Standing in a River Waving a Stick

Another fantastic book from the bamboo maestro himself:
Standing in a River Waving a Stick

A popular sportswriter returns to his first love, fly fishing, in this wryly crafted reflection on friendship, getting skunked, and other musings sketched against the backdrop of the Colorado foothills and British Columbia. Reprint.

The Synopsis is pretty poor, good fishing book with great stories, some of his books are kinda hit or miss first time around….this one is a hit!


So this evening was just one of those times it just didn’t happen. I walked for a good while and fished some pools I ordinarily just walk by. No trout rising, little fly life and a high temp. The water quality was ok, maybe a little murky but nothing that should have put the trout down. Strange!

Action Stations: Dry Fly Attacks

So there was a definite three pronged approach to the Kelvin today. Alex was fishing his favourite stretch, Mike was fishing up at his end of the Kelvin and I decided to have a bash at one of the tributaries. It has been a windy, showery day and it has been raining on and off the last few days. The Kelvin itself is a bit higher than usual and has a slight colour to it. It did not stop Alex pulling out this monster to the dry fly.
My little tributary was at a nice height with just a touch of colour.
There were plenty of terrestrials getting blown onto the water but my little Klinkhammer did the damage as normal.
nice troot
I only fished for a couple of hours before the wind made it not much fun to cast any more. It suddenly struck me today whilst I was fishing that the season has well and truly started, it feels as if the Kelvin fishers have been waiting ages for it to get in full swing. It won’t be long until it shall be nice evenings with a spot of dry fly action.
Anyway, once I caught this lovely looking trout I decided to truly call it a day, there is no point in souring a nice session.

Not so much an attack more a leisurely stroll

So last weekend Alex, Mike and I headed up North for a little camping adventure.
Alex and I travelled by train through to Edinburgh where we met Mike and then shot up to the River Tummel for the first leg of the adventure. When we arrived at the Tummel an angler came up to us and told us to make way for guys fishing Salmon, he then proceeded to boast that he had caught a 1.5lb trout on his salmon spinner and decided to leave it on the bank for some of “you trout boys” Needless to say it was eaten by an otter. He seemed quite proud of this and we watched as he skillfully cast out his giant flashy lure seeking for a salmon, I vowed to keep out of his way although not for the reasons he thought.
We had a pretty good day on the river, we each caught a few trout, this is a picture of me looking like a gigantic bug (my other glasses make me look sexy, these make me look like a giant bee).

Conditions were pretty good and by the end of the day we were all ready to tackle 3.5lb wild brown trout on the Don. Towards the end of the day there were plenty of trout rising but we could not work out what they were rising to. Mike took this trout on the old faithfull a Dirty Duster..

We got kinda worried on the way up as it started to rain, and I mean real mans rain, pouring out the sky like someone pouring water out of a bucket. Good news though as when we got to Aberdeen it had not been raining. We went to be dreaming of stalking giant trout on the dry fly. In fact when Mike spoke of tactics it was all stalking with creeping up on giant lazy trout sipping down up winged flies. Half a bottle of single malt whiskey helped those thoughts along rather nicely if the truth be told.

Little did we know that the entire Don would offer up after a day of coldness (not to mention a sore head) was a scabby 6oz trout, and this was after trying small cdc F flies, parachutes, wet flies and finally Mike tried a woolly bugger fished down stream. We couldn’t believe we did not actually just fluke a trout. Well, we did in fact catch a lot of par…
At one point we came across a phone box which thinking back we all got overly exited about and happilly snapped pictures of it….
phone box

So then it was the mighty Tay on the Sunday, another cold day. It was a cold morning and Alex did not want to hatch from his nymph like sleeping bag, kind reminded me of the Don actually :)

When we arrived there was a really nice hatch going down but as I was so exited I somehow managed to mess everything up. Alex managed a few nice trout though. I almost blanked if it was not for a flukey nice brownie at almost home time that then decided to do a Long Distance Release, by this point I was not too bothered about catching fish. To be honest I think we were all just enjoying the fact that we were outside and not cooped up in some air conditioned building..

All in all a rather superb few days away, it just goes to show that you don’t actually have to catch lots of trout to have a great fishing trip. On our way back home Alex made a suggestion for a fly with a rather unusual ingredient. It makes pretty good sense and once I have harvested the necessary ingredient from a friend of a friend I shall post the results here.

Big River Bonanza

So I and a couple of pals (Mike & Alex) are going away for a few days fishing and camping. It is going to be a bit of a big river bonanza as on Friday we should be fishing the Tummel, Saturday the River Don and on Sunday the River Tay. Should be good fun!!.
When I told Claire she had the cheek to say “sounds all a bit Brokeback Mountain to me” the bloody cheek- there will actually be plenty of fishing and quite possibly whiskey as well. Alex has to share my tent so I sent him a text asking if he had one of those foam mattress things for under sleeping bags “those are for pussies” came the reply. If that bugger wasn’t in my tent I would be taking my self inflating double mattress with me, as it is we shall see who the pussy is when he is sleeping on a rock! Mwa ha ha!!

The weather is to be atrocious so wish us luck wherever you are!

Exiting stuff with the dry fly!

