Catch report & fishing forecast for Dorset including Chesil Beach, Portland & Weymouth

Sean McSeveny
  · Sean McSeveny  · July 12, 2013

Where can I catch some Mackerel? At last it looks like the May water has gone, even from the western end of Chesil, where it seemed to linger for an eternity. Although the water is lovely and clear, the Mackerel do not seem to want to play ball. Very few have been reported on Chesil. I spent over an hour yesterday driving round trying to find where they might be. I even went up to the top of Portland and looked down in to Chesil Cove.


Although you cant see it in the photo above, the water clarity was so goo I could see several large shoals of Mackerel moving along the beach. The down side was, they all seemed to be around 200m of the beach. I wasn’t able to understand why they didn’t want to move closer to the shore, until I went home and looked at some satellite information that I have been monitoring. I noticed that there was a very distinct band of cooler water at the same distance as the fish seemed to be at. The bait fish it seems are unwilling to move into the warmer water closer to shore (well thats my theory and I am probably wrong). The good news however is that the cooler water seems to have moved away to the West and become more diluted with the warmer water, creating a less dramatic change in temperature. I will be monitoring the satellite information closely in the future to try and help predict better fishing conditions.

The Mackerel were around in good numbers of the Pleasure an Stone Pier in Weymouth. They have also been prolific of the Cobb at Lyme Regis.

I have been lure fishing most of this week with mixed results. When we have expected to struggle in the bright sunshine and calm conditions, we have had fish. At dusk with a high tide, we have had nothing. I guess thats fishing! I will leave you with a picture of  3lb Bass that my mate caught on a Seaspin Pro-Q 90 in bright calm conditions.

Ade Bass3-2

Ade Bass3

Sea Conditions: 

Water temperature 14.5*c.

Chesil Beach: Flat calm and clear water

Portland: Calm with clear  water

Portland Harbour: Calm with clear water.

Weymouth Bay:  Calm with clear water

Chesil Beach forecast: Looks like a good weekend in store for us with lots of Mackerel, some Bream and Gurnard on the cards. With larger tides I expect to see some large Smoothound and Ray being caught. Ray fishing does seem to be better during darkness, especially at marks like Seaton.

Portland: Plenty of Wrasse and a few Pollock around the Island. The Bass do not seem to be showing on any of the rock marks. Night time sessions can produce large Conger Eel and Bull Huss, especially from Blacknor Point on the West side, and on the East side off Chine.

Portland Harbour: A few Bass are showing in the harbour along with lots of Thin Lipped Mullet. Whilst I was wading along Hamm Beach  I spotted lots of Flounder swimming away. They were very close to the shore.

Weymouth Bay: The Mullet have been keeping plenty of anglers busy in the harbour. Most of them are Thick Lipped Mullet and have been falling to bread.

Further round the Bay, Preston Beach has been fishing very well, with plenty of Bass being caught by lure and fly fishermen. Bait anglers have been catching plenty of Gurnard and Flounder from the same mark.

Guiding & Lessons: If you are looking for Bass guiding in Dorset or any other guiding, then I am opening up the diary again for the next 6 months. Now that they fish have started to show, I should have some good sessions.  Have a look on the guiding link at the top of the page or drop me an email for more details to [email protected]

Fishing Tails > All Articles > Reports > Chesil Beach > Catch report & fishing forecast for Dorset including Chesil Beach, Portland & Weymouth


7 Responses to "Catch report & fishing forecast for Dorset including Chesil Beach, Portland & Weymouth"
  1. Avatar Ollie Whitehead says:

    Thanks for the info on Mackerel shoals Sean! I’ll be taking the canoe to around 250 meters out! That should do it!

  2. Avatar Nick says:

    Hi Sean,
    We’ve been waiting all spring and early summer for the sea to warm up and bring the summer fish in. The surface temperature is still only 15c rising to 18c by late afternoon on some days. This is only surface temperature and would be cooler a meter or two down. Are you seriously suggesting it’s too warm for the bait fish? If so why didn’t they arrive earlier?


    • Sean Sean says:

      I am not saying that it is too warm for bait fish. What I am saying is that there was a band of water that was significantly different in temperature fro the water around it. The colder water was according to the satellite imagery, high in Chlorophyl. This provides a rich food source for the tiny life forms that are at the start of the food chain. The slightly larger fry feed on them and so it goes on down the food chain.
      That band of water has now moved further West and is becoming diluted. Unfortunately the licence I have for the satellite imagery does not allow me to repost the images, but I am trying to negotiate a better deal with them to allow me to add that information to my site.

  3. Avatar sandy whiiton says:

    Fished Abbotsbury last night [friday] till high tide, managed to bag 20 odd mackerel in 3 hours but very slow,all mackerel were taken at range on the drop at around 175 yds, my 2 mates who were only getting out around 100yds had nothing, so i guess your theory is right sean.

  4. Avatar Paul Cook says:

    Was also one on the hundreds at Abbostsbury last night, (Friday), all fairly quiet until bang on high tide and with a slight swell we only managed a dozen between 2 of us, the guy next to us had better luck and was still catching in the darkness. Fished until about 1am and had loads of small pout but that was our lot!

  5. Avatar Jared says:

    Off down burton bradstock tommoroow so hopefully the fish will be playing ball !!

  6. Avatar Laurence says:

    Spent 4 hours on Chesil Ferrybridge end yesterday to ride the 2pm high tide (Thursday 18th July).

    I think the cooler water and explanation is spot on! I have never blanked so badly in my years of fishing Chesil. Not even one Mackerel caught and I cast around 160>180 yards. I must say though, at about an hour after high tide there were some HUGE splashes, and I could swear one I caught sight of was a 4>8lb Bass! Only 50 yards out as well, so I can only recommend dumping out some big baits close in if the Mackerel are still so far out this weekend.

    Good luck to all!

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