I decided to visit some of my older haunts on the river for a nostalgic trip down memory lane
Maybe see you there!
I decided to visit some of my older haunts on the river for a nostalgic trip down memory lane
Maybe see you there!
Mind that book I told you about the other day? The one that nobody knows much about written by someone who nobody really knows?
Well, even though Amazon have totally sold out there are around 10 copies for sale on Ebay.
(Picture of book takes you directly to Ebay)
You cannot go wrong – instead of fish on the front cover there is a cow!
So I have been tying up some flees in preparation for some hot evening action. Reluctantly I took the advice (you can substitute advice for pretty much constant ribbing) from pals regarding the size of my flies. You see in the past I fished a place where a big bushy fly was a essential as it was pretty much all pocket water. Now as I am hanging around where the big kids are I need to step down my size of fly – bloody picky trout.
Also I need to make sure I have flies for every occasion – which means my repertoire of Giant Deer Emerger or Scruffy Olive must be expanded. So I spent some time tying up some small CDC n’ Elks and some small CDC Olives (with tails). I also decided to tie up some Deer Hair Emergers on small hooks – they are always good flies to have in an emergency especially in small sizes. I know that Mike from Tamanawis always does very well with them.
Saying all that fat lot of good it did me.
On Saturday night I decided to hit the Loch for some Pike action – I reckoned the conditions seemed pretty good; it was overcast and kinda warmish with a light wind. I did not even spook a Pike the whole times I was there which is always a bit of a bad sign – at least when you spook Pike you can be slightly hopeful that eventually you will not spook one and it will take your fly. Casting aimlessly at likely places to find that all you drag back is your own hope is kinda demoralising after a while. Of course this was then topped off by on the way home being stopped by the police for two busted lights – I was given a ticket and told to get them fixed.
With the Pike not playing ball I decided I needed to catch a trout – I wanted to catch a trout on an honest to goodness dry fly – preferably a rising trout and big – if it was gigantic all the better. I decided on the Clyde and the big trout decided to play the Pike game and totally hang out somewhere else. Dusk was alledgedly the time to be there so I dutifully fled down the M74 after 7pm.
I caught some small trout which was fun as they were rising incredibly sporadically. Paul noticed the mist drifting down the river first which may have killed any action dead – certainly when it was proper dark the trout still did not feed.
Turns out I had forgotten my torch as well which would have been fun if the big trout had actually been rising all around me and I needed to change a fly in the dark would have been fun if the big trout had actually been rising all around me and I needed to change a fly in the dark.
I cannot help but notice we are now half way through the year – the nights are fair drawing in by a few mins every night – that is some scary stuff to contend with – the thought the season will be almost over in a flash – to me it feels it has hardly even started. It seems like only yesterday I was on the Kelvin at the start of the season wondering about the lack of hatches and the good height of water. Well, after work I had a spare hour – literally one hour that I could use to catch a fish. It was overcast and warm and I just knew the water should be in a good condition. I parked the car and peered down a steep embankment and could see it had some dirty color in it however could still see some rocks at the margins.
I got my shit together and promptly fell down the embankment (there has got to be an easier way) As soon as I got to the river I spotted a trout rising..
I worked my way up the edge of the river and almost immediately lost my fly in an overhanging tree branch. This area is about to be targeted by the River Kelvin Angling Association for some tree cutting – nothing major, just some of the biggest overhanging branches. Anyway, I spotted a trout downstream of me right in at the right hand bank..it seemed a nice trout and rose twice as I was getting into position..
I false casted a few times and decided on an experimental drift just to see how close I was to the target – it was a downstream cast so the trick is to try and have your line snaked towards the target so as the fly drifts down the line straightens giving you a drift. The trout took the fly that first cast – it went bananas!
By heck – it was pretty strong, initially I thought it was going to be a monster however it turned out the trout was foul hooked in its side causing the tussle to be out of proportion to the size of trout. It is something to do with the pressure of water as the trout twists and turns.
Anyway – it was a lovely Kelvin trout caught within my timescale of an hour – actually it was around 45 mins..
I was looking forward to tying some flees up at the RKAA fly tying night however lay down at half six and woke up at 5am having totally missed it. As it is I have got to put in some serious effort to get some more tiny CDC n Elks tied up.
Looking forward to my next session already!
