Lee Swords Fishing

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Late August Fishing Blog…Back from Costa Teguise!!

Here we are again, late August and I am back from my summer holiday which was once again in Lanzarote, the fishing in Lanzarote last year was enough to drag me back for another go at it, I wanted a Stingray and I wanted a shark… Lee Swords I would have to make do with one out of the two! One of the first things I wanted to do when I got there was have a bit of a snorkel around and have a “look see” at what was occurring out at sea and see if I could spot any likely hot spots. The first thing I noticed was a lack of Vieja ( parrot fish) when compared to last year, I was a bit gutted as Vieja were high on my list of “wants”. The second thing I noticed were Sea Bass. they were everywhere I looked in small groups of two and three, I did not see a single Bass last year never mind catch one, these could prove to be interesting I thought to myself ( I wasn’t wrong but I will get to that laters) The last Lee Swordsthing I noticed was the fact that I cannot do the James Bond 007 emerging from the ocean surf with quite the same athletic grace as I could 25 years ago. The basic materials are the same but they are starting to show wear and tear through years of improper use and poor maintenance. I really will have to work on the maintenance and servicing of my body as I only have the one, I think I will have to adopt my “Caveman diet” as a lifestyle choice rather than a three monthly trim down for the beach so I don’t embarrass the wife or daughter on holiday routine. Anyway shall we get on with the fishing? Last year I met a bloke called Steve who had landed a stingray and a tope, I had some decent fish last year but did not get into either of these two trophy species so they were very high on my “wish list” The other fish that was high on my wish list was the parrot fish but as I have already said I knew the numbers of them were well down on last year for some reason and as Steve Gregory once said to me in a match ” You cannot catch what isn’t there”, it is a good bit of advice which has stood me in good stead over the years, I am not one for banging my head against a brick wall in an attempt to force the issue, I would much rather move onto “plan B” costa teguise bait Plan B involved half and whole sardines that were fished on double hook rigs at distance… My old adage of bigger baits for bigger mouths was something I was going to run with, I had no intention of tiddler bashing until I had something special out of the sea and I had two whole weeks to get it out…I was in no rush to go small for bites. There was one slight flaw to my plan however… Have I mentioned the ornate wrasse and all the other goby Ornate Wrasseand weaver species of fish that inhabit the coastal waters of Lanzarote? Well, there are millions of them and sardines although effective at inviting attention were prone to being stripped to the bone in less than 2 minutes! the green you can see in the rig shot is an elastic band I used to fix the fish in place, I got them from the Chinese tat shop for about a euro, very handy they were too! costa teguise fish bait lover The other downside to using fish baits were the cephalopods! That special moment when the rod tip starts to move and you make your strike is only bettered when it is met by a solid moving resistance, that truly is a special feeling but that moment when you first see the octopus hit the surface squirting jets of furious water out of its “go-faster pipe” ( I have no idea what the correct term for the go faster pipe in an octopus/squid/cuttlefish is called) is something altogether different… It is a moment of total confusion…WTF do I do now? I could clonk it on the noggin and take it for lunch, I could even ask one of the locals if they wanted it… I put it back. octopus going back costa teguise I couldn’t do it, it’s the eyes, they have an intelligence about them that fish lack, now I am not saying I will not eat cephalopods but at that point in time the telepathic message was loud and clear ” Put me down and let me go Earthling!” And so that is what I did, I put it back, I took the strange sideways glances from the locals as I lobbed back what would I am sure have made a very nice little snack indeed. They may be fishing for the pot 100% of the time but I am not, I am on holiday and I have two hotplates to cook onlee swords with octopus and two sauce pans and frying pan to cook in….If I am taking something for lunch it had better be something special! Anyway… Lets move this thing on and not get lost on the octopods…I caught all the small stuff last year, I want something bigger, I want a trophy shot, I want something special! Stingray or Tope would be awesome but preferably both would be better. IMG_2889 The sardines were a write off as they were whittled down to nothing in minutes flat so I tried big squid baits tied on with elastic, elastic I again bought from the Chinese tat shop ( you can buy everything from the Chinese tat shop) The big squid baits were a success! They gave me the time for something of merit to find my offerings before the million mouthed monster that is the Lanzarote horde of mini species devoured it down to nothing more than metal and shredded elastic! part of the million mouthed monsterNot that I minded all of the mini species, some I actually enjoyed catching as they were new species, I have always enjoyed the enthusiasm of Dave Tipping when it comes to catching new species, the man’s enthusiasm is infectious. He doesn’t care if the fish is three foot or three inches, he enjoys the catch and so do I. That is something to be nurtured in angling, it cannot be all bout pounds and ounces, that is the road to insanity. But that said, I was on a trophy hunt, so some measure of focus was needed… Sea Bass Lanzarote Lee Swords The first fish I would class as a trophy fish was a nice little Sea Bass ( My first)  that fell for a big squid bait, the fight was very spirited and thoroughly enjoyable, I can see now why so many anglers go in search of the the “Loup De Mer” The looks on the locals faces when I slipped it back was priceless, it was too small to feed three and it had fought well, so much so that Tina and Olivia gave it the thumbs up, it would live to fight another day! I as a fisherman however had been relegated to that ” strange foreign fisherman” category, the locals knew I was half decent but they also thought I was barking mad, I fished at the wrong times of day, I baked myself till half cooked in search of  big fish when I could quite easily catch myself a bucket full of boga and bream and be off and away with a nice dinner for three in no time at all. After a few days the wind which had been a real pain in the arse dropped away and that allowed the sea to calm down a little, the sea at Lanzarote is a killer, make no bones about it, this is not the Mediterranean, this is the Atlantic Ocean ( Not the Pacific …Cheers Bryan) and as such there are a few thousand miles of open water to the west where big waves and high rollers can build up enough momentum to shit all over your day but now the sea had calmed I could fish the outside of the jetty wall and a few deep water rock marks that I had found the year previous. Lanzarote