Back to the burn..

Back to the burn I fished the other day however no rod with me as it was just a recon mission. I had googled the burn on google maps and found a likely looking spot which I thought may have good access – turns out I was wrong,very wrong!

You can see the river through the trees – I think I am actually standing on the true riverbed as the river appears to be flowing over concrete.

There is no way anyone could actually fish here as it is so overgrown and wild. I do not think a lot of people come here as I found some rough sleeping camps – I heard some rustling in the bushes so I knew that I had disturbed someone. During the hot weather it is fairly typical to run into these camps. A piece of tarpaulin and sometimes and old blanket are all these folk can count on not getting stolen while they are out begging. Sadly lots of people with mental health problems are unable to get it together to get some support and get a roof over their heads. If you see a rough sleeper you know that they have lots of problems that stop them engaging in ordinary society.

Not good for dress trousers and shoes.

If I had been in my fishing gear I would have made it further however eventually the jaggy bushes drove me back – walking with dress shoes and suit trousers really is not the best.

This burn has been in my mind a lot recently as I used to pass by it much further upstream on my way to a loch in the hills above Clydebank and never really thought about it seriously for trout . However after that ball I had the other day and the fact the Kelvin is still out of action I feel it deserves a full on assault.

The reason behind my thinking is that as it is fed by a reservoir it should not be affected as much by the rain as other rivers.

Any of you guys been out fishing at all?

Lunchtime lesson.

Sadly, I had to attend a funeral as my first act of business for the day. The ceremony took me up to lunchtime by which time the drive back to my office seemed a chore just to eat some food as I would be just driving back to the area I was in to visit clients anyway.

So I had a 45min lunchtime that I took next to a burn that runs past some high rise flats in the Clydebank area.

I tweeted today that this river was not loved – that is not strictly true as I met a lot of people (and golfers) who were interested in the wee trout…

It just so happened I had my rod in the boot and after a brief thought about whether I really needed to eat I strung that bad boy up and armed only with a pair of forceps and a fly box I had some exploratory casts – we are talking about really minimal fishing here so minimal that all my gear fitted in a suit trouser pocket.

Within two casts I had a lovely wee trout on the bank. I knew there were trout in this burn as I have heard of them as well as gazed at them anytime I have been passing – what I have never actually done is make that leap to getting a rod strung up and having a cast at them.

The first one was a tiny cracker that took my cdc messy fly with gusto…

The water was higher than normal and was running with a tinge of color – it made the runs beefy and full and made long pools that gave these trout a lot of cover – pretty much every other cast I would watch a shape drift up from the depths to swallow my fly..

Long deep pools, they were full of debris!

Of course, remember that I am decked out for work with a shirt and tie on at this point – next to me some golfers stopped for a chat and they all had a tale to tell about the trout in the burn – seemingly further up the river it gets better.

I walked another pool up and caught some more trout.

I hope you like trout pictures as I have tons of them…just like this one!

I wont bore you with a blow by blow account of every trout that I caught however if I were to give a total tally for the 45 min session i would say at least the high teens – so roughly a trout every couple of mins. There were some bigger trout mixed up in the haul as well.

Not monsters….

These trout took a dry fly with sheer maniac abandon – they were not only fighting the hunger but each other for survival as well. I am sure I pricked some even bigger trout however I can never really be sure – I mean they seemed big as they rose from behind a boulder to intercept my fly however they were pricked – always remember that a trout in the water will seem smaller than the trout in your hand – it is all down to refraction or something..

At this spot I caught around 8 trout – three in that wee deep run across the other side, a couple at the end of the run under the bush and the rest in the middle…

I walked back to my car at the end of that wee session a happy man – everyone I met on the way back to the car smiled and chatted about the burn – I spoke to a couple of golfers, a council worker standing with his top off and for want of a better word a Ned* with his dog.

*Ned is a derogatory term applied in Scotland to hooligans, louts or petty criminals,[1][2] latterly with the stereotypical implication that they wear casual sports clothes.[3] Such usage in Glasgow dates back to the 1960s or earlier.

 

50 shades of brown..

Decided not to go fishing as my wife was going for a run after work – got a text from Jim Burns to say the river was in fine fettle and he could see rising fish despite all the rain over the last day – wife wanted to finish reading her sexy book – Fifty Shades of Grey so I had a free pass.

In the half hour it took me to get in the car and drive to the river the rain started again and it rose a few inches and turned into a chocolate color – I did not even string my rod up or get my waders wet. As I arrived Jim was getting out the river – we spent the hour or so watching the river rise and talking about holidays – turns out Jim’s wife is reading the book as well (as well as every other female in the Western

Whether it will fall again for tomorrow evening remains to be seen however Jim is up for joining in the bit of Pike action if this keeps up much longer.

