Tuesday, 13 March 2012


A few photos from the season about to pass...

Sunday, 4 March 2012

What have the Romans ever done for us?

Today for the first time in almost a year, I bank fished for Pike, with deadbaits. As the temperatures gradually climb, My 9 year old - Isaac, finds it comfortable enough to venture out with me and this is my main motivation. Isaac has dipped in and out of fishing since he was about 3 but lately he’s shown more of an interest which I hope to encourage. This coming spring I hope to immerse him (and the rest of the family if willing!) in enough angling to find out if he’ll share my passion, ultimately the decision will be his. To be honest, in the past I‘ve always made the kids fishing second priority to my own, it had to fit around what I was doing. This coming season priorities will be reversed, hopefully this blog will be as much about Isaac’s progress as my own failure to catch Tench I’d love to include Madison in this too and maybe I will but at the moment fishing doesn’t enter the sphere of this twelve year old girl.

Madi, aged 6 with her first Pike

Anyway, back to today. We left the house at the crack of 0835 and half an hour later we were soaking a couple of deadbaits at a local stillwater. I legered a sardine to the left and Isaac, after a refresher course in casting, plopped a bluey out to the right. Both baits were popped up to sit clear of silt and our set ups differed only with the addition of a float on Isaac’s rod, give him something to look at. The morning was chilly with light rain being carried on a fresh south easterly so we immediately took shelter under my little pop up bivvy. And there we pretty much stayed while the rain got heavier and more unpleasant. We endured because Isaac is determined to christen his very own Pike rod, which he has owned over a year but only used once. Isaac has caught a handful of Pike over the years and has a current PB of nine pounds, all have been on trolled lures so his next Pike will be a whole different experience. Unfortunately the rod christening didn’t happen today but it was nice to spend a little one on one time with my son, even though the theorising on what would have happened if the Jedi had not won got a little wearing. After a couple of hours we were back home, drying off and drinking the tea we were unable to enjoy whilst fishing. Isaac’s muppet of a father packed the flask of boiling water, mugs, milk and sugar but forgot the tea bags.

But spring isn’t quite here yet and before I make too many plans there’s still just time for a couple more trips in the boat before the river season ends of 14th March. On final, big effort and then it’ll be time for a rest.

and Isaac aged 4 with his first

At work we have started selling fishing magazines which means I get to read them all in down times. Sadly the standard hasn’t improved since I was a regular reader. I hate the way the weeklies assume their readers are fuckwitts. Angling times is tolerable but the Anglers Mail is excruciating from beginning to end. Carp talk is worse. I’ve been reading the Carp mags in an attempt to understand a little better what the customers want, as these make up the majority of the tackle trade nowadays. Some of the writing is very good and some isn’t. Something I’ve never understood is the use of military metaphors in angling writing. Why do anglers “plan a campaign”? and why do they have “lines of attack”? I cringe every time I read those or any other hideous military cliché. I guess anglers write that way because they’ve read others in the past that have written in the same way, a style handed down through generations. That must mean, that somebody somewhere is or maybe was, responsible for the whole lot. Whoever was the originator of all this military jargon has a lot to answer for.

As well as having probably the most comprehensive Pike fishing website in the world, (set up by Dave Lumb and currently managed by Mike Skipper, see link on the right), the PAC of GB also has a Facebook presence and it was here that the activities of a certain Mr Stuart Campbell Wilson were brought to light- to me at least. Mr Wilson has been “harvesting” Pike from waters in Scotland and it is unclear if this is being done for reasons of Science, fishery management or finance. Whatever the reason, Mr Wilson has been using gill nets and long lines to randomly destroy the Pike populations on fisheries with obvious knock on effects to the rest of the environment. He has also promoted Pike as a food for sale to restaurants but I’m not sure where the science comes into the picture. He was then daft enough to post the photographic evidence on Facebook. Much of this has subsequently been deleted but some images still remain here


and here.


And here


Subsequently the PAC and PAAS have become involved together with furious local anglers prompting the removal of the offending photographs and a promise from visitscotland.com that their article will be removed. Fish ins and socials are great but this is PAC at its best and big credit goes to the guys fighting the good fight. Micky Jones, Graham Slater, Brian Marshall, Scott Davidson & the Ayrshire branch, Pike Anglers Alliance Scotland, Sean Allan, Alan Daly, Dave Mcinllaly and apologies to anyone I’ve left off.

And still people ask “What have the the PAC/PAAS ever done for me?”