Tuesday, 10 April 2007

Bristol Channel, Blue Anchor.

Blue Anchor, Looking east.

The area known as Blue Anchor takes its quaint name from the pub at the Watchet end of the beach. It is a high tide mark and can be found on the back road from Watchet to Minehead. It is fishable for a few hours either side of high water from the sea wall or the beach to the west. There is car parking on the landward side of the road or alongside the seaward side of the road for much of the venue. There are only a few places where there is access to the beach so fish have to be retrieved by use of a drop net, risking a loss by lifting the fish up by hand-lining or 'walking' the fish along the wall to an access spot. A large portion of the wall is unfishable due to the rock armour placed under the wall, this makes it next to impossible to land a fish.
Blue Anchor Beach, east towards 'Broken Wall'

A good selection of species can be caught from the wall or from the beach. Dogfish seem to be ever present with cod and whiting in the winter. Large conger eels are quite common; also taken are pouting, thornback rays, small eyed rays, bass and rockling. Small turbot sometimes put in an appearance. Baits used here are ragworm or lugworm , squid and fishbaits, ( if you are feeling energetic it is possible to dig lugworm from the beach ), sensible people buy them from Westcoast Angling in Watchet, ( 53 Swain Street TA23 0AG Tel: 01984 634807) or Minehead ( a kiosk on the harbour wall ) . There is a shop and café just inside the entrance to the caravan park which sells frozen bait and has a selection of basic tackle bits and pieces.
There is a toilet block about halfway along the bay and a café at the western end where there is also a station serving the steam railway.
At the eastern end of the beach there are some reefs which are exposed at low water; the locals who are aware of the dangers, local weather conditions and tides fish these reefs. Do not attempt to fish here, there is a real danger of drowning. Near the reefs are patches of soft sinking sand which are dangerous enough before you get out onto the rocks.

updated 17th August 2010

from wall only