Kelvin Work Party – now with added free booze and girls*

Every time there is a River Kelvin Angling Association work party there is always some excuse why I cannot attend – just like this Sundays. The wife is away to Spain on a hen gig and I am left with the kids. Anyway, I always ask for folk to take photos and send me them, guess how many I have been sent.

Times requested = dozens

Photos received = 0

I always ask for photos as at the last three work parties a bunch of semi clad young women turned up with free beer and gave away money*

So if you fancy going kamikaze on some bushes with a chainsaw then read this:

On Sunday the 9th of September we will be carrying out some improvement work, all members are invited to drop by and lend a hand. We will be meeting at Balmore Bridge at 10.30am. Depending on how many numbers we have we may decide to tackle more than one particular stretch. Come along even if it’s just to say hello. Equipment will be provided. Wear old clothes and wellies if you have them!

I have arranged for some strippers from a local club that I attend on a regular basis to attend to give us moral support, Alistair cannot make it unfortunately however I will not moan at him as he is an all round good guy who we appreciate greatly. He is also struck with a severe case of the handsomes!

Kind regards

Remember you can read more Kelvin Angling Association news on the site.

*May be a lie.

First Tenkara Action..

So today I got a chance to try out Tenkara.

If you have not at least heard of Tenkara then you must have been living in a bubble as it is the new fly fishing craze that is sweeping the states and has gradually moved over here. Tenkara as described by my fishing buddy Atkins is “that huckleberry fin shite” where at its most basic level some kind of fish attracting lure is tied on to a piece of string and then on to a pole – no reel!

Of course, it is a little bit more complicated that that as the fly fishing industry must justify selling us lots of “stuff”. Over in the states they are making a big deal of the fact it originated in Japan where Tenkara when translated literally means – from heaven.

And here is some English chaps having a bash with Grayling taking duns, you get the general idea though:

The rods are surprisingly long – anywhere from 11 to 13 feet, but telescope down to just 20 inches and weigh just 3 oz on average. You can buy a rod for around £100 and a line for an extra £10. A few folk have told me I should get into some of the Tenkara action, honorary Kelvinator’s James Bennet and Chuck from the States (you remember Chuck, he was the one that brought all the rain with him) have been going on about it for donkies,

So, my Tenkara rod (a Seiryu 12foot) has been sitting in the car for the last week and I have been gagging to try it out, I had watched a few videos and read up on as many blogs out there as I could. I got myself a half day from work and had a spare 45mins before I had to be home. I walked to the wee burn that should have been ideal to try it out as that was the kind of water it was developed in Japan for. Pretty much everything was against me though as it was a fair bit windy plus the burn was running very low, I reckon if I had been here last week I would have been hauling them in. Still, I was there fishing and managing to cast the Tenkara rod absolutely atrociously. When I have been watching the videos it looks bloody easy however I was surprised at just how hard it is. I was finding it difficult to get a good line out and weirdly I was getting a pain in my hand as you do not grip the rod the same way you do an ordinary set up.

You do not grip a Tenkara rod the same way…

Saying all that after 20mins I was fair chuggging away at some of my wee pools, unfortunately my favourite wee pool was spoiled by a guy pulling out golf balls so moved down to some pocket water – I cast and as the fly drifted down a wee splash intercepted the fly and it was game on. I had no idea what to do, it looked bloody easy in the videos however I found myself with an extremely bendy rod and a wee fish going bananas. Fairly quickly I realised that the rod can put up with a lot more bendy punishment than an ordinary rod.

First wee Tenkara troot!

I think I can honestly say nobody has caught a trout from this burn fishing Tenkara style ever. I then spent some time on a bridge trying to catch some trout below me – a golf cart put paid to them rising though and it was time to head home.

Oh yea, the sun was at my back also!

I got home to take over child rearing duties only to find the door locked and the family away to the shops not to be returning for an hour or so. “You’ll just have to go fishing” I was told, I did not have to be told twice.

I headed for the Kelvin and I reckon I am the first punter to have a crack at Tenkara on it (or should that be in it?) and got myself set up again. From a distance the river looked ok however as I waded up I realised it was still a bit colored and high. After about 20 yards I was starting to have doubts, I just could not seem to cast it consistently, once cast would be incredibly accurate and straight and the next it would end up in a pile at the end of the rod. Even though the leader was around 12 feet long it did not feel like 12 feet I was casting – in fact the fly was probably around 24 feet from my hand. I suppose that should be enough eh?

