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Friday, 22 February 2019

Fishingmegastore March 2019 Open Weekend

It's that time of year again where Glasgow Angling Centre we will be hosting another fantastic Open Weekend, and this one, like all those before it, will be a treat you won’t want to miss! March 2019's event is more focused on you, the angler, learning more and getting more from your equipment. That's why during this event we will have more free tuition, demonstrations and workshops so you are equipped with all the latest knowledge for your next fishing trip.

Expert Advice From Ian Gordon
This year's event is also focused on showcasing all the latest products for 2019, so there will be representatives from each major brand in the tackle trade available throughout the weekend to let you see all the latest rods, reels, clothing and much more.

Hywel Morgan Casting Demonstration
Vass Clothing Demonstration
During these events our 30,000ft megastore throws open its doors and visitors flood in to check out the latest kit, pick up some great bargains and rub shoulders with the top names in the fishing tackle business like Hywel Morgan, Ian Gordon, Paul Young, Stevie Munn, Scott Mackenzie, Craig Barr, Steve Souter and many more of the famous faces in fishing. This year we are encouraging our customers to engage with these experts and ask questions. So whether you want to improve your fly casting, sea rig tying, lure fishing for Pike, LRF, or fly tying, there's a free activity running over the 3 days giving you the maximum opportunity to learn - and it's all free!!

Trying Some New Lures in the Lure Tank

Meeting TV Personality Paul Young
In general, the Glasgow Angling Centre Open Weekend in March is synonymous with the start of the new season and is still the biggest free fishing event in the UK. Every year the attendance figures are increasing because no-one offers more. There will be more tackle, more bargains, more demonstrations and more well known anglers for you to meet in person than ever before! If you have never visited one of our events, you really should put 1st-3rd March 2019 in your diary.

Bustling Atmosphere
One of the highlights of the Open Weekend is the very popular Fly Tyers Row, with loads of fantastic demonstrations from some of the country’s top tiers including Ian McKenzie, Barry Ord Clark, Paul Clydesdale, and Darryl Mooney. These guys are all on hand to show you how to perform the latest techniques and how to use the latest materials with ease.  They will be able to show you step by step how to execute a specific technique or how to tie in specific materials, so you can significantly improve your fly tying skills.

Fly Tyers Row
Free Instruction from the SGAIC Team
The SGIAC team will be available to offer free fly casting tuition, so if you ever wanted to learn how to double haul or just improve your technique, you can, for free and under the supervision of a fully qualified instructor. There will be loads of other cool demonstrations of LRF and lure fishing techniques in our two huge water tanks so you can see the action of all the latest lures. Lastly, you can enter our free fly casting competition, sponsored by Wychwood.

Wychwood Casting Competition
Get Hooked on Fishing will be offering fun fishing actives for all the family, so if you've never picked up a rod before, you are in good hands.  The RNLI Community Safety Team will be there to offer free life jacket checks and will be giving advice on all activities carried out on or near the water.  Representatives from the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park will also be in attendance to offer advice regarding the fantastic outdoor activities available, and to encourage you to get outdoors.

RNLI Safety Team
Getting There
Just a couple of minutes drive from Glasgow’s M8 motorway, you will easily find the huge store. It's an angler’s paradise with its own spacious car park and more than 50 trained, knowledgeable staff, eager to help you tackle your angling problems, whatever your interest may be. The store is the nearest thing you will ever get to a fishing tackle Aladdin’s cave, boasting a mind-boggling 40,000 different products on display. It is one rare opportunity where you can see and touch rods, reels and equipment you might want to buy and fish with, all under one roof.

Friendly and Helpful Staff
There are refreshments on site, so you can enjoy a coffee and a bite to eat. Most tackle-shops can't offer their customers the same level of service as the GAC. Not only does it stock the single-largest range of tackle and clothing in Europe, but there is ample space in which customers can try before they buy.
Inside you can hold and compare tackle under one high ceiling. There are more than 1,500 rods on display, and you are welcome to get them off the racks and try them out on the 30m casting pool or the neighbouring canal basin. The same goes for the hundreds of reels and fly-lines. If you are an armchair angler you can pick up the latest books, DVDs and catalogues. Plus a massive range of hunting and shooting equipment is available from Glasgow Field Sports – who have their store and gun room inside the Glasgow Angling Centre!

Having Fun with Some Lures
In the last couple of years GAC has hosted some memorable Open Weekends, with the last one in September 2018 being one of the biggest and best attended yet, breaking all records and attracting over 2000 anglers from all over the country. We anticipate another fantastically attended event this March so don't miss out. Get yourself along to the Open Weekend, indulge yourself and join us for Scotland's Biggest Free Angling Event.  For Opening times and more information click here.

Thursday, 21 February 2019

Tying a Clyde Style Wet Fly the Blae & Ginger with Davie McPhail

The Clyde-style fly is distinct from all other trout flies. Designed to the exact anatomical proportions of the natural insect, it is slender in outline with delicate body markings and very slim wings set at an unusual angle. It is equally successful on stream, river or lake for trout and grayling.