costa teguiseI got to the jetty wall just on day break, I would fish the tide and be away for 11 am for a little bit of late breakfast, that’s right late breakfast, I am northern we don’t have “brunch” where I come from. I wasn’t the only one to have the same idea and I wasn’t the first there…bugger! Two Spanish lads had taken the point of the outer jetty wall which gave them a clean shot at fairly good ground, I however was a little way down and stuck with broken ground and a distinct lack of fish…but I was optimistic of a parrot fish from here so I decided to stick it out. I had seen a lot of parrot fish come from this spot so I was confident the Marukyu crabsMarukyu crabs would be a winner. The locals all fish there crabs with red tubing on the hook but I could not get hold of any…I could however get hold of red pipe cleaners from the invaluable tat shop of Chinese origin! The rod ip did not stop moving, unfortunately the million mouthed monster makes short work of a trigger fish?Marukyu lures The first fish to fall to the crab was I thought a small trigger fish of sorts but closer inspection has me thinking it is a puffer fish species, I will have to have a Google to see if I can name it, at this point in time I will call it a Puffery trigger fish mkII species. puffer fish lanzarote Mark II Puffery trigger wasn’t as keen to blow up as the normal Puffer Mark I variety  but it did have the same weird “flobbidy” body texture, it’s a bit like holding a very small fat man in the palm of your hand. Anyway let us not digress… I am on the outer edge of the wall with a pair of Spaniards who seem more than happy to get themselves a bucket of dinner, top up their tans and smoke a little bit of weed whilst drinking a couple of cans of Estrella each . Pretty much a perfect life plan in action then if you ask me… They caught an occasional sea bream now and then but for the most part the fishing was pretty quiet, the wind started to lift a little and the tide began to run, eventually one of the two Spaniards had enough and decided to disappear, I think he made the wrong choice as the fishing began to improve, not much but a bit… A few minutes later I hear a call ” Senor…Senor” It is the Spaniard….He is “in”, his rod is in full fighting curve and even from 20 yards away I can hear his clutch grudgingly giving line…The game is on! He doesn’t speak much English and my Spanish is ” Hablo un poco Espanol” but we share a common language, we share fishing, this lad is in bother and he needs help. I wave, I have my rod in and secured, I have my gloves rammed in my pocket and my camera over my shoulder…I am moving! I jump from rock to rock like an athletic mountain gazelle ( to the uneducated in such things this also looks like a scene from Grand Theft Auto where Trevor is chasing down a soon to be victim) , I use more speed than would be recommended by the Health and Safety Executive but this is no time for caution, this is “game time” ” Vieja?” I enquire, they do go big, it could be a vieja ” No vieja senor…Grande pesca, muy grande” The problem is obvious we are fishing on big boulders, landing big fish here is not a one man job and his buddy has left him he isn’t going to be able to maintain a decent angle on this fish and get it to a place where he will be able to land it. Getting this fish out of the sea would be my job, there is a gap between two huge lumps of ex-volcanic eruption currently being used as a sea break where I reckon I could stand, the water would only be to my knees and I would have a great angle to get the mainline in hand and do the job. I am not thinking now, thinking is for people that want to live forever not for people that just want to see what is on the end of this lads line, I go down to the water’s edge and get in, it’s very clear, it’s also a fair chunk deeper than I thought it would be,the swell of the sea rocks me as I reach up for the mainline, there will be no issues with the line breaking, it looks to be at least 30lb… Then I see it…Sweet Jesus! It’s a Stingray…I reach into my pocket…Gloves on…The game is now well and truly afoot and I am in it upto my waist. I pull the fish towards me with the line, I am not interested in its head as I swing it through an arc, I use the line like a leash, a leash leading a shit covered puppy, a puppy I really want to keep at arms length for a second or two… Then I see it, the tail. That is my target, that is what I have to control…Then it hits me…The thought… Didn’t one of these things kill Steve Irwin? That is right, one of these things did but I don’t plan on doing anything rash…I reach into the sea and grab hold of the tail as hard as I can ( So grabbing a stingray by the tail isn’t rash?) I have the tail now, I control the weapon, I pull hard and swing the fish around, I reach for the gill holes and get a good grip and then a big wave hits me and has me underwater…bollocks. Underwater holding a potentially lethal Stingray by is sting…good idea Sherlock. I break surface and throw the stingray up onto the flat surfaced block the Spaniard is standing on keeping hold of the tail as I do, until that weapon is under control I am not letting go of it. The Spaniard looks impressed with his catch, he flips the ray over and puts his foot on the tail. I unhook it and then look at him, I gesture to the sea… ” No …muerte” He hands me a butter knife and passes his finger across his throat to emphasis his meaning ” Muerte” I don’t really know what to do with the butter knife so I flip it over and smash it square between the eyes with my fist three or four times. It does the job, the fish is as dead as a donut, I feel a little bit of guilt but that is balanced off by the fact that this chap is going to feed his entire family tonight on a stingray and regale them with a story that will be told for years, the story of the mad Englishman, the stingray and the right handed hammer hand. My fist fight with a fish has not gone unseen, the secret would not remain between me and the Spaniards family ” Lee!…Lee!…What the hell are you doing?”costa teguise stingray It was Tina, she was standing on the statue plinth looking down at me ” ” Err…Stingray” The Spaniard bounds over to her ” Champion, champion!” He gestures towards me ” Muy loco!” We are bound by a shared experience, we don’t share a common language, we share something far more important. Tina and the Spaniard chatter on for several minute each with almost no idea what the other is saying but  body language and elaborate hand gestures leave no stone unturned and then he shows Tina his fishing rod, it seems as though at some point in the final moment of the battle the rod rings  along the top section ( most of the locals use telescopics) have been ripped free…The rod is ruined. I want to give him one of mine but I cannot, I have over a week to go and anything can happen, not only that the locals use far heavier rods than the one I have with me but that doesn’t stop me feeling bad for him. I reach up to my cap, I take of a Chub Study Group badge and give it to him as a trophy /memento of a great occasion, we shake hands and go our separate ways. Me for breakfast with Tina, him with a big bucket of dinner for his family and his chest stuck out like a champion fighting rooster. crab bait