Of course the wind did not help, or the lack of rising trout for that matter. I really started to enjoy fishing it again when I got up to some riffles at the top of the pool. At least here I could target areas that I knew would hold trout, on several occasions I watched trout come up from the depths, inspect my fly and then bugger off.

I will tell you something though, not only is Tenkara accurate it also seems like a breeze to control the fly without any drag – I enjoyed trundling my fly down a seem of fast water without the fly dragging like a speedboat. Because the Tenkara rod is so long I could hover the leader and line off the water. This was much more enjoyable and then…..Fish On!


Tell you something, for such a wee fish it put up a fair old scrap on the Tenkara rod, it had an almighty bend in it. I managed to get the trout in with less fuss than the first, a quick photo and then it was gone.

Yussss! 2nd trout on the Tenkara and from the Kelvin…

I am pretty sure that I am the first person to catch a trout from the Kelvin on a Tenkara rod as as well.

I am most annoyed that it is only a few weeks until the end of the season – I wish I had longer to really get to grips with it, I wish I could use it during those dusk sessions when the trout are very willing to take the dry. I will probably get a few more bashes at it before the season is done and then it will really come into its own next season – watch this space!

Araneus diadematus

So my wife told me there was a monster spider in the back garden and wanted to know if it would bite the children. She thought it may have come across in a banana boat or something. I walked over took one look at the beast and went in to get my flamethrower.


Araneus diadematus


Before doing that I had a quick look on the internet just in case I was being a bit hasty and what I found surprised me. It turns out the monstererous spider is one of the most common garden spiders there is. Its name is Araneus diadematus and is largest in the Autumn when it is full of baby spider eggs. After laying their eggs the females die. Going by the most excellent Nicks Spiders it is:

 … easily identified by the distinctive white cross on the abdomen (although in some specimens it is indistinct or missing). This spider is most commonly called in England the ‘garden spider’, it is also known as the cross spider. They are common in woodlands, heathlands and gardens. They build circular orb webs and can be found either sitting at the center of the web with facing down or in a retreat at the end of a signal line a short distance from the web itself.

So there you go, not a horrible beastie after all. The kids loved looking at it however seeing as it was not catching any insects at that time they wandered off.

Along with my wee books on trees and flowers I think I have a new addition to my Christmas wishlist on Amazon:

Collins Gem – Spiders


Rained Off.

I got to the river at around 6pm, it was up around a foot an running a dark color. There was some visibility in it as pointed out by John in the comments so I was kinda hopeful as I started. I wanted to try out the Tenkara rod that I had swapped for an ad in the sidebar however first I used my conventional rod to check out whether there would be any point.

No pictures as to be honest I could not be bothered transferring a picture of the rain from my camera to my computer. Instead here is a random photo of my last years permit.

2011 Permit.

Thinking about it I must have got to the river at around half six as I got back in the car at 7pm with the rain bouncing off my car windscreen.

Plans dashed by the rain as usual – it is a common theme or this year.


Winter Mode?

Winter Mode? I now drink better beer!

Greetings New People! (and Urban Veterans)

Greeting new readers and urban veterans – if you are a long time reader then do not switch off as you may find out something interesting.

Visitors have jumped in the last month or so and I thought I would tell you again how to access the content of Urban Fly Fisher as well as get more involved if you wish.

To access the content on Urban Fly Fisher you can:

  •  Go to the page (some people only read the email) If you do receive the content by email do not be shy in coming to the site and leaving a comment. I love getting emails from you guys however sometimes I think other folk might like to hear what you say in the comments as well.
  • Subscribe by email – on the right side bar you will see a wee box where 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 as quite frankly I do not know how #grin#
  • 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 – it says RSS with a little symbol next to it – click it and then click “subscribe with Google”

If you have a smartphone you can actually subscribe to many different blogs and sites and that is what I use to keep myself updated on what other fisher folk with blogs are doing – usually this happens when sitting on the toilet and often when on the train to work.

Many people have mailed to say they like the new design and I thank you  – I have also got to thank my pal Campbell who took a few of the photos on the header – I have to supply him with a bottle of wine and some dilly wax .

Anyhoo, I have also restarted the Urban Fly Fisher Forum after wiping all memories and members from it – if anyone wishes to join that would be nice. I have made it as serious and fishy as I possibly can in true urban gritty style #smile#

Talking of reading stuff while sitting on the toilet over over the last wee while I have spotted a few blogs that I have really been enjoying:

Owl Jones – I feel like he is a kindred spirit!

