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Thursday, 28 May 2020

8 Steps To Tying The Best Nymph In The World

The most successful trout nymph EVER! How to tie your own ultimate stillwater, river, reservoir, stream, ‘you name it kind of water’, see where I’m going here, nymph!
A few simple steps to rolling your own Hare’s Ear! 
You Will Need…
Thread: Black
Body: Hare’s ear, ( although I’m fast preferring squirrel)
Click here to see all the steps in detail! Hare' Ear Nymph - made easy



Saturday, 9 May 2020

Light Rock Fishing Island Sea Lochs

During this lockdown, while fishing trips are off the menu I've been itching to get back out. With plenty of time to reminisce and recce, I am sure many of us have done is begun planning trips. 

Scanning through my fishing photo album there's one mark that I can't wait to get back to, hopefully the weather holds and I'll get to see Loch Scridain against beautiful blue skies soon.

Beautiful View of Ben More Across Loch Scridain


Loch Scridain is located on Mull. You can catch lots of species in the waters around the island; Mackerel, Skate, Pollack, Codling, Flatfish, Tope, Spurdog, Rays, Coalfish, Conger Eels and Flatfish. 

There are plenty of charter trips available if you want to go out with a skipper, while for the more adventurous may be able to find under-fished marks amongst the rugged coastline of Mull. Shore access is difficult at best and often inaccessible due to the cliffs though

The Sea Lochs and Estuaries will produce Sea Trout from late April onwards along with Grey Mullet, Pollack, Mackerel and Flounders. 

Rocky marks will turn up Dogfish, Wrasse and Conger Eels with fresh bait like mackerel. With a spinner you should attract Mackerel, Pollack and Coalfish. 

The sand of Calgary bay, neighbouring Langamull and the other white sand beaches in the South (Ross) of Mull and Iona will produce Rays, Flatfish and Codling.


________________________________________

It's the sea lochs that I favour and in particular the steep-sided Loch Scridain with its incredible views and superb fishing that I'm planning to get back to as soon as I can.

View of Loch Scridain

On my last trip, we'd been hillwalking on the island so I'd brought along my light rock fishing gear. This meant I could grab a session and keep mobile whenever I got the chance to go fish. I was targeting Pollack using lures exclusively.

Tackle for Rock Fishing

I find soft plastics such as the Swimy Cheburashka with it's weedless rigging work best, allowing me to get closer to the kelp without snagging up but traditional spinners like Tobys work well too.

I'll always have a range of sizes and colours but  I find a bit of baby blue or pink on the lure can give you an extra edge.

A short cast from the shore is all that is needed  to get over the kelp, then a variety of retrieval methods can be used to bring the lure back over the kelp to entice a Pollack to have a go.

Typical Scridain Pollack taken on light lure gear
Setup wise I use a nice lightweight rod that still has a bit of muscle to handle a decent-sized Pollack diving back into the kelp. My Rockfish Revolution paired with braided line gives me a great balance between casting distance and sensitivity to pick up feedback from the lure through the braid and pick up slight knocks and bites that I'd miss otherwise.

For lochs that hold bigger fish and snaggier ground, I'll step up my gear but this outfit is perfect for Scridain and similar waters on the island.


On my next trip, I will definitely bring along my bait gear for a longer session at the loch. I'll be able to set up at different marks as the tide changes through the day and take the chance to explore around with the lure gear while my baits are soaking.

Tuesday, 5 May 2020

Tying a Teeny Nymph with Davie MacPhail

As Davie points out in his demo, this is an incredibly versatile pattern that can be used and adapted for lots of species.

Jim Teeny describes it as "The original pattern that started my fishing career. I originated this pattern in May of 1962 to catch Trout. I had no idea that this fly would hold so many world records and catch so many different fish. There’s hardly a fish that couldn’t be caught on a Teeny Nymph.... from a small size 14 up to a large size 2 hook."

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 an Olive Adult Midge, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:


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!






Friday, 17 April 2020

Sawyer's Actual Flies - Davie MacPhail

Modern Classics


We've been tying up some Sawyer flies recently using Davie's simple how-to guides.
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Pheasant Tail - Davie MacPhail
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In this video, however, Davie is going through some flies tied by the famous Angler/River Keeper and Author Frank Sawyer himself. 


These classic patterns include The Killer Bug, Grey Goose and a Pheasant Tail Nymph/Franks "Bow Tie" Buzzer/Midge Pupa.

