All this talk of carrying minimal amount of gear has made me think of the things I carry regularly. One thing that I carry regularly is my monocular.A monocular is similar to a pair of binoculars except it is just like a mini telescope. I dont use it to see vast distances but for just a quick closer look at such things as birds (feathered), foxes, and rabbits. It is also useful if, like me, you are a nosey bastard.
The monocular is good as it means you can spot other anglers who you might not want to run into. It means you can miss out pools that they have fished or just simply due to etiquette you dont want to intrude on their personal space.
There have been times I have been looking up river and wondered to myself “is that another angler?“ One quick look through the old monocular and I find it is a black bin bag hanging on a tree. Curiosity solved!
There is also a safety aspect involved, on one of the rivers that I fish regularly the wading is very tricky. It is full of holes with boulders and rocks at knee level. I am naturally cautious but sometimes it is easy to get carried away. If I cannot see someone there is always the possibility that they have been swept away to their watery death. My trusty monocular can then be used to sweep the banks looking for their now ownerless rod which can be stashed safely in the back of the car. It may be a cheaper option than actually buying a Sage. Now that might be an idea actually- coupled with the walky talky a well timed “BOO” may be all it takes to get my hands on a nice rod.

Anyone fancy a Grayling session anyone?



  1. Murdock · February 5, 2007

    Makes note to self:

    If I ever fish with Alistair, bring only cheapest and most undesireable fly rod.

  2. mike · February 5, 2007

    I reckon this is a great tool for endulging in your favourite past time: tackle tarting. You can spy nice rods and of course REELS from a long way off and decide if the person is, you know, up to scratch. Alistair, I’d leave my Sage for you any day pal 😉

  3. Steve · February 5, 2007

    Great idea the monocular! I carry a small pair of bonoculars for the same reasons. They are great for a close up view of rising fish or just fish spotting. If you put your polaroid specs over the lenses you get the magnification plus the underwater view!

    The monocular however would be even lighter! Anyone know where I can get one cheap?

    P.S. You won’t find me with a sage Alistair, I can’t justify the price to myself let alone the wife!

  4. Alex · February 5, 2007

    Looks like that poaching book has turned you into a heartless, calculating low-life crook!

    Before you know it you will be fishing with worms!


  5. Alistair · February 5, 2007

    Hey Steve,
    I bought mine off Ebay for around a tenner including postage. I fixed the links in the post so that it now points to Ebay (I am an affiliate) or you can use this link

    Dont speak too soon, I quite fancy your jacket!

    The positive thing with my set up is that if i get washed away my reel will act like an anchor 🙂

    Was it prawns or shrimps you were the master of I can never mind which ?


  6. Alex · February 5, 2007

    Scathing! I always preferred shrimps to prawns actually.
    Ps this was in the days when such methods were legal, before they were banned for being too much fun.


  7. Tom Chandler · February 5, 2007

    Interesting. The question on my mind is this: are monoculars half the price of binoculars?

  8. Alistair · February 5, 2007

    They should be 🙂

    However my rule of thumb is that if something is not waterproof then it should only cost £15 Max !!


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