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October 28, 2011

IRELAND: 183lb skate on 12lb rod

On a recent trip aboard my Red Bay Fast Fisher, the weather was horrendous with near gale force wind and torrential rain. Being quite “certifiable”, we still wanted a day out on the water somewhere, even if it was simply sheltered behind a headland fishing for pollack and wrasse. We opted for the north coast as this would give us a little protection from the strong southerlies.
In the lee of the headland, we managed to find some fantastic pollack fishing on light tackle, with fish to double figures and also a bonus specimen cuckoo wrasse. As the tide turned and the area became un-safe, we decided to anchor over an in-shore sand bank in the hope of finding a small ray or two. After a few obligatory dogfish, Glenn and Big Phil found a blonde ray each, before Glenn lifted into something some-what larger!It was obvious he had found a common skate that had ventured close in to shore. This in itself is interesting, but  the skate was taken on 12lbs class tackle and a light flouro-carbon  hook-length. Playing the fish with a great deal of skill for over an hour, he managed to bring it to the surface and realise his goal of landing a “ton-up” fish. The measurements put the female skate at 183lbs. Glenn deserves a pat on the back for landing such a sizeable fish on very light tackle.

Terry Jackson

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