Davie has a good look at the patterns picking out some variations and little quirks, the use of foils, wools and wires that were available meant that these patterns were innovation borne of necessity. If we didn't have such an abundance of specific materials to choose from these days patterns could well be very similar, reclaimed from scrap or repurposed from other industries.
_________________________________________________

As Davie mentions, there's still some footage of Frank tying available, here he is demonstrating the Pheasant Tail Nymph in the 1950s.


_________________________________________________

Try some of these patterns for yourself, there's a reason that they've have endured for decades and are still catching fish today.

Wednesday, 8 April 2020

Shimano Spinning Reels Maintenance Guide

A simple guide from Shimano to help keep your reels running smoothly for longer.

Shimano® reels, when properly maintained, provide years of dependable high performance. Below are a few simple steps to help keep your Shimano® reels in top condition, as well as, preventative measures to avoid costly repairs.

List of tools that may be needed for service:
  • Small Flat Head Screwdriver
  • Small Phillips Head Screwdriver
  • Lubricant - Bantam™ Oil (BNT1445) or similar Oil & Grease
  • Cotton Swabs
  • Isopropyl (Rubbing) Alcohol
  • Tooth Brush
  • Paper Towels or Rags
Gather up tools and cleaning materials recommended to service reel. Some  Shimano® reels come with Bantam™ Oil but others are available. These simple tools are readily available at hardware stores.

Remove spool assembly by turning drag knob counterclockwise. On reels equipped with a rear drag, spool assemblies are release via push button and handle assembly.

Inspect spool assembly for damage. Pay special attention to the spool lip, as damaged or chipped spool lips will consequently cause premature wear on fishing line.


Clean exterior of the reel with cotton swabs and isopropyl rubbing alcohol. Clean off excess oil, grease, salt deposits or debris. Keeping reels clean helps prevent costly repairs or replacement.

Clean exterior of the reel with cotton swabs and isopropyl rubbing alcohol. Clean off excess oil, grease, salt deposits or debris. Keeping reels clean helps prevent costly repairs or replacement.

Lightly oil line roller assembly using Shimano® Bantam™ Oil. Regular oiling (after every fishing trip or two) will greatly increase the life expectancy of the line roller bearing.

Oil drive gear bearing (s). Bearings are visible with the handle assembly removed. Some reels
also have an additional drive gear bearing on the right-hand side.

On reels that are equipped with a Maintenance Port™ apply one or two drops of Shimano® Bantam ™ Oil. Do not use WD-40® or any degreaser, as it will cause premature wear and tear on the internal parts of your reel.

Oil bail arm assembly to maintain smooth and consistent bail operation. For further assistance, or to order parts, contact Shimano® Customer Service or your Shimano dealer.

Sunday, 5 April 2020

How To Maintain Your Rods, Reels & Flylines

Over the course of a season your gear can get into a mess but you can preserve your kit with some simple steps.

Completely air dry your rod and place it in a cloth bag and tube before storing.
You should periodically clean your rod with warm water and soap and let it completely dry. If you are using them in saltwater make sure you do this every time out.
Take the rod apart when you are done fishing to avoid stuck ferrules. Storing assembled rods saves you a little bit of time but when they are stuck solid you run the risk of damaging the rod trying to separate sections.
The application of a little wax can help prevent slipped joints and breakages. To protect the tip, it is best to bag your rod with the tip and handle up, remember not to tie the sock up too tight.
Use a simple cleaning spray for wiping down the outside, at the very least rinse them in clean fresh water and dry them thoroughly. We'd recommend using an air duster and a simple reel maintenance set that contains synthetic reel oil and precision reel grease for maintaining the moving parts inside.
If you’re not confident then it’s best to leave them alone as some disassembly is required – but be careful and you can easily keep your reel serviced without needing to do a full strip and build.

  • Clean the reel by rinsing with cool fresh water and dry.
  • Take care to thoroughly remove all sand and grit from the reel.
  • Leave the frame and the spool apart and dry out of the reel case.
  • Reduce the drag pressure to the lowest setting when the reel is not in use and store in a neoprene or cloth reel case away from extreme temperatures.

After use in saltwater, pay attention to cleaning the reel, as saltwater can leave a sticky residue that will harden over time and corrode ­unprotected metal parts of any reel.
Your flylines are dragged through muck and vegetation regularly. All those bits of grit add up and they’ll reduce the line’s lifespan.