I think the most exiting thing that can happen when dry fly fishing is when you see the trout coming up to take your fly. The last say I was out fishing on the Kelvin I was casting downstream to a trout that I had seen rise, I was getting a drift of just a few feet and suddenly I seen a flash as a brownie rose up from the depths of the pool to take the fly, it came up like a rising torpedo. Just at the last moment it turned away as suddenly the fly started to drag across the surface. I cast again but this time the trout took and was certainly not a happy chappy as it was jumping out the water and generally raging that it snack was a bit of tomfoolery. The same thing happened when I caught my first big trout from the Kelvin.
Exiting, you betcha

Trout: Awesome to the Max!!

Sometimes the Kelvin really surprises me and today was one of those days. I had not planned to fish today and it was on the off chance that Claire offered to drop me off that I went. I am very glad she did.
The day was a wee bit chilly with the odd shower of rain. I should have known it was going to be a nice session as on my first cast I hooked a rather nice little brownie. There were sporadic hatches of olives and even more sporadic hatches of Yellow Mays. Well, when I say sporadic hatches of Yellow Mays I mean every now and then we would see one zip past.
Alex came down to join me after a hurried lunch with his girlfriend and her parents and then we attacked the Kelvin full force. Before Alex arrived I did a little exploring winkling out some nice trout here and there and around about. I was using a little black Klinkhammer.

blc hammer
After Alex caught a tiny par using the New Zealand method of attaching a dropper to a dry fly I decided to have a bash myself and did quite well. Out of one pool I caught 2 lovely plump trout one after the other- they were both rising even though it was raining. I think I was just lucky as Alex had asked me where I wanted to fish; I said the top of the pool as secretly I loathe wading along the edge of pools in case I haphazardly fall in. Anyway, my third fish from the pool was this one…
And here is a close up to just appreciate the awesomeness of the trout. Secrecy forces me from telling you where we caught it so don’t even ask.
And to think my beloved wife thinks I look like a trunpet when I go fishing, I mean just look at me with my sexy buff around my neck?
Alex not long after caught another one, obviously not as awesome as my leviathan from the depths of the Kelvin but still a nice trout.
I was starting to get a little worried that the trout population had really suffered due to last years fish kill however it seems that some have certainly survived.
Incidentally, no trout were harmed in the writing of this post :)

Like a visit from an old friend

So it was a nice evening and I decided to forget the rest of the garden and have a spot of Kelvin action. It was a high temp when I got there and there was fish rising. I missed around 3 although I think they might have just been splashing at my fly. I was using a deer hair emerger. Later I moved up to the Vet school and managed to winkle out a couple of trout. I got chatting to a guy who has emailed me a couple of times, James, who’s wife was about to give birth, well, not today but tomorrow. He did the honourable thing and nipped out to do a spot of fishing- good move that man.
I telephoned Emmanuelle and he promised me some 2lb trout if I waited around for a spinner fall. Alas it was not to be, or at least no more trout rose. Well, that’s not precisely true I managed to winkle out one more trout however I am sure it will be 2lb one day.

I wandered up the river, but seeing as how it is a nice night there was a gaggle of young people, girls and boys, playing around in the river. The boys were desperately trying to impress the girls by making animal noises. Ah to be young again. A simpler time!

I then noticed a pretty big hatch of sedges. I noticed as there was a few on my arm, how sweet, I thought, I truly am one with nature.
I then looked down at my waders and found myself covered in them. I am still finding them crawling around my house which the old ball n chain wont be happy about.

No fishing tomorrow, more back breaking work in the garden awaits.

Book about the Kelvin

A bit of a repost this but seeing as how I have so many new readers I think it is worth it. Here is a book dedicated to the Kelvin

The book is the first full-length account of the Kelvin.
From its source near Kilsyth to its confluence with the Clyde, the Kelvin is a river of startling contrasts. From meandering stream to the dramatic and picturesque river at the heart of Glasgow. This superb book tells the fascinating story of the river and its main tributaries-the Glazert, the Luggie and the Allander. It also looks in detail at the thriving and attractive communities along its banks: from Kirkintilloch to Kelvingrove, Kilsyth to Kelvinside, and Milngavie to Maryhill. Famous people abound:Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the Red Comyn, Thomas Muir, Lord Lister and, of course,Lord Kelvin.The sweep of the book is impressive and it encompasses the widest possible range of subjects from history to architecture, geography to literature, and archaeology to ecology.

Glasgow\'s Other River: Exploring the Kelvin

Click the picture above to buy from Amazon

Rushed home for some serious humping!

So yesterday I had to come home from work early as I was struck down with a migraine hence no fishing. Today it is warm (in the 20s) and when I got home my beloved new wife wanted some serious humping done. Yes I had to hump large plastic bags full of stones from the local garden centre to the car and then from the car to my back garden…..behold a couple of hundred quid and hours of back breaking labour and it looks exactly the same !

I was going to finish it off tomorrow but bugger it….I want, nae I deserve an evening session down the Kelvin. In fact I am looking out my window just now and it still looks nice, but I am jiggy jiggered from hauling rubble so it had to be tomorrow.

I think it might be time to break out the Bamboo rod 

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