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Hail, wind and tangles just about sums up the day for the five hardy Loch Fyne SAC members who ventured out on Loch Etive for the annual Christmas Shield competition.
Part of the fun of this event is the ‘compulsory’ festive fancy dress and the boys entered into the spirit of the day with their outfits on Saturday December 14. This year’s winner, picked by the skipper, was Robert ‘Grinch’ MacBrayne.
The day started off as expected, pretty cold with a few light showers. Fishing was slow at first with roughly an hour passing before the first catch came aboard, but after that it was non-stop until lunchtime.
The quality of spurs and whiting was better than expected with very few undersized caught. Most made the measure and on average spurs hit the 30-50cm mark with a couple of decent ones coming in at 70cm tipping the scales at 4lbs 7oz.
As the day progressed the weather deteriorated with heavy showers, hail and really strong gusts spinning the boat leading to the inevitable Etive tangles.
A decision was made to cut the day short and lines up was called at 3pm.
Given the conditions everyone coped well and at the end of the day four species, spurs, whiting, lsd and pouting, added to the tally of 52 counting fish.
Highlight of the day were the two sea eagles that flew in quite close on the hunt for food but they had their work cut out with so many greedy gulls around. Food wasn’t an issue for the boys though with homemade soup, tablet, shortbread and ginger wine all hitting the spot.
Back ashore and the scores tallied up, the winner of this year’s Christmas Shield was Gordon Law with Robert MacBrayne in second place.
1 Gordon Law 98pts; 2 Robert MacBrayne 72pts; 3 Andrew Jamieson 42pts; 4 Ronnie McGinty 41pts; 5 Steven MacBrayne 33pts.