It did not end well….

did not end well..

The nights are fair drawing in chaps….

I encountered my first problem almost as soon as I got to the river – my camera was totally dead. The boy had been playing around with it earlier and I think that he must have left it on letting the batteries run dry, no matter I had my wee Kodak PlaySport Zx5that also takes half decent stills so that would have to do. The second problem was the huge black cloud hovering above me and the fact the water looked colored and dirty, more like a spate was on the way rather than thinning out afterwards. I did not see any rising trout as I walked down to the river.

At least everything looks green....

At least everything looks green….

I was late getting out as we were being ruthless with the kids getting them to bed and they were not happy about it at all. Still, when I got to my wee banker spot I did see the odd trout rising so tied on a small comparadun and got to it. Just then my fly box fell out my pocket and hit a discarded scooter with a bit of a crack.

How does one lose a scooter?

How does one lose a scooter?

I would have thought it would have stood up to slightly more punishment than this...

I would have thought it would have stood up to slightly more punishment than this…

Still, I suppose the crack adds a bit of character…

Even though the water was dirty it did not make the trout any less spooky however with a bit of stealth and some serious work covering a riser I managed to finally hook a nice quarter pounder..

A quarter ...

A quarter …

Just as I was preparing to cast again at another spooky trout it happened.


The noise scared the absolute shit out of me and I looked up expecting to see a Pterodactyl hovering over me ready to take me back to its young for a hearty feast. Turned out a heron was coming in to land and it was none to happy to see me standing next to its perch. I wandered up the river to find some more trout. As the dusk deepened behind me there was an almighty big splash which was definitely no trout, it was a Salmon and I half considered sticking on a wooly bugger and covering it just to see what happened. I decided that possible madness lay down that path and instead waded slowly up to a rising trout. The water was dead still and every slight movement sent small waves out across the pool. When I first started fishing someone once told me “wade like a burgler walking through a room full of sleepers” and this I have always kept to. In fact it annoys me no end when I fish with folk that splash through pools sending waves everywhere scattering good trout.

There was a trout rising a few rod lengths in front of me and I crept up slowly. As I moved into position a slowly took my fly from its ring and pulled some line from my reel, the trout rose, I was almost there. The trout rose again and I was in position, I flipped my fly on to the water and gave the standard maximum couple of false casts and the fly landed in the sweet spot a couple of feet above the rising trout, it drifted down to just where the trout should see it……




The Luggie, the Kelvin and a lost phone!

So I have in fact had an eventful week or so which did in fact involve some fishing.

A bridge over the Luggie..

A bridge over the Luggie..

I met Jim Burns down at a wee bridge over the Luggie as it is now on the Kelvin permit. I have been getting messages from @JBrownisky on Twitter who has been letting me know about pollution incidents as well as enticing me with tales of rising trout so I was keen to try it out. Paul Reid also said he had fished the stretch we were at so I knew we were not completely onto plums.

It transpired however that we were in fact onto plums as we spotted nary a trout spotted as we stoated along green paths at the height of summer.

The sun is strong just now in the summer sky...

The sun is strong just now in the summer sky…

Of course all the action is at dusk just now, sure you will see some trout during the day and you may even catch some however if you want the real action it is spooky and scary dusk where you must be.

We bolted from the Luggie straight to the Kelvin, we were there for half eight.

Last photo of the evening, story will follow.....

Last photo of the evening, story will follow…..

We fished up the Kelvin and it was plain old weird. We caught a few trout and at dark we went wandering through the bushes until we got back to the cars. The police stopped us and asked us a few questions as they thought we were both carrying guns instead of fishing rods and it was at this point I realized my phone was missing. We had a highly amusing period of time when we tried to phone it and ended up phoning Alan Atkins (chair of the rkaa) mistakenly. I decided the phone was gone and headed up the road, by this point it was pitch black and there was no point in heading through the bushes to try and find it. I was mourning the loss of my phone pretty badly as it has a phenomenal amount of pictures on it of my kids and wife. I also use it for browsing the web pretty much at every moment I am bored as well as checking my emails,updating this blog, updating twitter and adding posts to my new facebook page. I also use it for listening to audiobooks and using the Sat Nav.I also use the camera when out fishing and of course use it to bug the hell out my pals during the day when they should be working by phoning them for a fishy natter. It is a HTC Desire S which even though not top of the range has done me fine over the last year.

It was then I realised one of my buddies had text me asking where I was fishing, like a thousand times before it I had taken my phone out the wader pouch, looked at it and then put it back in. That was the last time I remembered having my phone. So, I got up at first light (after going to bed at 1am) and headed to the river. It was 4am and the river could not have looked any more beautiful. I found my phone in a foot of water where it must have been for the last six hours. Of course it is totally gubbed however I was able to pull all my photos and SIM card from it and thank goodness I had some kind of insurance even though it was only through my Halifax Bank Account . So it has been sent away to be assessed and I am hoping the transaction will be nice and easy. I will update you when i know. I suppose I have been lucky all these years so really cannot complain.

