Samuel Irvin
FISHING PAGES
Samuel Irvin 3
 



EXPERIENCE A TRIP TO THE CHANNEL ISLANDS

Three to five day fishing holidays by arrangement.

The Islands give to the angler a chance to fish for many species of fish in a variety of locations all within 30 to 40 minutes steaming of each other.

A normal trip would be to fish the more remote Channel wrecks and reefs on the way to and from the Islands, then for the remaining days to fish the banks and reefs around the islands. The trip will be tailored where ever possible to your requirements.

We base or trips either on Guernsey or Alderney, the choice is yours, as is the type and quality of accommodation.

5 day Channel Islands trip aboard "Samuel Irvin 3"

Seven o'clock Monday morning we passed through the Castles guarding the entrance to Dartmouth harbour on the start of a five day fishing trip to and around the Channel Islands. On board were some of the members of the Rod n Reelers Fishing Club from North Devon. They wanted to fish the deep wrecks around the Hurds Deep on the outward journey with particular interest in Cod and Ling. I knew just the wrecks and looked forward to fishing them as they were closer to Guernsey than Dartmouth and I don't get the opportunity to fish them that often. We fished wrecks either side of the Hurds Deep and they produced some fine Cod, a lot of them coming to pirks and the old favourite rhubarb and custard Sidewinders.

Simon Silvester proudly holds his fine
Conger Eel caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 
Dave Atkinson proudly holds his fine
Ling caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 
John Passmore proudly holds his fine
Conger Eel caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 
aa
Andy Joslin proudly holds his fine
Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 
Geoffrey Rothay proudly holds his fine
Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 
Andrew Atkinson proudly holds his fine
Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 

At one of the wrecks we saw a storm front sweeping up the channel. When the front hit us it pushed the boat back up the tide at speed and a heavy down pour of rain soaked us. A strange event to us all and a demonstration of how things can suddenly change at sea. At slack water we fished a deep wreck at 109 metres with Mackerel baits. Soon Ling and Conger were giving the lads some sport. Many of the Conger were shaken off at the side of the boat but of the better specimens were brought on board for a photograph (after some extended Eel wrestling)  and then released.

Andy Joslin proudly holds his fine
Turbot caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 
Andrew Atkinson proudly holds another
fine Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 
Andy Joslin proudly holds another
fine Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands. 
Dave Shapland proudly holds his fine
Turbot caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Dave Atkinson proudly holds his fine
Brill caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Simon Silvester proudly holds his fine
Brill caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.

Leaving there we moved to a wreck close to Guernsey and shared the fishing with a channel island boat who seemed pleased to share his good fortune with us. Seven o'clock that evening we docked in St Peter Port tired but well pleased with the day. Now all we had to do was go drink beer and eat good food at The Ship and Crown. Excellent!

John Passmore proudly holds his fine
Brill caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Dave Atkinson proudly holds his fine
Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
John Shapland proudly holds his fine
Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
John Shapland proudly holds another
fine Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Dave Shapland proudly holds his fine
Pollack caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
John Passmore proudly holds his fine
Bull Huss caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.

Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday we fished a similar pattern of half a day over rough ground for Black Bream and the rest of the day over banks for  Brill and Turbot. The catches were good but on average the size was less than the fish we caught on the previous trip. Although the anglers were very sensible and returned to the sea any fish bordering on small we still ended up with full boxes of quality fish. All the flat fish came to live sand eel or mackerel strip with neither being more successful than the other in catching.

Both Skipper, Ian Noble (L) and Andrew Atkinson
proudly hold their fine brace of quality Cod caught
aboard Ian Noble's Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3" on a 5 day trip to the
Channel Islands.

Thursday was a bit of an epic session on the Black Bream mark with us not getting back into port until 8 o'clock at night but still making the pub by twenty past. John Passmore had bought a pair of glasses that were supposed to combat sea sickness, but they just seemed to make him even more laid back.

John Passmore proudly holds his fine
Black Bream caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Simon Silvester proudly holds his fine
Black Bream caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Dave Shapland proudly holds his fine
Black Bream caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Andrew Atkinson proudly holds his fine
Black Bream caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Dave Atkinson proudly holds his fine
Black Bream caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Andrew Atkinson proudly holds another
fine Black Bream caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.

