Blog Awards: The Shortlists – Updated

Got my official email with a nice logo to show off the fact I have been shortlisted for the Metro Blog Awards

You’ve been short listed in the Sport category, for the Best of Brit
Blog Awards 2007 (BOBB’s) brought to you by and Metro
Newspaper. The BOBB’s were launched earlier in the year and are
designed to discover the most talented wrtiers in the blogosphere.
We have had a staggering response to this year’s awards with over
1,000 entries – all at an outstanding level.

The winners will be announced during the week starting 23rd April,
chosen by our expert panel of celebrity judges including music
legend, Alan McGee and TV personality, Jason Bradbury.

On the fishy side of things I am going fishing Saturday and Sunday as my beloved wife is working 12 hour shifts. Ahhh, the pain of it all…

[tags]metro,metro blog awards [/tags]

Ron. P. Swegman

Over on the right hand column there you can see books that I am currently reading. I will be posting a review very shortly of the current book but in the meantime head over to the authors lovely little corner of the net and check it out.

Blog Awards: The Shortlists

Good grief, it seems I have been short listed in the Sports category for the Metro blog awards.

I have been eyeing up the contenders in the category and it seems I have some pretty stiff competition.

Next steps:

Now our panel of celebrity judges – including England cricketer Alastair Cook, TV presenter Jason Bradbury and rock mogul Alan McGee – will decide which blogs will emerge triumphant.


It is Alastair Cook the famous cricketer who currently plays for Essex County Cricket Club and England who is judging the sports category.

Fingers crossed 🙂





Olives on the Water

A howling gale with intermittent light rain finally told me the trout season was finally under way. Over the Easter weekend I was visiting family in sunny Birmingham, and boy was it sunny – almost shorts weather. However scanning the weather for today here in Glasgow it was too be cloudy, windy with rain – fantastic – I had a hunch the Large Dark Olives would be coming off. For once the hunch was correct and we were soon met at the water with many large dark olives on the water with sporadic rising trout.

I managed to winkle out two trout using my olive comparadun whilst Alex caught many more using nymphs.

I was glad of my new 5 weight rod – it certainly helped to put out a nice line in the howling gale.

Sadly I did not walk up as far as the dead sheep so am unable to give a full detailed summary of its decomposition.

From here on in it only gets better.

1st Visit to the Kelvin of 2007

So toninght I am driving down to Birmingham to see some family. I managed to wangle my way out of work early so instead of tidying up my house I decided to do what any normal fly fisher would do with mounting laundry responsibilities – I went fishing.

I would like to say I caught a trout but instead I went for a nice wander and spoke to a few chaps fishing with bait.

I arrived at the water around 2pm- I got the feeling I was a little late and considering I only seen a couple of trout rising I think I was correct. The actual river is at a nice height bust still has that dark winter look about it.

I did get a couple of trout rising to my dry fly at this little spot.

But I was either to slow or they were just splashing the fly so never actually made contact – they soon stopped.

Later I walked along the river looking at all the pools that have changed. I took a picture of this bridge that goes over the Kelvin

…as I found a photograph from around 100 years ago that I found interesting. In fact I love looking at old pictures of the Kelvin as you can see how the river has changed over the years.

I think showing you all the photographs I have collected may be for another post though.

My next trip out will be Monday!

Review:Safe Passage Complete Chest Pack

Like clothes and French fries fishing trips often come in three sizes- small medium and large. I always think the amount of stuff you carry often directly relates to the amount of time you spend on the water. For small trips where not much tackle is needed , for example, a tiny burn being minimalist is the way to go. For medium trips, anything up to a few hours, you can get by with a waistcoat, a bottle of water can be stuck in the back pouch although it can be mighty uncomfortable. I have been pondering large/long sessions for a while and have never really found a solution that might suffice. On longer sessions you must carry a larger bottle of water, lunch and a greater assortment of tackle so that you are not taken unawares in a situation. Heaven forbid I leave my monocular, walky talky or camera behind on a serious days fishing, heck I would say that’s what makes a days fishing. Anyway, with all these thoughts Orvis were kind enough to send me a Safe Passage Complete Chest Pack

