Ask when for season –
Season is April to December – with key times of June to October
Ask when for time of day –
A good time is during the change of light from dark to bright or bright to dark (dawn and dusk) – or go dark…..
Ask when for state of tide –
Spring tides often produce more fish than neap tides
Ask when within tidal run –
Some locations fish best at the beginning of the tidal phase other at the fall of tidal phases – always look for water movement and motion, its not always constant. Sometimes in places where it slows and stops can be magic too
Ask when during different phases of weather –
Bass are highly susceptible to all changes in and state of weather conditions, temperature, barometric pressure, wind direction, wind strength, water temperature, long periods of settled weather….
Ask when do you change your fishing tactics, colour of fly, type of line-
Never stay doing the same thing in the same place (unless its a passing point !) – keep on the move, observing,learning, changing and adapting and most of all enjoying the freedom that flyfishing creates ..
Taken from Notes from the past on Here written on the fly some 10 years back you can 


Bass fishing Jim Hendrick

I have used the Guideline Coastal line when saltwater fly fishing here in Ireland for many years now. In fact I fish with it quite a lot and really like the older type lines – HERE

Now guideline have created a new version – The Coastal Evolve. Guidline have shortened the head from 10.5 m to 9.8 meters and the weight moves from 19 to 19.5 grams for the #8. This is heavier than say the coastal quick shooter from RIO for a 10.9 meter head but closer to the coastal quick shooter XP at 20.4 grams for a 9.7 head – and similar too to the outbound short……….(all in the 300 to 330 grain range)

Of course all these lines sit outside the normal AFTMA criteria – but the original does cast and work really well with most modern #8 rods. Any newly designed line you cast will require each individual to adjust to the new line and the coastal is no different – I found myself slowing over the cast a little like casting any shooting head you should be thinking of hitting good distances a lot easier.

I’m thinking too how this line might fit on my ECHO DH…

I’m interested to see the effect of the change in the taper comparisons as the original taper was more ‘rear concentrated’ with a longer front taper, the new evolve has been modified to a shorter front taper and overall shorter head length. One of the things I really enjoyed on the original was the running line – low memory good diameter too for windy conditions and just great to grip – ! The skinny running line on the evolve in wind…..now there’s a challenge – however when drifting flies running line diameter has a huge impact on presentations.

I have taken the notes from the Guideline page on their new line (please see below) and I have highlighted the changes from the original. Once my health improves over the next month or so I will cast and fish with the line and make some notes for you on here.

Source: http://www.guidelineflyfish.com


The brand new Coastal Evolve WF fly line has an optimised taper with slightly more mass in the front part to effortless turn over the fly in harsh coastal conditions. Guideline have designed the line for sea run brown trout, sea bass, mullet and other coastal species that live in shallow water and require long, careful and precise presentations regardless of the weather conditions. Coastal Evolve has an improved and somewhat thinner shooting line to give less friction in the guides and thereby longer casts in difficult conditions. The color of Coastal Slow Intermediate’s head is Ice Green, while the head of Fast Intermediate is a slightly darker Sea Green. The shooting line is a clearly visible Sunrise Yellow that makes it easy to recognize where the taper of the head ends and the shooting line starts.

The head weight in the table is at 9.8m, which is the bulk of the head and what is required to cast effortlessly and effectively. The back taper has the same color as the shooting line and is 4m long with a smooth taper that ensures very good stability when you want to cast really far. When casting the new Coastal Evolve, it feels like Coastal in weight, but it has more stability and power in the roll over due to slightly more compact taper in the front of the head. This feature is an important improvement to both casting and presentation in wind with increased stability and a roll-over that is far less sensitive to wind. Back taper / handling line was also excluded in the head weight on the first generation Coastal. Total length is 32 meters.


The coating is the same memory-free, smooth and durable type that many recognize from the previous version of the Coastal. The line has a Direct Contact core with only 5% stretch, which means that you have excellent contact with the fly and feel the slightest pull and bump from the fish. Because Coastal fishes just below the surface, it creates a straight line between your hand and the fly and a turbulent surface do not affect the contact. PVC-free coating without softener and a durability in a class of its own makes the Coastal a good environmental choice. Factory welded loops in the front and back make it easy to place a drawer and connect the cable to the reversing via loop system.
Slow Intermediate has a sink rate of 1.25cm / second. The discrete color of the head together with the density means that the line stays just below the surface and does not create shadows and wakes on the surface. This makes it the perfect weapon for spooky fish in shallow water.
Fast Intermediate has a sink rate of 3.8cm / sec and thus goes down somewhat deeper. It´s a great choice when you want to fish off edges and deeper parts, or when you fish wants a high speed fly.

