Camping Trip – Part 1

A few trusty Kelvintators (Alex, Allan and I) left Glasgow on Thursday morning to meet Mike to fish a few rivers that we had discussed about at great length – around 15mins. Little did we know we were driving towards a rather vicious cold front that swept in to pretty much put a stop to any meaningful fly life.

However, we decided the first two rivers would be the Water of Dean and the River Isla of which the Dean is a tributary. We met Mike at the riverbank tying some flies…

Mike and I headed upstream on the Dean while Alex and Allan headed a fair old distance away to try their luck on an entirely different section of water on the Isla. The Water of Dean is around half the size of the Kelvin – more like the size of one of its tributaries in some parts I would say.

It is nice dry fly water although on the day we fished it we did not really crack many of its secrets if the truth be told. It was quite low with just the odd rising trout – I managed to winkle out a couple of sub quarter of a pound trout and maybe one around the half pound mark. I thought my fat half pounder was going to be the “fish of the day”

Alex meanwhile was having a bonanza on the Isla catching a trout around the 3.5lb mark..

This of course prompted Mike and I to panic due to our lack of trout and make a bee line for the Isla – Mike stooped to a whole knew low and possibly shocked all the fish in our little stretch.

Needless to say, we did not see any action.

If there was one thing we learned on this trip it was “don’t camp in April” in fact another add-on little gem of wisdom would be “don’t arrange a trip in April”.

It all seems a bit of  a haze sitting at my computer now – the cold, the aching back from sleeping on the ground (those rubber mats don’t work) and did I mention the cold – cookies for breakfast and swigging whiskey to keep warm before going to bed. Alex had a jog round the campsite in the morning because it was so cold – people must have been looking out their caravan windows thinking “that guy is keen as mustard to keep fit” 

Little did they know it was to stop freezing to death.


  1. Alex · April 24, 2007

    I felt like taking a bath in liquid nitrogen to warm up. We should’ve stayed in the B&B the first two nights…. (or should I say the B&B&P?)

  2. Alistair · April 24, 2007

    Shhh – that story has still to come, if you fancy qriting part two I can send you the photos ?

  3. Alex · April 24, 2007

    It would be an honour!

  4. Alistair · April 24, 2007

    Mail me the story of the Ericht and Tay – give us all the run down on the big trout you caught as I have in no way done it justice 😉

  5. Nick · April 24, 2007

    Despite the cold, it sounds like you had a good time… and the captions on the pics are brill!

    I must admit that I haven’t fly-fished since going into the wheelchair, but now the wife wants to learn, who knows?!!


  6. Alistair · April 24, 2007

    Hey Nick,

    It was unbelievably cold – I woke during the night to a freezing cold……er…leg, the second noght I had to wear all my clothes, my hat and put my fishing jacket over the sleeping bag….brrrr

    In this day and age there should be little stopping you getting out in a boat in a wheelchair – I mind hearing of a good few venues with adapted boats for chairs.
    Dont teach the wife – send her off to an instructor 😉


  7. alan atkins · April 24, 2007

    Brrrrr !! Yes, nothing like afreezing trip in mid-April to make you realise that winter has yet to loosen her grip on the countryside, but a blast was had by all and highlight were many:
    Alex’s Highland Park – i like whiskey again
    The massive potential of the upper Isla
    Alistair’s nightly pep talks, c’mon boys tomorrow’s the day, olives hatching, trout rising everywhere and us bagging up !
    Alex doing his Alan Wells impression around the perimeter of the campsite in an attempt to stop his teeth chattering
    oh, and we caught a few fish!
    Alex’s tiddler !!

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