Family Fishing – On an October night

Well, my bluff was well and truly called, as both Mike and Katie decided they wanted to come fishing with me tonight. My jaw hit the floor as I expected only a rude rebuff at the idea of abandoning a night in front of the TV/computer/iPad in exchange for keeping the dog amused on an East Lothian beach in the darkness of an October evening.

Fair enough though – pack another rod and choose a more accessible beach than originally planned and we headed off just as it got dark to try for a few flounders. I’ve launched the inflatable before at Whitesands beach, near Dunbar, and although I’ve never actually fished it I reckoned it was worth a go, and didn’t involved wandering around too much in the dark.

Katie and Michael with Bonnie the dog on Whitesands beach. Katie reeling in (nothing) on Whitesands on an October evening Bonnie trying to rescue her tennis ball after Mike buried it under the beach.

On arrival we found it flat calm, with no wind at all – very nice for the humans, but probably not that attractive for the fish. I’d been expecting a small swell to be running but there was nothing bigger than a ripple in the bay. Oh well! We got a couple of rods rigged anyway and lobbed a 2 hook flapper rig, baited with mackerel, out 10 and 20 yards respectively and plonked the rods in their rest and waited.

Mike and Katie played with the dog as it chased balls in the dark, whilst I played with a new lens for my camera and took a few night shots for practice (and I need a lot more practice to get decent pics without a flash). Reeling in the baits from time to time saw them stripped by crabs or prawns within minutes of hitting the seabed, so it became obvious fairly early on that we’d be lucky to get much.

A lovely night on the Forth, with the Plough constellation showing clearly above my rod tips The lighthouse at Barns Ness shows up in the darkness, with Torness providing the backlighting Lights from May Island and further afield, seen from Whitesands beach

And so it proved – by the time we ran out of bait our only catch was a crab that didn’t let go quickly enough. A little disappointing as other beaches can fish their heads off at this time of year, but a perfectly fine evening to be out. The kids seemed to enjoy getting out, and the dog certainly did!

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