The last day of the week we set off early to fish the wrecks mid channel hoping to equal if not better the superb fishing we had on the way out to the islands. The first wreck produced some good Cod and Ling but was slow. However a move to a nearby wreck did the trick and soon Cod, Pollack and Ling were coming aboard to a variety of soft lures. Andrew Atkinson maintained his prowess with a baited perk landing a lot of good fish. I even got in on the act with several Cod to a Storm Shad which I found in the bottom of my tackle box. Eventually we had to leave to complete the journey home arriving back in Dartmouth just before 6pm. We then had to sort out the 150 litre IceyTech fish box which was full with fish fillets from the previous five days catch.

Geoffrey Rothay proudly holds his very
nice Tub Gurnard caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Skipper, Ian Noble proudly holds
his fine Cod caught aboard his own
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Dave Shapland proudly holds his fine
Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
John Shapland proudly holds his fine
Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
John Passmore proudly holds his very
nice Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.
Geoffrey Rothay proudly holds his fine
Cod caught aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"
on a 5 day trip to the Channel Islands.

A really enjoyable 5 day trip with good weather, good fishing, good ale  and good company.

Alderney, Channel Islands Angling Adventure

I have just returned home from 4 days charter fishing in the Channel Island waters surrounding Alderney. aboard Ian Noble's Dartmouth charter boat, "Samuel Irvin 3", together with a really companionable group of 7 other chaps from Leek, Stafford, Dover and  Clevedon, Somerset.  I already knew most of them well as long time good pals, but we were joined by a couple of new faces whose company I thoroughly enjoyed.

Monday morning 31st May, I was down at Darthaven Marina by 6.36 am.  Most of the chaps were already aboard Ian's big white and blue Blyth 33 catamaran, eager and ready to go.  One of the chaps had to dash back to his van to collect spare pairs of underpants, and then we were off.  My pal Roger and I coiled the ropes and stowed the fenders as we meandered out of the River Dart.  Ian had already boiled the kettle, so I made teas and coffees for everyone aboard.  My Wife, Patsy had made bacon rolls wrapped in kitchen foil for all aboard; Ian popped those into the oven to warm through; which only took a short while.  The smell of tea and bacon butties in the crisp sunlit morning air set the tone for our adventure.   Ian gunned the throttles as we left the restricted harbour limits.  We were fed, watered, happy and on our way.

We headed for Guernsey, where we put into Port to collect live Sandeels and Launce to use as bait and crushed ice to keep those fish we wanted to retain for our own family table, fresh, in our big "Icy Tek" chiller box.

By just after lunch, we were on the Shoal Bank, drifting with live Eels presented on size 3/0 hooks on flowing traces, fished from a sliding boom rig with around 8 ozs of lead to keep it firmly on the sea bed.  The big flat fish were hungry and we were in the right spot.

One of the first chaps to contact Turbot was John Kemp, from Staffordshire.

John Kemp from Staffordshire
caught the first Turbot of our trip
on the Shoal Bank in Channel Island
waters off Alderney aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat "Samuel Irvin 3"

Then his pal Rob Clowes, from Leek, caught another Turbot.

Rob Clowes from Leek, Staffordshire
caught his beautiful Turbot on the
Shoal Bank in Channel Island waters
off Alderney, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

Richard Stanley from Stafford and Rodger Leviston from Clevedon, both were into good Turbot of greater size on the next drift.

Richard Stanley (l)  from Staffordshire
and Rodger Leviston from Clevedon, Somerset
caught their beautiful pair of Turbot during the
same drift across the Shoal Bank in
Channel Island waters off Alderney,
aboard Ian Noble's Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

Rob Clowes went one better when he caught the biggest Tub Gurnard I have seen in the past 15 years.  It was a monster and very beautiful.  I weighed it on my Salter calibrated digital scales where it recorded 6 lbs 4 ozs.  That is truly the fish of a lifetime.  Most of us will never have the pleasure of seeing or catching a fish of this specie of comparable size.