Review in progress: Oregon Scientific WMR180

Those kind folks over at Oregon Scientific have heard my bleats about becoming an amateur weather watcher as they have sent me a full on professional weather station.

Oregon Scientific WMR180 Wireless PC Connectable Professional Weather Station 

WMR180 is the latest professional weather station from Oregon Scientific with the addition of a wireless USB communication hub you are able to view, anayse and store all your weather data on your PC as well as the console. With the USB Hub connected to your PC you are free to move the console anywhere in your home enabling you to view all the important weather data at a glance whilst your PC stores the data

Both units receive information wirelessly from a complete set of outdoor sensor at a range of up to 100m. Enabling you to see the Weather forecast, time, wind speed & direction, indoor & outdoor temperature & humidity, barometric pressure, and rainfall reading with bar graphs plus together with max and min readings over the past 24hrs

The Complete Weather station includes:

• WMR180 Weather Station Console
• USB Communication Centre
• Wind Sensor (WGR800)
• Temperature and Humidity Sensor  (THGN801)
• Solar Panel (STC800)
• Rain Gauge (PCR800)

All I can say is that folk are going to regret asking me if I think it is going to rain once I set this bad boy up in the back garden – and oh my it is an awfully big box!

Watch this space!

Aaaaaand back to the “K”

For trout fishing the Kelvin has been absolutely bloody awful for over a month now. I thought thas as we did not have any major downpours over the weekend it would be ok for Sunday night however as soon as I arrived I wondered why it was a dirty brown – it was fishable however only just.

Fishable – only just!

I met Stephen (who is also a Crown Bailiff) on the river (he also would not let me throw any streamers as it was the Sabbath) and we had a few hours casting to incredibly picky trout that I suspected were small.

Stephen surveys…

Stephen showed me a technique to attract the bats to you whereby you rub your thumb and index finger together. I have no idea why you would want to do that. That was about as exciting as the few hours got – oh we each had boils at our fly of what could have been nice trout.

We decided if the Kelvin remains pish for trout we would attack the Pike.

Over and Out!

 

Bank-side Surgery and a Giant Inflatable Penis!

I am still trying to get my head around the evening session on my other river. I mean it was a great session however not many fish were caught, I caught a couple however only one of those ended up on my camera – the fishing was hardly the talking point of the night it was the events of the night that made the evening.

There we go – the trout!

I mean it was a nice trout and I am glad it showed up and took my dry fly in the fast turbulent water as if it had not then the night would have been a blank apart from the events of which I will speak – so thank you very much trout for making me not blank.

Like I say the river was fast, big and turbulent – the weather was changeable in that one minute it was blazing sunshine and roasting and the next windy and cooler with a smattering of drizzle. I was glad I had on my jumper and cagoule and the next cursing the extra heat I was holding.

Fast and Furious – with a smattering of sunshine…

Part of the reason I had chosen this spot for our first stop on this river is because my old time fishing buddy Emanuele left a comment on the last post and it made me realise I had not fished here in so long. Long time readers of the blog may recognise it – It was a regular haunt before my time became limited due to kids. Still, I do not complain as I still manage to fish a lot – if the fishing had not been as good on the Kelvin this year maybe I would have been down here more however as it is I have been staying local as you guys know.

I was fishing with another old time fishing buddy Alex  called over that he had a bit of a problem – he had a nymph stuck in his lip. He came over and showed me the offending nymph which he had a  tug at but would not budge – there is not much pain he told me however the barb was well and truly in there. The sickening reality of the situation hit me – I was the one that was going to have to perform any kind of bankside surgery on the boy as he could obviously not see the nymph.

He could not see the nymph!

What made things slightly more difficult  is the fact he has a big man beard. I knew there is a technique to get barbed hooks out and googled it on my smart phone – I found this page and studied the instructions carefully.

Ah, yes – quite simple…

He lay down and I sat almost astride him with some strong fluro – now the procedure calls for a short sharp yank. I will not deny that I was a bit nervous however we were faced with a trip to Casualty on a Friday night – the local drunks would eat a couple of outdoors men like us up for breakfast if we let something as simple as a hook in the lip stop us fishing. Anyway, the the instructions said:

Using this hook removal method, there is one common factor – the almost complete, and surprising, lack of any pain

When I gave the short sharp tug I wondered then why long time fishing buddy Alex appeared to be in great pain and discomfort and then lay still on his back moaning for a bit with the nymph still stuck firmly in his face. I am sure if I was a cannabis smoker I would be describing this whole experience as a bit “heavy”

I wondered what his wife would say if his smooching abilities were ruined if I had tore his lip off.

Anyway, he was made of sterner stuff and we had another go at it – in true male style we threw the instructions away and I used my fishing forceps to grab the nymph while he stretched the skin around it.