I was back on the outside of the jetty the morning after and fishing the spot where the Spaniard had snagged his trophy fish, the tide was just finishing its run out and I was lucky enough to snag myself a decent sized crab that I would use as bait.

Chopped in half and tied to the hook ( with elastic sourced once again from the Chinese tat shop) it oozed attraction, this would ring the dinner gong to all manner of species and would I was certain get me what I wanted…

A trophy shot!

I made a long cast into the rather calm and well behaved sea, I counted the lead down to the “clunk”, twelve, thirteen,fourteen, clunk…fairly deep and a softish landing, it felt like I was on sand , stingrays love to be on sand….fingers crossed.

Two minutes later the line around my finger gave a tug lanzarote tshirt( Yes, I am touch legering for stingray), another little tug…and then the line tightened up….strike!!

A deep throbbing “thump” travelled down the rod and into my arms, the old shimano that has landed countless fish on the Trent arched over and into an impressive curve…Game on!!

Game over.

It was off.


That as it turned out was that for the day, I had no more indications of action, I could have sat out and waited for the tide to run but I am on holiday, I cannot be a complete knob and sit out here all day…Beer is 29 cents a can and the beach has more than a smattering of free boobs on offer for those that enjoy such things.

I am one of those people that enjoys such things, some may call it adolescent, some may call it lecherous, I call it living.

Once back at the hotel I tell the story of what could have been to a couple of the other guests, they seemed intrigued with the chances of seeing a stingray up close and personal but also they fancied a change from having a “pool day” or a “beach day” and so it was decided that we would return to do some “fun fishing” with maybe the outside chance of taking chum mix for fishingsomething for the pot.