Well this book snuck up on Clyde fishers everywhere – it seems to have slipped on the scene without any kind of fanfair at all – I suppose it is a fly tying book so does not get the same treatment as say….Harry Potter but still #grin#
(image is an affiliate link to Amazon)
It is of course out of stock on Amazon already so am sure it will go the way of every other book on the mighty Clyde – totally disappear and become hideously expensive. Seeing as how there is no info on Amazon about what the book actually is I should tell you I believe it is a fly tying book – it details flies for the Clyde and entomology aspects of the river.
Maybe one day I will write one for the Kelvin – “Crisp Packets n’ The Kelvin – an insiders view of the gossip, scandal and inner-workings of an inner city fishing club”
Beer is made from water right?
So finally managed to get some fishing squeezed in amongst the madness of 2nd time fatherhood.
With hindsight maybe I should have chosen a different river, I decided on the Shit Pipe River pretty much because it was far enough away to feel I was on a trip yet close enough to bolt home if things turned nasty the first time the boys were alone with their mother.
I flicked through my phone to see who would be around and decided that I have not fished with Jim Lees from Palewatery nearly half as much as I should have – I have fished with him once back in 2008 and apart from some random meetings on the river bank never again. Jim informed me he was supposed to be renovating his house however after what seemed like a second of weighing up the pros and cons ditched the decorating – top priorities!
With hindsight we should really have chosen another river – usually when you get to a river you judge whether it is fishable by whether it is too high or too low (sometimes), the water clarity and other stuff like that. Weather conditions can be combated on wee rivers, if it is too bright you look for pools in the shade and just work your way up.
Fridays conditions were pretty damn good, it was bright intermittently mixed in with a lot of heavy clouds with a temp that stayed around the the 14 degrees mark (possibly a little higher), there was also lots of insects around: spinners and terrestrials.
So after all that why should we have chosen another river? Because, there was also a very grey color to the water.
Oh there was trout there all right, I managed to winkle a couple out – one was a good one maybe around the quarter of a pound mark (both released without actually touching my hand or getting with a couple of feet of me). The bigger one was sitting in a tiny pocket between some slack and faster water – I cast, cast and cast again covering the same spot – I knew that if I just get the drift right a trout would take the fly.
We also saw some trout rising however considering the conditions you would really expect to have seen some consistent sport considering the conditions.
Still we gave it a good go though – most pools had a cursory fly thrown at it and Jim even stuck on a nymph. However there was still that nagging feeling that we “should” be picking up trout on every pool we really concentrated on – some of the pools just looked unbelievably fishy and there was no real reason why the trout would not take.
If I had been fishing myself the trip would have been ok bordering on mild disappointment that the shit did not come together – as it was we chatted about the rivers we fish, the characters we both mutually know, the current state of pish fishing forums that litter the internet and the headbangers they attract, flies, casting and how a good caster can still be a shite fisher and many other interesting topics (I am a shite caster and a mediocre fisher who can talk a good game which makes up for a lot) – Jim is also a web man so rates highly in my geeky world.
Of course I spotted the usual obligatory burnt out car – looks damn old, maybe from the 80s?
Jim has fished this river a lot more than I have (albeit downstream) and has witnessed the grey color before and stated that it usually puts a death knell on the fishing – we wondered exactly why this might be the case as the visibility in the water was still fairly decent and trout can take flies in pretty murky water. I remember fishing buddy Campbell telling me that the grey color is usually caused by treated sewage which would probably be legal enough to be pumped into the river. I decided on returning home that a call to SEPA may be worthwhile – they told me they had reports of a problem at a sewage plant out that way however they would check it out. They asked if I could be more specific about where the river was white “You don’t get it, the whole river was white – at least a couple of miles worth” They could see how that could have been a problem. Another warning sign that this river may have some kind of underlying problem is the weed growth – there was a lot of it – that stuff was probably feeding on affluent – like I say, I do not call it “shit pipe” river for nothing.
In fact that is another thing that Jim and I spoke of – how overlooked some of these wee rivers can be, only being fished now and again by a few guys. It does not have a club to look after it so problems relating to sewage go unreported. I suppose in a way I am glad that on the day I managed to get some trout fishing done something was causing a problem with the river – it drove home the point that every problem should be reported so that on the days you do get out there are no problems – does that make sense?
So a typical day just now is wake up and look out to see what kind of day it is and try and scope out if a couple of hours fishing is a possibility – this all depends on the weather, what fun family activities are planned, how the two kids slept and whether I can do without sleep enough and get away with not having a migraine – also I have got to think about the various rivers I fish and what the typical conditions might be in each of them. So far none of the magical ingredients have came together – however a wee birdie tells me they may come together soon. It bloody poured down yesterday and I reckoned the river would have risen – I am hoping it is going to be in a good fettle for this evening – we will see eh?