Troutrageous – I wish I could have thought of that name – the writing is superb!

 Back Country Nerd – Oh, the stories this man weaves!

So, that is my wee housekeeping post out the way. Autumn is fast approaching and so is the 10th anniversary of Urban Fly Fisher so if there is anything you want me to write about or do (apart from use commas as one wag said in the comments) then drop me an email or post in the comments.


Shock Expose:Hardy used subliminal sex messages in its adverts!

(I wrote this post back in February 2011 – I have no idea whether they still use sex to sell fly fishing gear #grin#)

Oh Hardy – you used to be all butlers and stupidly expensive reels – where did it all go horribly wrong?

So I got home from a hard day of shopping with the wife to find the new Sportfish catalogue sitting on my doorstep (I curse the day I ever gave them my address) opened the first page of stuff they were trying to punt me and there it was – it hit me right in the face!!!

Hardy has one of the most amazing marketing strategies…

Lets look at the advert….

(by the way I had to take a photo of it)

For the love of God think of the children!

See nothing wrong eh? You see a middle aged chap fighting a huge Sea Beast? I see Hardy using red hot sex to try and sell you rods and reels!

Let me explain the sexy facts of Hardy to you!

You see advertising agencies think nothing of using a little risky sex to try and sell you stuff, it has been going on for years, recently they get blatant like the “Diet Pepsi” guy ads however they are sometimes a bit more covert – let me show you a few examples:

Look where the rocket is aiming!!

and another:

Look where the bottle is pointing…

and another…

The lipstick is supposed to be like a willy 😀

I have got to admit that I stole all these pictures – before reading on you might like to check out a bit more about how subliminal adverts work:

Subliminal Images and Hidden Images

Sex and Death amongst the Ice Cubes

Ha – now go back to our Hardy advert and with your new found knowledge have a think – you can click the following  link when you think you have it.

Continue reading Shock Expose:Hardy used subliminal sex messages in its adverts!

3rd time unlucky…

As we were walking back to the car I spoke about every reason for why we should have caught some monsters.

  1. The Pike were their!
  2. I had caught them there at this time in previous years.
  3. We had huge flies.
  4. I had read some stuff on the Guru McFluffchucker site.
  5. You cannot have a third time blanking for the beasts surely?

Turns out you can blank three times in a row…..

So what went wrong?

Well, for a start it was bloody windy which made casting interesting. The Loch was also higher than usual, maybe a foot or so which made wading tricky. Considering I had fished it on Sunday and it was a lot lower I suspect that the Pike do not like the big fluctuations that the on going rainy weather has been giving us.

Next time Jim, I promised, we shall catch a half dozen.

Here is a picture of a fish just in case you have forgotten what they look like:

Look a fish!

Guys, Autumn is fast approaching and with it so is the end of the trout season – roughly 5 weeks by my counting! You chaps got any plans or is the weather pretty much knocking your trout fishing on its head?




Awake at 4am.

Picked up at 5.55am

Arrived at 6.30am

Yea sure, I mean it LOOKS fishy!

It rained on and off.

Cast over a hundred times with streamers and an amazing popper that went Gloop, Gloop, Gloop!

Caught one Pike of a few pounds.

Left the loch at around 10am.

Alex turned to me and said “that was totally shite”.

I agreed at 10.01am.


The talk of the steamy are the two park benches that are on the falls at the Sea Pool on the Kelvin.

You can see a newspaper tucked into it!

They are going to be removed very soon using a chainsaw so that they cannot be put back again. Personally I will be sorry to see them go, not that I liked them at the top of the falls however I used to see them on a regular basis at different parts of the river and park. Someone probably removed them from the Botanic Gardens as there are so many however I hope they do not have any kind of inscription or dedication on them.

I walked through the park today – I met one women fishing with her son and wandered up through the gardens with my boys. I really noticed the number of benches in the park and read a lot of the inscriptions. Some were new and some old. Each one had been bought and paid for by someone who wanted to mark someone’s life and I wonder what they would have thought if they knew their bench had been stuck in the Kelvin.

What do you call a grouping of benches?

I mentioned to my wife when I got home that I quite fancied a bench when I shuffle off – the thought that someone may sit on my bench and glance at my name and wonder who the hell I was tickles me in a way that rotting in a box under a stone does not.

In other news I felt Autumn in the air this morning. The leaves are starting to fall from the trees and their was a cold chill that took a while to burn off. The sun felt old and worn out.

It started to rain late afternoon and has not stopped!