The blurb from Orvis is thus:

Carry all you need for both day trips and back-country fishing. A roomy main compartment houses numerous fly boxes, accessories, and tools. Backpack carries your lunch, rain coat, or extra layering. Two integrated coil zingers. Hand-warmer pockets with tool storage. Forceps pocket and two mesh tippet pockets. In forest.
Front compartment: 11″ x 9″.
Back compartment: 14″ x 12″

Yup, that all makes perfect sense and sounds like the solution for a longer session. But the proof as they say is when someone other than the seller is trying to punt you on, read on…

Initial Impressions

I am not going to lie to you, this bag got extra marks just because it came with a little card from Orvis that stated “proudly packaged by” and then a squiggle where the name should be. Classy I thought!

The bag feels light in my hand and is a nice green color, the color of these types of bags is important as this year my fishing buddies and I have named “The Year of Stealth” When it comes to stealth green is good ! The only thing I dont like is the funny handle on the top of the bag as I am not aiming to carry it anywhere as it is an….er….back and chest pack. There are straps to to tighten it up- they are maybe a little long – but easilly fixed with a pair of snips – obviously it is designed for even bigger chests than mine. Overall though, this bag feels nice in the hand and not bulky. I was looking forward to examining its insides.

The Back Bit

There is this nice little clip where you could store a stuffed jumper or rain jacket if you did not want to put it in the main back compartment.

There is little side pockets that can be used for keeping small items that you won’t be using all the time. On my first trip I kept my monocular. I would suggest not keeping anything you would be using regularly like a camera (I wish) as you have got to be a bit of a contortionist to actually get anything out.

The main compartment of the back pack has two little pockets for storing things. One of the spaces is partitioned by a separate sheet of material and one is netted off with a zip. There is a little clip for your keys, I like things like that as I am always paranoid I will drop something and have to spend the day going back on my footsteps. It holds a bottle of water or a small flask with ease. I filled it up with miscellaneous junk and when I put it on I did not feel anything jagging into my back, so a big plus point in the comfort factor.

The Front Bit

The chest pack is split into two main compartments – the front pouch does not have a lot of space but I reckon you could squeeze a fly box in there as well as some of the bits and bobs we all like to carry.

The main pouch is a lot bigger and would hold just about anything you could stick in there for a serious session. I managed to cram in a large fly box, a walky talky, a camera and some other bits and pieces like floatant and sinking putty.. I don’t like carrying too much and I especially don’t like having too much at my chest as it may feel bulky. I think I was adequately covered for just about any situation without going overboard.

The pack sat high on my chest and quite tight in, I liked that as my other William Joseph Chest pack tended to hang forward and just plain annoy me – being tight in also means it does not interfere with casting.

I have worn it twice and like it a lot- as usuall I will update you again after further serious fishing.

Good Points

  • Plenty of space for lunch and sweater in back pouch.
  • Ample pockets without going overboard.
  • Chest pack is held tight into the body.
  • Ample straps for those of us with a bigger…er…chest.
  • Standard features like forcep holder and tippet dispenser.
  • Hand Warmer pockets are the bees knees

Bad Points

  • The clip to fasten the pack together is on the back pack rather than the front. This I think is a design flaw, it means you have got to reach back behind yourself to get in fastened. Very annoying and very hard.
  • There are two magnetic holders over two mesh tippet pockets on the front pouch. When it does actually stor etippet the magnets dont appear to work. Still, this is just after a couple of sessions so I may be able to work it out eventually.

In summary, this is a nice bit of kit that serves its purpose well, I am going to enjoy putting it through its paces and reporting back.

