Whitehaven West Pier Sea Fishing Mark

This popular mark offers fi shing from two levels. Most fishing is from the top level fishing out to sea, the bottom is mainly into the harbour but is more easily accessed by disabled anglers.

Redevelopment work has improved the pier area and there is a nearby car park. The west pier is the larger of the town’s two harbour arms and is very popular because it tends to produce the bigger fish. Most anglers fish from the long straight stretching from the elbow to the end.

The town’s other pier is lower amd means less of a haul to land a fish.

SPECIES

Plaice, flounders, dabs, cod, whiting, coalfish, dogfish, mackerel, garfish, eels and rockling are the main species taken at various times of the year.

Occasionally the odd bass, conger eel, gurnard, pollack, mullet and sea trout are caught and it is possible for unusual species to turn up.

BAIT AND TACKLE

Lugworms, ragworms and white rag take plaice in spring. Crabs, worm baits and mackerel strip take fish off the bottom in summer.

Float fishing with a light rod using a strip of mackerel or sandeel for bait works in summer for mackerel and garfish, as do lures and feathers. Try a light beach rod for feathers and lures. A light beach rod and a reel loaded with 15lb line is ideal for smaller fish, such as dabs, flounders and whiting, at short range, especially on smaller tides when the run isn't too strong. Try a one-up, one-down rig with size 2-1/0 hooks and a 3-4oz grip lead.

When seeking larger species or when fishing at longer distances or on larger tides when the tide run is very strong, use a standard beach rod and reel with 15lb line and 50-60lb leader and 5-6oz grip lead. A one-up, one-down rig will do the job, but increase the hook sizes. Use lug and rag in winter, but tipping off with mackerel or squid can improve catches. Frozen crabs, mussels and razorfish take fish at times.

GETTING THERE

From the A66 take the A595 south to Whitehaven. Turn right onto the A5094 and follow the one-way system towards St Bees. At the second set of traffic lights turn right and at the next set turn left and go past the Beacon towards the pier. Just past the fisheries building on the right, turn right onto the bottom of the pier where there is limited free parking. There are pay and display car parks 100 yards away.

Directions : From the north follow the A596. From the south the A595. Both roads take you into the town where the sea front and piers are signposted

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Season : Winter for codling and whiting, other species in summer