Oh, I got out fishing after work today and it was pretty shite!

Some sessions are just like that!


Random Photo Friday…

It is Friday again, no fishing for me as I shall be driving 300 miles to Birmingham this evening. If you want to cheer me up you can  use the comments, forum or Facebook to let me know what you guys are up to.

Here is a random photo of the Kelvin to keep you going, I hope you guys get out and fish..

Park Life!

Park Life!

Enjoy your fishing!

Why are all my rivers weirdly white just now?

I had an evening on the Kelvin the other night with the mighty Jim Burns, we both blanked or if we did catch a trout it was nothing to write home about.

Even Jim struggled....

Even Jim struggled….

We fished until dusk and then had a spot of action lasting 20 mins, even though trout were rising we managed to not even hook one of the blighters even though we were sharing the one rod and spotting fish for each other. We both commented on the color of the river, it was looking a bit white. I was reminded of my other urban shite pipe river which when it runs white is totally shite.

This was an interesting thought as I found myself at my other river after work wasting time to miss rush hour today. It was running white which meant no trout were coming to the dry fly so I tried a nymph under a dry.

You can see how white it is in this picture...

You can see how white it is in this picture…

I was fishless until I got to a corner pool and tried a nymph under an indicator, first cast and I lost a trout. Second cast a nice trout was being played. I wandered up until I found another nice pool. The glare of the sun on the water was making it difficult to see my indicator fly, it was not very big as I was actually using an unweighted nymph on maybe less than a foot of leader. I crouched down and spotted the dry dipping under, I struck and a brown belly flashed back at me as a trout took a tour of the pool and put a bend in my rod. I am glad I am making a habit of carrying my net as the beast would have been difficult to unhook otherwise.

What do you give it? a pound?

What do you give it? a pound?

It was pretty tired out and had to be cradled in the water for a bit before it drifted off to the middle of the pool to consider its recent life choices! I thought about refraction of the water, when you see trout in the water they always look smaller than they actually are. When I was playing this trout even though my rod was bent double it still looked half the size.

Trout = Not Amused!

Trout = Not Amused!

I headed back to the car and up the road!

I sit now waiting for my wife to get home so I can possibly catch dusk at the river, it is past eight already! What the hell can keep someone in Costco so long?


A boat for a hundred bucks and under?

I have been thinking of getting one of these blow up boats for farting around with the kids when I go on holiday. Also I was thinking about the possibility of taking it out on the canal to get to some of those hard to reach spots with the fly rod. I am looking at two on Amazon, both have great review.

The first:

(Images are  links to Amazon to check them out further)

SEA HAWK 2 BOAT SET WITH OARS 93″ x 45″ x 16″

  • The boat measures approximately 93″ x 45″ x 16″ (236cm x 114cm x 41cm)
  • Seahawk 2 is designed to hold 2 people and can hold a maximum capacity of 440lbs (200kg)
  • The boat includes: 2 x 48″ oars and a high output pump.

All for the cost of less than a half tank of petrol – £35. Just read some of those reviews.

The 2nd one is a beast and is £120


Some guy takes his out on the Sea.

  • The boat measures approximately 124″ x 65″ x 17″ (315cm x 165cm x 43cm)
  • Excusion 5 is designed to hold 5 people and can hold a maximum capacity of 1000lbs (455kg)
  • The boat includes: 2 x 54″ Aluminum oars and a high output pump model 68614. Two inflatable seat cushions with backrests.
  • ISO 6185-1 NMMA-ABYC
  • 2013 models are Grey and blue, 2012 models are beige

For someone that only wants the odd bit of fun on the water these might be just the ticket.


Ladies & Gents, we have a CRIMP!

I attended a meeting up at Glasgow University a while ago, it was hosted by Willie Yeomans and was introducing CRIMP.

CRIMP is a citizen science project which aims to provide training in riverfly monitoring to volunteers across the eight counties of the River Clyde catchment. Riverfly monitoring can help protect the quality of our rivers;  increase our knowledge and understanding of invertebrate populations and promote the conservation of their habitats. Volunteer involvement is important to the development of this project and will allow us to assess the sustainability and practical benefits of using the method on a large scale. CRIMP will provide another tool to inform management of the fishery and freshwater ecosystem. For example, we have had two recent examples of river pollution (one in Lanarkshire and one in Renfrewshire) where well-trained volunteers could have sampled the incidents more quickly than even the statutory bodies – we see this as a way of helping to protect your river; your fishery. CRIMP will involve the Clyde River Foundation (CRF) coordinating monthly river health checks undertaken by specially trained volunteers. We will deliver training workshops in riverfly monitoring three times per year, followed by a half day site selection and sampling “run through” day with each angling club. From there, volunteers will monitor their given sites monthly and report their results to the CRF. The CRF will collate and check results, and report back every three months to contributing angling club secretaries, with a facility for more rapid communication with the Scottish Environment Protection Agency
SEPA) if pollution is detected.
So today (Sunday) was the day that the mighty Kelvin attained its dedicated team of river fly enthusiasts. We all met at the Friends of the River Kelvin  building down at the Botanics and had some classroom work to complete before we were let loose on the river with our nets.