Rob Clowes from Leek, Staffordshire
went one better when he caught this huge
Tub Gurnard which weighed 6 lbs 4 ozs,
truly the fish of a lifetime, from the
Shoal Bank in Channel Island waters
off Alderney, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

Dave Newman from Clevedon caught another Turbot until, as the tidal flow dropped away, so did the fishing.

Dave Newman from Clevedon, Somerset,
caught another beautiful Turbot on the
Shoal Bank in Channel Island waters
off Alderney, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

Of the 9 anglers aboard, 7 caught a total of 9 Turbot, several of which were returned alive and unharmed after being photographed, to grow, breed and fight again another day.  I was in the minority, together with my pal Gordon Stanley.  We remained as Turbot Virgins on the first day.  Despite our best efforts, neither of us could catch one.  It happens.

We headed in to Bray Harbour on Alderney where Ian dropped us ashore on the breakwater.  I 'phoned Island Taxis on 01481 823 823, who speedily transported us, complete with our hand luggage, for just £6 per cab, to our accommodation which Rodger Leviston had pre-booked on our behalf at The Town House, High Street, Alderney, (Tel. 01481 824 897 -  web site www.thetownhouse.moonfruit.com )   Our bedrooms were clean and everything we needed.  There are 6 double and twin-bed rooms.  The early breakfast has to be seen and eaten, to know just how good it is.  We were made very welcome and our needs such as orders for Baguettes for subsequent days at sea were taken care of with no fuss at all and at very reasonable cost.  Our individual accommodation cost just £36 per person per night in May/June which is excellent value.  I will be very happy to stay there again on future trips to the Channel Islands.

We booked our party of 9 into the Mai Thai restaurant, which is situated in Le Val, in the centre of Alderney (Tel. 01481 824 940).  We chose their special menu selection at just £20 per person for a very tasty meal which everyone thoroughly enjoyed.  The proprietor gave our party a bottle of red and one of white house wine, to accompany our meal at no additional cost, which was a very generous gesture, which we all thoroughly appreciated.  I enjoyed the food and the convivial hospitality.  I certainly look forward to eating there again.

Tuesday 1st June - Next morning, after a sound night's sleep and the biggest full English breakfast I have ever eaten,  we were collected, around 8 am, by Island Taxis who drove us safely back down to Bray Harbour.  Several of the guys left 20 minutes earlier and walked down the hill, to enjoy the sights and buy wonderful fruit pies from the local bakery.  The cherry pie is the best I have ever tasted.  Those who know me will know I love pies.

It was a misty drizzly morning.  Not at all the weather we would have preferred, but there was very little breeze, so the sea was flat.

We stopped off at Mark Harding's "Alderney Angling" van alongside the harbour.  Mark offers  a personal and very welcome service to visiting anglers from his huge van, overflowing with the best tackle, all at fantastic prices.  There is no VAT on Alderney;  it is not a member of the UK, neither is it a member of the EEC;  it's status as a UK protectorate affords it many advantages, including duty free tobacco, cigarettes and drink to visitors.  The lads purchased high quality multiplier reels by Shimano; line; braid and fluorocarbon; lures; they were like kids in a sweetie shop.  You can visit Mark's web site at www.alderneyangling.com to learn more.

Mark is a good friend to visiting anglers, who is under severe pressure from just 2 or 3 commercial fishermen on the Island, who apparently view visiting anglers as marauders who take "their" fish.  Angling boats visiting from the mainland are now an undoubted major source of tourist revenue to the Channel Islands.  There is more than sufficient fishing in these rich waters for everyone, yet there have recently been frequent reports of Island commercial fishermen setting gill nets just off beaches formerly favoured by visiting shore anglers.  I wrote to Mark several weeks ago detailing the reasons for my support of recreational sea angling around the Channel Island waters.   I know Mark is frustrated that the Island Council has still not held its promised meeting with the various parties involved to try to resolve this unnecessary conflict.

We boarded "Samuel Irvin 3" alongside the quay in Bray Harbour, and headed out to the Casquets Bank, where we fished live Sandeel or Mackerel strip baits on flowing ledger rigs.  Although the weather was miserable, the angling was fantastic.  You can't always have everything you want, but the fish certainly obliged.

