Monthly Archives: February 2008

Big mouth!

I had to go and open my big mouth didn’t I? Just after updating the review of the Wychwood waders both neoprene socks have stared to leak like a sieve – way beyond my powers of repair. I was tempted to replace them with a pair of Willy J V2s from an fleabay store in Canada but they want $110 for shipping!! I finally decided to go with what you know and replaced like for like from Gary Evans.

The boots are the same old rubbish but they’ll do to keep as a backup pair. The wader design has changed a little – they seem baggier than the previous pair and there is no reinforcement in the seat area – I’m sure I’ll miss that little feature!

So it’s fingers crossed that this pair will be as durable as the last.

Passing the time

Here I am again. Middle of the night and I’m baby-sitting a database migration – 70 gigabytes of ones and zeros moving silently from Frankfurt to Hamburg. I’ve done all I can; now I have to watch and wait, just in case there’s a problem – when this is done and the Germans have got their very organised act together I’ll have one less thing to worry about. It’ll be theirs – no more come-backs, no more call-outs. Just one more step on the way to working myself out of a job. I usually have a side-kick to chat to when I do this sort of thing but the powers that be have decided that he’ll be needed in the morning to rectify any mistakes I make tonight. Hmm – I’ve been doing this kinda stuff every week for the last 10 years and if there are any mistakes they won’t be mine.

The forums are full of the same old, same old questions and the blogs are fairly static. Gareth reminds me that there are 11 days, 21 hours, 55 minutes and 21 seconds until the opening of the Trout season on the River Taff – thanks Gareth; that really helps at a time like this 🙂 and I see that Warren has stopped posting on Water Lines for some mysterious reason – shame, that was shaping up to be a very enjoyable and educational read. I wonder if I could persuade him to contribute here?….

Masochism dictates that I read over some of my old posts and I’m appalled at some of my typos and grammatical errors so I spend a while mending my mistakes and try to remember the true spirit of the experience that lead me to write them in the first place – then I stumble across The Cruelty of Chronos which brings a tear to this crusty, cynical old eye and I truely remember what fishing is all about.

I wander out on to the patio for a smoke and I see the fog, clinging, freezing to the branches of the old Crab-Apple. I’m struck by the silence and reminded that my recent hopes of an early end to winter are mis-placed and the glory days of May are way down the road in an uncertain future. I remember soft nights like this in far from happy times in far away places when fear was an unexpected noise and relief was the realisation that nature had wandered closer than is good for any creature of the night; and I remember the glorious Hebridean nights in the company of friends and Sherry Spinners and taking a wild Brownie on the dry at midnight on Cuckoo Loch.

It’s 03:15 and I’m bored – much more bored than you are, reading this – and my state of the art software tells me there are 2 hours and 51 endless minutes before I can even contemplate going to bed so, I’ll leave you knowing that this post is almost as pointless as my work here tonight.

See you on the dole queue [apologies Tom]

Ozleworth Brook







Robins, Blackcaps & Tigers

Yesterday, as always, dawn broke to the accompaniment of our resident Robin broadcasting his presence to all and sundry. Already he has a wife and they have started house-hunting in the best looking spots in the garden – I fear they will do as they did last year and favour the neighbours Buddleia as the site for their nest while being content to gobble up every meal-worm I provide for their breakfast. Ungrateful little buggers.

This morning he was not alone in offering up his song to raise the spirits in the pre-dawn darkness; he had some stiff competition from something unseen at the bottom of the garden. I recognised the song but I couldn’t quite put a name to the singer who seemed out of place somehow on this chilly February morning – this was definitely a song of the summer. As the light improved I was surprised to see a pair of Blackcaps stabbing away at the crab-apples that stubbornly cling to the bare branches right through the winter. I wouldn’t normally expect to see them until late April.

In the afternoon, under a sparkling blue sky I watched a dull performance from Gloucester as they managed to kick away almost every chance that a tight fisted Tigers team offered them. I felt somewhat overdressed in an overcoat and scarf while many of my fellow spectators were in shirt-sleeves – brave indeed for early February.

Today I’m going to take the cane rod [now back from a short vacation in Michigan] over to Ozleworth Brook to test it’s capabilities in the tight, overgrown confines of this challenging little stretch. I don’t expect to see any prolific hatches of BWOs despite the warmth of the late winter sunshine; although, you never know, they may have got the same message as the birds and put in an early appearance – and winter might really be coming to an early end.

Texas Trout

From Fly Fish Chick

It’s a rich blend of troutbums, troutnuts and troutlaws, and at the end of the day they all come together to share their stories. When it’s really hoppin’, Craig is like summer camp for grownups. But with liquor, a jukebox and really big trout.

About as different to Charfield as it could be 🙂

…need to get out more

I’ve just been trawling through the forums where things are getting just a little bit fraught.  It seems that the enforced idleness of a damp & dreary winter is having an adverse affect on the psyche of posters who, normally quite level headed, have resorted to deliberate provocation and nasty barbed retorts.  Some appear to enjoy this ‘sport’ but frankly, I find it all a little juvenile and pathetic.

I stopped by the LA on thursday afternoon.  The river is pushing through at a fair old rate but it’s not too high.  As we’ve had a day or two of dry weather, with a few more forecast I reckon it might have fined down enough to make it fishable on Sunday or Monday.  I’ll certainly be going along to find out.

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