Camo Beret – Cool as fu….

You wear a camouflage beret while you are fishing then you are as cool as Top Cat in my book.

(pic is an affiliate link to Amazon)

I am going to add one of these bad boys to my Amazon wishlist for my birthday next month.

Tell you what else is happening in a couple of months – my second born child will be hitting the planet – this means instead of fishing for the next wee while I am doing DIY (for me this means decorating) you see my wife is “nesting” – not the old style cleaning every room in the house thing it is the new wave nesting thing where she gets me to paint every room in the house – thanks a bunch Parenting Weekly.

And this weekend it was my sons bedroom.

When number one son was born we decided to put a border around the room – we used “border glue” – if I had been told that once the border glue was on the wall the only way to remove it is to actually get a new wall then I would not have bothered with a border. If you do not get the glue off then it bleeds through the new paint.

Instead I have just spent the last two days using fairy liquid, fabric softener, sugar water, tin foil heated up by an iron, white spirit and finally my spit to try and get this evil stuff off my sons room. None of it helped – finally I bought some stuff that is supposed to cover up hard to remove stains and coated the glue. You can still see where the border was kinda through around 8 coats of royal blue paint however I have agreed with my wife that even if we do still notice it we have NEVER to mention it ever again.

Camo Beret = cool as f#ck!

Border Glue = a pain in the arse!

Weekly water photo – 11 of 52

Ok – so the race is on to actually see a rising trout. Last year the first trout I seen rising was this wee burn running through Dalmuir.
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Congratulations – you made it!

Yay – you made it to another season – today is the first day of the 2011 trout season.

Congratulations on making it this far – we all deserve a great big round of applause for fighting through yet another thoroughly miserable winter.

From this moment on instead of being totally unable to legally fish for trout we can now choose not to fish for them as the conditions are totally against us. We can now look out the window and shake our heads in woe at the dismal temperatures which is going to be keeping the trout comatose at the bottom of the river. Consequently the possibility of catching a trout on the dry fly is incredibly slim – by slim I mean none. There was a time I would have taken the day off work just to head down to the river to have a symbolic cast however I have been stung that way before – and by stung I mean froze my booty in freezing cold miserable water. You see the hope at this time of year is that you would see the mythical Large Dark Olive hatch – they are the main insects you should see flirting around the water with the trout greedily gulping them down. The hatch usually starts in February and peak in March and April – however, personally at the start of the season I rarely see them and when I do they sail down the river are totally unmolested by the trout – of course I might actually be in a place totally devoid of trout which is why this year I will be totally sacking my usual early season haunt and tackling some fresh water upstream. Technically the hatch should be either side of the hottest part of the day – people say noon however to me that never makes sense – going by my temps the hottest part of the day is usually mid afternoon or a little earlier, say 1pm – 2pm.

Still, its not all that bad – give it another couple of weeks and hopefully the temperatures will be up a bit – It is a funny time of year when a week really does make a difference. I always think Autumn slips into Winter a heck of a lot quicker than Winter slips into Spring. The real date that we should all take notice is the 1st April – we should have a bit more sunlight and hopefully some steady temps above 10 degrees. Today we will have an astounding 11hours 46minutes and 14 seconds of daylight whereas on the 1st April we will have a whopping 13 hours 5 minutes and 21 seconds of daylight.

Whee!

Another book from my bookshelf!

This one is all about dry fly fishing – I bought mine second hand without a cover in a wee bookshop on Otago lane .

(the picture is an affiliate link to Amazon)

I see you can now buy it for the princely sum of 1p plus a couple of bucks postage. Good thing about books is you can read em’ on the toilet a lot easier than a laptop.

It covers pretty much everything you ever wanted to know about fishing with a dry fly – including leaders, lines, rods, rise forms etc.

I like it.

 

Weekly water photo – 10 of 52

Passed over my shit pipe river today and it looked great – because all the trees have no leaves I can see lots of riffles and runs!
Only a week until I can choose not to fish for trout – I will probably fish for pike first.

Probably.

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Fishing blogs I think kick ass!

To be honest I think loads of blogs rock however I thought I would highlight a few here that really shine for me. I wish we had some kind of fishing oscar ceremony to show off these guys however we don’t so you will just have to put up with me telling you.

North Country Angler – Once you get past the outstandingly huge nymph he uses as a header (he only put it up as he won a competition with it – I like his style – I would be riding that wave for 5 years) you come across some well written thought out posts which give a fantastic insight into fishing his own neck of the woods.

