With little or no angling taking place at the moment, we thought we’d cast a line through the archives for a look back at times past. One story that is well documented and well worth repeating is that of legendary angler Jack Shine, a Cork man who, back in the 1950s,  was new to angling when he found himself living and working in County Clare.

Jack, with the shared expertise of his new neighbours, became well adept at landing the bass, wrasse and pollock which were plentiful off the Clare coast. Looking for a new challenge, he decided to turn his attention to attempting something previously unheard of; this new dream was to land a 100lb plus fish from the shore using conventional beach casting gear.

Jack was aware of porbeagle shark being present in the area, they were known for disappearing to the deeps with whole strings of valuable mackerel feathers leaving anglers cursing them from atop the rocky deep water marks on which they fished. Fired up for the challenge, he set about investigating many of the deep water marks scattered all along the Clare coastline in search of the elusive 100lb fish.

John Cullinane admires Jack’s 115lbs Porbeagle taken at Ballyreen in 1964

As mentioned, the story is well documented and, as with any story, it needs to be told in the right manner (and we wouldn’t want to spoil it in the telling). Instead, you can read about Jack’s exploits on the Irish Specimen Fish Committee website  or read ‘Shark Fishing the Shine Way’ by Peter Foster here.

If you’d like to see a short interview with the great man, there is one available in the RTE archives but perhaps the best option of all would be to make a cup of tea, find a comfy seat and enjoy all 48 minutes of the Audio Angling Podcast as beautifully narrated by Phil Williams and Mick White on the FishingFilms andFacts Youtube Channel.

We should mention that times were different then, fish of all species were plentiful and they were all caught for the pot; unlike these ‘enlightened’ times where sustainability and conservation are a must in order to preserve depleted fish stocks, ‘catch and release’ fishing never crossed an angler’s mind.