Soak the flyline in warm water with some washing up liquid, five minutes should be grand unless it’s very dirty.
Gently pull the line through a cloth into another bucket of water to wipe off any remaining dirt. Don’t put too much pressure on the line, as the heat generated in the cloth can distort a flyline.
Gently pull the line back through a clean cloth, removing detergent and
dirt. You can then wind the line back on to your reel.
Floating fly lines can benefit from an application of one of the fly line treatments ­available but take care when using them on other lines in case you make your great intermediate line into a bad floater.

Friday, 3 April 2020

Sawyer's Killer Bug by Davie MacPhail

Another of Frank Sawyer's classic patterns, so simple and so effective. 

The story goes that Frank Sawyer originally developed the Killer Bug (in the 1930s) to eradicate grayling from the river Avon where he worked as the riverkeeper. Reportedly, the Killer Bug, which was tied to imitate a scud, was more effective than even netting or electro-fishing – hence the name Killer Bug. Now that’s a ringing endorsement if I ever heard one!

Chadwick's 477 Yarn is like hen's teeth now, original Chadwick’s 477 changed colour when wet from a greyish brown to a pinkish tan due to red fibres present in the wool, which presumably better matched the scuds Sawyer has was imitating. Chadwick's 477 hasn't been produced for decades now, all is not lost if you can't track down the original there are other options available to do a very passible imitation.



Davie's version below uses the original's two materials approach, with the addition of some superglue and varnish to make the pattern a more robust fishing fly.





Materials Used:


Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish and Superglue to improve the longevity of the pattern and prevent the wire from slipping whilst tying.

Davie recommends a ceramic bobbin holder, particularly when you're tying with wire, check them out HERE
Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE.






Thursday, 2 April 2020

Tying a Pheasant Tail Nymph by Davie McPhail

In his book Nymphs and the Trout Frank Sawyer describes
"The great joy in trout fishing comes with the knowledge one has deceived a fish into taking an imitation of the natural insect on which it happens to be feeding. If the fisherman is a fly-tier there is added pleasure, for in the occupation of making an artificial, he will be filled with the anticipation of seeing his creation accepted by a trout in mistake for the insect he has been at such pains to copy."

In the years since Frank Sawyer created his ubiquitous Pheasant Tail Nymph, tied using just pheasant tail fibres and copper wire, the fly has undergone as many variations as there are fly-tiers. Many of these variations involve the addition of tying threads, peacock herl, dubbed thoraxes and many beadhead pheasant tail patterns are used all over the world.




Frank Sawyer MBE, was an English River Keeper who devised the PTN for use on the chalkstreams of Southern England.
He designed this nymph to imitate several species of the Baetis family, generally referred to as the 'olives'; it quickly became world-famous.





Davie's version below uses the original's two materials approach. and while most of us won't have access to the copper-red transformer wire in Sawyer's notes but modern wires are a suitable alternative.




Materials Used:


Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish and Superglue to improve the longevity of the pattern and prevent the wire from slipping whilst tying.

Davie recommends a ceramic bobbin holder, particularly when you're tying with wire, check them out HERE
Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE.






Wednesday, 25 March 2020

First Flies on the Line?

Everyone is locked down just now but we were looking for some inspiration to tie up those early-season year-round patterns while we're all in the house at the vice.
We were looking for those ones you've got confidence in March but have a place on your line right through to November. It's not just that pattern though it's how to fish them to keep you catching so we asked some of our game anglers in Edinburgh Angling Centre for their first flies on the line.


----------------STILLWATER TROUT----------------

Callum is our go-to stillwater Trout angler, he had a couple of patterns that he would never leave home without. They're staples in but with some tweaks you can make sure you're getting the best out of them.


Hot Headed Damsel
 

As most stillwater anglers will know, fishing the right lure when the temperatures are still low can be a devastating tactic when targeting rainbow trout.
One of the flies I'd suggest having in your box if you don’t already, is the Hot Headed Damsel, this is an extremely effective damsel nymph imitation, most of which will feature a brass bead to help gain some extra depth. This version has an orange or red bead to provide the trout with a hotspot to hone in on.

This is an excellent fly choice in late winter and throughout spring until it warms up, as these small damsels are often found in huge numbers in stillwaters, and they tend to stick around decaying weedbeds or sheltered bays. The fish get turned onto these aquatic insects so they are keyed in on them throughout the year, this makes it a superb searching pattern counting down through the depths to find feeding fish,

My favourite way to fish a damsel, would be to use a 3 or 6 foot sink tip fly line, a single fly on a mid length leader, with a steady figure of eight retrieve, with a couple of pauses and twitches thrown in to ensure that you are accurately imitating the nymphs natural movement.

