Opening Day On The Kelvin

Alas, I could not fish on Saturday however Alex (aka the Nymphmaster) sent me this report. 

We were blessed with a cracking spring afternoon on Sunday, lots of wild life (and wild folk) – more about that later! I opted for the vet school stretch, which had that usual kelvin green tinge about it and running at a nice height.
I had a few casts here and there as I walked downstream, but with not a touch to my flies, and a constant reminder of how cold the water was (thanks to the worsening leak in my waders), my early-season eagerness was disappearing. I crossed the river and fished a nice pool with a dry and a nymph.
The wading in some parts of the Kelvin, it must be said, is horrific! At one point, I was kinda balancing on a pallet that had become rooted in about three feet of fast water. I could feel it wobbling about and tilting in the current as I walked over it. At least it will make a perfect home for thousands of invertebrates! Talking of which, there was a small trickle of flies hatching just after midday. Obviously not enough to get the fish really interested, as I saw nothing rise all afternoon!
At one point a kingfisher flashed right past and into a hidey-hole in the overhanging roots of a large tree. It’s amazing how many of them the Kelvin supports. Next thing, the guy fishing opposite me shouts “Oi, d’you know who those guys are”. I had noticed a couple of dudes downstream of me earlier. Now if my wading experience wasn’t enough, these guys were yomping up through the far side of the river, in the deep channel in front of a verticle jungle of jaggy bushes and other highly effective wader-shredding devices. Not that torn waders would be a concern for these gentlemen – they weren’t wearing any!
They seemed to be having a whale of a time, maybe it was a crazy red-nose day stunt? I’m sure they don’t mind me taking their picture….
Not long after 2 O’clock, the fishers left in their masses to watch Rangers and Celtic slug it out in the league cup final.
Only down the Kelvin!

March 15th – A word from sponsor – Lord Kelvin



What is it that tells you guys that Spring is finally here?

For me it is when I finally see those first flowers of yellow as I travel up the Great Western Road.


I watch them snake all the way along the central reservation – sadly they are only ever there for a few weeks and their departure I always find a little sad – still, their sharp exit means the leaves will be back on the trees soon – this usually seems to happen in April/ May – one minute the trees are bare and the next suddenly they are full of life!

I think we Anglers look for these signs more than others  – perhaps not gardeners 😉

What signs do you look for in Spring?

GAC Open Weekend Charity Raffle Winners..

The raffle was drawn by the tyers at 5pm on Sunday and the winners are as follows…….. Duncan Egan’s print was won by Mr A. Ferguson of Ayrshire

 Davy McPhail’s print was won by Mr J Fisher from Glasgow

 Mikael Frodin’s print was won by Mr W R Woods from Derby

 A cheque is on its way to each of the three charities, The Dee Trust, NASF and Casting for Recovery.

My congratulations to you all 🙂

What NOT to do if you ever go to the Glasgow Angling Centre open weekend

Okay so it is my first weekend free after being back at work – I wanted to continue my anglingtastic extravaganza after the Friday nights shenanigans so I visited the Glasgow Angling Centre today as it was the open day – tragically it all went horribly wrong – as usual I have worked out how and am willing to share my analysis with you – here is my handy list of what not to do if you ever go along to a GAC open day:

1. Take your wife/partner/other ball n’ chain as well as newborn first child.
2. Promise to only spend a maximum of one hour browsing the goodies and looking at fly tyers.
3. Forget to charge your camera.
4. Ask John Wilson if you can have your photo taken next to him.
5. Take your visa card.

Firstly, your wife/partner/other ball n’ chain will not enjoy it – sure I know some of us are blessed with understanding women however when you have just sacrificed two evenings to fishing clubs (and then talked about it non stop) maybe you should not drag them along stating that they will “really dig this foreign dudes flies”  Your baby will not be happy iether – even if you cannot stop thinking of those tiny wee fingers and how well they could handly size 28 dry flies (not to mention those young keen eyes)

Secondly one hour is not enough – especially if you want to have a listen to what all the reps have got to say – nuff said!