It has been cold and raining for the last three weeks – the temp has been hovering around the 10 degrees mark, sometimes getting up to 14 degrees during the day however never feels that good to get my gear together and hit the river. Hang on – that came across wrong, I do not mean I can hit the river any time I want, what I mean is occasionally I have a very small window of opportunity which I would have to pay for in blood, it is also a major gamble.
For all new Dad’s out there you should know the first 12 weeks are the worst – the baby lulls you into a false sense of security one night by sleeping the whole night and then the next stays up all night wanting to be rocked to sleep. The danger of just heading out in the evening for a few hours fishing (instead of going to bed at 8.30pm) is that you will then be knackered to complete your father duties – “you are only young once” my pal said to me last week as he headed out to the Clyde on his one trip out of the month away from his two kids. I wondered why I did not have kids in my twenties instead of my thirties. Saying that though, I do not think it was just youth that kept me up dancing for two days straight in my early twenties.
At least I get to catch up on some reading seeing as how I get to my bed early – next book on my list is the new John Gierach book “No Shortage of Good Days”
This is an affiliate link to Amazon by the way:
I am assuming what he means is there is no shortage of good “fishing” days?
Of course seeing as how I cannot turn on the light at night in case the baby explodes or something I quite fancy getting one of those fangled Kindle machines:
The pic is a link to Amazon:
Anyway, I had better get off and make some porridge to keep the old strength up – I am assuming you guys are hauling them in?
So I have two weeks “paternity leave” and two weeks “annual leave” – of course before number two child was born I was sneakily thinking about fishing opportunities however the best laid plans are always totally blasted out the water by sleep deprivation and a doubling of family duties.
It has been a bit of a double whammy in that not only has the weather been pretty rubbish for fishing it has also been rubbish for fishing – the wind has been coming from the East and has been cold – this does not bode well for nice family days out and barbeque’s either. Still, being Scottish we do not let some crap weather get us down eh?
Anyway, there has been lots of walks down around the pond at Victoria Park. The pond may actually look nice however seems totally dead – I have been assured there is some Sticklebacks in it however it is not like Binghams Pond which is stuffed full of huge minnows which would pull on a zero weight. I remember not too long ago there being sailing boats on the Victoria Park pond – obviously the council budget cuts of yesteryear totally wiped out that fun activity.
One fun activity we could do is to try and catch some of the wee fishes with a handy net that just so happened to appear on the scene.
To cut a long story short we caught bugger all in the pond although we will keep on trying – we then decided the next place to try would be the canal. Oh boy this place was a treasure trove of water beasties. He was getting those bugs out the water as if he was being paid by Willie Yeomans – first of all I showed him how to get those bugs into the net, you try and get your net as close as possible to some reeds and the vigorously pump the net up and down. As the old man was hogging the net the boy wanted a shot and was pumping that net like a pro…
In the net was some tadpoles, some water snails and some nymphs – I think one of them was a dragon fly nymph however I am not sure. This getting back to basics is not only good for the boy it is also good for me as well – it reminds me of what exactly fishing is all about you know?
Talking of back to basics we popped into Kelvingrove Museum yesterday – afterwards when number two son was being away being fed number one son and myself headed over a fence and down some paths to get to the weir in the park.
The river is at a lovely height for trout however while we were there we did not see any trout rise – their is a pretty vicious cold front sitting atop us at the moment and this gives rise to a cold wind coming from the east – this generally puts off all fly activity – this can be looked on as a guideline more than a rule as I have had some great fun during times of cold fronts and east winds. At the moment the thought of cashing in brownie points and suffering intense sleep deprivation (thus putting me in the risk of migraine territory) do not seem worthwhile if conditions do not seem at least leaning towards the positive side of catching trout. However he who waits n’ all that jazz.
Eventually we got bored looking for fish and decided to throw stones in the water to see how big a splash they make. Which is something as an angler I have not done for quite some time.
Of course this being the Kelvin I had to guide his wee hands away from broken bottles and he helped me stuff my pockets with some “anglers” left over fishing line – “whats that?” he asked pointing at some empty mepps and maggot boxes next to some discarded Glasgow Angling Centre plastic bags.
I had this dream that I may manage a few days off trout fishing while I am off work for this month – turns out they allow you the time off for a reason #grin#
Anyway – I am aware I have now fallen waaaaaay behind in my weekly water photo picture by around three weeks – I have some nice ideas and will post them this week – meanwhile I need to enjoy my fishing experience through you guys so let me know what you are catching in the comments or forum.
Save my Sanity!