Photo 01 - The victor looking very happy as well he might!
Wild Trout Competition
No two days are ever the same, and it was thus with our competition! A cold wind with occasional cast tangling heavy gusts led to blue fingers once the hands got wet only to be partially warmed up when bright sunlight broke through the dark clouds. The water has stubbornly remained cold at around eight degrees in the margins which is not conducive to good fly hatches demonstrated by no Trout being noted breaking the surface during the six hours fishing.
As always we started the day with piping hot tea/coffee and a bacon roll at the Glen cafe which at least gave us a great start. Cath had kindly opened the cafe 45mins earlier to accommodate us on our day. Around ten o clock we headed off to our preferred starting points where we each imagined Trout would come to the fly. With the wind changing direction by the minute it quickly became clear that (as usual) this would be a hard days fishing!
Most elected for intermediate lines with a team of three flys two natural patterns and a bright attractor fly. Some chose to fish into the variable strength wind whilst others fished with the wind at their backs, I did both with no method coming over as superior. Yes according to all the entrants the going was hard with relentless casting, retrieving and moving to new areas in the hope that suicidal Trout were present in numbers.
One member our secretary Alasdair White found such a spot on the far banks of the loch down from the sculptures and enticed three Trout for the day which was really good going in anyone’s book! Unfortunately he had happened upon the juvenile department where none of the residents were above eight inches in length! Stevie Nimmo reported having turned a small Trout at the graveyard but nothing else and it looked like a day when no takeable Trout were to be caught.
Step in Chris Empson, yes our committee member and ultra fit champion power lifter. Chris appeared at the Tibbie with a carrier bag with a bulge at the bottom which clearly boasted there was something within! After some coaxing and gentle encouragement he modestly pulled a nice looking Trout from his bag in very good fettle and turned the scales to 14oz. Yes we had a winner in Chris! Like mild mannered Clark Kent of Superman fame he was delighted but made no bravado regarding his catch! He was in the right place at the right time and secured his win. He didn’t touch any other fish and when asked how his day went he simply said it was a hard day’s fishing as it usually is on the loch but the trick is to never give up and fish willingly until the bitter end!
Yet another of our members with the correct attitude following in the footsteps of old Izaak and revered senior members such as Pete Young and John Miller! We held the post mortem at the Tibbie and as usual there was much re-examination of tactics and swims fished but general agreement that once again there was much enjoyment, wind burns and untangling of casts which all add up to a great day out!
Indeed we would have preferred less rain less wind and more fly life to assist us in our quest but it was not to be! This is the lot of an angler where nothing is ever just quite right, but like Chris demonstrated persistence in spite of the conditions can bring great rewards! Chris now takes his place in the hall of fame as the holder of the Major Sir Neil Westbrook cup which he will keep for a year as testament to his resolve! He is also very excited at the prospect of his autumn day on Tweed having never before fished for Salmon. We will of course report on the trials and tribulations that face us on that day when it comes to pass.
The second and third prizes of a bottle of Old Grouse Whisky kindly donated by Alastair at the Tibbie and the third prize of a box of fly’s containing the essential St Mary’s loch favourites were decided by a draw kindly conducted by Sheila pillar of the Tibbie Shiels Inn. I won the whisky and Alasdair White won the flys and fly box which was particularly appropriate as he lost five on the day hooking trees and such like! Thanks to Alastair and Sheila for the great food and drink and super service as usual. Of course heartiest congratulations go to Chris a worthy champion! I think I have said this after every competition but it is what comes naturally. A great day out in the company of real anglers – it is the one thing that remains constant every year Peerless!
Photo 02 - Chris with the cup!
Other activities on the day!
You would not have thought other activities were taking place yesterday but they were. Yes treasurer John Wright and committee member Frank Gillespie opted to finish the tree planting at Kirkstead and continue our habitat work there. Frank proudly proclaimed that he had managed to plant 95 trees which was absolutely super. Glad you enjoyed your day Frank as we are expecting a delivery of three hundred on Thursday which will need planting! Thanks to John and Frank for their hard work on the day!
As mentioned above we have three hundred trees coming on Thursday and a large delivery of rebar steel which we require for our bank stabilisation work. Unfortunately it is arriving in eighteen metre lengths so we have 3 angle grinders and one of our Genny’s earmarked for duty first thing on Saturday morning. Also taking place on Saturday will be the initial work of concreting in the ten foot 4 x 4 posts which will form the anchor points for our safety rail. There is also some remedial work required on our bank works at the foot of Kirkstead which took a pounding in the recent huge waters experienced in the area. The dates of our work parties are below.
