Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Scouting for Trout

The dip in form of my home stretch of river sent me scouting much further up stream. The river in these parts 'aint purdy', it's all culverted & often disappears for stretches beneath dark satanic mills but, 'dare be trout in dem dare hills'.

The river's little more than a stream here but, there's still good fish to be had.

Headed back to the home stretch for last light to skate some Caddis in the dark, the midges foiled us though, even chain smoking couldn't keep them off.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Tweaking out Borrowdale Beckies

The crystal clear water of Langstrath Beck proved too temping on a hot Saturday afternoon. Fortunately Mrs C didn't mind sunbathing while I tried for the resident little beck Trout although she seemed a little miffed when I interupted her sun worship by shouting for her to get a snap.

I love this type of small stream fishing, using little dries in the many pools, it reminded me of fishing with a Spanish friend of mine & Tom's, a top fisherman & tier called Paco from Girona who showed us round the mountain streams in the foothills of the Pyrenees where he fishes. Stood there with a short line & high stick nuts deep in icy water I could almost hear his mantra of 'fly working well'

Friday, 5 June 2009

Return to Jurassic Tarn

Skipped up the M6 Lakesward after work to take on the turbo charged trout that foiled me last time.
The conditions were chilly & blustery with no fish showing so I decided to search them out with a team of 3Here are the culprits responsible for pinging me off last visit, some of the hardest fighting bows I've come across.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Lancashire Ganges

Got to the river last night eager for a fish expecting low clear water only to find it resembling the Ganges - found out today some berk upstream had been excavating & dumping mud & shite in the river... reported it to the EA

As the river was totally unfishable I headed up to a local lodge to try & nobble some of the resident Carp - got this tubby little beaut on a floating crust fished half a foot from the bank whilst crouching in some bushes.

Wednesday, 27 May 2009


Determined not to blank again on the river I set out wading with a two two rod system. One rod was a 9ft 6wt set up with a team of 3 nymphs & the other an 8ft 4wt for throwing little dries at any Trout fool hardy enough to rise!
The day was really hard going, not because of any adverse conditions but, just the fact that the water is in really poor form this year The fish only started to rise in the twilight.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

jurassic tarn

Working in Preston yesterday afternoon gave me the opportunity to hop up the M6 towards the Lakes & search out some new water. On getting to the water it started raining & there was an intermittently gusting Westerly. Some fish were fin & tailing while feeding just below the surface so I opted to fish with buzzer & Diawl Bachs. After several swirls & plucks at the flies a fish took and just shot off pinging strait through the leader, not what I was expecting from a tarn trout. I stepped up to a 4lb leader & hooked up with a powerful fish that shot off on several huge runs, just as I though I was taming it & bringing it in on the reel, it shot off again & as the reel span the handle hit my thumb stalling it & allowing the fish snap clean through the line.

Sunday, 17 May 2009

Upper Roddlesworth

I wanted to put my mid week blank behind me this weekend & put a bend in my rod from some fat stockies so with that I headed up to a Res in the moors above Bolton. The weather was atrocious, it pissed it down & blew a gale. The fishing was tricky & made even more difficult, as you can see from the picture, the water is heavily wooded and the only places to get a decent cast out meant you had the wind gusting in your face.
Here's a chunky Blue Trout that has just been filleted & pan fried in butter.

Thursday, 14 May 2009


Just spent a few hours wading the river & ended up catching sweet F.A. This is pretty much unheard of on the stretches I fish at this time of year. Fair enough the conditions were not brilliant, there was a strong cold wind, nothing was really hatching & the bites I eeked out I managed to miss. I am starting to think that fish numbers are well down this season & it's not just my bad timing & technique. Mike (manchester fishing fiend) has reported similar findings on his blog & heard stories of people meat fishing the area. Wild Trout poulations are delicate enough especially with the pressures of Mink, Goosanders, pollution & gypos meat fishing... you can trap Mink & shoot Goosanders but, how you gonna get across the notion of catch & release to some scrote raised on findus crispy pancakes!

Anyhow, here's a nice picture of some Bluebells.

Monday, 4 May 2009


Just spent a fantastic couple of weeks travelling round some of the islands in the south of Thailand.
This surely earns me enough brownie points with Mrs C to enable me to spend the rest of the summer on the river bank.

The angling bug got the better of me though & after several Singhas & Sangsom buckets I got chatting to a Mr Sak who promised me a 80-90% chance of landing a Sailfish!

Here's Mr Sak skippering his Longtail boat - basically a long wooden skiff with a dirty diesel engine attached to the back, powering a propellor at the end of a long shaft... genius!

First off, we jigged some feathers for the live bait.

Then we set them off in a channel & waited... alas no Sailfish were hooked, just this Garfish looking thing with some mad dentistry!

