The Kelvins a bloody mess!!

Someone left a messege on my guestbook..They were saying when its gone its gone talking about the river and the wildlife around it.
Even though the river has come on in leaps and bounds the river still looks like a shite hole. I got a mail from a guy who was visiting from Canada last week. I was supposed to meet up with him for a fish and a chat as he was going to be in Glasgow for a conference but things being the way they are I couldnt make it. One of the things that he expressed suprise about was the state of the river. He said that he couldnt believe it was so full of rubbish as my photos made out…….boy did he sure get a shock when he realised that yes it is full of junk.
People like Friends of the River Kelvin do a lot of good work in the river and so do a lot of the anglers but i cant help feel that its a lost cause without the backing of the council. The council are forever selling off out nice green land and dont seem interested in actually looking after the river.
Great progress has been made in the kelvin but I cant help but think that something has got to happen or the progress is going to slow and stop…………and probably start going backwards because of some crazy developer wanting to build flats on the banks of the river.

Strange day!

So I had a strange day at the river today. I left the house at around 4pm…it had been warm and muggy all day. Almost as soon as i got to the river it started to rain. I didnt bring a jacket….all i had on was my waistcoat and waders. No hat.
Anyway, I was sheltering from the rain under a tree when I had a sudden urge to carve my name into a very large tree branch. Its not something Ive ever done before and you know how much I love trees so it was a little weird.
I did it. I carved my name. It got me thinking about how the river and probably the tree will be around long after Im gone……kinda strange really when you think of it. How many marks does someone leave in the world. I wonder if even in a few years someone will see the marks I made and wonder what the person was like that made them…….its a nice thought I think. I see things all the time and I wonder how they got their…..I mean you have the mills and things like that beside the river….th eold abandoned ones I mean……..people went to work everyday in them…people like you and me……I wonder if any of them made marks on a tree one day!

Once the rain stopped I carried on fishing…..upstream with a dry. I thought I was going to blank untill I caught a lovely little brownie of about 5-6 inches long. Carried on fishing getting carried away with the feel of casting and the concentration of watching for any signs of a trout. Sometimes Its the smallest rise, the supping of a fly betrays the bigger trout. And that is exactly what happened. I made a tricky cast …….here
That is an old photo but the same place……just right in at the tree……..there was the most gentle of takes, a tiny little sup…..the fly just disapeared……I would have thought that the leader had got snagged and pulled the fly under if i had not been waiting on this happening……I struck and was into a nice brownie of around 1/4 to 1/2 a pound…….it fought strongly…..very strongly. I find after the river has had some rain the fish seem to get very “fighty” I think its got something to do with the amount of oxygen in the water.

I met a guy who I have not seen all this season. An awful nice guy. I seen him a lot last season……he fishes with a bubble float and wasp grubs. He always does well, or did last season, he says that things are a bit harder this year. We spoke about using different techniques……he comes from a course fishing background so is used to handling fish well, and making sure they are returned safely. He treats the fish with a bit of respect……I like that!!
Anyway, we ended up walking up the road together, swapping stories…..he too gets the heaby jeabies at night down on the river. Before we left their was a good few fish rising and he said he would like to watch me fish for a bit, he had already packed up. I got into the water and within a dozen casts had a couple of fish………he was very impressed …..secretly so was i 😉

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I have Typhoid!!

Nah, not really. But yesterday I got my combined typhoid and hep A jag. My other half had got hers last week and her arm got sore because of it so i wanted to go fishing before the pain hit.
Headed down to the River and using my fav little fly (if you dont know what that is ….jeash) worked my way up the river. The first hour I though I was going to blank, untill I caught a lovely wee brownie from a riffle. Anyway I went on to catch a few more on the dry fly and that was when my head started to get sore. I had been warned I might start to feel bad but ive had this particular jag before and couldnt remmember feeling like this.
Anyway, I felt so bad I had to go home.

Urgent – river Kelvin under threat

People needed asap to protect a reclaimed patch of the river Kelvin in Glasgow.

Tea and tree-loving people are urgently needed to help stop the destruction of one of the nicest parts of Glasgow. The garden round the back of Otago Lane (near the Tchai Ovna teahouse) is threatened by plans to build luxury flats on the site. The site is right on the riverbank by the bridge on Gibson Street. The flats will wreck the view up river, damage a nature reserve and increase traffic in that area. After minimal consultation permission was granted and the developers are moving quickly to clear the site of it’s trees before any possible appeal.