All of the materials needed to tie this fly are available from Glasgow Angling Centre as listed below, but as always, if you need any help finding materials or substitutes then we'll be happy to help. Time to tie the Blae & Ginger, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.

Materials Used:
Hook: Size 14 wet fly Thread: Pearsall's Gossamer Yellow Silk or Uni-8/0 Tag: Small Gold Tinsel
Body: Yellow Thread Hackle: Ginger Hen Wing: Secondary Feather from a Snipe or Starling

Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish, which he applied to the thread after completing the fly.

Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE!

Wychwood Casting Competition at GAC Spring Event 2019!

Back by popular demand, we will once again be hosting our very popular distance fly casting competition at our next Open Weekend event on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd of March 2019 - in an all new format sponsored by Wychwood who will be putting up some great prizes on each day!
Can you cast like Cullen?
To enter this competition simply fill out an entry form with a Wychwood representative to enter on the day, and you will have two minutes to make as many casts as possible with the new, top of the range 10ft #7 Wychwood RS Competition Fly Rod inside our casting court. Your longest cast will be verified and submitted for the competition and the customer with the furthest cast on the day will win £100 worth of Wychwood products of their choice!
Click to enlarge!
There will be two casting sessions per day, one at 11am and one at 3pm. Plus we will have a special junior section for under 14's with more great prizes!

There really is something for everyone at these events, that's why they are the biggest in Scotland - and this one promises to be the biggest ever! With FREE parking and FREE entry, there will be loads of things to see and do on the Open Weekend dates as well as some amazing bargains on all types of fishing tackle. Keep an eye out on FacebookTwitter and instore for more info on what's going on at this event! Plus don't forget to register for your FREE GIFT on the day! Click HERE for details!

Thursday, 14 February 2019

Tying the Haslam Fly with Davie McPhail

Originally tied as a salmon fly, the Haslam has since achieved far greater fame as a highly effective sea-trout pattern, especially on the rivers of Wales, it's adopted home. In appearance the original Haslam is very similar to a Silver Invicta, the main difference being the lack of a body hackle plus the addition of a white wool butt and horns of blue and yellow Macaw.

All of the materials needed to tie this fly are available from Glasgow Angling Centre as listed below, but as always, if you need any help finding materials or substitutes then we'll be happy to help. Time to tie a Haslam Fly, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.

Materials Used:
Hook: Singles or Doubles size 8 or any size you like prefer
Threads: Uni-8/0 in White and finish with Black Tag: Oval Silver Tinsel Butt: White Wool or Seals Fur Tail: Golden Pheasant Crest Rib: Silver Wire Body: Silver Tinsel Throat: Blue Jay or sub Guinea Fowl and Teal Blue Hen Wing: Hen Pheasant Horns: Blue Yellow Macaw

Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Fullingmill Glue and finally Varnish, which he applied to the thread after completing the fly.

Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE!

Tuesday, 12 February 2019

A Box for Every Occasion

As the Season approaches, it's time to sort out all your fly fishing gear, ready to hopefully tackle lots lovely trout.

After a rummage through the garage or shed, you will probably be faced with a load of stuff that was put away in a hurry at the end of last season, so where to start? Firstly, check your flies for any rust, damaged points and ragged dressings and make a list of what needs to be bought or re-tied. Also look at the foam in your fly boxes, which may need to be replaced or new boxes purchased. This is also the time to organise the contents of your fly boxes and decide if you are going to have one large box, like the  Airflo Competitor - and carry all your flies with you - or go for a few small boxes like the Fulling Mill Clear Silicone and just take what you will need that day.
Next, have a look at your landing net and make sure any moving parts are functional and check there are no holes or rotten sections in the mesh.  With some nets, you can replace the mesh or you may need a new one altogether.  If so, the new rubber mesh nets are very good and cause minimal damage to the fish.

Next on the list would be your fly lines. Give them a good inspection and a clean - something like Loon Line speed should do the job.  If you don't clean your fly line, it can reduce the line's 'shootability.' It can also cause wear on your fly rod rings, which can cause further damage to the line.

Hopefully when you put everything away last year you properly cleaned and stored your rods and reels so they should be good to go after a quick check over. Last but not least, get all your prepared gear stowed in your waistcoat or pack where they will be easily accessible.  This will save any faffing about when you need to change your fly line, leaders and tippets, flies, or if you need to apply floatant or sinkant to your flies or leader. Tight Lines.

Saturday, 9 February 2019

Choosing The Right Colour Of Salmon Fly

When it comes to salmon flies, the choice is endless. You have to navigate a plethora of patterns, shapes and sizes. But what about colour? In fact, how important is it to fish the 'right' colour of fly? Do you choose a fly according to the colour of the water? And what are the most effective colours?

