Thursday, 8 October 2015

Float On !

I had another outing on the tube last weekend, this time at Hillend's neighbouring loch the Lily!
I wasn't as successful as my first time afloat as I didn't catch any fish , however it was great fun to be out in the tube. I was really surprised that I could manoeuvre all over the 60 acre loch without any trouble. Perhaps I spent too much time moving around and maybe should have concentrated my efforts in some areas a little longer. I suppose I was just getting to know the tube and how to handle it etc, it was  great  to try in at the dam as well as square bay, Scunners point, the big weedy bay and all down the south shore. I could have done with a trout though. 
However I wasn't downbeat, far from it in fact I'm rather excited about the possibilities with the tube therefore I'm going to have another visit with the tube to the Lily this weekend as the Lily stays open until the end of October.
The Lily may be open for a further few weeks but the official 2015  brown trout fishing season has now ended but I'm already excited about getting out on the tube next season to some hill lochs that I would like to visit but in the mean time the Lily will do for the next few weeks.  

Friday, 2 October 2015

A Loch Revisited.

The day after my first experience of Armchair fishing I was once again out  pursuing Brown Trout, however on this occasion it took a lot more effort to catch my quarry.
I visited a lochan west of Rannoch Moor for the first time in a number of years along with my friend Scott.
We had a cold foggy start to the day and it definitely felt like autumn but as the day progressed the temperature started to rise.
After a walk of 1 3/4 hours we arrived at this remote loch which is set in a spectacular location surrounded by a group of Munros.
Before we strung our rods the sound of roaring stags could be heard echoing around the mountains.
It was obvious that the fishing would be difficult as there wasn't a breath of air and the surface of the loch was like a sheet of glass.
However during our time there a slight breeze would appear intermitently throughout the day but these spells didnt last long.
Fishing was tough but we did manage to fool around half a dozen trout each with Scott getting the catch of the day with a small plump Perch.
Big and bushy flies were the order of the day. We missed a lot more fish than we caught which was fun but frustrating too, The fish werent very big and never even reached the 1/2 lb mark. 
The trout may have been mediocre but the scenery was absolutely first class. I dont think Ive ever fished a loch with such spectacular surroundings.
We were leg weary and tired after making the long walk back to the car. Although we were thirsty and hungry after such a long day we deliberately avoided the chippy in Tyndrum and waited until we arrived in Callander to refresh and regale ourselves.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Armchair Fishing

I was keen to get out on my recently purchased float tube so arranged through a fishing friend to get some tuition on a Perthshire Lochan.
I met up with Vaughan at Braco and then after packing all my gear into his car we drove up through the Perthshire countryside to a couple of lochs which Vaughan assured me would be ideal for a novice float tuber.
We stopped off at the first loch and ran through everything I needed to know he then attached a rope to my tube and set me of out onto the loch. After learning how to manoeuvre etc I was keen to be set of the leash to start fishing.
Therefore we moved onto another loch where Vaughan said I could be in for a few surprises , so told me to be prepared.
We noticed that fish were dimpling at various areas all over this loch so expectations were high and we were both keen to get afloat.
So off we went and I found it surprisingly easy to move up the loch the only trouble I had to start with was controlling turning left and right but soon found a technique to do this which suited me.
Vaughan was first into trout with two nice trout fooled by his beetle pattern which I suggested to him he should call Ringo.
I had a few offers before I managed my first trout. Vaughan was correct, I was indeed most surprised as my first trout from the float tube was a hard fighting rainbow trout.
It has to be said it is an absolute pleasure to fish from the tube. I couldn't believe how comfortable it was as it was like flyfishing from a big comfy armchair.
I caught a further two trout which were once again very fine conditioned rainbow trout.
Vaughan caught a couple of brown trout and a couple of rainbows too.
It was so relaxing sitting on the tube and fishing areas which wouldn't normally be able to be fished due to soft banks and weed.
It's just a pity I've been introduced to this style of fishing at the tale end of the season as i really enjoyed myself and can't wait to get out on the tube again.
I can't thank Vaughan enough for taking me to these lochs and instructing me on how to get the best out of float tubing.

