THE QUARRYMEN

The ‘Fab Two’ (not Len­non and McCart­ney) bee­tle off for a spot of rock­hop­ping – they love it… yeah, yeah, yeah!

Sea Angler (UK) - - CONTENTS - Words and pho­tog­ra­phy by CHRIS CLARK

Wrasse and garfish from the Purbecks.

Hav­ing spent a lot of my fish­ing time head­ing west­wards, well away from my tra­di­tional rock-hop­ping haunts, a trip closer to home to one of my favourite marks along the Purbecks was well over­due.

Both my en­thu­si­asm and adren­a­line were on a high as I picked up Steve Lawrence from Poole en route to what is, in my opin­ion, one of the most pic­turesque coast­lines in the coun­try.

Our fi­nal des­ti­na­tion would be Lit­tle Hed­bury, a dis­used quarry tucked mid­way be­tween Danc­ing Ledge and Win­spit. I knew from past ex­pe­ri­ence it was one heck of a walk with some steep hills to test our stamina.

On this oc­ca­sion we parked close to the Square and Com­pass pub (an ex­cel­lent wa­ter­ing hole at Worth Ma­travers for those vis­it­ing the area) and then it was a case of don­ning the hik­ing boots.

Nor­mally, I would rec­om­mend trav­el­ling light when head­ing on a mag­i­cal mys­tery tour to th­ese more re­mote marks but on this oc­ca­sion we were laden like a cou­ple of pack­horses. We had all the usual heavy-duty rock-hop­ping gear but, due to a short­age of fresh mack­erel, we had our float tackle with us to help sup­ple­ment the bait box.

While many may find the walk gru­elling, I re­ally en­joy am­bling down through the wooded glades with the buz­zards and pere­grine fal­cons swirling over­head, and just to add to the en­joy­ment there are al­ways plenty of rab­bits, deer and other wildlife to see. For the ma­jor­ity of coun­try lads, such as my­self, the fish­ing al­most comes sec­ond but, once at our rocky plat­form, my mind rapidly changes to a fish­ing mode.

HID­DEN GEM

As we made out fi­nal ap­proach down the nar­row, wind­ing track lead­ing into the depths of the quarry I was buzzing with ex­cite­ment. It had been nearly two years since my last out­ing to this lit­tle hid­den gem.

This was Steve’s first trip to Lit­tle Hed­bury, so he was just as en­thu­si­as­tic as I was. As we rounded the cor­ner, his eyes lit up as he got the first glimpse of the quarry – cer­tainly a new ex­pe­ri­ence com­pared to his usual floun­der haunts in Poole Har­bour.

While it’s a fairly lofty perch, Lit­tle Hed­bury of­fers an ex­cel­lent, flat and safe fish­ing plat­form, ideal for cast­ing. On the neg­a­tive side, it does catch the wind, re­sult­ing in big

A lovely-coloured, big, bold bal­lan

Steve Lawrence with a garfish

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