His photos are superb and I note several gargantuan trout of the brown variety he has caught. He is taking a wee break from blogging just now however maybe if you guys head over there and give him some credit and a boost he will let us know what Spring is like on the Eden. I promise I have not made him first on the list as I will be spending some time in the Lakes in the Summer and need someone to give me info. (by info I mean exact coordinates of where to park a motor vehicle and permit availability) #smile#

Fly Fishing in South Wales – Tell me, who among you do not read Gareth’s blog? If you do not then head over their now and check out his molecular sized flies (some of which are not in the Royal Mail heading in the direction of my fly box). Gareth was a reader and commentator here before realizing he could take this whole blogging thing to a whole new level – he is now a registered instructor and has another site at Gareth Lewis Fishing.  Gareth loves small streams so therefore can do no wrong in my book. He is a handsome chap who I think should be given his own TV show even if it is because I want to be dragged along to some exotic destination as an “advisor” He came up to Scotland a few years ago just as a cold front swept in so totally blanked however still had a good time – I left him fishing the Clyde due to a horrible migraine, ugh! Top bloke – go read his stuff!

Taunted by Waters – Jeffrey Prest is paper magazine “Trout Fisherman” editor. So what caught me eye first about  “Taunted by Waters” ? was it the good writing?, the interesting articles?, the insight into what folk at “Trout Fisherman” discuss in the office? No – it was the picture he uses in his sidebar – it makes him look like Grandpa Munster.

The Munsters

I jest, I jest – it is those other reasons – the good writing and articles and all that jazz. Check him out!

(or your blood gets sucked)

Tamanawis – When Mike actually updates his blog with a post it is actually quite good. In the meantime you can read stuff from the past. Nuff said.

Singlebarbed – The man took an ordinary pair of fly tying scissors and a ring and suddenly BAM :the “sixth finger scissors” were born – making tying flies approx 10 seconds faster.  What else will that crazy mind come up with ?

K.Barton - not selling Snake Oil!

K.Barton was also the chap who came up with the term “Brownlining” – that is fishing in the shite to you and me – as opposed to blue lining which is fishing in nice clear country streams. Top bloke – I use his sixth finger and love it!

Who is next?

Wayward Fly Fishing – #nervous laughter# He tried normal once. he got bored.  So he stopped doing it – and believe me you can tell. I am actually still working through his archives – check out his post on October 8th, it is an eye opener.

Pike Fly Fishing Articles – Ok – here is the deal – ANYONE who fishes for Pike on the fly and has this graphic of their quarry on their blog should be taken seriously:

aaaAAAAAAAGRH!

That fish looks as if it is about to pull out a baseball bat and beat the angler fishing for it into a pulp – and then feed the pulp to the fish it is about to eat.

He also uses a magnificent Jvice – this is probably why his flies are so good.

Trout Underground – Does Tom Chandler need any introduction? Not only does he write consistently good stuff he also somehow manages to juggle being a father with a helluva lot more fishing than I seem to do. He obviously has some secret going on that he is not telling anyone –  he probably makes it all up with stock photos or something – even if that is true it sure is a still a lot of fun. He also still links here as “Urban Fly Fishing on the Kelvin” which is kinds sweet however sucks for SEO.

The Unaccomplished Angler – Ok – listen guys – I know you do not actually read Urban Fly Fisher for the in depth articles about how to fish (which is just as well really) and the Unaccomplished Angler  is kinda another blog in the same vein – a satirical look at fishing. I love it – he said he was jacking it all in a while ago however has been back posting so I am happy.

A Matter of Life and Fluff Chucking – When I think of crazy bastards I automatically think of McFluffchucker – another Pike fiend who ties great flies and is always up for a bit of the banter.

He scares us...

Look at those eyes – just look at them – you can tell he is serious as he wears his hat backwards. I always think he looks a bit like the Terminator (even though no Pike are terminated)

Nadder Diary – Yet another super sweet and slick site that also has great content – his photos are great . One recent post I really enjoy his when he was invited to fish a wee lake and caught a few species after some speculative fishing.

And thats it for now – I have another few blogs I think kick ass which I will tell you about later – in the meantime check out these ones.

Any blogs you guys recommend?

Weekly water photo – 9 of 52

The clyde is not all just about trout and salmon – battleships are also given birth on the river.
This picture is not really that far from the entrance to the Kelvin.

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Kids and the Kelvin kicks off!

Cleaning out our rivers and trying to make sure the fish are a happy bunch is quite a selfish act for anglers. We have a vested interest in making sure the river is clean and healthy because we want there to be more fish for us to catch. We also do not like wading through horrible stuff!