Saturday, 26 September 2015

The Great Outdoors

My flytying has been curtailed of late due to my sister in law temporarily taking over my tying room whilst  living with us until she moves into her new house.
However today I managed to get outdoors into the garden and tie a few patterns on the garden table with a nice cold beer close to hand.
It has to be said the light was absolutely tremendous which I believe is a very important factor whilst tying. The natural light really assisted me outdoors today so maybe tying al fresco is something I should consider doing more often. I doubt my hands couldn't cope with the cold during January and February whilst in the depths of winter though.
It was very enjoyable to be at the vice again to tie my favourite style of patterns. 
With the end of season fast approaching I'm very keen to get out over the next couple of days to use these flies and make the most of what's left of the brown trout season.

Friday, 25 September 2015

Hillend Naturals

Last weekend I was out on the boat at Hillend most probably for the last time this season with the Hillend Veteran Davie Graham.
We didn't do too well. Not for us were those rainbow trout that are stocked every week , oh no!
We hooked up with "Hillend Naturals"
I fooled two wee natural brown trout with a doobry on my top dropper however I only managed to handle one of them as the first one got away.
Davie managed to land a pike.
It was rather disappointing not to see any trout activity on the surface as conditions did look perfect.

Monday, 21 September 2015

What a tube!

Whilst on my recent trip to the Outer Hebrides a few of the guys were fishing on float tubes. 
At the après fishing back at our accommodation it transpired that a good number of the Stravaigers have used tubes from time to time and encouraged me to try it out.
A discussion about float tubes and their merits transpired over a few beers , and wine etc 
I always fancied the notion of using one but was unsure as the big appeal to me about fly fishing is the simplicity of it all therefore to take loads of extra gear might be rather off putting.
I decided that I would think about getting one over the winter and have a look into it.
However a full kit bargain was brought to my attention at the weekend by a fellow Fisher who noticed it for sale on line. 
Included in the kit was a life jacket, fins, boots, paddle, net, pump, rod holders and even a few fly patterns.
I was advised that this was a wonderful bargain therefore  on Saturday evening my son drove me down to Stevenston in Ayrshire to collect the gear.
I'm now the owner of a Caddis Nevada Gold float tube. Now for the hard  bit.  Getting in it and learning to use it.,
Fortunately one of my fishing aqauintences has offered to take me to a loch in the next couple of weeks to show me how to use it and hopefully catch a few trout into the bargain.
If anyone would like to suggest any lochs for me to try tubing  or indeed offer any float tubing advice please do get in touch through the usual sources. 

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

South Uist Stravaig 2015

That's the 2015 Wild Fishing Forum EOS Stravaig to South Uist over for another year.
I've now experienced a few of these get togethers and have to say this has been the most enjoyable of the lot.
Paul has to be congratulated for planning and organising the whole trip and I'm sure I speak on behalf of everyone when I say it was very much appreciated for without all the planning and ground work  to such a remote location this would never have ran so smoothly.
Andy is also to be lauded for all his advice and knowledge of the Uists too.
The accommodation, meals and après fishing were first class as was the company of all the Stravaigers who travelled from the North South East and West.
The fishing was fantastic all be it little tough especially in the strong winds , particularly on the boats as I'm not great on the oars although I tried my best.
I was more comfortable with the bank fishing on all the various lochs we fished and it was a real joy to fool a number of beautiful trout.
It was reckoned that over 100 trout were caught over the duration of our time on the island with Vaughn having having and I quote" The best fishing day ever"
I personally would like to have  a return visit to South Uist sometime in the future.
My experience has given me an insight into the potential this Island has, especially if the conditions were just perfect.
I've got a head full of memories and a camera full of pics. Check back later for a slide show video of my trip.

Sunday, 6 September 2015

A brief catch Up!

First of all I would like to apologise for the lack of posts on here. However its been utter turmoil here at Dabbler HQ for a number of reasons which have meant that I've not been fishing as much as I would like and I havent even tied a fly for a few months either. Ive been doing more hillwalking this season than fishing although I have had a couple outings with rod and reel. A recent trip to Loch Rannoch yielded a couple of nice trout, other than that there has been nothing much to blog about. However I'm off to the Outer Hebrides on Tuesday the 8th of September for what I hope to be the highlight of my flyfishing season. I hope to have a memory card with a plethora of photos and stories to tell of fish lost and fish caught in the meantime here are a few pics from recent weeks.