Despite its name, we also want to highlight the Coastal as a super-fine alternative for the fisherman who chases rainbow trout and trout in still water. As on the coast, you often come across windy days that require you cast into a stiff headwind, and it is striking often that the wind drives food on the wind side and that is where you find the fish. To fish a nymph or streamer just below the surface is often very effective, and when the line goes down just below the turbulent surface it gives good contact with the fly.


  • Thinner shooting line for long, frictionless cast.
  • Optimized taper with more mass in the front.
  • Sharper color difference between the shooting line and the head.
  • Factory welded loops in front and back.
  • Direct Contact core with only 5% stretch.
  • Environmentally friendly PVC-free coating without softener.
  • Optimal wear resistance with no-crack coating.


ModelLineHead LenghtHead WeightDensitiesTotal Length
Coastal Evolve#59,8 m / 32,2 ft13,5g / 208 grainsSlow & Fast Int.32 m / 35 yds
Coastal Evolve#69,8 m / 32,2 ft15,5g / 239 grainsSlow & Fast Int.32 m / 35 yds
Coastal Evolve#79,8 m / 32,2 ft17,5g / 270 grainsSlow & Fast Int.32 m / 35 yds
Coastal Evolve#89,8 m / 32,2 ft19,5g / 300 grainsSlow & Fast Int.32 m / 35 yds
Coastal Evolve#99,8 m / 32,2 ft21,5g / 330 grainsSlow & Fast Int.32 m / 35 yds

*Head weight measured at 9,8 meter, read more under the Taper section above.

My place in me

Catch and Respect

Catch and Respect – Fly-fishing for bass – & Leave no trace

There is a skill too, in the proper release of fish!

Please limit your kill rather than killing your limit.

Catching a wild fish like a bass is a skillful process, releasing one successfully back to the sea alive and healthy also requires skill and good techniques. I try and apply the following to my own fishing as best I can

  • Before you start fishing look closely at the area where you are angling and search for lies that you suspect a fish may run to for cover and use to his advantage for escape or possible hang up.
  • Plan regularly as you move and consider how you will play land and return your fish under the circumstances you are in. Check for your own safety and a possible path to bring the fish through to release.
  • Think speed of return – get them back in the water fast!

CatchandreleaseSome helpful tips for successful catch and release

  • Handle the fish as little as possible and try to keep the fish in the water when removing hooks
  • Avoid lifting or touching the fish if you can
  • If you do need to touch the fish, make sure your hands are wet
  • Avoid lifting the fish out of the water unsupported
  • If you do need to lift the fish, make sure he is supported evenly
  • If you are using lures for the first time and are nervous of treble hooks, consider using a boga grip for in the water releases
  • NEVER lift or SUSPEND a fish from a boga grip.
  • It is often not necessary to use a boga grip when fishing for bass, especially when using single or barb less hooks, cut down or eliminate its use entirely as you grow in confidence
  • Always have a plan for releasing a fish before landing it
  • Because time is crucial in keeping a released fish alive, work quickly and eliminate any over exposure to air
  • Avoid using landing nets
  • Do not drag fish over dry hot sand which clings to its slime
  • Handling the fish with wet hands helps to avoid removing the beneficial fish slime.
  • Remove treble hooks carefully and quickly using pliers and try to avoid lip or flesh ripping, also avoid any contact to the red gill plate area.
  • When taking photographs make it very quick and always plan ahead
  • Revive any exhausted fish in the water by pointing the fish into any available current and providing support until the fish recovers.
  • Try not to recover the fish where water is muddy or sandy or temperature is high
  • Be patient with bigger fish or fish that are responding slowly

Points to Consider in reducing overexposure

  • Be confident when landing your fish
  • Cut down on the number of hooks on your lures
  • De-barb your treble hooks
  • Fit lures with single hooks
  • De-barb your single hooks
  • Try to land fish as quickly as possible to avoid over stressing them
  • Overplayed and overexposed fish die after release
  • A quickly landed bass will still have a lot of energy and is very inclined to shake his head from side to side – a dangerous time for both fish and angler for potential damage especially with barbed multi hooked lures
  • Longer lures with multiple treble hooks cause greater damage to fish than shorter ones
  • Regards measuring fish – wrap tape of three different colours at important intervals on your rod-  measure from butt of rod to coloured tape – is it really that important to be mm accurate at the cost of a fast return?
    • 50 cms equates to approx 1.35kgs or 3lbs
    • 70 cms equates to approx 3.35kgs or 7lbs
    • 80 cms is mostimes greater than 4.45kgs or 10lbs and less than 5.25kgs or 12lbs – this is a big fish and one that bass anglers seek most.