Ally's Shrimp Cascade
Colour is important, however, when we start making rules like what colour of fly to fish when and where, the salmon have a habit of proving the opposite. Indeed, there can be few sports that throw up as many exceptions to the rules as salmon.
Sunray Shadow
That aside, most salmon fishers accept the theory that we should fish a bright fly when the water is coloured and a more sombre pattern when the water is clear.  So, in coloured water, we might choose a fly with a yellow and orange wing over a gold body. Later, when the water is clearing - but not yet absolutely clear - or on rivers that are naturally peat-stained such as the Spey, we might tone this down with the addition of some black. For example, Willie Gunn’s hair wing is a blend of black, yellow and orange over a gold-ribbed black body. And later still, in clear water we might choose an all-black fly or a black fly with a dash of yellow such as the Tosh or Dee Monkey.

Check the Water Colour
The above are broad generalisations to point you in roughly the right direction. But nothing is written in stone. It is often confusing how gillie's beliefs about fly choice differ. For example, you could be fishing a beat on the Findhorn where the ghillie is absolutely determined that a Yellow Ally’s Shrimp is far more effective in clear water than the standard orange version – which is only used when the water is coloured. But a couple of days later you could be fishing the Tay where the colour of the water is practically identical, and the gillie might tell you the complete opposite. Also, for the Findhorn, a few strands of flash in the tail could be the most effective style, while the Tay gillie might suggest snipping those flashy tail strands off with scissors!
Stoats Tail
In a similar vein, in fairly recent times the Cascade has become one of our most popular flies. But a few successful salmon anglers won’t fish it unless it has a fluorescent green butt (making it an Aurora Cascade) and jungle cock cheeks of just the right size. Because there is a belief that these additions take a good fly and make it great. And of course, because these anglers rarely fish anything else, it may be a long time before they change their minds.
Flame Thrower Red
So yes, it is confusing when we talk about fly colour. Each river is different; beliefs about what patterns and colours work best differ, water colour fluctuates, and air pressure goes up and down like the water level itself. However, what we do know is that the majority of salmon in the UK are caught with patterns that are tied with black, yellow and/or orange materials, but the choice is yours.

Friday, 8 February 2019

Baiting Up for The Bite.

As the winter really starts to bite, so do the cod.  They are brought inshore after the winter storms to feed on the glut of food churned up by the rough seas, so this is the time to get yourself a tasty supper. The Cod season on the East Coast of Scotland has got off to a bit of a slow start, but the hardy breed of cod fishing specialists are still able to root out a few cod from the rock gullies. So how do you get into this elite band of fishermen who head out in the worst of the weather and return home with ultimate prize catch?

P.P.P.P.P (Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance)

Successful cod fishing (like most fishing) is almost always down the to above motto.

1. Timing You need to be prepared to fish when the cod are there, and feeding. If fishing in your shorts and t-shirt is not the game for you, the best time is after a big blow.  In the depths of winter, on a lot of marks, you need to fish through the night and at the right state of tide to give yourself the best chance. An old fashioned tide table like the QT International Quick Tide Chart is as good as the internet, and more portable.

2. Location This may be the most difficult thing to master.  There are lots of well known cod marks out there, but most will be very busy with other anglers at the best times - other anglers can be very 'cagey' about giving up their secret marks. But all is not lost.  A bit of knowledge of the rough areas, and the wealth of online resources such as Google Maps and Avionics, combined with at lot of footwork, should get you where you need to be.

3. Gear You have arrived at the right place at the right time, so now you will need the correct gear. Firstly, you are going to need a good stiff, rough ground rod to bully the cod through the heavy kelp that fills the gullies that they love to feed in. Something like the Century Eliminator T900 teamed up with a good quality multiplier reel such as the Penn Fathom 25 star drag or Daiwa Saltist Black Gold is ideal for the job. Make sure you fill the reel with a good mono line around the 18-30lb mark and you are good to go.

4. Bait This is the most important part of the whole operation. You can get everything else right but if the fish don't want to eat what you have on offer, you will go home empty handed. Cod fishing means big smelly baits. Black lug, Pealer crab and Squid are probably the most common, but depending where you are, Bluey, Rag, or Mackerel may be the preference. Most sea anglers will use a combination of some of these baits and make a cocktail bait. Bait presentation is also important, especially if you are using big cocktail baits, because it makes casting with them a lot easier.  This has been recently aided by the Gemini Spring Loader bait tool.

Hopefully these 4 tips will help put you on the cod this winter. However, one of the most important pieces of advice is to be careful out there and making sure you know the ground you are on and what the dangers are!  Also take your mobile phone and let someone know where you are going and when you expect to be back.  Lastly, wear some type of floatation device like the Spinlock Deckvest Lite Auto Life Jacket or a Floatation suit like the Fisheagle Expert 2pc Flotation Suit.

This article was brought to you in association with Sea Angler Magazine.
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