To be fair three and four are kind of linked – seeing John Wilson standing talking to an GAC  employee I sidled up to him and asked for a quick photo – “not right now” he said “I am in the middle of something” – he then walked off (Paul Young on the other had would have not only had his photo taken with you he would also have taken you out for a pint and then stuck you in a taxi at the end of the night, possibly) – that is the last time I watch your show I seethed. Anyway, I took one photo of a rather good fly tier and was then about to zoom in on the flies when my camera died. I suppose taking around 600 photos of my first born son will do that.


I then cursed (not really) John Wilson for not being more organised with his holiday snaps (or whatever it was he was getting ready to show)

Not sure whether the GAC would want me to advise you not to take your visa card however be aware it is very difficult not to buy stuff – especially when you get free gear along with it.

In a nutshell – this really is a day out – which I suppose is why they spread it out over three days – still got Sunday to go though. If, unlike me, you are not chained to domestic bliss you could do some odd jobs around the house to earn some time down at the centre – or start early for the next open weekend

If John Wilson reads this the only way he can make amends is by sending me a signed photo stating “ – hotter than my ass”

River Kelvin Angling Association AGM – Major Changes!

Ok – so the AGM was the place to be if you wanted to have a say in the changes. In a nutshell the AGM was carnage – there was disagreements, arguments, calls for the resignation of members of the committee, arguments amongst the committee, a member of the club were told to fuck off by an office bearer (not sure if that one was a joke) and everyone now has an idea that there are deep divisions between the old and young members of the committee (as in age).

In a nutshell the changes are:

  • The permit will be raised to £20 for wage earners and stay the same for youngsters and the unemployed.
  • 5 members of the club will be put through the bailiff course – the names are already decided – looking at two of the guys you do not want to mess with them.
  • Douglas Brown is no longer secretary; instead Paul (a reader of my blog) asked too many questions and was promptly nominated and seconded for the post. He then spent the remainder of the evening with his head in his hands.
  • The treasurer retired – at the moment no one has come forward to take up that post.
  • I am now back on the committee and contrary to what was said at the AGM and are still my personal sites – I will be making announcements on behalf of the club however this has still to be discussed. This decision was made as the sites are hubs for anyone looking for info on the club – I have done the job informally for years so I may as well do it formally.

The rise in permit prices will help to fund:

  • Putting the bailiffs through the course and paying for expenses.
  • A study of insect life and water quality (possibly the Wild Trout Trust however do not quote me)
  • Putting up signs along the river.
  • Possible future implementation of tags for salmon (may be a hint of limits)
  • The repair of Gavins Mill fish pass

There were major arguments about all these points – the chair wanted the permit price put up to £25 to fund all the proposals however members were only willing to pay £20 – still the cheapest river in the West of Scotland. Even though the river is the one of the best rivers out of the Clyde catchment it is also one of the most abused. Appalling stories of anglers killing large amounts of Salmon on Sundays was discussed – fingers were pointed at anglers who fish the sea pool – many of these anglers were killing Salmon on Sundays. The issue of people using hand lines and badminton court nets to catch salmon was discussed, the issue of major pollution incidents – all of us have witnessed sewage in the river – the infamous “sanitary towel” pool is stuffed with trout – pity they all have breasts. Also how to educate anglers was discussed – people killing black fish is a problem – the permits may be changed in future to show anglers examples of fish that are not cocks and hens and what ones cannot be killed.

Written this very hurriedly for those that could not attend!

The Kelvin Angling Association AGM is Friday 27th Feb at 7pm – Expect the Unexpected!

The Kelvin Angling Association  AGM is Friday 27th Feb at 7pm  – You can see what my views on the direction of the club should be here: River Kelvin Wishlist Take Two – Let us see how many changes take place which are in line with my wishlist!

You can check out what people are saying in the forum: Kelvin AGM update

This will be the the biggest and most important AGM in the history of the club – expect there to be changes made due to the sheer will of the anglers that care about the river! I love the fact that people all over the world read about the trials and tribulations of this wee river – so famous that a temperature scale was named after it – I bet most people think it is a cooincidence!

If you fish the Kelvin tell your pals about my wee forum dedicated to the Kelvin – by far it is the most popular part out of all the sections – I always see a few members browsing alongside several guests – if you are a guest do not be afraid to log in – not only does it make me feel good and other members less lonely it will get you used to actually staying logged in – in the coming weeks I will be changing over to a system where you will not be able to see the posts without being logged in – makes you all feel a little special eh?