I very quickly caught a couple of Bass, one of which was deep hooked so I kept it to take home for my family table.  The other was lip hooked, so I released it alive and well, to grow, breed and fight again another day.  During the day, our group of 9 anglers caught a total of 17 Turbot, plus 4 Bass around 3 lbs each.  Every angler on our boat had caught a Turbot by the end of the 2nd day.  This place can truly be spoken of in hushed tones as "Turbot Heaven".

John Kemp was top rod on the day with a personal tally of 6 Turbot on day 2.

John Kemp from Staffordshire,
caught another beautiful Turbot on the
Casquets Bank in Channel Island waters
off Alderney, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

 

Gordon Stanley lost his Turbot virginity when he caught his own specimen fish.  I'm not certain which made Gordon happiest, catching the fish, or the fact that the rest of us stopped teasing him.  I lost my own current trip Turbot virginity too and personally caught 4 fine specimens during the day.

Mike Concannon a member of Brixham SAC
caught his beautiful Turbot on the
Shoal Bank in Channel Island waters
off Alderney, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

Once again I saw several anglers catch and release Turbot that they did not want to keep to eat, which will help to preserve stocks for the future.

Tuesday evening we ate at the Belle Vue Hotel before heading back to our cosy beds.

Wednesday morning 2nd June - dawned bright and clear with warm sun over a calm sea.  We returned to fish the Casquets Bank aboard "Samuel Irvin 3".  We found dan buoys with flags marking long lines, placed by a commercial fishing boat along the top of the bank, which made our angling a little more difficult as they impeded our clear drifts.  Nevertheless, we caught 10 more Turbot between the 9 anglers aboard.  Later in the day, the commercial boat which had placed the long lines lifted them, but our angling was not quite as easy or successful as on the previous day.

Yet again John Kemp continued to fish consistently well and catch still more Turbot, though none of us caught any Bass today.

John Kemp from Staffordshire,
caught another beautiful Turbot on the
Casquets Bank in Channel Island waters
off Alderney, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

The best fish of the day was a Turbot caught by another "Flattie King", Dave Newman from Clevedon, which Ian weighed on my Salter certified digital scales at 14 lbs 4 ozs, and which fell just a few ounces of the Clevedon Pumpers SAC record for this specie.

Dave Newman from Clevedon, Somerset,
caught the best Turbot 14 lbs 4 ozs from the
Casquets Bank in Channel Island waters
off Alderney, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

This evening we dined in the Orangery at the Georgian House Hotel,  Victoria Street, Alderney, (Tel: 01481 822 471  web site: www.georgianhousealderney.com )  After a couple of pints in the bar, we headed upstairs to the beautiful dining room, a huge conservatory which overlooks the courtyard garden.  We were made to feel very welcome by the licensee and staff.  Several of the guys chose the steak and ale pie which was huge and they told me it tasted really flavoursome.  Gordon Stanley and I chose Mussels as our starter, followed by a main course of Scallops served on a bed of cous cous, with a sweet chilli sauce.  They were delicious.  I enjoy my food and this was amongst the best I have ever tasted anywhere in the world.  I just about made room for Welsh Bread Pudding, served with fresh Alderney cream and ice cream.  Yummy !  Ian and I shared a bottle of the house red wine, a Merlot, which was spicy and well rounded.  I finished my meal off with a glass of Port.  Richard Stanley enjoyed a glass of Cognac.  Ian enjoyed what he later told me was a really superb coffee.  The average cost was around £25 to £30 per person.  I really look forward to dining at the Georgian House Hotel again in the not too distant future.

