One summer night, part 2

Danish inshore fishing

By Martin Joergensen

One summer night, part 2 of 2

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Loud 'plops'
I still get a lot of cod. They take any fly, but even so they seem to prefer a small tan muddler with black Arctic fox wing and two straws of flash as a tail. I stick to that one. The cod, how ever small, strike with a loud 'plop' as they break the surface. All around me the cod are working. No minute passes without several plops. I debarb the hook, because unhooking all these fish becomes harder as dark falls.

After midnight
The sun is long gone and it's after midnight. Still light is good. No longer sufficient to tie on a fly, but all enough to see the water and the rings. Suddenly the plopping stops. This can be a good sign or a bad sign. Either there is trout around or the conditions have changed in a negative way: too little light, current has turned or the like. No matter what I fish on, and concentrate on my little hole.

An 'uncodly' pull
The next fish doesn't take with a plop. It breaks the surface, but leaves a small eddy in stead of a ring. I set the hook, and is promptly awarded by a very 'uncodly' pull. A cod will normally shake it's head and seek down, this fish runs and stays in the surface. It's a trout, and even though it's not a big one, my system is already on full alert. I try to feel the fish: What size? A jumper? How is the hook set? In the dark every signal that goes through the rod has to be used. The fish rarely shows itself before it's quite close.

Well hooked
The fish seems well hooked, and draws a bit of line out through my fingers. I press it and it runs outwards. I start spooling the loose line on the reel letting up the preassure a bit, and the fish decides that this makes for a change. It turns around and heads towards the shallower water... and me!

Strength to run
I stop spooling and retrieve line like h... in order to keep the hook set and have control. The fish comes closer and I lower my rod to one side and try to force the fish to change direction. It does. When it sees me it takes two frightfull jumps out of the water and starts going right and left in front of me constantly pulling the line. I regain the last bit of loose line, and now have the fish on the reel. I try to get it closer, but it still has strength to run, and makes a couple of short but fierce bursts.

Bring in the net
It's tired now. I lift the rod to test it and start getting my net ready. The net is in the water beside me as the fish turns over on its side and slides toward me in the surface. I bring the net forwards and lift the fish out of the water. It's a nice, but small sea trout. Just over 2 lb. as expected. It's perfectly hooked in the corner of the mouth and even though the hook is debarbed I have to use my forceps to loosen it. The first night trout of the season regains its freedom and seeks out. One more
The night brings one more trout of the same size and a lot more cod. I finish at 1:30 and head home. The first night trip of the season.

From now on it gets better every day... or rather night. I'm high on the feeling.


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