bait, four more doggies in the next 90 minutes and got bitten off (on 30lb mono) by something- one nod of the tip, thought I'd missed it , and came back without a hook. Thought one of the dogs was going to be something better as rod was right over, mostly almost a dead weight but could feel the kick of a fish- expecting a ray to surface but just the dog plus a load of weed on the spikes of the lead.
Quiet again towards half tide down so busied myself with the mackies again, still one a chuck. No idea how many I must have had, but 18 of them are now in the freezer which will keep me in bait for a few trips (Was going to be 20 but two ended up on the grill when I got home)
A few shots, mark and doggies. Note spinning rod plastered with mackerel scales....
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Silverfisher

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Sounds good fun getting mackerel on lures like that! Cut down feathers with a big dexter as the weight is one of my favourite methods for them, gets the odd bonus fish on the dexter as well. Got a soft spot for the humble doggy as well, they’ve added action to many an otherwise quiet day.
 
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