Diawl Bach


One of my favourite nymphing tactics is to fish a team of two Diawl Bachs with a heavier nymph on the point of a long leader with either a full floater or hover intermediate. This is because Diawl Bachs are excellent imitations of Corixa (an aquatic bug found in most stillwaters), and the heavier nymph allows me to ensure I am reaching the correct depth.
Generally, I will use this method around the margins in an attempt to successfully imitate the real thing, as Corixa will most often be found feeding around weeds and reed beds, looking for algae and other vegetation.

This is especially useful for anglers who are new to fly fishing, as there is no need to cast your full line out into the middle of the pond. You can shorten the leader down, fish two flies and as most fish taken on this method will be quite close to the bank it puts Trout well within a short cast. My retrieve when fishing this method is to twitch back quite fast and erratic, which can result in some brutal takes up close!

----------------RIVERS-----------------------

Grant took on the river patterns, if you want to know about nymph and small stream fishing then Grant is definitely the man to ask.


Micro Glint Perdigon


My go to pattern all year round, as it seems to be deadly no matter what conditions you are fishing in. Most of my larger fish over the last few seasons have been caught on one of these flies and they are  a perfect example of what I look for in good fly design.

They are simple to tie and due to their slim profile and size, they sink like rocks. This makes them especially effective in fast water, as you’re able to ensure that you’re reaching the depth the fish are sitting at.

When you are looking for a killer pattern in lots of settings, the one that goes on first before you know what the hatch is like or what the Trout are feeding on, is one that really is a generic imitation that passes for many forms of aquatic insect. It looks like nothing specific but it looks like everything in general so Trout and Grayling are always pretty keen on them!

Pheasant Tail Bomb (PTB)


When the water is cooler the fish are normally still found closer to the bottom of the river and any time the water level is up on the rivers, you will need something heavy to get down. Perfect for nymphing your way up a pool on a traditional or Euro Style leader this is more than just sacrificial weight to get your flies down and fishing.

This is why I like to use a PTB, it’s heavy enough to knock a cow out on your backcast and given the changeable weather we’ve experienced in recent years, that’s exactly what you need for when conditions aren't ideal. Ensuring that your flies are reaching the appropriate depth at this time of year really can be the difference between blanking, and managing a few fish to the net.

As most fly anglers will know, the Pheasant Tail Nymph is one of the oldest fly patterns in the sport, originally developed by English river keeper Frank Sawyer. Variations of his pattern have been created over and over again in the years since then, and it is still one of the most popular flies for stillwater and river fishing to this day. I would never leave the house without at least a few variations of them in my box.

Thursday, 19 March 2020

Tying an Olive Adult Midge with Davie McPhail

With the UK Trout Season in full swing, its time to get your Fly Boxes filled and ready to go fishing. The Olive Adult Midge is a classic wet fly that works very well throughout the entire season. This green bodied wet fly is often used in the middle or on the point of a wet fly cast and it works well as a single fly on stillwater venues. These Midges are most commonly found when it starts to rain and throughout the year, there will be plenty of that especially in the UK, so get tying a few of these all-season flies and get out fishing.

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 an Olive Adult Midge, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:



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!

Friday, 13 March 2020

RNLI Clinic Results

Glasgow Spring Open Weekend Life Jacket Clinic:

We'd like to thank Alan McLaren and the team from the RNLI Roadshow who attended our Open Weekend recently, we got time to catch up with Alan to see how the event went. They had one of the best turnouts to any of their Clinics in recent years and these safety checks really could save your life.

Every year, around 200 people drown in the coastal waters around the UK and Ireland. These tragedies happen to people taking part in a wide range of water-based and waterside activities. Whatever your activity, wearing a well-fitted, well-maintained and suitable lifejacket or buoyancy aid could save your life.


RNLI at the Open Weekend

Of the checks carried out, there were a variety of failures and faults that could potentially put the wearers life at risk.

18 Loose Gas Bottles, this can allow the bottle to unscrew upon activation and under inflate or fail to inflate the life jacket.

20 Out of date Auto Firing Mechanisms, there is a date stamped on the mechanism that needs to be checked and replaced as necessary. Expired mechanisms may fail when you need them and one of the jackets checked had a mechanism that expired in 2004.

