Monthly Archives: April 2008

New rod, tackle, tying room

The builders are in the final stages of completing my new rod, tackle tying room. This was carefully designed to be light and airy with plenty of space to store rods, dry lines and tie flies. This means having a glass roof and walls.

One strange thing; Mrs. S keeps referring to it as ‘the conservatory’ :-\

Pisscalator from OverMyWaders

For my first trial of the “Mark II”, I chose the well-known “Shopping Cart Pool” of my local stream. A cooperative Nature called when I was mid-river — and Science answered! Confident that a sufficient amount of liquid had passed through the catheter, I switched the vacuum pump on and…experienced the most unusual sensation. Perhaps it was disconcerting to my fellow anglers to have someone shouting “Yes, Yes, oh Yes!,” while fishing. One lad called out to me, “What pattern?”; “Pisscalator!” I screeched back.

Read the whole hilarious article at

I’m not very good at this

I had an after-work visit to my therapist yesterday. She soothes my furrowed brow and washes away the cares of a complicated life but sometimes I come away thinking ‘what was she trying to tell me?’ Not this time though; I left with the clear and resounding message ‘you’re not very good at this; are you?’

I parked by the bridge on the A38 and, as I always do, peeped over the parapet to see what’s happening below. Immediately I saw two large dark shapes streaking off down-stream – Bugger! We’ve had a little rain over the past few days so I was expecting at least a tinge of colour, but the water was low and gin clear. I scanned the river bed and my eyes came to rest where the side stream joins the main river by the northern tunnel – a shoal of Grayling. 30, possibly 40 small ladies of about 8 to 10 inches moving as one body but constantly changing their position in the shoal. Wonderful.

Sometimes these after-work excursions have an element of pressure about them as I’m stealing time between work and home commitments but this time I had nowhere to be, no-one to see, so I could afford to take my time. Nothing hatching and no sign of fish moving so I went exploring the deeper channels with a pair of nymphs. All of the usual places proved fruitless but somehow I didn’t get frustrated and I moved up to the shallower section just below the tunnels where I made the decision not to fish blindly but to practice my fish spotting skills in the sandy, gravelly channels between the waving weeds.

I spent the best part of an hour searching for a sign; a flash, a shadow, an unusual movement – nothing. So I returned to the bridge to see if the Grayling were still in residence. Of course, they weren’t. I can only assume they had a prior engagement – either that or the local kids had been throwing stones at them again.

So what did I learn from my unsuccessful foray? I need more practice.

Caption Competition

Taken on the opening evening of the Monnow Social 2007 – Anyone want to hazard a guess at what this sagacious looking lot are saying?

Only a few days until we have to do it all over again 🙂


I received this picture from Bob this morning.  I’m amazed at how quickly this project is progressing.

Warren is back

More good news.  Waterlines is back and Warren is once again posting some of the most readable fishing related stuff on the interweb.  Amongst his latest offerings are a couple of short videos of rising fish.

Mopping up shows a confident fish rising again and again to a stream of duns – a great contrast to the ‘oncers’ I see rising on the Little Avon; and Nervous feeding shows exactly that – a series of snappy rises from a fish that looks like it would cut and run at the first hint of danger.  Great observation and no mean feat to get it all on video.

Welcome back Warren.

New Boo!

There’s a little bit of alchemy going on in Michigan.  Bob is busy turning grass stalks into objects of beauty and soul.

The blank in the centre is a Cattenach 6632 taper that has a Trans-Atlantic journey ahead of it.  Mine.  Mine  Mine!!!

Time flies…

…when you’re not having fun.

I’ve just realised that it’s about 6 weeks since my last post.  Well I suppose I’ve been adhering to advice passed to me long ago – ‘if you’ve nothing to say, say nowt’.  And that’s the problem; I’ve had nothing to say.  After waiting so long for spring and the trout season to arrive I’ve only managed two sessions on the river; one a spectacular success and the other a dismal failure.

It’s all about timing and, to be honest, mine sucks.  We’ve had the wreckers builders in and the Smith household resembles a Sadr City market-place after someone in a loud wait-coat decided to liven things up a bit.  Although the actual construction work is now finished I have to deal with the aftermath of mini-diggers performing a pas de deux on my once immaculate lawn.  The patio has to be re-sited and re-laid and raised borders have been demolished and re-built.  Sure, there have been times where I could have stolen an hour or two on the river but these are precisely the times when the weather gods have decided to have a chuckle at my expense.  Very bloody funny!

This-afternoon the forecast is telling me to expect sunny spells at 10c with a 6-8mph easterly – not perfect as the wind will be directly down-stream but, I’m going anyway.

May will soon be here which for some I guess is the start of the proper trout season.  The Monnow Social 2008 looms large and anticipation is building amongst those lucky enough to secure a berth.  Dave, Neil, Tim and Rob are all reporting wonderful things from the Monnow and Honddu which does nothing to suppress the growing excitement at the prospect of a few days in these hallowed environs.

Good news from Bob too.  Michigan’s master builder tells me the new blank is glued and ready for the fiddly bits to be nailed on so, who knows, I may be taking a new friend to the Social.

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