|The Black Cuillins , Loch Portree and Portree Harbour|
Like so many places on Skye, Loch Portree, basically the sea in the bay area where Portree is located, can be almost amusingly picturesque. The harbour front itself is classic picture postcard material whilst the views south to the Cuillin mountains, east towards Ben Tianavaig and beyond to the adjacent island of Raasay, or north past the black Rock where Bonnie Prince Charlie is said to have fled from government troops, up towards the imposing cliffs of Scorrybreac, make it an absolutely outstanding place to lose some time before nightfall.
|My first Portree Pollock|
These have been the most numerous of my sessions on Skye. I've been treated to the sight of a White Tailed Eagle soaring high above me and often spotted the odd seal hanging around the fish cages towards the sound of Raasay. Out in Loch Portree the youths from the sailing club are often out practicing in the conducive conditions. I think it gives a real insight into how past generations on Skye utilised this, like so many other sheltered sea lochs around the 'Winged Isle', to hone their sea faring skills in much the same way in the old Birlinns that frequented these waters in times gone by.
A quick mention here for the other wildlife you find in abundance, namely, the Midgie. In the absence of any wind, for any session to last more than a couple of casts you will absolutely need a midgie net.
|Come back in a couple of years|
My first few sessions involved hurling a jighead as far as possible (3.5g, so quite small) and jigging some Isome back at varying depths and speeds. Interest was frequent and I'd take some small Pollock and Coalfish in between the wee blighters nicking my lure.
The first few sessions were at the higher end of the tide. The Black Rock on the cornere of the sea loch is said to be a good mark, but is only accessible at low tide. For my first visit out there, I'd have to wait.
|I doubt this wee one was even 3 inches|
Echoing the sentiments of the great species hunter himself, the sheer frequency of small Coalfiish and Pollock that seem to be almost everywhere you try in the sea around the coast can only be a good sign for the future.
|Gully to the right|
|Gully to the left|
In discussion with Hutch, he advised that the amount of missed bites I was reporting might be negated with a drop shot tactic instead of the jighead. The next night I was back with a drop shot set up and a better camera. First fish was a wee Pollock making that four fish, four different species in a row from the Black Rock. Then I tempted another Grey Gurnard, getting a much better snap for posterity. More Coalies and Pollock followed. Whilst the drop shot was hooking more fish, my rod and especially reel were making actual bite detection less successful than it should be. The LRF would make its way to Skye with me the next time.
|Baby Cod (or Whiting?)|
|Getting (a bit) bigger - Pollock|