An open beach with pounding surf and golden sand is a very inviting place for any sea angler to fish.
The UK contains many famous beach fishing mark but perhaps the most famous of them all is Chesil beach, Dorset. The beach is far more shingle than sand, with deep water located close to the sore. Chesil beach is a steep banking beach, this can help the angler in that you shouldn’t need to cast soo far to find the fish. On beaches with a more gentle slope a good basic guide is to aim to cast just beyond the third breaking wave.
All beaches have certain species that visit them during various times of the year. Flatfish species will move inshore and feed on lugworm, ragworm and various other food sources during the summer months. A running leger rig is popular with either a crab or worm bait. One of the most prized beach species is the Bass, which can be caught by beach casting. A favoured approach is to cast a running ledger rig with either a Peeler Crab, Sandeel or Razorfish bait out to just beyonf the white water (approx 30 yards). In recent times with global warming Bass can be caught from the shore almost all year round, certainly in the south of the UK.
During the winter months the main species for beach anglers to target is the Cod. The preferred bait for Cod being a lugworm and squid cocktail. Cod have big mouths so remember to use a big hook! As well as Cod the beach angler should expect to catch a lot of Whiting during the winter as well, these can be a pain when looking for the Cod. A good tip here is to fish at night as this tends to result in the larger Cod being caught.
Whatever species you choose to target from the beach that are a couple of things to think about that should help improve your catch rate. Look for features, even barron areas of sand will have features that attract fish, look for any gullies, channels, worm beds, structures at low tide. If you’re fishing a beach for the first time this is where you should try first. Further is not always better, remember that a lot of the fish you will catch from a beach are attracted by the food that is disturbed from the churning action of the waves. A short cast can often result in a fish where as a longer cast if going over the fish, this is especially true when fishing after a storm.