The only access to the site is through Otago Lane and already this morning (Wednesday) they’ve sent contractors in across the veranda of Tchai Ovna to clear foliage. Soon they will try to start cutting the trees down. Drilling on the site is due to start on Monday. Once the foundations are struck it’s unlikely the building can be stopped so help is needed Now. People are needed to stay at the site (even if only for a few hours) to watch for / prevent trespassing and damage. There’s a tent and plenty of tea to sustain you.

People are also needed for to put out flyers, speak to people on the street, collect signatures and suchlike. More information can be found on

To offer help, call the teahouse on 0141 357 4524 or Martin on 07976 932432 (email: martin (at) A meeting will be held at Tchai Ovna, Otago Lane on Monday at 10pm but people are needed sooner than that, so if you can offer any support, please get in touch with them.

Allso see This Post for pictures..
I cant stress enough that this is a very serious issue on the banks of the river. No doubt rubbish from the site will end up in the River as well as rubble. This will allso mean that access to the pool at this stretch will be impossible.

Upstream Dry!

To be honest Im not bothered about the actual size of the fish that i catch. I mean, when i do catch a big trout im happy….like very happy but usually I get a lot of enjoyment out of catching a tricky fish. I was fishing dry and was casting upstream when I seen a fish rise just the once underneath some branches about a few inches from a submerged log. It was difficult. I kept at it for a good 20 mins correcting my cast untill eventually the moment came when it was perfect. When the time came I knew the fish would take it and it did. It was around 6 inches long and perfect in every way. I caught around 4-5 that size.
The water still had that tan colour to it, not as much though and im glad I kept fishing.
I allso fell today. The high water has meant that alot of the stones are slimy ……….I got quite a fright….I ended up on my side next to some packing crates…..I thought my rod was broken but I was lucky this time. Damn near peed myself.

Later I caught another nice fish. A lot bigger than the others and it was jumping around all over the place. I was quite worried about it actually as it took a wee while to recover. I cradled it for a good few mins untill it had recovered enough to swim off…….
holding fish
Probably to smoke a nice cigar or something.
The stretch at the vet school was extremely busy today.

Dirty water!

So Ive been gagging to get down to the river. Ive not been down in a good couple of weeks or so. I headed down today……the conditions were perfect…..the water was at a good level, their was a gentle breeze……….and unfortunetly the water was a tan colour. The problem is that the river flows through farm land and when it rains water runs off the land making the water change to the colour of tan.
Anyway, when I got to dawsholm park there was a man fishing with his son and daughter. They were both young and were using little telescopic rods with little floats. They had picked up a few fish as well………did better than me anyway…I had a few casts and went for a wander. Oh…thats right… I was having a few casts I heard a big splash ……it was a shopping trolley that had fallen into the river. I thought someone had just dumped it but couldnt see anyone. It must have just been resting on a tree or something and fallen in at that time……
Here it is
Im in two minds whether to haul it out or not. As weed gets caught up in the spokes and bars it will create a place where juvinile trout can hide and also the weed will produce flies. In effect it will become a nice little hive of river life activity.
Of course what we dont want is a mass of shopping trolleys everywhere but………..hmmmm I suppose I could move it somewhere……

Fantastico!…..and leaders!

So I was taken to a spot on another river by a friend on Sunday. What a marvelous place. This part of the river is unnusual in that for a good long stretch it is dotted with lots and lots of bushes and weed beds. It channels the water into not just one flow but many many flows and gives the affect that you are not just fishing one river but many many streams and burns with little pockets and their own characteristics.
It was hard fishing…….not in that the fish were not their or hard to catch but the wind was damn strong. If I had got up that morning and was going to the Kelvin I probably wouldnt have bothered. Just goes to show you.
Anyway I have never seen a place that looked so damn fishy……you would be fishing a sweet little riffle and you would look say 5 yards to your right and you would see an even nicer bit….when you got there you would see another 10 sweet riffles.
There was not many fish actually rising, and the friend I was with spoke of a particular pool where fish usually rose. We got to it and to be honest I thought it looked exactly the same as any other part. It was only when you stopped and looked properly could you see that it was a good sized pool in its own right. Any yes, their was fish rising. How many fish did we catch? Well I got a fair few but my fishing partner caught at least triple what I was getting….here he is….putting a fish back
He does that a lot :)…..seemed every time I looked over he was iether into a fish or releasing one.
It always amazes me the way in which Brownies can be such a different colour. Th etrout here had small spots quite close together…..lovely colour of fish. Next time I go I will take a picture of one.

