I have only ever bought one Rapala Sliver, and that was about ten years ago. I took it trolling in Dorset and lost it to the bottom after about five minutes. I challenge anyone not to grind their teeth and mutter unmutterables in that situation when you have just forked out in excess of a tenner for a little bit of floating wood. Well OK, it actually sinks very slowly but you know what I mean, and don’t be picky.
However I HAVE noticed that around the southwest the closer a lure looks like a sandeel the more joy you will have. And experience of Porthcurno suggests that the very large number of launce (big sandeels) which you always catch when using mackerel feathers is probably what keeps the large numbers of birds, fish and mammals excited. And a Rapala Sliver is nice and thin and looks like a Launce. So I shelled out another tenner (or a bit more,actually) and off I went.
Before I tell you how I got on I must brag a bit about my recent Gurnard hat-trick. Well…nearly. All three species in three days anyway. I do like Gurnard as they are very un-Britishly brightly coloured (remember I have a birdwatching background ) and make a ridiculous grunt when you catch them. First was a Red at Porthcurno:
Three days later I caught a Grey and a Tub on my local patch near Bude. I used to write under the pen-name ‘The Grey Gurn-nerd’ but nobody seemed to twig what it meant and in fact not a lot of people read what I wrote anyway. I thought it was excellent.
I was joined by my chum Pokey who always looks like a cool dude and is in total command of the situation (at least when he is in a kayak).
Not having caught a single bass all season ( yes, alright I’ll concede to a degree of incompetence but I also havn’t really tried that hard yet……well , incompetence then) I wasn’t expecting much but within a couple of minutes of setting off from Porthgwarra my line buzzed out and I groaned as I thought I had lost more hard earned cash to the depths. But hang on, there was a BIG lump repeatedly,slowly and powerfully pulling on the line. Major panic! I reeled in slowly and in typical bass fashion the line went light as the brakes came off and I was getting ready for the big plunge when it got near the kayak. There it was, and OH NO there goes the fish. Never saw it so clearly it was a record breaker.
And then another right in front of the Minack theatre.
Crossing the green water of sandy Porthcurno bay I wasn’t expecting a bite but a pathetic tugging on the line produced a launce barely bigger than the Sliver itself. Surely it wasn’t serously thinking it could eat a fish that size. Amorous intent would be more a more feasible explanation.
Porthcurno usually resounds to the occasional scream of excitement from the beach , or applause from the Minack audience, but today it was a bit more cacophonous as the Royal Navy were fine-honing their rescue skills on Logan rock.
So I’ve still got my Sliver and looking forward to it’s next outing. I notice it really makes the rod end shake as its jointed body ‘swims’ through the water…more so than any other lure I have used. This can only be an advantage because more movement surely means greater attractive power to the hungry predator.