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Discussion Starter #1
Elsewhere on the board I have a thread about how to fish a surf beach in rough conditions. One of the ideas was to skish it, getting outside of the surf and fishing back towards the beach. In many ways I think done properly it could be a safer way to fish when the surf is pounding.
Now a few questions,
Holding outside the surf would mean either alot of work (if possible) with fins, and using any longshore drift to cover the beach. Or some form of anchor and cover the beach a section at a time?? So which is better/safer/doable??

Also i get my best results by hanging the lure in the gutter beneath the surf, using the undertow to work the lure. But if I am outside the surf, I would be not be able to do this. I know Keith has said he would be fishing soft plastics. Any pointers for what would be best things to try with either hard or soft plastics.

One more question, many of the beaches around here can be very popular with bait fishers, I have had a couple of near(ish) misses from leads, they have belted out into the darkness. I am currently deep wading, but skishing would allow me to access another shallow wadable area further off shore (when the tide/winds are right). But would you see any problems wearing a helmet while skishing. I have a couple (I use for rock climbing), any thoughts.
 

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Holding outside the surf would mean either alot of work (if possible) with fins, and using any longshore drift to cover the beach.
Actually, IME, it doesn't.

A rearward entry into the water is essential as is jumping each wave as it gets higher until feet up.
Once actually OUT THERE, swell goes up and down, not in and out. It just looks that way.

Using longshore currents is exactly the ticket to moving along a surf beach. Get aerial shots to find heads of rips and be prepared to get slung out to sea IF you get in one unaware. However !!!

Never PANIC. Carry on fishing and stop kicking.
You will go where the bait goes and sometimes, whilst diving I've sat on the end of the head of a surf rip. It's like a ball of water that is spilling of the end of a pole.

We do a few longshore current skishes but you must get in 'without' gear for a few sessions and pick a mid tidal height as a first run.
Get a mask and snorkel if you like with a waterproof divers slate and compass. Take bearings and write them down when you pass useful underwater features.

As you get better, try going from spot to spot but, work out the track and allow for longshore drift. Swimming in a arc almost.

There is loads to this. You are essentially navigating like a boat/kayak but without the boat/kayak or the height advantage. You DO have the advantage that being low down keeps you stable. You must wear long fins, NOT SCUBA FINS. They do not give you enough keel, especially in swell off the back of a surf break.

Consider taking sea sickness precautions as you might be in the water for extended periods.
Consider food, drink, gear, where it is, how you get to it. It's all underwater and it might be dark.

Saying this, it is the most exciting rush of blood you are likely to experience outside of you know what..., it's just better and lasts alot longer LOL
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Interesting stuff Keith.
I was thinking that the onshore wind would be pushing you back into the surf (think like a boat angler), but I gues with such a limited profile. Being pushed before the breeze wouldn't be much of an issue.
Totally understand your point about watching for rips/tidal deflections, a couple locally can still be felt out on flats 300 yards beyound the daytime surface visable end of the rip.
I use a GPS for alot of my night wading-BUT being someone with no trust in batteries. I carry a compass and bearings for my marks and for express routes back in to the beach. I aslo find that changes in water temperature are worth noting, as they often tell you flowing water (inparticular around here, the change of the tide can be felt as a temperature change) and or deeper water.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Keith,
I know that from your experience reel wise the VS is the only way to go.
But if someone wanted to try skishing, would you reconmend just using a cheap reel (knowing it will die pretty quickly) or spend a little more on something tougher??
 

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Just an idea:
I have absolutely no experience of skishing (although it does look great fun), But the idea of using a float tube to position yourself might be a good idea. But then I guess that would be deafening the point of skishing as you wouldn't be skishing.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Joe,
I have float tubed in saltwater before. I would say that I would think that skishing would be safer. I used to have to be VERY careful about wind direction, a change in the wind could literally stop you from being able to reach the shore. Skishing doesn't prosent the same proile to the wind, so you would be much less effected by the direction of the wind.
Float tubing a flooding tide into marshes or over enclosed area of water is great, but personally I wouldn't float tube open beaches AGAIN
 

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Just an idea:
I have absolutely no experience of skishing (although it does look great fun), But the idea of using a float tube to position yourself might be a good idea. But then I guess that would be deafening the point of skishing as you wouldn't be skishing.
Use of a float tube in open water swell, current and wind would be a death trap imho.
 

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Keith,
I know that from your experience reel wise the VS is the only way to go.
But if someone wanted to try skishing, would you reconmend just using a cheap reel (knowing it will die pretty quickly) or spend a little more on something tougher??
Keith and I know someone who uses a cheaper Shimano (Sedona?) with holes drilled into the side cases to let water OUT and waterproof marine grease on the gearing. Some bearings may have been replaced with hand turned nylon bushes but I am not sure that is essential. Slip of the side casing, rinse dry and re-grease every so often.

If you need a VS I know where there may be a VS200 for sale, if a bit big for your average bass! But if you are going skishing for conger or tope it could be ideal!
 

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Keith and I know someone who uses a cheaper Shimano (Sedona?) with holes drilled into the side cases to let water OUT and waterproof marine grease on the gearing. Some bearings may have been replaced with hand turned nylon bushes but I am not sure that is essential. Slip of the side casing, rinse dry and re-grease every so often.
agreed, you can use a cheaper reel first to give it a go, but don't expect them to last, normally it's the drag that starts packing up, then the gears.

kev
 

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Keith and I know someone who uses a cheaper Shimano (Sedona?) with holes drilled into the side cases to let water OUT and waterproof marine grease on the gearing. Some bearings may have been replaced with hand turned nylon bushes but I am not sure that is essential. Slip of the side casing, rinse dry and re-grease every so often.

If you need a VS I know where there may be a VS200 for sale, if a bit big for your average bass! But if you are going skishing for conger or tope it could be ideal!
He has just re-built that reel after it really started to bind. I think he is in the process of proofing a smaller reel to go on his new Shimano Dropshot rod too.
So, that reel lasted the last quarter of last season and 2 or 3 full on skishes this season before a full rebuild.
Not bad for an el cheapo.
 

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I didn't realise it was a rebuild, I thought it was just a degarease and some fresh grease. Also saw the "new" one being prepped. Think it is a 3000/4000 size Shakespeare with baitrunner. £50 tops?

I don't have the spare time but it seems an OK option for starting out?
 
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