I had bought a new fly line as well. I had allso bought some tapered leaders. The problem I have is actually attaching the fly line to the tapered leader. I know that I could have used a needle knot and attached it permanantly but I just feel Im too damn clumsy and that something may happen to ruin the leader so I would spend ages trying to fix it. When I had bought my new fly line I didnt want to attach a braided loop as they are just so big and bulky especially for fishing dry… I made a loop of mono using a constriction knot…a bit like this from Grays of Kilsyth
grays loop
Well in fact exactly like that….I just stole his photo.
Anyway you would think that there would be a pre formed loop on the end of the tapered leader……this is not the case. So what I had to do on the day was form a loop myself in the tapered leader……..this was in effect possibly the worst thing possible i could have done. What I should have done when I realised it was not going to work was just make my own tapered leader and that would have worked just fine……and would have given me some space to work out what I should do about the tapered leader.
So I stoated in to the Glasgow Angling Centre yesterday and bought some mono and buzzer hooks. Mono to make my own leaders and buzzer hooks to tie some “grey dusters”
Again the service in the GAC imressed me with their courtesy………although I have taken to wearing dark sunglasses in case anyone recognises me and beats me with a keep net. 😉

I feel Ive not fished the kelvin in a while……ive been busy with uni work and being ill………and the wind lets not forget about the wind…….

Oh……i almost forgot…….just as we started fishing we seen an almighty movement in the River……we thought it was a Salmon at first but it turned out it was an Otter…..a big one at that.

BBC NEWS | Scotland | Fisherman dies in loch accident

BBC NEWS | Scotland | Fisherman dies in loch accident

One man has died and another has been taken to hospital after a boating accident on Loch Lomond.

your narrow minded outlook!

I recieve a lot of emails.
Most of them are telling me that they used to fish the river and now moved on and some people mail me to tell me how well they have been fairing fishing the river. Ive got to admit I meet and speak to a lot of Anglers on the bank but seldom do I tell them about this site. The site was and is mostly for myself and a way of keeping a “high tech” fishing diary. If other people like it and enjoy it so much the better 🙂
Today I recieved a mail that made me think, it was entitled “your narrow minded outlook!”

I have just read your comment regarding (bait fishermen), dated 26,05,2004. There is no place in our sport for such snobbery. As for not knowing what to do, I have landed more & by far bigger trout than you could ever dream of.

one of the (bait fishing), underclass.

I couldnt mind of the post but I sent this reply back saying

I meet many good bait fisherman in my travels and yes they do catch
good fish. What I am against is people that static line ie sit with a
bait rod and a worm on the end letting it sit until a fish comes along
and takes it…usually half way down its throat thus killing the fish
no matter what the size. THAT is the kind of bait fisherman that i
detest. Bait fishermen that I admire however and am continually
impressed by their skill is the bait fisherman who fish worms down
pools letting them drift and striking when appropriate. Using worms on
the Kelvin for Salmon I think is the only way to go…..never been in
contact with one on the fly and personally don’t fish for them.

and then I realised that the post in question was talking about me wondering how people managed to get fish up a 10 foot high wall once caught.

Anyway I thought I would share some of my experiances with people fishing bait. last season I ran into lots of anglers fishing with static lines with wormd and maggots. While I was talking to them their rod tip was waggling away. I eventually pointed this out and they eventually picked up the rod and struck. It was a trout maybe about a quarter of a pound. The fish had taken the bait down into their throat. They said they had caught around 10 like this. Of course the fish was leaking blood everywhere and took about 5 mins to get the hook out. The fish was then dropped back into the water.
That was a perfectly nice trout…..killed.

I got talking to a guy who fishes wasp grubs. What the guy was doing was using a tiny bubble float trotting it down between the weeds, holding his rod and striking anytime he felt a fish. He caught a fair few…nice ones too…..played them unhooked them and put them back quickly.

Its not the same is it?
What I obviously dont like is people who sit with a static line. Ive done it. When I was younger. As time went on I moved on to spinning and using worms and maggots but fishing them upstream and trotting them down feeling for takes. You killed fewer fish that way. If I ever get to the river and the water is dirty and I think a worm will help I would probably grub one up and stisk it on a hook and use the fly rod and line to work it. Not had the chance yet though.
Some people dont fish with a fly rod and line I accept that…….dont understand it…but I still accept it. I dont think its elitist these days when you can walk into a fishing shp and pick up a fly rod combo for less than 70 bucks. Its open to anyone.

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