Now I have had a plan fermenting in my head for a while, last year I lobbed out a bag of old squid and watched as the million mouthed monster went into overdrive, everything went into a frenzy till all the squid was gone…and during this frenzy I saw barracuda dash through and take their fill of small stuff

What if there was a big attractive cloud of bait that was continually topped up?…Just how big a bait ball could I attract and would the predators once again follow it in?

I reckoned it was worth a chance so I made up 10 litres of “sloppy chum” that consisted of 2kg of frozen mashed sardines, a bag of rolled oatmeal, a bag of polenta and a bag of plain white flour, all mixed into a slop with a couple of Ady Cole is in!litres of sea water.

All the ingredients were sourced from the SPAR and came to a cost of about 7 Euro, which in the post Brexit exchange rate is equivalent to £345.67 .

(What a fucking bunch of lies we were fed pre referendum, I did not see a single dragon, the sky was blue and not the colour of sack cloth, the sea was also blue and not the colour of blood and not one person we met whilst in Lanzarote had nailed their first born child upon their door and painted a seven pointed start upon their foreheads with the child’s freshly drained ichor)

The continuity of normal life must be very fucking disappointing to the mumpy mouthed sore losing whiney slappedarseface Remainiacs  but anyway let’s get back to the fishing… No time to waste on dickheads.

The slop works a treat, the fish go mental. The Boga are straight in on it, and they arrive in their thousands, it is proper hook a duck one a penny shooting fish in a 

Samuel Cole is in as well!barrel type fishing!

An hour or so after we have started  the lad ( Adie Cole)  I am fishing withs wife and son arrive, Samuel sits down besides me and it isn’t long before he is into his first fish.

His first fish is as I expected a boga and it is soon joined by his second third and fourth, Adie’s wife Nikki also gets in on the action and bags a couple of Boga for herself before they call time and head off for a breakfast and back to the pool, Adie has a grand total of fifty plus Samuel has ten and Nikki has two…a very respectableBoga Costa Teguise catch indeed!

Now that Adie has left for breakfast I have a spare rod…

I cannot speed fish the Boga with two so I decide to lob one out into the distance with a big bait on the off chance of something decent picking up my offering…

I had read a lot of stuff on the internet and one thing kept coming up…Boga as bait.

And so it came to pass that the very next Boga that dropped a boo boo found itself halved and threaded down the shank of a size two Drennan Super Specialist and thrust out to sea where it oozed out the last moments of its life on the sea bed only for something to “sniff” it out in under five minutes…

I was just unhooking a boga when I saw the tip of the Shinano twitch, it stayed twitched and then the Shimano baitrunner did something it hadn’t really done all holiday…it began to run.

I grabbed the rod, dropped the tip, wound down and struck….


Goodly amounts of mobile solidness and tactical throbbing met my strike and sent down the rod  a very satisfactory dosage of adrenaline releasing fishing drugs…get in!!

The battle was dour and deep, slow progress against a tide that was just thinking of running in, a chap came up to watch, I nodded a casual greeting, I had seen him a day or so before.

costa teguise fishing


The fish wanted to stay deep, I wanted it up in the water, it was a battle of wills, luckily for me, my will was enforced by 18lb nylon and a 2.75 tc length of carbon fibre, it made an impressive case for coming away from the snag strewn sea bed!

Up it came…

Up and up it came and as it did it kited in towards me, the tide was now doing some of the work for me, the fish was now heading in towards me at a reasonable rate of knots….and that is when I saw it!

Oh shit!

It is only a bloody stingray!!

It isn’t massive but it is a stingray, I have a stingray on my line, that has taken my bait and has the good grace not to drop off or snag me up.

Now the tricky bit, I have to land it…

I will climb down the rocks on the end of the pier and use my brand new TFG 42 inch landing net…but first I will say a little prayer to the fishing gods and let free a small amount of sex wee into my undertrolleys with all the excitement.

I get down to the water’s edge with no bother, the fish is now less than a couple of rod lengths out and the fight has faded from it completely…the net is out…The ray comes over the edge of the cord and the half boga dead baittrophy is mine!!!

The half boga had served its purpose well, a little bit of research had paid dividends!!

I had my trophy, the chap that had been watching quietly offered me his hand as I climbed back up to the pier top.

He seemed as shocked as I was!

“Will you take me a few pictures?” I asked

” What camera is it?” he replies

“Cannon…dead easy to use…just point and shoo”

” Brilliant ” he replies before I have finished ” I am a Cannon photographer” he checks out my camera ” Do you mind if I alter the settings a little?, these are a bit off”

” Err, no…..feel free mate”

” My name is Fletch”

stingray Costa teguise lee swords

Pictures are taken and the fish is returned to fight another day…

And just as the fish hits the surface Olivia and Tina arrive…bugger they missed my glory moment by only a few seconds…Gutted!!

