My tackle

My fishing box is kept under lock and key. Whilst tickling a fish is an admired art tickling someone’s tackle is a definite no no.

Just like a good mushroomer keeps productive patches close to his chest, a fisherman’s tackle is his private domain. Any good tackle box takes many seasons before it is complete and the constituent parts of such a collection are usually best suited to a specific stretch of coast, the result of much trial and error, some perseverance, a little success and many failures.

My tackle

Mine is focused on fishing from rocks, fishing over reefs and fishing by kayak in the shallows close to shore and in deeper and mid waters of the Hebridean sea. The season usually dictates which fish to chase, where and how but typically mackerel, pollock, coley, whiting, wrasse, sea trout and squid. I put cod back as the stocks crashed due to overfishing by commercial vessels. I would also put conger eels back as they breed only once in their lifetime and only after their fifth year.

However, line fishing from kayak and spear fishing from shore are the world’s most sustainable fishing methods. Rare fish-types are avoided, bycatch is eliminated and fish below the Minimal Catch Size are put back.


Octane offers gastro wilderness expeditions and, employing Octane’s Eight* methods of sourcing wild food for the pot, we eat the world’s best food, ocean fresh**.

*Octane’s Eight is our philosophy. We believe our travelling guests, being closest to the world’s wildest fresh foods, might quite like to eat the world’s wildest fresh foods. 1) We line fish, 2) we lobster pot, 3) we spear fish, 4) we sea forage, 5) we land forage, 6) we deer stalk, 7) we seed the sea, 8) we seed the land. 

**The term fresh fish is of course relative. On the high-street, at supermarkets and in city restaurants fresh fish really means days old so, when patiently waiting for your number to be called at the fish-counter, be ready to ask where your fish is from and how many days ago it was likely caught. Supermarkets invent terms to suit their needs and, as a discerning consumer, it really is your right to challenge nonsense. At Octane we have therefore made a new, differentiated and entirely transparent definition – Ocean fresh. Simply put, it means caught and eaten same-day.

See ocean fresh in practice with the post ‘Drive through calamari’ – ocean fresh calamari caught, cooked and served in under an hour.

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