Lure fishing for Bass, or any other species is by far my favourite method of fishing. Its a light, mobile and sporting style that has given me a far greater success rate than any other method I have tried. This set of spring tides in May, normally heralds the start of the Bass fishing around the Dorset coast. I am up bright and early this morning to meet a couple of clients, in the hope that I can find some fish for them.


In a session I will often move marks several times as the tide changes.


Waders are not essential but they certainly help.


Despite tales to the contrary, you don’t need hundreds of lures in your box to catch. If I was only allowed to take one lure it would be my favourite the SeaSpin Pro-Q. More tackle shops are starting to stock the Seaspin range, the latest in Dorset is the Tackle Box in Lyme Regis.


Early morning and rough conditions are normally the best conditions for Bass.


I have to admit I struggle to get up in the mornings, but the first signs of the sunrise set me up for the day.


But you don’t have to get up at stupid o’clock to catch fish on lures, as I have had hundreds in the past few years during calm and bright conditions. You just need to know where to move as the tide changes, and with some luck you will find your quarry.


All the above pictures were taken by photographer Gavin Parsons on previous sessions with me. He will be joining me again this morning and hopefully my clients will have a great day. For more of Gavin’s photographs have a look at Gavin Parsons Photography 

It is not just lure fishing that should be good this weekend, with some big tides and water that is clearing nicely Chesil and other south coast beaches should fish well. Big tides normally mean Smoothound. I would expect to see more than a few caught. The Solent is starting to produce some good catches of Smoothound and Ray, and we normally see them around the same time.

Mackerel should be abundant as the water is so much clearer than it has been for a few weeks. I spotted several large shoals on Chesil yesterday.

Just in case you missed a couple of interesting articles this week then check out the information on Kayak fishing in Swanage Bay and the latest rod review of the Cinnetic Cautiva


Sea Conditions: 

Water temperature 12.4 °c.

Chesil Beach: flat calm with good clarity in the water. Visibility is around 5m

Portland: Calm and almost clear water

Portland Harbour: Calm with clear water

Weymouth Bay: Calm with  lightly coloured water.

Chesil Beach forecast: Mackerel, Smoothound, Plaice, Dogfish, Pout, Rays, Bream and Gurnard are all on the cards over the next couple of days. Admittedly the Bream and Gurnard won’t be around in large numbers, but they should start to show in the catches. Abbotsbury and West Bexington will be very busy this weekend, so it might well be worth choosing the Weymouth and Portland end of Chesil to get away from the crowds.

Portland: The conditions are almost perfect for fishing on Portland. I will be heading out in a couple of minutes in search of Bass, Pollock and Wrasse on lures. Sure you can pick them up on bait, but you normally have to go a bit heavy for that. Having said that, float fishing will pick up a few fish, especially smaller Wrasse on float fished Ragworm. Top marks for the next couple of days are Chesil Cove and Church Ope Cove, especially first and last light.

Portland Harbour: Mullet are shoaling up in Portland harbour around Sandsfoot Castle and Castletown. Bass and Flounder should be in the cards as well.

Weymouth Bay: The bay could well produce a lot of different species this weekend, as Rays and Smoothound come into the shallow water of Preston Beach after dark. It is also likely that there will be numerous Bass there, but they are normally quite small.

Both piers will have Pollock, Pout, Wrasse and Mackerel on them.

Lyme Regis: Mackerel from the Cobb and Mullet inside the harbour are the main target species at the moment. You will be able to pick up Flounder and the odd Plaice from the North Wall as well. Wrasse are a high possibility from the reefs surrounding the Cobb.

Guiding & Lessons: With the fishing season well under way I am taking bookings for lure and bait fishing guided sessions. I am also offering 2 hour long fishing workshops, for those wanting to learn some of the basic techniques.  Have a look on the guiding link at the top of the page or drop me an email for more details to

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