Anyway I say to Fletch that he can have the next run whilst I have a chat with the family and replenish on some take away snacks they have brought down for me.

I love my family!!

The tail end of the Bogo is now sitting at the bottom of the sea attracting the attention of something or other…I know this because I see the rod tip knocking.

” You have it Fletch”

Fletch Fletch lanzarotedoesn’t need asking twice, he hits into something, what it is we don’t know yet…


It isn’t a beast, it’s not a bad fish, it’s a Cabrilla or Comber.

I was hoping it would be another biggie!


I shall leave Lanzarote there for a while…there is only so much one can say in one blog, I will go back and finish off the story in my next blog…

Another Drennan Weekly Award!

The big chub catch I had last month did the business on the prize front, I bagged myself a Drennan Weekly award, my second and for me the 7lb Trent Chub most prestigious of the weekly awards although I am not knocking the Korum one in Anglers Mail.

The £80 will go towards some fruit trees and maybe a few plug plants for my field, I would like a few meddlar, a couple of apples, plums, a walnut or two and a nice crab apple.

Basically I want to lay out a foraging plan so that I as well as anyone else of a mind can loop around Bowden Houstead and forage something from summer to winter.

And the cash from Drennan will help no end!


Yes, I am a geek and I love it!

Sheffield Comic Con 2016

My name is Lee Swords and I am a geek…

Sheffield Comic con 2016

I have always been a bit odd and over excitable about fantasy, sci-fi and all manner of horror genres , I see nothing to be ashamed of in regards to this, I embrace my geekness but recently I moved it on to the next level.

As a family we have now attended a fair few Comic cons but I have never dipped my toe into the area of Cosplay…I just sit on the Iron Throne and collect autographs from the guests.

Cosplay brings up some strange ideas but in  reality it is for the most part average everyday people escaping the humdrum monotonous dirge that is reality .

For those that think this is a bit silly or a bit stupid…I pity your closed mindedness and lack of imagination….

You are also missing out on the chance to interact as an equal with ultra foxy girls ( and boys) that would for the vast majority of time move in completely different circles to the ones you move in and would I expect be in a far higher league for the rest of it!

Lee SwordsAnyway I went in my Game of Thrones “Wildling” outfit as Olivia did not wish to wear it in August as it is made up of real fur and yes it was hotter than a bastard but not as hot as a red PVC wearing vampire nor was it as hot as Harley Quinn.

Nope, they were hot.

I was eventually persuaded to enter the contest as I was getting quite a lot of interest and being asked to pose for a lot of pictures, Olivia’s friend Georgin was Cosplaying Daenerys Targaryen and so we decided to enter as a team…What could ever go wrong?

Actually nothing went wrong…

We did a little “Friday Dance” parade thing and I announced in a loud voice that it was “For the North”.

Sheffield comic con 2016We won!

I really do not think I have laughed as hard or as long as the moment they called out our names, nor have I seen as much joy and excitement on the face of my wife Tina as I did in that moment.

The £200 winnings  was split and my share was given to Tina to pay for a 16 autograph Game of Thrones portrait of the “Iron Throne” and that is 16 top drawer autographs such a the actors that play Jorah Mormont and Tyrion Lannister not the ones that play “second man standing in the market” or “Little fingers third whore”

Not that I am knocking little fingers whores!

Down on the field

Bowden Houstead lost a good man this month, while we were on holiday one of my good friends passed away from cancer, his battle had been brief and brutal and when I found he had lost his fight  on our return I admit that it placed me into a tail spin.

dragon fly bowden HousteadJohn was a hard working honest man that loved his family and everything about nature, when we met up on the field we often spoke at length about the dragonflies, the flowers, the newly planted trees, the birds, especially the Parakeet, the butterflies and even the  slime moulds that appear on the vandalised beech trees in the woods at certain times of year.

He leaves behind a wife and children.

He will be sorely missed by all at Bowden Houstead.

Rest in peace John.









2 Responses to “Late August Fishing Blog…Back from Costa Teguise!!”

  1. Hi Lee, cracking read glad you got what you were after.. I was also there again this year, coming home on the 10th August so must have just missed each other. My fishing didn’t go to plan, the first week the wind made it near unfishable with a contact what felt like gale. Then when it dropped , apart from the kids catching the small stuff I only had a bass, a good one though about 4lb caught on a spoon near the shallow end of the pier. Our lass wants to try somewhere new next year so I’ll have to research and factor in trophy fish.. I’m after a barracuda…

  2. Steve…Cape Verde!!

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