Urban fun with Theo

A while back a chap called Theo Pike contacted me as he is writing a book on fishing urban rivers for trout and grayling. He wanted to write a short section about the Kelvin so we agreed to meet up at some point in the future. Suddenly the day was fast approaching and after a fair bit of negotiation with SWMBO I was allowed out for a few hours to try and assist Theo in catching a Kelvin trout.

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Do you remember that epiphany I had last week? You know the one about sticking to slow and deeper water as that appeared to be where all the trout were hanging out? Well, I totally forgot all about that which is why it was only at the tail end of the day we caught any sizeable trout. There were still trout rising in the riffles and seams however a lot of them were small fish – I will say this for Theo he has a power of concentration and determination – whereas my philosophy is usually change your fish not your fly when faced with a particularly belligerent Kelvin trout his hook sizes were getting smaller by the minute until eventually I thought we would be seeking some spider web to be used as a tippet on his one weight.

There continues to be good hatches of Grannom however the trout do not seem to like them – they are more interested in the nymphs.

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Anyway, I was scoping out some rising trout when I got the fright of my life – it was staring at me from the other side of the river, just sitting there bold as brass not giving a feck – a huge big Skunk Cabbage. Willie Yeomans is going to have nightmares about this one I thought – It was too deep to get across and stomp it so instead marked it for future reference.

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The infamous Kelvin Otter also put in a surprise guest appearance which was good PR for the river – it was chilling out under a bridge just waiting for some of those Kelvin Salmon to make an appearance – in the meantime it was feeding on trout and possibly discarded takeaway pizzas.

Support your local Urban Fly Fisher!

It is my birthday today (Easter Monday) and it is a nice chilled out day with the family. I plan to do some  urban fishing tomorrow with Theo Pike and then some non urban stuff on Friday all going well.

Reader numbers have jumped in the last month or so – probably due to the start of the season so I thought I would tell you the few ways you can actually get the content of this blog and the ways you can support it. You can get the contact by

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Every now and again people get in contact with me to ask how they can support the site – you can do this a number of ways:

  • You can send me cold hard cash via PayPal – in the left hand side bar there is a “Tip Me” button.
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  • You can send me an Amazon gift certificate.

You may have noticed I have a thing for Amazon – this is because my Fortress of Solitude otherwise known as my study has now been turned into Nursery Number Two which has left me without a decent computer as their is now no space in my house for a desktop – consequently I need to get myself a good laptop. The laptop I have my eye on is this one:

Samsung R730 17.3 inch Notebook (Intel Core i3-380M Processor, 2.53GHz, 4GB RAM, 640GB HD, DVDSMDL, WLAN, Webcam, Windows 7 Home Premium) – Red/Silver

I am such a geek 🙂

I am almost half way there to getting it – I am looking forward to writing on something a little better than my ten inch notebook or my mobile phone. Actually blogging from my phone is kinda fun – in fact that is where the majority of the weekly water photos come from. You may remember last year I missed weeks – well now I have one of those fancy Android Smartphones I can write posts on the go and snap water as I see it.


Weekly water photo – 16 of 52

I decided it was time my sun flowers were outside – the boy helped me dig the holes.
I am hoping there will be no more frost.
The next thing to  go out in the garden is my tomato plants – I still need to buy a grow house though! I have actually been scouring gumtree for one however nobody seems to have one to give away.
After I planted the Sunflowers I watered them …. ta da – hence the water photo!


A bloody great hole in my foot!

So just after I had sent my waders for a full hole repair job to Diver Dave I then spent a few nervous trips thinking I had a leak – turned out it was just the cold and not creeping water in my nether regions.

Anyway, last time I was out I noticed a distinct squelch from my right foot – I mean it was really full of water – this was not a slow creeping leak it was a real pouring leak! Every time I took a step the water would really be sucked into my boot a bit like a pump – this was no pin prick I said to myself.

Turned out it was a fair sized hole in the neoprene sock. I decided there and then to drive to the Glargow Angling Centre for some Aquasure – once the sock was dry copious amounts of sticky stuff was applied and job done!

Hole in Sock

Hopefully it will not be acting like a water foot pump next trip out!

By the way if this ever happens to you ensure you check your boots for anything that is possibly causing damage to your sock – I mind once the exact same thing happened and it turned out nails were coming through the bottom of my boots.

Here is a picture of my old boots – now binned.

The Root Cause

Those studs eventually wore through from the sole and dug into the neoprene sock at the heel.

Anyway, I checked my boots and could not find anything wrong – I mean it was a pretty big hole, all I can think of is that it was a rogue stone or something.


Combined Trip Report

A very hit or miss couple of weeks on the Kelvin for me – I have not been able to fish anywhere else due to work and time commitments. You have got to be on the river at the right time and be in the right place as soon as a hatch starts. One guy who appears to be doing exactly the right thing is Kelvinator Alasdair P who has been Salmon fishing – he keeps his trout rod set up and soon as he sees a hatch heads straight for somewhere he knows there will be rising trout – big ones too. The reasons you get rising trout in only certain areas can be explained by quite a lot of factors one of which is there are areas that collect a lot of flies due to currents in the river.

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I have been fishing much further upstream and fairing poorly – I mean I say poorly however I did manage to winkle out a nice trout on a nymph. On Sunday I had a good afternoon fishing with some pals and we all did poorly – I reckon we missed all the action as we started at around 1pm. We all saw some action however not the real consistent action that you expect when the trout are totally up for it. It was a hot day and even some canoeists were out being incredibly rude:

Pro Tip: If you paddle past an angler so close he can smell your breath then a smile and a wave is as good as an apology – ignoring the oik in the water is liable to cause friction for the future.

