I have a love-hate relationship with Tope. They are one of my favourite species to catch. Hard fighting with powerful runs and the whole element of danger handling a toothy critter on the kayak makes fishing for these small sharks quite exhilarating. Whist brilliant fun to catch, I have blanked far more times than I have caught when fishing for them and after several back-to-back blanks it can be frustrating to keep targeting them. Nevertheless, they present a challenge, and it wouldn’t be half as interesting targeting these fish if they were jumping onto the hooks every cast!
After the success of the first Tope trip Kieren wanted in on the action so we headed off to the North Coast for another short evening session. It would be the first time Kieren, Elliot and myself would be fishing together on the kayaks so we were hoping for fish all round. Conditions were less than ideal with a fair chop being whipped up by a brisk onshore wind. We battled our way out to the mark and dropped the mackerel baits down....
I have often contemplated targeting Tope from the kayak but have never got round to trying for them. News was in of Tope showing on the North Cornwall coast so hatched a plan to dedicate a session targeting them. A bit of research online into rigs, gear and conditions and I was ready. I spent the evening before tying tope traces – 8/0 Mustad o'shaughnessy hook double crimped to 12” of 100lb Sakuma coated Wire biting trace attached via a swivel to 5ft of 80lb Fluorocarbon rubbing leader. If I hooked one I wanted to land it!
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