Incidentally, there was a man with white hair and a light blue linen jacket, sitting with a beautiful lady, at a window table next to ours in the Orangery.  As he got up to leave at the conclusion of his meal, he collectively asked, "Are you chaps here for the angling?"  We affirmed that we were.  He asked where we had travelled from and we said, "Dartmouth".  This gentleman replied, quite unprompted by us, that Tourism on Alderney is now substantially dependant on anglers visiting the Island aboard charter boats from the mainland.  He added that the "Bucket and Spade" family holidaymakers do not arrive in the numbers they once did.  I guess that is true of most resorts on the mainland and beyond; a symptom of the harsh financial times in which we presently live.  I could not help but think to myself that I sincerely hope that the Island Council do not allow two or three self serving local commercial fishermen to further damage the Island's fragile tourist trade for their own selfish reasons.  Yes, I know they have a living to make, but there is no reason for any conflict to worsen.  There are fish resources in plenty around the Channel Island waters.  Come on chaps, please see good sense.

Thursday 3rd June, we were up for a 6.20 am breakfast which our hosts were happy to provide.  I love their full English breakfasts; I could easily grow used to them. They also made up various Baguettes to take with us on our return voyage, which were a perfect picnic treat.

Island Taxis collected us at 7 am and drove us down to Bray Harbour, complete with our luggage.  The duty free wine, spirits and cigarettes were delivered to "Samuel Irvin 3" by the Island's supplier.  We boarded in a freshening easterly breeze and headed for home.

En route, we stopped to fish the "Patch" a mid-Channel reef famous for its Cod.  On his first or second drop, Rob Clowes hooked into a hard fighting fish, which greedily seized his Blue "Sidewinder" Sprat lure, close to the sea bed.  From the head banging that was apparent as he pumped it to the surface,  I guessed it was a Cod and I was correct.  Rob was "chuffed".

Rob Clowes from Staffordshire,
caught his Cod from a mid-Channel
reef, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

It looked as though we were going to catch some excellent Cod.  I quickly hooked into another hard fighting example, which seized my dark red Red Gill "Evo" soft lure.  I could feel it shaking its head very hard as I retrieved it, but I never did get to meet my fish as it threw the hook around half way to the surface.  Sometimes these events are just destined to turn out that way.

I caught a couple of small Pollack, but no more Cod.  The wind increased as the tide turned.  HM Coastguards forecast force 4 to 5 winds from the East coming in during the day.  We were still around 45 miles from Dartmouth, so we prudently elected to move to fish wrecks closer to our home Port.

We stopped on a wreck around 30 miles from home, where the lads caught a couple of Cod and some small Pollack.  We moved a short distance to another wreck, where the angling improved significantly as the tide picked up and started to run.

Dave Newman caught a hard fighting Pollack of good size which I guess was around 16 lbs.  A good specimen.

Dave Newman from Clevedon,
caught his Pollack 16 lbs from a
mid-Channel wreck, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

Gordon Stanley was delighted to catch another fine Cod.

Gordon Stanley from Somerset,
caught his Cod from a mid-Channel
wreck mark, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

Best fish of the day went to MS sufferer, Colin Newnham, who lives near Dover.  Colin inspired me with his perseverance and adaptability to conquer the symptoms of his illness.  Colin has made a belt harness, which allows him to clip himself to the rails around the sides of the boat to keep him upright with a minimum of effort.  He uses his walking stick for lifting ropes, climbing ladders, his ingenuity knows no bounds.  Colin caught a beautiful Cod which we weighed-in at around 19 lbs, which took the money for our informal sweep on the day.  I was pleased to see this.  Colin, who clearly loves his angling certainly deserved it.

Colin Newnham from Dover,
caught his Cod 19 lbs from a mid-Channel
wreck mark, aboard Ian Noble's
Dartmouth charter boat
"Samuel Irvin 3"

We stopped off at another wreck closer to home, but it did not produce any exceptional fish.

People have since asked me, "Did you catch any Bream?".  The honest answer is no, we did not try.  Good friends on the Island, such as Mark Harding, and fellow local charter Skippers, confirmed that they have apparently not arrived yet this season, probably due to the cooler than normal sea water, which follows a colder than usual last Winter.

We got back into Port at Dartmouth around 6.0 pm, tired, suntanned and happy after our exciting but relaxing Alderney sea angling adventure.

"Thank you", to everyone on the trip, to Ian my good pal and "Skipper", and to everyone we met during our visit to Alderney.  Let's do it again before too long ... please !

 

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