I think that myself and Allen knew that even though there was a howling wind across Ireland for the day we were going to get out on the Hobie’s somewhere for a cast. I stopped off at the first lake to have a look as going to sea was completely out of the question. The first lake was like a washing machine with white horses making their way across one side of the lake to the next, not a good sign and on to the next lake.
Thankfully the next lake is very secluded and hidden away behind a good number of trees which sheltered it from the harsh wind. We decided to have a go at some Pike as there was not much else we could do and being fisherman we were going to try and catch anything. So we met at the lake and rigged up. I was trying my new Daiwa Emeraldas spooled with 20lb Daiwa J-Braid. I have to say that this is one stunning looking reel and with the mag sealed technology it is as smooth as anything. The second rod had my trusty Daiwa Ninja spooled with the ultra thin 9lb J-Braid. Also a value for money reel but quality all the same. When using a braided mainline and lure fishing I always use a fluorocarbon leader. It is just habit and gives me more confidence when fishing lures. I was sent over some Daiwa Tournament Fluorocarbon in varying strengths. This leader is really nice to use as it has an almost stiff feel but still being soft which does not make much sense but it ties really well and has a good feel about it.
We knew that the lake is mostly populated by smaller Pike and thus the lure of choice was a 6.5cm Duck Fin Shad in UV Chartreuse colour. A great colour variation by Daiwa as it glows in the dark and is also a vibrant chartreuse colour with gold flake. With the water having a bit of colour this colour would be somewhat visible. The second lure I wanted to try out was the 6.5cm Daiwa Popper Frog in Albino colour. Although not the best conditions I thought I might as well give it a go as it is fishing at the end of the day.
With the rods rigged my plan was to slow troll the soft shad and cover the most amount of water to see where fish may be more congregated. Using the lowrance fishfinder I wanted to try and find varying bottom conditions which might hold Pike waiting to ambush anything that comes past them.
I made my way around the lake which is not a very large one at that and quickly came across my fist take. Not a very big fish but when using such light gear a small fish always puts up a great account of itself. The small pike nailed the soft shad and using a light 10g Daiwa Jig Head with a 4/0 hook was perfect for the hookup. Letting Allen know I had one I let the Pike go after a photo. A nice way to start.
I carried on around the lake but struggled to find another take until I came to the same area of the lake when instantly I was hooked up again. It seemed the Pike were very concentrated in this area, Another small pike but they were loving the Daiwa soft shad and this time the pike removed the tail off it. By this time Allen had landed a fish of his own and also had a trout take the soft shad but threw the hook at the side of the Hobie.
Staying in the area I decided to cast and work the soft bait on the bottom which showed to be a weedy area on the edge of a drop off. I cast out and let the bait sink to the bottom before lifting it up off the bottom and dropping it again back towards the kayak. I have to say it is a great feeling to have a fish take the lure on the lifting of the lure. I was in again but this time a slightly better pike. I did however change to another lure in the Daiwa range, Full of life, the pike made a good few runs before letting me get a fist look at him. With the water temperatures up the Pike were very energetic and tail walking. This Pike was a better fish for the lake and I was delighted with it on my lap ready for a photo before releasing it.
I continued trolling again with the Duckfin Shads and had a few more Pike but the they were all pretty small and very hungry. They were attacking the lure with force and using light gear is so much fun. The light braid really lets you feel every bump on the lure and also how the lure is working.
Another great way to spend a day when the weather prevents fishing out in the sea. What more could we have asked for. Allen had a few more Pike as well before we decided to call it a day. I really enjoyed these feisty Pike and it was great to see a healthy number of them at the location. Lets hope it stays that way.
Until next time,