Machrihanish Fishing Trip

07 May 2012
Summary

No trekking as such.

Details

A few months ago, Iain & I bought some fishing gear with the intention to get in touch with our inner hunter/gatherer and go eat direct and fresh from nature. Headed off to pick up Iain and the first thing I realised was that my waterproof jacket was still hanging up in the hallway at home. To be fair, when I got back, my jacket which was the very first one next to the door so I would not forget it, had been buried under my wife's and both kids' jackets! Will have to come up with another plan next time so I don't forget it. Luckily Iain had a spare jacket... there seems to be a theme developing here with our trips!

A beautiful, but quite long, drive to our home for the long weekend. The weather was glorious and the views fantastic. Arrived at the camp spot and set up the tent and tarp. One of the joys of car camping is the level of comfort you can get which is just too heavy when you have to carry everything.

Once everything was set up, we were off to the closest spur of rock to try our hand at fishing. Alas, after a few hours the only thing I had caught was seaweed. Slightly disappointed that there would be no fish for dinner that night, but happy to have tried out our fishing gear, we decided to try Iain's lobster pot. Weighted with stones and with a fish head in the bait bag it was carefully placed in what looked like a path between the seaweed. It was not until about midnight that night, when it was far too dark and the tide almost at high that we realised that we had forgotten to attach the night light to the pot!

The evening meal was the planned boil in the bag dinner next to an open fire! Another joy of car camping, the box of wood and the bag of peat to make a fire in an area largely devoid of trees. As this was the night of the supermoon it was the perfect excuse to sit by the fire and watch it rise over the hill.

Up bright and early the next day to start fishing 'properly'. We had scouted out a location that we thought would be ideal. There were gannets diving into the water and coming up with beakfuls of fish. The some dolphins or porpoises looked as though they were having a good hunt. We couldn't loose! At least that was the theory. In the 3 or so hours before we gave up, we had lost tackle, my reel had gone through some major line malfunction which required most of it to be cut off and the final nail in the fishing day coffin was Iain's fishing rod broke. Shortly before we called it a day a local came past and after politely asking if we had caught anything, told us in her 30 years living there, she had never seen anyone fish where we were.

Oh well, dinner was not going to have fresh fish and we had a back up plan! Smoked sausage kebabs instead of fish kebabs. Cooked over the awesome grilliput grill. This thing impressed - big enough to cook the 4 kebabs we had and stows away in the large tube for easy packing.

After some seriously good food [thank you Iain] it was time to check the lobster pot. And it was full! An eel and some crabs. Not sure if the eel was big enough to eat but as we had just had dinner it was not a concern to the eel. The crabs were probably not big enough, which was probably lucky for them and there is always room for crab! Bit tricky getting them out of the pot though as the pot walls are mesh which allow for legs and claws to go through and grab on for dear life! Kind of looked like the facehugger from alien.

Eventually they were all released so the only thing left to do was burn as much as possible and enjoy the warmth of the fire. Seriously, 2°C in May??

The fine weather of the weekend gave way to the wind and rain of Monday morning. At least packing up did not need to be so precise as many thing were just rolled up and bundled into the boot of the car to be dried once back at home.

All in all, a fantastic weekend. Ok, so we did not catch anything but we learned a lot and had a great time in the process. I think our next trip will be a little later in the year when there should be fish around ;)