After-Work Tope Fishing
A Race to the Fish....
There is nothing more rewarding after a busy day of work than getting on a kayak and escaping the world for just a few hours. The moment the kayak glides off the beach nothing else matters. It's fishing time!
With work closing at 5:30pm we can be launching on the north coast by 6:30pm and with last light at 10:30pm we have more than enough time to catch a few fish. Everything is strategically loaded into the Cornwall Canoes van, with everything set up as much as possible to save time when setting up. I do love light evenings!
Evening tides are usually big tides and big tides are great for Tope, and we love nothing better than fishing for Tope! One evening when the calm weather and tide coalesced we headed down to a beach after work and launched for a few hours targeting these small sharks. Andrew on his Viking ProFish Reload and myself pedalling the Hobie Revolution 16. Fast fishing kayaks to get us to the fish quicker! We headed a little way out and dropped our anchors in a tasty looking spot. It took a little while but eventually the unmistakable sign of a Tope attacking the bait came along. Fish on and i could tell it was a better fish. Holding tight to the bottom and running hard. On braid, these fish feel immense as they power off! This fish was angry and refused to come near the kayak. It is always a great sight seeing a big grey shape appear from the depths as you peer over the side of the kayak. After many runs back too the bottom i had the fish under control and pulled it onto my lap.
A quick measure and the length and girth dimensions gave a calculated weight of 33lb!
That was me well happy! As with all Tope we catch, it is a case of measure, photo and then release. There really is nothing better than seeing one of these beautiful fish swim strongly back to the bottom.
Andrew had to wait until sunset before a Tope found his bait amongst a proliferation of dogfish. I up anchored and headed over to take a photo. It was a lively fish and gave him a right run around! A nice Tope of around 20lb.
Time was now running out with the fading light, but i had just enough time to winkle out one more fish. A smaller fish than the first at around 20lb but still an excellent fight.
We arrived back at the beach just as the last of the light was fading. A successful few hours on the water. We could easily have just gone home after work but even a short time on the water is better than none. Happy days!
Tandem Tope Fishing
A few days later i returned with Holly on our tandem kayak. I have been wanting to take Holly out fishing for the Tope for a while now and it has taken a bit of persuading to get her to have a go. She is no stranger to catching sharks and has had a few Blues from the boat, but it is a little more daunting from a kayak. The biggest challenge is 'the cold'. There would be no complaining of the cold today as she is now kitted up with some very nice Palm paddle clothing from their Womens range, including the Atom Womens Pants, Seti Thermals, Vantage Jacket and topped off with the Meander Buoyancy Aid...In snazzy purple of course!
Within 5 minutes of dropping the bait down her rod was bent over with a fish taking the bait. The next 5 minutes were quite funny as she took the strain of a powerful Tope!
She did well and played the fish right to the kayak. I had to do the shark cuddling though! 😂 A lovely 20lb Tope for Holly and swiftly released after this photo.
The rest of the session was dead and i had to make do with one bite for a Bull Huss that spat the hook at the kayak.... That's fishing!
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