26thof May 2013
8thof June 2013
23rdof June 2013
3rdof August 2013
18thof August 2013
3rdof August 2013
18thof August 2013
We will have our completed submission ready in the next week. This will be submitted to Visit Scotland and Marine Scotland in a formal format with a copy being given to the MSP who will pursue this on our behalf. Without exception all the anglers we have approached are one hundred percent behind our campaign. Member desirous of adding their tuppence worth should mail me with their comments this week.
Photo 03 - Frank on his 95th tree and still smiling!
Yes it was only last week that I spotted the Lancaster bomber of the Bee world, the mighty Bumble Bee. The ones on the go just now are all queens looking for abandoned mouse holes in which to set up a home for the coming summer season if we get one that is! Already fertilised the queens will lay their eggs in a honeycomb similar to honey bees and a few weeks later her army of between thirty and two hundred will emerge. Charged with the function of pollinating if the weather is kind their loud drone will be all around very soon. Incidentally Bumblers do make a watery type honey not as nice as honey bee honey but eminently recognisable as honey! However the amount the small colonies produce coupled with the watery consistency and resultant poor preservation properties do not make it a commercial proposition. How did I get a taste? My dad had to move a buried colony to erect a shed and he punctured a honey cell and gave me a taste. The colony actually did survive the move which is unusual.
Don’t panic, if you find a nest of these guys near you, they are harmless. They live in harmony with us and you have to do something really stupid to egg a Bumbler on to sting you and even then it’s not near as bad as a honey bee or a wasp. Just modify your path so you don’t have to cross the flight path to the entrance of the nest. Other than that have a seat with a nice cool drink of whatever takes your fancy and just watch them at their unceasing work – an absolute treat!
Our loch keeper Dave has informed us that one of our Arrans looks like it is taking on water following the storms of late. The water level was too high on Saturday to investigat this and we will have to get a looh as soon as the level permits. My thoughts are that the cental keel has taken a fair number of good sideways smacks and has fractured allowing small quantities to seep in. We should know by the end of the week!
The Frasers are back!
We thought they had gone and feared the worst, but the ald yin appeared on Saturday! I was under the floor but that growling voice was unmistakeable! Elliot & Lee welcome back! I’ve just cancelled our order for a new heavy duty electric puller with these two muscle bound guys who needs powered machinery! Good to see you again mate hurry back! Of course our stock of Trout will be worried by this development but what the hell!
The wider world in my view!
A bunch of clowns!
Yes old school posh boy Ken Clarke uttered the retort when being asked about the UKIP threat to the Tories in the local elections to be held on Thursday in England & Wales. No great dissection of policies just the nervous uttering of one who sees his party of duffers take a heavy beating at the elections! There is no doubt that UKIP has the posh boys rattled as dithering Lord Snooty tries to hold together the crumbling mess that is the Tories.
UKIP are a party of protest there is little doubt about it but with Snooty and Minister without a clue Gideon Osborn making a complete hash of everything they turn their hands to the outlook for the posh boys is not great! You generally find when constructive criticism has run out insults take over and so it was with has been Kenneth Clarke! Nothing constructive to say, no answer to the justified criticism of the posh boys by all factions in the political arena and by the public at large. If you are a supporter of the posh boys then prepare to take a sound beating on Thursday as all the shameful incompetence of the Con-Dems policies come back to haunt them!
Puppet Clegg no doubt will also be hammered for his persistent lies and prevarication that now characterise these buffoons! Tory handmaidens incapable of sticking to an election promise these fools have shamed the proud tradition of Steel & Co and are now completely unelectable. Look out for big Labour and Green party (respect!) gains and a significant percentage of UKIP councillors elected at the expense of the posh boys! Looks like the much used phrase of wanting to help “hardworking families who want to get on” is looking a little threadbare!
And then there were none!
Hehe in the Guardian last week a Tory political commentator cited Minister without a clue Gideon Osborn as being a liability to the prospect of a Tory Government being elected at the next general election! Further down the column he placed Lord Snooty in a similar category and that from one of their own! It’s looking pretty dire for the posh boys!
Don’t know who said it but it’s quite heavy!
Life isn’t about how many breaths you take but about the moments that take your breath away.....