Last time I was out I noticed I was running low on nymphs – consequently I tied up a power of basic nymphs over the weekend – simple wee nymphs with beads.

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I headed upstream again after work the other day (I have been grabbing an hour here and there) and had a bit of an epiphany – I have been fishing mostly long riffles and runs with a dry and nymph and catching bugger all so walked down the river to some deeper slower water – I spotted a rising fish – heck from a distance it looked a big splash (I suppose there was a possibility it was a kelt) and I headed down there. It was a big slow corner pool with the water flowing at maybe half a slow walking pace so plenty of time for the trout to inspect my fly – I got in the water and started to get myself into position – it stopped rising when I was in position. I waited five mins and then got back out the water and walked back upstream – when I got there I looked back to find another trout rising – I walked back again and it stopped. To cut a long story short I did this about five times. I do not think the trout spotted me as I was keeping low and in to the bushes. More probably the fish was rising sporadically with about 5 minutes between rises, just the amount of time it took for me to walk upstream. I reckon the next time I am on the river I will just head straight for this spot and sit it out waiting on a rising trout – it is nice and shaded with trees as well, casting is a problem because of the high banks however we don’t want it too easy eh?

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On a side note it is my birthday on Monday and I was toying with the idea of getting a new pair of trousers to wear under my waders – I hate wearing jeans as they feel all bunched up around the ankles and even walking trousers feel weird. During Summer I usually wear shorts however it still feels weird around my ankles and calves only having waders. I think I solved this whole comfort thing by simply wearing a pair of long johns under my waders – I know some guys that do this and I must say it felt really comfy and natural – no bunches around the waist or ankle and felt a nice temp in the cold water. Consequently I told my wife to not bother getting me a pair of new fishing trousers.

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Anyway, I hope you guys are going to be doing some fishing over the Easter break – even though I will be off work it will be all family fun down my neck of the woods – I imagine the rivers will be jam packed full combat anglers so I hope you manage to find a quieter wee nook somewhere.

Weekly water photo – 15 of 52

Walked through the Botanics – did not get near the river. Tell you something though it was only at around half four the temps started to rise to a measly 12 degrees.
These are the only fish I seen today.



Spring Sun – Check!

Decorating chores partly complete – Check!

Water at a good height – Check!

Water at a good height!

A full fly box – Check!

Non leaky waders – Check

Bank covered in empty cider bottles carried their in blue plastic bags – Check!

Wanks - Check!

Regaled with stories of monster hatches of olives – Check!

Meet a guy on a Sunday with a beechcaster – Check!

Cast for an afternoon with a dry and dropper – Check!

Be regaled by a Kingfisher zooming past – Check!

Count 5 shopping trolleys – Check!

Trolleys - Check!

See some Olives (6) and get excited – Check!

Paul Reid shows up and forgets his rod – Check!

Catch fuck all – Check!




Weekly water photo – 14 of 52

Where am I?


Weekly water photo – 13 of 52

Took the boy out for a walk beside the Kelvin – he insisted on carrying a net!


Spring Pike!

Firstly to the gent in the boat who I possibly destroyed his last ten minutes of fishing by attempting to sidle past his bobbing float – a apologise profusely. Why am I doing it here? Because I think the gent may be a reader – after I shouted an apology he called me by my name – it was only later did I realise  that he could not have overheard it. So apologies – put it down to excitement and the fact that you possibly just fished more in one weekend than I will get this season.

We cool?


Good – you are  gentleman and a scholar – and also quite possibly a sex fiend – I mean taking your wife fishing in a tiny wee boat for a couple of nights. Well played sir, well played!

Anyway, moving on swiftly – this trip was a trip of firsts – firstly I actually had my first cast of the year and caught my first fish.

Yay - I caught a big green pike!

And here is the boy in question on the end of my line – all fired up for some red hot sexy pike action.

Sex - NOW!

It was actually bigger in my hand – it was a high single – maybe around 7 or 8lb.

Another first was actually getting Alan Atkins (Chair of the RKAA) into his first proper Pike on the fly..

Look at that bender!

Unfortunately I did not get a picture of him holding the beast as it promptly wiggled out my hands however managed to get a picture of it diving in the water.


He then went on to catch another smaller one and miss a bigger one later.

Meanwhile buddy Alex was hauling them in on the other side of the pond…


Sweet action all round.

I also got a chance to wear a new pair of glasses sent by Kontrol Sports – they sent me them a while ago however seeing as how it has hardly been sunny I have not been wearing them much. The model is the Polar Ice Polarised Sports Sunglasses” and they cost a rather sweet £25.

They are pretty sweet – they fit comfortably around your ears due to their spring hinges and fitted rather well under my cap. They have a 1.7mm Polycarbonate lens which is 50x stronger than glass. Seemingly this is the toughest most shatter resistant material commonly used for protective goggles lenses. This is the same material used for aircraft windshields! It is also scratch resistant. This is all good news when you have an enormous fly whizzing past your face at Lord Kelvin knows how many miles an hour – a lot I would imagine. Nothing says a trip to the hospital than a Pike hook embedded anywhere your eye.

If you fancy a pair you can buy em’ from the Kontrol Sports website with free shipping – if you meet me by the river and you fancy a shot of them just ask!

You do not want that orange thing in your eye!

Judging by the weather today lots of folk will be out with their sunglasses on over the next day or two – if this keeps up the trout might actually show an interest in a dry fly soon.