As we approach the end of June and losing a few days to the weather, we take a look back at an incredible month. June started with amazing fishing, with plentiful packs of Tope, Smooth hounds and mackerel still fairly easy to find.
Every trip bar the last one produced Tope to 40lb + and one amazing day producing 30+ Tope in 4 hrs crazy fishing only to be cut short by the weather which arrived earlier than expected. A day out on the overfalls and French banks produced bass on most drifts with the majority being in the 3-5lb bracket.
Our first Sharking trips have taken place, sadly no hook ups yet only lots of small Tope, but we have seen one free jumping Thresher which is always a awesome sight.
Towards the end June we had the Sea Angling Classic in which we had entered the Charter Boat section. There was some stiff competition with the likes of Glen and Zac Cairns running their Valkyrie charters and the Wetwheel boats from Portsmouth and Hamble. Our 2 teams consisted of Steve Batchelor and Colin Searles both England international anglers and myself with our secret weapon in the one and only Mr Peter Churchill aka (Mr Tope).
The plan was to use Peters 30+ years of knowledge about the tides, marks and fish behaviour. After an exciting start with over 60 boats racing from the start line, we managed to secure our first mark without to much hassle, although I didn’t get the anchoring spot on as got pointed out! We all fished our socks off and by the end of day 1 Peter and I finished in 1st position.
Day 2 was going to be more tricky as we knew we had a target painted on our backs. But we managed to get on our marks, again my anchoring wasn’t quite up to the standard of Mr Churchill although close enough for us to catch our intended species. By lunchtime the fishing had slowed up, more to do with the amount of boats flying around than the tides I think, but this is where Steve and Colin really showed us why they fish for England. Constantly changing baits and rigs for the different target species and to be pulling out fish while I was lifting the anchor made the difference.
At the presentation event held in Portsmouth historic dockyard, the excitement of everyone involved was electric. Harvest Moon won 1st in the charter boat section with Steve and Colin getting 1st place and Peter and I coming in 2nd spot. Plans for next year’s event are already in place.
The only thing that made the result of the Sea Angling Classic better was receiving a email from CEFAS to inform me that I had been picked from the application process to be one of only 25 boats legally allowed to target Bluefin Tuna in the UK. This is something I have been working towards for the past few years and can’t wait to give people the chance to catch these amazing fish. More details to follow if you fancy booking a trip of a lifetime!
Stuart Newell, “Harvest Moon”
(Contact Stuart on 07919 001400 or British Big Game Charter on Facebook)