All he had to worry about now was the huge amount of blood and possibly some kind of infection setting in making his head swell up to double its normal size – result!

Ping!

We fished on!

Now as you know I am not a big fan of cows. Quite frankly I do not trust the creepy fuckers with their munching and mooing and sneaking around fields – people do actually die every year from being trampled by them.

Bullocks my friends are ten times worse.

So there we were happily standing by the river when we heard a thudding – I looked around at the same time as Alex exclaimed something along the lines of “Uh Oh” and witnessed a bullock charging towards us – it was not a fake charge by the way it was a full on gonna getcha charge – there was another dozen behind it.

I went into full on Commando Ninja Mode as the “Fight or Flight” reflex kicked in – thank God it was not “Flight and Shite” as I dropped to the ground and rolled under an electric fence and down a hill away from the beast from hell.

The electric fence stopped it and the rest of the beasts were left at the top of  a short hill stomping their feet looking at us. The electric fence was essentially a bit of string with a thin wire going through it – I am kinda amazed that it stops them but that is intelligence for you.

Just look at them – milling around pissed off as they did not get to kill us!

We laughed for a bit about it however we wondered what would have happened if that fence had not been erected – I suppose it would have been a dash to the river and a quick wade. We could have splashed it with water or something.

We fished on.

Alex was fishing upstream of me and I called to him as it was time to move on to another section of the river for dusk – instead he called me over.

I will cut to the chase – it was an inflatable penis stuck in at the side of the river.

I was wondering why its testicles were so small…

We wondered what chain of events led to this obvious bag of fun ending up discarded next to the river. We are well upstream of the city with only smaller towns close by – someone probably had to make a real effort to lob it into the river. What the hell was going on?

We fished on – or rather got in the car and drove for a bit and fished on.

Fished into the gloaming…

We fished into the gloaming and darkness tossing streamers into dark deep pools to little effect – Alex felt some tugs and I had one take.

At the end of the night we somehow still felt fully satisfied with the evenings events.

I met Alex down at a shopping center today with his wife and child, he had no scarring whatsoever.

Kelvin probably on Sunday evening – any takers?

Good grief?

image

Being Watched…

Saturday evening was suppose to be a Clyde trip however at the last moment was changed to a good old Kelvin night out – pretty much because I realised that I was not going to get away early enough to justify the trip. I met up with the legendary Jim Burns who was already checking out rising fish and then I watched as he covered some fish that he had spotted..

The legendary man in action…

The river was still high compared to its usual self and was carrying some color, not enough to put the fish off as I had heard from a couple of people that trout had been rising all day – it seemed though that by the evening they were starting to switch off or tone down their feeding as even though we spotted trout that were feeding they were often small ones.

One of the curses joys  of urban fishing is sometimes having an audience, where we were fishing was a good vantage point for people on one of the road bridges above the river to watch us fish. Many people would stop to watch – possibly in case one of us fell in.

A View from the Bridge….

Of course you always get people who stop and watch you catch a fish and often get told there are no fish in the river despite trout rising in front of them. Often you are told that you are fishing wrongly or should have been here yesterday.

You often see the shadier side of life as well. Jim was telling me tonight about a time he was was checking out the river in Kelvingrove Park and a chap came out the bushes (who he had said hello to earlier) and asked him if he wanted some “action”. Jim commented that the river was too high and fast however the chap stated with a glint in his eye that was not the action he was talking about. I wondered what would have happened if the river was fishable and he had given a totally positive response to the chap when asked, I mused with Jim. “Damn right I am after some action, in fact I have been looking forward to it all day”

Obviously I am not sexy enough to be propositioned – maybe I need a mustache or something?

 

I met a Salmon angler who was working his way upstream with a red flying c and we chatted for a bit – Jim and I decided to head up river to another spot as the Botanics area seemed a bit on the dead side.

A bit on the dead side…

As soon as we got to the new stretch we spotted a lot more rising trout – a lot of them were close into our bank . I offered Jim the first bash at them however he had lost his fly so I sank into the river. I was glad I did as the first trout I caught was the trout of the evening size wise – a really nice fish that put up a good fight.

Caught with absolutely no skill whatsoever..

I would like to say it was caught using skill and cunning however I was not even looking at my fly when it took and after I seen the fly being taken I thought it was gone – it was only after I tightened my line did I realise it was still on.

I fished on and eventually came to a bend where I picked up a few more trout – I was watched by a couple of anglers set lining on the far bank who were enjoying some cans of lager and some joints – the music I fished to was a rave version of The Police hit “Every Breath You Take“. I listened to them discussing the recent problems with Rangers Football Club  (it is good apparently) and a dissection of my fishing technique “that cunt knows whit hes daen” 

Soon the bats were on the water and the river went back to sleep – it was time to call it a day.