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Cant Clough, can't catch (almost)

Jonny took us up to Cant Clough, one of his club waters on Sunday, a high moorland res perched in the Pennines near Todmorden. It took about four hours to cover the water & in that time we threw everything at them & almost blanked. It wasn't that we weren't getting takes, we just couldn't land anything. The fish were taking lightning quick & just shaking the hook everytime. Only when I beefed up my gear a little & stripped back a lure did I manage to bully one in.

Saturday, 11 April 2009


Spotted a pod of three fish sipping down flies tight to the near bank under some branches & managed to waft a little EHC just in front of them with a side cast. With a big swirl the fish took & shot off upstream jolting the rod forward & stripping line. It jumped once trying to shake the fly then I didn't see it for the next five minutes as it bored up & down the river. As usual I'd forgotten my net so had to hand him in.
You can see the fly just knicked in the scissors.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

mink or gollum

With the temperature creeping up into the teens today so my Trout barometer shifted me riverwards accordingly. There was a little bit of a hatch & the odd fish was rising sporadically so I decided to try something Stuart Crofts suggested at a talk he gave to Horwich fly dressers, he recommended fishing a buzzer New Zealand style off a dry, not a fly combo I had previously tried on rivers but, one that definitely works. An injury I'm seeing increasingly on Trout in the river, it's not like the Heron stab marks you sometimes see on fish, this is more like a chunk that has been bitten out. I'm sure this is down to the mink that are present as the river here is devoid of Cormorant, Goosanders & Gollum.

Monday, 30 March 2009

British Summer Time

The clocks had gone forward & the start of summer was heralded in with a fine sunny Sunday, so with that I donned my waders & ploughed up the river in search of Trout.
A nice hatch of Olives was trickling down stream all afternoon & that gave me the chance to do what I'd been waiting for all winter... Target rising brownies with dries!

Sunday, 29 March 2009

High Winds High Arnside

I was up in the Lakes on Friday for a mates stag do so while the rest of the lads were off doing the Via Ferrata up Honister slate mines I slipped off to try and find a spot to fish. Heights really aren't my bag!

With the wind gusting at 50mph I searched the map for a spot that might offer a little shelter & settled for the beautiful little High Arnside Tarn.
I was surprised upon arriving that considering the conditions & the fact that there is still snow on the fells the Tarns surface was covered with slashy little rises. There was a steady hatch going off but I couldn't really see what because as soon as they emerged within seconds they were half way up the Old Man! That would account for the quick slashy rises.
The Tarn is absolutely choked up with weed thus surface or just subsurface fishing is the only option. I caught a few small brownies fishing a little Caddis in the ripple but by far the most effective method was a little buzzer suspended beneath a parachute fly.
One of the bigger ones!
Signs of spring

On the walk back down I came across this pair of just born lambs taking their first tentative steps & eagerly guzzling down their mothers milk. If you look close enough you can still see the afterbirth dangling from the Ewe!

Thursday, 19 February 2009

P-Funk Piking

Tom commented that my latest Pike fly bares more than a passing resemblance to the P-Funk legend George Clinton... I can definitely see where he's coming from!

This week I've really noticed that it's getting brighter & warmer, so with that 'George' & I snook down the river for a dabble. After searching out the weir pool for a while with George getting a couple of follows, a nice fish shot out and after a few good runs & a bit of tail walking to boot a superbly conditioned Pike was netted.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

The flies have eyes

Here's a new Pike fly that I'm sure will coax out a monster next trip:

Hook: 6/0 mustad Cod hook
Body: cactus chenille
Tail: combed out parpost wing

Sunday, 8 February 2009


Skiing in Cumbria???? That was the response I got when I answered my phone at the top of Yad Moss on Saturday afternoon.
Yad Moss or 'Aspen-on Toon' as a Geordie I was chatting to called it or 'Englands premier ski resort' as their website calls it is located in the north east of Cumbria about 30 miles east of Penrith near Alston. Thanks to a lottery grant & the hard work of some dedicated enthusiasts Yad Moss offers the opportunity to ski within a couple of hours of Manchester, albeit for usually a handful of days a year.
View from the top station - 725m

Tweedy having a brew

Saturday, 3 January 2009

Manchester has got everything except a beach...

Manchester has got everything except a beach said Ian Brown... well, Salford has got one & that's where I spent a couple of hours on Saturday afternoon.I'd been keen to try out some of the Pike flies I've been knocking out over the last few weeks & todays milder temperature combined with the lack of rainfall recently left me feeling that I might be in luck today.
I started fishing through a 100 yrd stretch below the weir with the Moulin Rouge fly that I'd had high expectations of but to no avail, not even a sniff of a follow.
At the tail end of the beat I changed fly to the one shown above that uses just artificial fibres, the main body being made of flouro green para post wing material, which pulses beautifully on the retrieve, the other main benefit is that it sheds any water on the backcast making it a much easier fly to shoot out.
Third cast with this new fly saw a nice Pike flash out of the murk close to the bank & snatch the lure, thankfully the hook set & the fish tore off on several really good runs which left me cursing that I'd left my net right at the top of beat.