The Dead Sheep

When we were out fishing the other day Steven stumbled upon a dead sheep. Well, when I say stumbled I mean he was fishing away happily and noticed a funny smell – a rotting sheep was amongst some reeds on the bank. We all had a good look at it through our trusty monocular (boy are we glad they came in useful) and pondered the sheep’s fate and the possible mishaps that led it to be a woolly carcass at the side of the river. Probably washed down during a spate and may well get moved further on the next time there is a lot of rain.

We all got to talking about the horrors that could occur if you did not notice the sheep and what could happen as the season progresses.

Horror One

You walk along, fail to see dead sheep, stumble and fall face first into the carcass.

Horror Two

You walk along, fail to see the wooly mass, stumble and raise hands which sink into the dead sheep’s carcass.

Horror Three

Dead sheep is washed down the river only to take up residency at the top of a very nice pool – trout then get fixated on eating maggots – you have no accurate bluebottle imitations.

Horror Four

Noticing a large amount of fly life and trout taking flies around dead sheep you cast towards it thus hooking it – on trying to dislodge your fly the dead sheep starts drifting down the current towards you.

Horror Five

You have no yarn to make an indicator and the only available wool is on the……..dead sheep.

I will give accurate  reports on the dead sheep’s progress as the season progresses – If it is still there.

[tags]dead sheep [/tags]

April 1st gag on FlyFish Magazine ?

Hang on a moment – I was re-reading my favourite blogs and came across this post on the most excellent FlyFish Magazine  Classic !

I notice that no other bloggers in my little genre decided to try and pull the wool over anyones eyes, I did not even blog but waited until the next day to post a report. I checked out Opax who gave us all a non progress report for his new fly rod project – was that a joke ? what the heck I enjoyed it anyway !

There was no such tomfoolery over at Trout Underground for April 1st – it was hard facts

 I’m dragging together the usual outsized pile of gear for a today’s trip, so my report on Saturday’s outing will be brief.

 …with a lovely picture of a March Brown Comparadun. Did you tie that up Tom ? psst you know we could arrange a little bloggers fly swap !

He ends with:

I could write a lot more, but I’d rather go fishing instead. Hope you understand.

We do Tom, we do !

April 1st – Spring Trip

What a strange day we had fishing yesterday. We decided to hit our other favourite river for a full day session.

We arrived on the water at around 0900 and it was cold- the sun was out and it was a clear blue sky (always a bad sign) but there was a cold wind. It was so cold in fact that I had to go and put my jacket on over my fleece.


Suffice to say, a couple of grayling played with my dry fly and I felt one “whum whum whum” on a nymph under an indicator before it was off. There were large amounts of stoneflies on the water which I thought looked mighty tasty and the odd Large Dark Olive drifted past unmolested by any trout – “what the hell” we thought ” If I was a trout I would gobble them up. Alex found a stick covered in nymphs and snails.

At least it looks like spring has in fact sprung, by 12 there was horseflies on the field and some butterflies dancing around the banks – it really was rather nice.

Mike showed up at around 12 with his brother Steven (mini Mike) – Mike proceeded to show us some rather acrobatic trick casts which I tried to take a video of but came out rubbish. We wandered back to the car and up the road with thoughts around from here on in it only gets better. Possible the next time I will be fishing will be next Monday- I am going off to sunny Birmingham for the weekend with some possible walks planned.

Marriage Counseling

A husband and wife go to a counselor after 15 years of marriage. The counselor asks them what the problem is and the wife goes into a tirade listing every problem they have ever had in the 15 years they’ve been married. She goes on and on and on. Finally, the counselor gets up, goes around the desk, embraces the woman and kisses her passionately. The woman shuts up and sits quietly in a daze. The counselor turns to the husband and says “That is what your wife needs at least three times a week. Can you do that?” The husband thinks for a moment and replies, “Well, I can get her here Monday and Wednesday, but on Friday, I fly fish for trout.”

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