Yeomans did not trust us so he gave us a pep talk before we got in the water...

Yeomans did not trust us so he gave us a pep talk before we got in the water…

We had a representative from SEPA to show us all how it was properly done. What you do is lean on your net and kick for three minutes in front of it. You must use running water and work your way across a pool. After the three mins a further min in spent scraping rocks by hand.

This is how the experts do it...

This is how the experts do it…

Kick Sampling

Kick Sampling

We were finally allowed to take our nets to the water under the watchful gaze of the CRF.

Jim Burns gets stuck in....

Jim Burns gets stuck in….

I partnered with Jim Burns simply because we have been fishing a lot together recently and we may as well do this at the start of each session. Yeoman’s commented we had collected so many gravel and rocks we could have built a wall.


Some people collected a half decent amount.

 We found an interesting amount of insects. Rooting through the tray was great fun, trying to work out what the hell some of the bugs were was a bit of a challenge considering we usually only see them in their adult and flying about state, apart from Stoneflies which will stomp all over you.

Atkins picked up a stone and their was a good amount of cased caddis..


Cased Caddis

It was great fun until the end when we had a bloody exam – we each had to attend a tray and identify some bugs under the watchful eyes of Caroline from the River Clyde Foundation. Thankfully I passed and will be taking my certificate into my work to put up on the wall.

One of the things I was surprised about was the fact we had some Blue Winged Olive (Ephemerillidae) nymphs in our tray, it means that we should actually have some good evening action down on the Kelvin at dusk during the summer. Not that we do not usually, more I know what to look out for. They are super abundant down the Clyde just not on the Kelvin.

I am now looking forward to using their Latin names down the river.

“Oh, there’s some Olives”

“You mean Ephemerillidae or Baetidae ?”

“What team do you exactly support?”

For good info on insects you will find at the Kelvin throughout the season on the Kelvin and other rivers check out this link to Amazon..

Matching the Hatch: Stillwater, River and Stream

Any questions, ask in the comments!


We threw stones…

We threw stones in a pool that I fish regularly, usually as I wade through here I try not to make even a wave on the surface. A slight stumble and waves will wash over the whole pool. It has got to be as still as possible to tempt the spooky trout.

Throwing stones, some of them were boulders!

Throwing stones, some of them were boulders!

Trying to make the biggest splash in the pool was probably the most satisfying thing I have done all year.

Life and Fishing!

It has been a busy week or so in this neck of the woods. I have managed a few last minute sessions on the Kelvin and they have all went well with a few trout caught. Nothing of the size of last week’s mighty brute but nice trout none the less. The Yellow Mays are now out and about in full force and the Kelvin trout love them. I read once that trout are not particularly fussed for them and I have witnessed trout on the Clyde ignoring them however I always make sure I have a few yellow comparaduns in my box just in case.

Usually what I end up doing is staking out one particular pool and then simply target rising trout however now that “summer” is upon us I think it may be time to start exploring a bit more.  Something I noticed about my usual haunt is that it has become infested by a plague of ducklings. The other day a Kelvinator posted a video of himself having a bit of a tussle with a full size duck (it was unharmed) and I can see how that happened. The last few times I have been out it seems like a fight between the trout and the ducklings to get the flies. The trout do not seem to be that bothered by the wee furry beasts bolting across the pool above them and they both chase for the same flies. Here is a wee video of the blighters…

My imitation fly seems to be too much for them and often I find myself whisking my fly away from their mouths just before they take it in their tiny beaks. Usually it is just as it is getting to the sweet spot where it will be about to be seen by the trout I have been casting at. The ducklings will often travel a couple of feet to get to the fly. I have also watched the ducklings scatter in alarm as a trout rises among them. I have yet to see a duckling getting taken from the surface like a dry fly but it is only a matter of time considering the huge capture of a huge trout (I think it was 8lb) taken from the Cart. After all our big trout have got be feeding on the Crayfish by now.

Anyway, I am not really complaining too much about the ducklings as apart from being incredibly cute they show a sign that the river is alive and healthy.

After a weekend up in Aviemore digging holes in the beach of a loch I needed a spot of trout fishing to sort me out.


