I’ve neglected these pages for too long so, to get back into the swing; here’s an update of what’s been happening in my fishing world.
Firstly, the new rod [see picture below] works just fine! I was invited to fish a short, very private section of the River Churn at the fag-end of the Mayfly season. I took 2 fish in the first three casts so I know that we are going to get on. Once again, thanks Bob, she’s a beaut!
Like most anglers I’ve been staring in despair at the weather forecasts wondering when things would change for the better. Sure, I’ve managed the odd snatched hour when the rain’s held off long enough to make a trip out feasible but, even then, the cold gusty easterly has made things difficult and not exactly pleasurable. I did have a more pleasant experience yesterday morning when I fished the Kennels beat of the Charfield section of the Little River Avon. On Friday evening the water was starting to fine down but there was only about 6″ of visibility but, by Sunday it was greatly improved and just about perfect. In the short time I had I managed to winkle out a brace of 10″ brownies still sporting feint parr marks – a very encouraging clue as to the health of the river.
I hear that the Monnow is still completely washed out so, until things improve I guess I’ll be staying to the east of the Severn.
Whilst I may have neglected this blog I have not been entirely idle in the world of on-line fishing. I have been asked to give a much needed makeover to the Charfield AA’s web site. Though it’s still in it’s infancy you can get a sneak preview here – any comments, criticisms or suggestions would be most welcome.
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 http://overmywaders.com/cblog/archives/89-The-Pisscalator-Illustrated.html
I received this picture from Bob this morning. I’m amazed at how quickly this project is progressing.
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!!!
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.
OK, I’ll admit it – I screwed up and took too many days off in 2007 so that I had no days left to take off over Christmas. I’ve been coming into an empty office, or sitting at home watching my inbox just in case some other screw-up sent me a mail which actually generated something for me to do – days of waiting – days of boredom.
Now, what does a computer literate fly-fisher do when he gets bored:
- Read the forums – but no-one is posting because they’re too busy celebrating with their family.
- Check out the other blogs – very little new content for the same reason.
- Hit eBay looking for the bargain of the year.
After a couple of hours trawling through the same old stuff from the same old sellers on ebay.co.uk I went over to ebay.com to see what was on offer over in the states. Now this is much more interesting, especially the reels. They have names over there that we seldom see on this side of the pond. Pleuger Medalists abound, as do South Bends and Martins but among these so called Blue Collar reels are one or two unusual [to us] makes like Peerless, Ballan, Bogdan, Browning and Saracione. Prices are flattered by the favourable exchange rate so I’ve been sorely tempted by an Orvis CFO II, though I doubt I could justify it to SWMBO, especially since I’ve recently bought the Hardy Featherweight 😦
If you want to see some really interesting vintage tackle; head over to ebay.fr. With a little schoolboy French and the aid of Google translation you should be able to navigate the site without too much difficulty.
I can only assume that the Belgians don’t do much fly fishing – searching ebay.be returns only 7 rods and 5 reels! Spain is even worse with only 4 rods and zero reels while Italy has zero rods and 11 reels including this sweet little Martin
I finished work at lunchtime yesterday and called by the river for an hour or two to get acquainted with the new cane rod. I have to admit, it looks the mutt’s nuts with the Hardy Featherweight mounted.
My first impression was how easily it cast a short line; it loads well with only a few feet of line out of the tip ring and accuracy is second to none – it even makes me look good! This rod is light too – a meagre 3.5 oz. Longer casts are a bit of a problem, though I suspect this is related to my casting rather than the rod. I need to get used to the slower, softer action as I am creating huge tailing loops; not something I usually suffer. I don’t think the line helps either. Though I’ve spent hours massaging grease into it, the belly is still quite stiff and is very reluctant to shoot. I guess I’ll have to fish a lot over the Christmas holiday to get it broken in 🙂
Overall, I’m delighted with this rod and I’m sure we will get along just fine when we’ve worked out our foibles. As Neil said when he picked it up for the first time “This rod has soul”.
I just weighed the first 30 ft of the silk line pictured below – an amazing 5.33 grams. That converts to 82.25 grains. Using the conversion chart here it looks like I have a sub 3 weight! Looking at the diameter of the tip and comparing it to my Thebault DT4 I see it is much thinner so I guess that’s right – I wonder how much weight it’ll put on by absorbing the line grease :-\
I picked up another silk line on ebay for a measly £16 – pretty good deal. The line came boxed and marked “Corona Superba” D/T FLY LINE No C 35 YDS. The line itself is dark brown, dry and stiff as a board but apart from a half hitch about 1 yard from the backing end and a poorly executed end loop, it looks to be in great nick. No signs of rot or damage.
Googling around I found that, if the line is indeed a Superba it was manufactured by Hardys but I still need to identify the line weight. I suspect that it’s around 5 or 6 weight but I need to get it on the scales to be sure as none of the conversion charts mention a ‘C’ weight DT line.
Although it’s dark and stiff it does not appear to be dirty so I have applied a little of the grease supplied with my Thebault line – it’s drinking it in and already the first few yards are becoming noticeably more supple so I may not be looking at a complete restoration job – time will tell.