Over the following days temperatures peaked causing extreme fire risks resulting in some big forest fires around the monchique area!
Warm weather in Portugal is caused by south winds from Africa, this in turn effects the currents and the sea becomes warmer in a matter of days!
So It was a relief when the north winds returned and temperatures fell once again to the usual cooler climate you can expect in summer time on the Iberian peninsula, but fortunately it would take some days for the water to cool down!
With a few days left I made the most of the early mornings, low tides and warmer waters to hit some great spots that could hold a decent amount of swell.
Many spots were unfishable with large amounts of summer weed floating around due to the recent big waves!
But once I had found some fishable marks I enjoyed some really fun sessions.
Over the years of fishing the Portuguese coastline I’ve found the summer to be the slowest months, but you really never know in fishing and I’m sure bass just love breaking the rules!
The winds had returned which meant not only chilly conditions if your getting wet but also heavier lures were necessary. Some days the winds were so heavy that even the 50g lures would be just blown across the surface of the water.
On my next session I crossed a few gullies to reach a nice potential spot where I was soon into a nice small bass which made the early start well worth it!
Moving onto a more sheltered mark a little more protected from the growing swell, I fired lures out over a boulder type bottom with big boils breaking the surface as the sea surged around them.
Bass love to sit in around these sort of spots and it can be very productive fishing if of course bass are around.
So I wasn’t too surprised when a big bass broke the surface hitting my lure hard!
Unfortunately it didn’t connect and it may have been trying to take out the already injured looking Lure.
Bass can often hit a lure hard in an attempt to incapacitate what it thinks is an injured fish.
I got a fairly good look at the bass and could see it was a good size! I decided to spend some more time casting lures to see if I could entice him to hit the lure again!
About 20 minutes or so later, I had another hit and this time it held and I was onto a nice bass!
I don’t think it was the same bass that hit it earlier making a huge splash! I will never know, but I certainly wasn’t complaining!
It’s interesting how bass fight once hooked! I’ve found that some make a hard run back out to sea, others seem to use up most of there energy with head shakes and trying to throw the hook, or like this one did, swim right for shore!
Although I had been lucky enough to catch regularly on this trip, I felt even the times I didn’t it was a blessing to be fishing along this beautiful coastline knowing that at any moment there was always the possibility of a good fish!
Bass was the target specie on my trip, but we also went on a few family mackerel fishing sessions!
Getting my kids into fishing has been not only great fun! but it’s certainly good back up when you have more fishermen in the family! When it’s 3 against 1 it’s certainly improves your chances of going fishing!
As the Mackerel came in thick and fast even my wife got in on the action!
On any sea fishing trip you really need to be totally focused on the sea conditions and dangers they present. It’s always a good idea to take safety gear like a buoyancy jacket and marine radio!
The eroding cliffs can also be a real danger and often underestimated.
It was only this winter I was fishing from a spot that had since fallen into the sea!
The tracks and pathways are continually changing and this definitely needs to be taken into account when fishing these coastal spots.
At high tide and pushed up against the cliffs, there is a real danger of falling rocks which tend just give way at any moment.
I noticed this whilst walking along many of my regular spots where you could often see tons of recently fallen slate.
What surprised me the most was how few fisherman I saw again on this trip.
It was understandable in the winter when I had fished the week of the 50 year storm.
But this was summer!
Apart from coming across the odd bait fisherman, and a few guys catching percebes, which is a kind of seafood found on the rocks at low tide, that was it!
I didn’t see not one Lure fisherman during my stay, and I was happy to have the whole coastline to myself!
As it was a family holiday there were quite a few late nights and I was starting to feel the effects! The 5.00 starts were getting harder each time.
I remembered waking up to the alarm on one of the last mornings to hear the howling north wind blowing outside the tent, knowing it could possibly unfishable and wondering whether It was worth it or should I stay in bed!
If you don’t go you’re never know has always been my moto!
So after a few moments of contemplating a few more hours in bed and a nice easy breakfast! Or getting into a wet wetsuit the decision was made!
And it was one I certainly didn’t regret!
I decided to again head across a couple very of rough gullies to a deeper fishing spot, compared to the shallow marks I had spent most of the trip fishing!
There was a fairly strong swell coming over some rocks acting as a breakwater.
The water was a lovely turquoise colour and perfect for a Sub Surface Lure.
The conditions weren’t the easiest as the strong north winds just seemed to be increasing by the day as did the swell!
After working hard at keeping my lure in the water with the windy conditions, it wasn’t too long before I was into a nice bass tweaking my lure through the rough water.
I had that feeling that more bass were likely to be around! So I wasted no time in getting the lure out again!
It’s just a feeling you get when you sense the conditions are right!
A little while later and I was into another nice one this time the bass had almost completely engulfed the lure in its mouth trying to swallow it whole.
Fortunately I could push the lure free and was back fishing as there was still time for one more before I headed back!
I stuck with the Tweak bait which was proving very effective in the conditions and was soon rewarded with the third and final bass of the morning this one again around the same size!
So with 3 good size bass for my efforts, this morning had ended an excellent mornings fishing!
Tomorrow we were leaving and would need to pack and drive up to Lisbon for our flight!
The conditions just seemed to be improving right before I was leaving!
I wasn’t sure how I would ask my wife, could I possibly have a last quick early morning fish before we packed up!
I did my best to put up a convincing case explaining how awesome the conditions were at the moment with warmer waters and bass being around at last!
I was expecting a definite you must be joking!! There’s too much to do!
So when my wife thankfully agreed! It was game on!
Last morning of the trip and I was back on the rocks!
Over a few gullies and I making the most of my last few hours of the fishing!
On this occasion I met a couple of guys catching percebes, It’s a real Portuguese delicacy and doesn’t come cheap due to the dangers posed when collecting them!
I was certainly happier to be facing the sea keeping my eyes on the set waves coming through! These guys need to have there backs to the sea and whits about them whilst prizing away these barnacles from the rocks!
Wasting no time I put on the 50g Tweak and sent it out into the swell!
It wasn’t long before a passing bass hit the lure and I could immediately feel it was bigger than the previous days catches!
Although it felt a nice fish, I knew it wouldn’t be easy getting this one in!
There was a some jagged rocks out in front and a ledge leading to the deeper water.
I knew I would need to time it just right with a wave to bring the bass over the ledge and safely onto the rocks!
When bringing a fish over a ledge like this, there’s always the danger of it being sucked back down the ledge with the swell easily snapping your line against the sharp rocks.
Fortunately all went to plan and the fish was washed up safely where I could climb down to get it
If I could just sneak one more, that would surely show my wife what a great decision it was to allow me to fish the last morning!
Well I didn’t take much convincing and pressed on in hope of one more last bass!
Checking my watch every few minutes I was running out of time!
It was a long hike up and I didn’t want to push it, my wife being so understanding and all!!
I decided to try another rock close by for a few last casts, and would then call it a day!
As anyone who’s fished with me knows! My favorite saying towards the end of a session is last cast!
It’s amazing how many fish I caught over the years on my last cast which inevitably turns out to be about another 20 last casts!
It’s really difficult to stop when that turquoise water looks so bassy!
Well when the rod bent over for the final time! as another bass took the lure! I agreed it would definitely be my final cast of the trip!
As I held the bass I can remember thinking! Wow! What an end to a lovely holiday!
I’m happy to report the bass fishing was well above expectations and my marriage stayed fully intact.
A special thanks to my lovely wife for putting up with my fishing obsession!!
I will certainly be back before too long as it’s hard to stay away from this place!