Digging a bloody big hole in the beach of the loch

Consequently I bolted to the Kelvin for a quick couple of hours and met a chap at my usual haunt, he was fishing a wet fly outfit. I advised him to switch to a lighter outfit and gave him a couple of dry flies. I wanted him to catch a trout however even when I had a go at the couple of risers the Kelvin trout were acting like their usual belligerent self and not playing ball. He has fished lochs in the past and I did my best to describe how the biggest enemy of a river angler is drag. Drag is essentially when your dry fly drifts at a different speed from the current due to different currents affecting your fly line and leader.

His name his Peter, I took a picture of his back like I was a stalker!

His name his Peter, I took a picture of his back like I was a stalker!

 There are a couple of ways of combating it and one of which is being sneaky and going at a trout from upstream and letting your fly drift down. Another way which I enjoy is when you have a riser that is not going to be easily spooked is to cast, cast and cast again and let your brain work out exactly the best way of letting your fly drift. What usually happens is your drift gets shorter and shorter meaning your fly will drift correctly for maybe a foot however sometimes that is all it takes for the trout to look at your fly and think that one looks alright and it takes it. This of course depends on you actually having the correct fly on. The other night I did not have the correct fly on (I had a small CDC n’ Elk) and it was only after changing to a comparadun that the trout eventually took. It was bloody satisfying as I had been trying to catch this trout for a couple of weeks. It was sitting at the other side of the current in some slack water behind some faster current. Working out the drag was a bitch!

Finally caught this trout....

Finally caught this trout….

Airflo came to my rescue after my last session out with Jim Burns. The sole of my Orvis boots which I have had for less than a season came away making wading tricky and I was not going to get a chance to get some evostick to fix it back in place. My last batch of Evostick was locked away in storage somewhere and I was unable to retrieve it.

The offending felt sole - it looks kinda like an unhappy face!

The offending felt sole – it looks kinda like an unhappy face!

Last season Fishtec sent me a pair of Airflo boots to review and I had not got around to actually trying them out so a quick trip to the storage unit where all my family’s worldly belongings are kept until we buy a new house was made and I dug them out. They are simply great, they feel comfy, look good; there are no fancy features other than a good lacing system that makes them nice and tight around the ankles. I stuck my Orvis boots in the shed to dry out and I have been wearing the Airflo ones for a few sessions. Obviously a full review will follow shortly. It is something I have noticed about Orvis wading boots, the felt soles always fall off. If you remember last year I spent a couple of months fannying around trying to glue bits of carpet to my boots – sure it worked for a couple of outings but the water eventually got to them.

It is not something that I have heard my pals complain about with their boots however every season I appear to have a period of time that I am scrabbling around trying to find the correct evostick to get them back in place. I would be interested in hearing what you guys have to say?

Wading boots have it tough though, they spend probably around 6 months of the year wet and damp as they never get the opportunity to dry out properly and I am not even sure you want them to dry out properly unless you are moving between rivers and want to kill some beasties on them so that stuff does not spread between rivers.

Anyway, it looks like the mild weather is now here to stay and we should be enjoying both day time and evening action for another couple of weeks before the trout decide that evenings and dusk is best.  I read over at North Country Angler that he is looking forward to the evening sessions as well. I reckon that being working family men we both like the evenings because during the day we are unable to take advantage of the bounty. Once we get home from work, get the sprogs in bed and have a bit of lovin’ (I jest) it is then time to hit the river with time to spare for the evening rise.

A view from the top of a mountain simply because I took it over the weekend!

Summer is here, I think!

I was surveying the old fly box as I gave away a couple of flies to the chap I met at the river and realised I need to get my ass in gear and tie up a dozen as all it will take is a tree to snaffle a few and I will not have any of my favorites in my box. Tying flies during the season is much more enjoyable as you seem to have a purpose, during the winter there is a disconnection with fishing and the river and it all seems a bit pointless for me. Knowing that the fly I am tying will be used the next day is much more satisfying and even when I am tying it on and fishing with it I can still think back to the evening before and remember tying it. The rule of threes when tying is always a good guideline: one to fish, a backup and one to give away. I have no illusions that my flies are simply functional rather than the art that other guys take time over. A dozen messy comparaduns in different sizes and shades of olive (some yellow too) and it will be job done!

I had better get tying!

ps. Oh, and if any of you guys are on facebook I would appreciate a visit to the Urban Fly Fisher Facebook Page and a quick “like” (seemingly later I can swap them for drugs and sex) You will not only be notified of posts here but I will also be regurgitating old content selecting some fine shit articles that I have written for your amusement interest.

Caught one trout – presented without comment…


Lets just say, I am glad I took my net!


Yes, weird bee spray painter, thank you I am!