Until next time!

I am assuming you guys are hauling them in?

 

Giving Some Link Love

Hey guys, you may have noticed I have tidied up the blog a tad and have moved some stuff around and taken away some other stuff. If the site looks strange you will need to clear your cache in your browser however if you just wait a bit it will all sort itself out.

I thought I would take this opportunity to welcome my new readers and to tell you the few ways you can actually get the content of this blog:

  • You can come to this old page. Of course one of the advantages of coming to the blog is that you can take part in the many conversations that take place. I enjoy hearing from people so please if you are shy about commenting don’t be.
  • On the top right off this page you will see two wee icons one says posts and one says email. With the one that says email you can add your email address and receive posts direct to your email – I will never pass your email into anyone else by the way. The one that says posts is where you can subscribe to my RSS feed. In order to subscribe to an RSS feed or newsfeed you will need two things, an RSS reader (also known as a news aggregator) and url (web address) of the RSS feed that you wish to subscribe. For example probably the most common RSS reader around these days is Google Reader – go and check it out. My feed is located up at the top right of this page –  click it and then click “subscribe with Google”

Keep that symbol in mind and then head over to my links list on the right hand page and sign up to their most excellent feeds as well – most use the same symbol

Here are a few to get you started:

The Hillend Dabbler – One of the freshest writers out there now has a podcast – definetly worth subscribing.

North Country Angler – Legendary Matt fishes the Eden Valley

Crooked Lines – Something a little different – catching coarse  fish on the fly

Taunted by Waters – Trout Fisherman editor Jeffrey Priest writes short thought provoking posts which are always enjoyable when they show up in my news reader.

Polaroid Rig P7202C & Rig P7202A Review

In a way reviewing and writing about Polaroid’s from Polaroid is easy as it is damned difficult to fault them – all I can really do is compare them to other glasses and Polaroids and say why I like them a little bit better.

I always have two pairs of Polaroids on the go – a pair for day and a pair for evening – come proper dusk into darkness they come off as no amount of optic goodness can combat against that kind of punishment.

I have written about the benefits of wearing Polaroids before however I feel I should reiterate them and why you need to get a pair that are well made.

Normal sunglasses decrease the intensity of everything by the same amount. Polarized sunglasses can selectively eliminate the reflection from light coming from above the water surface.

You see certain surfaces, such as water, can reflect a great deal of light, and the bright spots can be distracting or can hide objects such as foot tripping boulders and the occasional fish. Good sunglasses can completely eliminate this kind of glare using polarization and also eliminate specific frequencies of light. Certain frequencies of light can blur vision, and others can enhance contrast. Choosing the right colour for your sunglasses lets them work better in specific situations. To a fly fisher this is pretty good as polarized glasses reduce the blinding effect of glare, they also reduce the effects of reflections on the water (clouds and trees) resulting in the water appearing slightly darker but more transparent.

Generally gray tints are great all-purpose tints that reduce the overall amount of brightness with the least amount of color distortion. Yellow or gold tints reduce the amount of blue light while allowing a larger percentage of other frequencies through. The yellow tint has the effect of making everything bright and sharp. Amber and brownish tints are also good general purpose tints.

However, not all polaroids are made equal – you can buy cheap polaroids everywhere that look exactly the same as the high-priced brand names for a fraction of the cost. Beware – not only will they be total crap at what you want them for they may actually damage your eyes in the long term as they may not block harmful UV. 

The two pairs that I was sent from Polaroid were great (that was easy) – they sent me a pair of Rig’s with Grey lenses and a pair with yellowy lenses.

Rig P7202C

Because you do not want light filtering in through gaps around the lenses they have got to be a good fit which these are. When bending over they sit nice on the face and do not fall off or feel slack. They feel sturdy and have been fairly abused by my one year old trying to drag them off my face when carrying him (nothing to do with fishing but you get the idea)  They are also pretty lightweight, yet remain sturdy.

Rig P7202A

Both were great and I cannot fault them one bit.

Polaroid say:

  • Floatable material
  • Wide wraparound frames
  • Strong, robust arms
  • Black acetate frames with polarized yellow lenses
  • Filter category 2 yellow or filter out less light so are good for dawn and dusk, and give great optical clarity right into the water. Filter category 3 Grey lenses work well in cloudy or sunny conditions
  • Polaroid UltraSight™ premium polarized lenses
  • 100% UV400 protection
  • Comes with Polaroid case
  • Inside frame width 128mm, lens height 37mm

So I have been using these bad boys for a couple of months now and they are mighty fine – considering the recent spell of wet weather is coming to an end (hopefully) and we will be looking at sunny conditions again these are a sure fire hit.

 

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