River Witham

River Witham
River Witham near Barkston, Lincolnshire

Friday, 21 October 2011

Outdoor Blogger Network 1 Year Anniversary Celebration!

On Tuesday the 18th
The Outdoor Blogger Network was officially be 1 years old.
And what a great year they’ve had!

So get ready Outdoor Bloggers, this week is full of giveaways. As in thousands of dollars worth of outdoor gear to be given away. So there is no regularly schedule features this week. Nope, they are off the books and every day they arebe posting new gear giveaways. Multiple entries a day.
Members of the OBN can enter every single giveaway.
You can win multiple times.
(if your blog is listed in the Blog directory, you’re a member!)
All they ask in return is that if you win something, they’d love for you to post a review of the gear you won. It completes the circle and is good for everyone around. They want to know what you thought of it!
Go take a look http://www.outdoorbloggernetwork.com/ sign up and cash in!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Show your support for a good cause.

A company ironically calling itself "Sustainable Bakewell", relying on taxpayers' money for its very existence has a CEO who wants to dredge an ancient millrace that hasn't worked for over 60 years.  See http://dryflyexpert.blogspot.com/2011/10/where-fish-are.html#comment-form.

Please click on http://bakewellgreen.blogspot.com/ and make your feelings known.  Thank you.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Now I understand!

Came across this in an anthology on fishing by Jeremy Paxman called 'Fish, Fishing and the Meaning of Life';

"A recent survey showed that roughly two-thirds of all fishermen never eat fish.  This should surprise nobody.  Fish is brain food.  People who eat fish have large, well-developed brains.  People with large, well-developed brains don't fish.  It's that simple."  
Ed Zern, To Hell With Fishing, 1945.

I'll let you draw your own conclusions.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Underwater portraits!

Wow you've got to see this. 

I'm going fishing anyway!

Saturday 8th October

This Rugby World Cup's playing havoc with my R & R, getting up at 5.45am to catch the quarter finals!  Its too much especially when England can't pull it together.  Well enough's enough, I had to get out and fish.

It was grey, overcast and raining, but not too cold, .. good for fish I suppose.  Cos it was raining it seemed like a good idea to go up river to our upper reaches, which has lots of tree cover, and see if it is was fishable.  One of our keepers told me he'd been doing some clearance work so I thought it worth a try. 

Looking out at the stream, there were no rises to be seen,  .. that I could differentiate from the rain splashes anyway.  So on with a klink & ptn nymph set up to do some prospecting.

The water is still so low despite the rain, that the nymph was continually snagging bottom, and the bankside vegetation so profuse it was difficult to drop a line. Perseverance, and concentration, were the watch words,  things that I lacked in my state of sleep deprived torpor.  So I missed the first take, opposite the confluence of a feeder brook, as my dry fly swung out of sight under the bank! Hmph I needed to try harder.

Further up there is a nice pool on a bend alongside a tree with submerged roots, a very fishy spot.  It required me to lean out and roll the flies upstream at a 90 degree, what fun! The dry fly (black klink with orange post) drifted back towards me and slipped out of sight, and joy of joys I lifted into my first fish for a fortnight, albeit a tiddler!  After shaking him off another cast and almost in the same spot the dry disappeared, and a slightly more respectable fish came to the net.

Well I pressed on and managed a couple more, but the 'cleared' stream was more often clogged as not!
 Please note that my rod is pointing along the main course of the river and I am thigh deep!
Quite a challenge to get one's fly down to the fish!!
 Is this because of the very low flows and warm weather we've experienced all summer I wonder.  Desperately in need of a good flush through, or we'll need a lot of work-party effort come late winter. 
I eventually found some clear stretches mainly under the trees, where the light struggled to illuminate sufficiently for photosynthesis.  In one particular very shallow stretch I noticed a distinct v-shaped wake moving upstream slowly. A cast ahead and to one side resulted in a violent pull and then my leader did an about turn and headed towards me at a rate of knots, trouble was I was standing downstream of a fallen branch!  My rod bent and then the leader flies and all were in the branches above me, sh.......!  And to cap it all the tree wasn't for letting go, and so remains festooned as if for the festive season.

Tying on a new tippet, and pair of flies, required more effort than I cared for, and that my poor eyesight could cope with in the grey gloom!  Did I mention that the light was beginning to go and it was only 6.00 o'clock. Once done I was free to amble further upstream, but to no avail as there was very little fishable water remaining, and what there was wasn't playing ball.  Well, I hadn't bargained for fighting through all the in-river vegetation so I was more than a little knackered as I walked the mile & half back to the car.

Sunday 9th October

Up at 5.45am again, I must be mad as well as shattered, good rugby though.

Went to Burton upon Trent with the missus, to the fly fair organised by Wendy Gibson of Flies by Wendy
Burton Fly Tying Fair It was a super event in the lovely old town hall, with great catering, lots of trade stands and great fly tying demos.  It was in aid of 2 very worthwhile charities Casting for Recovery and Fishing for Heroes, my wife having benefited from the former.  I hope it was successful enough to take place again next year. 

We had to leave earlier than I hoped to join my brother & sister-in-law for a birthday lunch, but that was probably just as well, and saved me money that I can ill afford to spend! But there are always some tying materials you can't do without.