If you have not posted yet – head over and Introduce yourself

Anyway, I think the forum has been a great success – it is the number one place for people to visit who fish the river with well over 100 members in a very short time – obviously the rumour that you can buy soft drugs on the forum helped a great deal however most of the seekers decided to stick around!

And now a note from my sponsor – none other than Lord Kelvin himself


See you on Friday!

River Kelvin AGM – scotty9 has a question!

Scotty9 has a question he would like put at the AGM:

AGM – Someone who’s going?

Glasgow Angling Centre – Open Weekend 27th, 28th Feb & 1st March 2009

Another season is fast approaching and of course this means another open weekend at the Glasgow Angling Centre.


The visit will be worth it alone just to meet John Wilson – sheer comedy value!

Anyways, along with the usual fun and frolics (click on the picture above), in conjunction with Merlin Unwin, publishers of Chris Mann’s Complete Illustrated Directory of Salmon Flies (see below) the GAC have commissioned 3 exclusive prints taken from the illustrations in the book, each signed by both the author and the flytyer, to be raffled to raise funds for the tyers chosen charities:

 The prints are as follows:

A set from Duncan Egan featuring the modern classic Flamethrowers, Flaming Pigs and the Volcano, Duncan has chosen The River Dee Trust to benefit from this raffle:


Duncan Egan

A set from Mikael Frodin featuring Scandinavian Templedogs and the infamous Octopussy, Mikael would like the proceeds from this raffle to go to Orri Vigfússon’s North Atlantic Salmon Fund:

Mikael Frodin

Mikael Frodin

And thirdly a set from Davy McPhail featuring his Fatback tubes and traditional shrimp patterns, Davy is donating the proceeds from his raffle to Casting for Recovery.

Davy McPhail

Davy McPhail

 The prints will be on display in the fly dressers area for the whole weekend!

Tickets cost £1 and will be on sale throughout the open weekend, with the winners being drawn by the tyers at 5 pm on the Sunday.

Also available over the weekend will be a limited number of books signed by the author and all three flytyers, these can be ordered in advance by calling the store on 0141 331 6330.

Somehow I always seem to miss these weekends – the last one I went to was purely by accident – I had just popped in to pick up some tippet and the whole place was jam packed, sadly I was in a rush and only had time to spend a quick half hour however what I seen impressed me.

I would like to see more days like this – they do not even need to be big events – just invite a few local tyers along to show off their skills. I have read they do this all the time in the States – I am looking forward to this one though !

See you guys there!

Roddy Finnie Flies..

So Roddy Finnie of “The Busby Angling Association” (he is the secretary) decided to send me some flies. Take note you guys – if there is something I like better than having a chat with a fellow angler on the river bank it is receiving free shit through the post – anyway, Roddy would not mind if I shared some of his creations with you, it was also the first time I had put a hook in the Nor Vise – and very nice it was too.

The Flies

p2190295Roddy Says “An excellent early to mid season fly fished slow and deep and is often taken (in rivers) without you inducing movement”

Size 12/10
Black thread
Fine gold wire thread
Pale yellow thread body and dark brown thread for thorax
Brown or black hackle
Pheasant wing folded

p2190296Roddy Says “Another good all-rounder – best fished slowly with agitated draws and near the bottom”

Size 10 is big enough (heavy hook)
Tail – cock pheasant
Body & folded wing – hen pheasant as this produces a buff colour.
Fine copper wire as rib
Black thread
Brown hackle

p2190294Roddy Says “Good all season fly fished on a floating line just below surface – slowly. Represents many dark species of insects”

Size 12
Fine black thread
Fine gold wire
Wing folded seagull (it is more robust)
Small soft badger hackle (or black)

p2190293Roddy Says “Good all season – again fished slow”

Size 12
Black thread
Fine gold wire
Dark olive wool
Peacock herl thorax
Folded wing pheasant
Brown or green hackle

 Thanks Roddy!

So I would just like to say thank you to Roddy for sharing some of his flies with us and especially for sending me them – if anyone out else there  fancies sending me flies I could do with a dozen Deer Hair Emergers.

In the meantime – I have some hot new patterns to try out!