We were incredibly lucky with our trip to Hilbre this year, despite coming unseasonably early in mid April the weather was fabulous and we had a week of uninterrupted sunshine.
It was a mix of old timers and first timers. For the first few days we enjoyed the company of our regular Hilbre buddies, Nicola & kids + Gavin, kids & Buster the dog. For the second half of the week it was new comers Jon, Heidi & Benjamin + Dave, Louisa & Jasper the dog (Jon and Dave have come once before for my stag do, but memories are vague due to the passage of time and quantity of alcohol consumed; I am counting them as first timers!).
On the second day with the fabulous weather Gavin and I eagerly carried the tiny dingy down the steps for another foray into the Dee estuary and what we felt would be a guaranteed bucket of mackerel with brand new tackle on board. We came back several hours later with a good sun tan, a couple of empty tinnies, but alas no fish.
We had more fishing success later in the week with the “first timers”, setting a fixed line with 20 or so hooks on and a buoy attached. Benjamin and I went out in the boat to pick it up at high tide and were pleased to find 3 nice flatties attached which we took over to middle eye to dispatch on the beach. It was a hero's welcome when we rowed into the beach at the south end of the Island :-)
Jon and Benjamin decided to chance a swim in the sea at high tide but despite the sunshine the water was freezing and they didn’t last more than a few seconds, running back to shore as though their life depended on it (see related photographs for the amusing expressions!)
Otherwise life on the island was relaxing with games in the garden by day and bbqs by night.
Looking forward to next year already and hopes of a big mackerel haul are high!
For now it’s Italy and the first instalment will be coming soon.