Further considerations in a dwindling population

If you intend to kill and keep a fish from time to time (July – December) then carry the proper tool do the job. Don’t leave fish gasping and flapping on the shoreline but use a salmon priest to dispatch him quickly.

If keeping a fish consider keeping one that has spawned a number of times > 45 cms.

Try not to kill the fish that everyone wants to catch i.e. return bigger fish,

2018, silence remembered

No form of fishing offers such elaborate silences as fly-fishing for permit. The most successful permit fly fisherman has very few catches to describe to you. Yet there is considerable agreement that taking a permit on a fly is the extreme experience of the sport. Even the guides allow enthusiasm to shine through.

Thomas McGuane – The longest Silence

Travelling to a hotel at Dublin airport by bus was a journey I can recall without any serious event or indeed concern. Even though there was snow on the ground I had seen worse but then, as I approached Dublin and disembarked at the airport things were definitely changing. Much faster than I realised. I hauled my wheeled baggage through the snow for five minutes, made a dramatic entrance through the foyer in a flurry of cold wind and banging doors and stumbled into an unexpected crowd of people – all trapped in a long queue trying to book rooms. Flights were being cancelled at an ever increasing rate. I didn’t register any anxiety regarding the fact that I was flying to Belize the following morning via Amsterdam.

Suffice to say that this seemingly inexorable invincibility and belief continued as the weather worsened, I survived a ‘lost in a whiteout’ experience on the way back to my hotel having met and drank with my fishing companions in celebration of our pending angling future and success.

Standing at the foyer door of the hotel the following morning as temperatures plummeted and snow fell like I NEVER saw it fall before, I looked forward to the routine and excitement of airports and their cadences. Apparently we were now flying straight to New York, I never felt the true impact of what this meant, but Atlanta was apparently on our list for a non scheduled stopover. This of course kept us in line for our destination but also allowed us time to contemplate and create new plans for things like having a ‘rare auld time’.

Spencer proved to be excellent exponent of this philosophy and immediately fell in love somewhere over the Atlantic.

We were the second last plane to leave Dublin that day. The airport closed for three days 40 minutes after we took off. Invincible!

Spencer got badly sunburned on day two – he remained on MOTHERRR for a day, recovering by way of air-conditioning. This left me to fish with my guide Jose to fish for the longest time for the greatest challenge.

They’re running hot to the boat Jim, fifty yards at 11 o’clock and closing.

Jose never raised his voice, even when I eventually spotted the fish, twenty of them, at 20 yards and going past the bow. I never even got a cast off. I marvelled at their speed their meticulous formation held in perfection as they traversed the reef on a secret mission.


We sped over shallow water, close to giant starfish, ray, reefs, stopped and drifted. And in the midst of the drifts I found the impossible silence as Jose majestically polled the boat over the flats and through heart racing locations where we met the fish, again and again.

It was always the gentle sound of the wind, the flap of shirt collar, the hiss of line through the cast, sometimes the clink clink clink of small waves against the hull. A pelican fishing.

Fish Jim..came the voice, do ya see um?

With some instruction and help, but now more frequently than not, more like encouragement, in the silence, came the activity of the cast, the retrieve, and most of all in the silence sometimes too came the sound of a fly reel emptying at speed, creating, in the silence, a frame of mind I can never forget.


At home

That scene, with Macbeth helpless and desperate
In his nightmare—when he meets the hags again
And sees the apparitions in the pot—
I felt at home with that one all right.

Seamus Heaney


In the street and in society I am almost invariably cheap and dissipated, my life is unspeakably mean. No amount of gold or respectability would in the least redeem it — dining with the Governor or a member of Congress!! But alone in distant woods or fields, in unpretending sprout lands or pastures tracked by rabbits, even on a black and, to most, cheerless day, like this, when a villager would be thinking of his inn, I come to myself, I once more feel myself grandly related, and that the cold and solitude are friends of mine. I suppose that this value, in my case, is equivalent to what others get by churchgoing and prayer. I come to my solitary woodland walk as the homesick go home… It is as if I always met in those places some grand, serene, immortal, infinitely encouraging, though invisible, companion, and walked with him.

Henry David Thoreau