But what about the folk that are just interested in the place looking good – they see a  natural resource and simply want it to be healthy – that is correct dear readers there are people out there that do stuff for the river that do not fish – for the River Kelvin we have folk like “Friends of the River Kelvin” , “Friends of Kelvingrove Park” and of course the Kelvin Valley Leader

We also have Willie Yeomans.

Yeomans is the main scientific chap who oversees all the science stuff on pretty much the whole of the Clyde catchment.  He is the main guy who heads up The Clyde River Foundation. The foundation is a registered charity that researches the ecology of the Clyde and its tributaries – it also promotes environmental education.

Yeomans does not fish – yet he still loves brown trout – the difference between him and us is that we use a rod and him and his pals use something that came straight out of Ghostbusters.

Check out that back pack!

Kelvinators will know of Willie Yeomans because  we haul him out at AGM’s to give a talk on river science stuff (not “just to kill time” as some unscrupulous folk state) and he is also doing a river habitat survey of the Kelvin – part of which appeared to be all about getting  the committee and bailiffs together to walk the length of the river to count leaves or something – allegedly we were trying to mark down where all the invasive plants are.

Here he is – gazing into the distance, pondering life and the universe…

A lucky photo - usually he talks so much his mouth blurs!

A lot of people will know of Yeomans because of his “Clyde in the Classroom” project – Clyde in the Classroom aims to encourage children to take an active role in conserving their local river. It introduces pupils to river ecology and biodiversity by utilising the lifecycle of the most common fish species in the Clyde Catchment – that is trout and salmon to us!

Essentially he gets kids to raise fish and then release them into the river – while doing this they learn about what makes rivers tick.

Anyway, Yeomans managed to secure some funding from the very fine folk over at Kelvin Valley Leader (more strange people that do not fish) and this year  he is doing something rather special – it is called Kids and the Kelvin. It is along the same lines as Clyde in the Classroom but on the Kelvin. Talking of funding – funding for the whole project (as well as Clyde in the Classroom) comes from many different streams – angling clubs usually give a donation as well. This year Orvis provided some cash towards the running of the project courtesy of James “if you type his name three times he pops up” Hathway. I don’t want to sound like an Orvis kiss ass or anything however it is stuff like that we anglers should take note of!

What I like to think is Yeomans is doing something a little bit more subtle – he is encouraging these kids to have a vested interest in the Kelvin.

You see,  you have got to ask yourself why you see litter on the banks of our rivers, why you find the river full of shopping trolleys, sofas and washing machines, why some companies feel it is probably easier just to take a hit of a few thousand pounds fine instead of disposing of their waste appropriately – I think it is because somehow people are so unconnected with the natural world around them they think nothing of destroying something in an unthinking moment.

Education and changing people’s attitudes takes a long time – do you remember when people did not wear seat belts in the back of cars? Now you would not think of getting into a car without belting up. People that are spoiling our rivers just now have never been educated on what makes rivers tick and what makes them such amazing places. If these kids are being educated about rivers then in the future when they have got a decision to make about whether they throw a crisp packet,empty bottle, shopping trolley or even release some sewage or chemical into the river they may think back to their school days and realise their actions have real consequences.

I think that is what “Kids and the Kelvin” is really all about.

Of course some people (me for a start) might think the last thing we want is a bunch of agile and keen eyed young people catching our trout from under our noses however we try and put those dark and black thoughts out of our heads.

Anyway – this is why the RKAA is behind Yeomans and Kids and the Kelvin – if you want to see attitudes changing towards our natural resources you have got to start them young.

I am looking forward to seeing how it pans out this year – I never did anything fun like that at my school, I hope I will be enjoying projects like this through my son when he starts school.

It is 16 days until the Trout Season starts and there is a distinct smell of Spring in the air – Diver Dave has informed me my waders are now repaired (so no early season wet crotch), the mighty Paul Young was in contact to tell me he has used Diver Dave and was impressed with the results .

Ya Beauty!

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly water photo – 8 of 52

To be fair I was hanging off a bridge trying to take this photo so mucho apologies for it being a bit squint!
Top bananas to anyone who can tell me where this is?

~hint~ it is on the Kelvin.

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Did you know SEPA have a new river level data site?

Most anglers in Scotland have used Sepa’s pretty good river level site in the past and I reckon more folk will be using it even more in the future.

There is a full update of the changes to the site here.

For us on the Kelvin there are now three monitoring stations – the lowest down being Killermont and also one on the Allander at Milngavie.

Kelvin at Killermont

SEPA River Level Site

Of course it is not just the Kelvin – it covers most rivers in the UK so you can see what has been happening with a river you may be travelling to.

How often do you guys use this?

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