How NOT to fish for cod

  1. Sure, there are some things you can learn from books. But if that’s your tactic – make sure it’s not a book solely on the topic of tropical fish. No matter how hard you look out for them, you’re not about to get your lines tangled in fly fish eggs in the Arctic seas
  2. While we’re at it – make sure you check how to humanely kill a fish before you put out lines
  3. Letting heavily weighted lines trail behind you while under full sail is a no-no. Shockingly, you’ll be going through immense amounts of tackle if you persist
  4. When you do catch a fish – try not to scream like a small child in surprise and fright
  5. If you meet a random Norwegian bloke on the top of a mountain – try to take it with a pinch of salt when he tells you that catching cod is easy peasy, even in fairly shallow waters. It’s a short route to feeling shit about your fishing skills
  6. Try not to panic about fish flopping around on the floor of the boat while you haphazardly try to remove a hook
  7. Don’t try to chum the waters in a sheltered, current-less bay with, ahem, human effluent from the head. Then go swimming in it…
  8. Don’t attempt to gut and fillet fish in the middle of a flock of nesting terns. It’s a short route to coordinated dive-bomb attacks
  9. While we’re talking about birds….best to avoid cruising around to ‘take a look’ at tern versus seagull wars. You will be collateral (pooey) damage. And when terns attack you, hold a hat or a stick or ANYTHING high above your head so they vomit on that instead. It’s not so nice on your temple

With a whole week of taking any opportunity to pop out a rod, there is one piece of advice I can reliably impart: get sonar, find the deepest point in a sheltered channel and watch to see where the locals drop rods. Keep a respectful distance and put out the longest line you can muster – a minimum of 50m.

It’s method that somehow yielded two separate fish suppers for us, so can’t be all that bad!