2 Jackets with corrosion on the Gas Bottles, this corrosion leaves a rough surface that can act like sandpaper wearing a hole in the bladder which can cause a failure to inflate.

1 Jacket with a Manufacturer's Recall that was destroyed by the RNLI with the owner's consent.

One thing Alan and the RNLI wanted to emphasis was that 15 Lifejackets checked had NO CROTCH STRAP.

It's not a failure at the clinic check but a crotch strap is a very simple addition that can make a huge difference.

The video below illustrates the importance of a properly fitted lifejacket with a crotch strap, it's pretty funny in a controlled environment but the thought of this happening in the water is terrifying.

With and Without a Crotch Strap

Here's an RNLI demonstration on how to fit a crotch strap correctly.


Some other recommendations were flagged up.
33 Lifejackets checked had No Light: A light, whistle and reflective strips will all make you easier to find if you do fall in the water.
34 Lifejackets checked had No Spray Hood: which will keep wind-blown spray away from your airways, making it easier to breathe and reducing the risk of drowning.


Research has proven that wearing a lifejacket can increase your chances of survival by up to four times if you’re immersed in cold water.

Your lifejacket may save your life one day, but only if you maintain it properly. If your lifejacket is faulty, all you’re wearing is a dead weight.

These free lifejacket clinics, and specially trained RNLI volunteers will show you how to maintain your lifejacket to keep it fully functioning. Don't wait till you're in trouble to find out your lifejacket is not working properly. We'll be running a clinic at the Edinburgh Open Weekend in July and the Glasgow Autumn Open Weekend in September.

You can also find out where your nearest lifejacket clinic through the RNLI. REGISTER YOUR INTEREST



Thursday, 12 March 2020

Tying Robin Twm's Small Sedge with Davie McPhail

The Robin Twm's Small Sedge was first tied in late 1949 to 1967 in Wales and was darker in colour to most other Sedges. A wing made of partridge tail, with a slip of red-brown feather tied in first, one of the speckled feathers tied above. This small sedge is excellent when fished as the top or middle drop on a cast during a night fishing session. These flies also excel in windy day-time conditions. An excellent traditional fly to have a few of in your fly boxes.

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 Robin Twm's Small Sedge, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:




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!

Thursday, 5 March 2020

Tying a Claret Bob's Bits with Davie McPhail

The Bob's Bits Fly has been a favourite with Stillwater fly anglers for several years. Originally it was created by Bob Worts for fishing the Grafham Water when reservoir trout fishing was in its infancy. It was not long before its popularity spread to other Stillwater venues and eventually became a fly that you cannot do without.
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 Claret Bob's Bits, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:
Hook: Fulling Mill All-Purpose Medium size 10 Thread: Uni-8/0 Black Rib: Uni Mylar in Pearl Body: Seals fur in Claret
ThoraxSeals fur in Claret
Hackle: Dark Red Indian Cock Feather

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!

Fishingmegastore Reward Card Members Only Pre-Sale @GAC Thursday 5th of March 2020!



As a special thank-you to all our loyal shop customers who joined our rewards Reward Card Scheme, we will be offering all of our Spring 2020 Open Weekend deals a day early to all of our Fishingmegastore Reward Card holders!
Join the 1000's of customers already reaping the Reward Card benefits!

From 5.30pm until 9pm on Thursday the 5th of March 2020Fishingmegastore Reward Card holders who come to the store will beat the crowds and still qualify for all of our amazing deals and offers that we were keeping for the weekend! Even if you haven't received your card in the post yet, simply show a staff member a recent receipt with your unique barcode on it, and they can quickly verify your membership so you can qualify for all the deals!
Over 75,000 of our customers are already benefiting from the scheme by earning points every time they shop with us that soon add up to money off future tackle purchases!
Don't have a Reward Card yet? You still have time to sign up, just ask any member of staff instore any time or apply online HERE! Beat the crowds and still benefit from the Autumn Open Weekend deals, plus you never know what angling celebrities just might be hanging around, setting up for this weekend's big event!
See below for just a few of the hundreds of deals on offer.  We will be giving Reward Card holders exclusive early access from 5.30pm until 9pm on Thursday the 5th of March 2020, and of course, these offers will be available to all of our customers instore on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the Open Weekend Event.  This is an addition to demonstrations, tuition and previews of this year's up and coming products from all the big suppliers in what has become the UK's largest FREE angling event!
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!   

Tuesday, 3 March 2020

Trout & Salmon Recommends 2020 - Stillwater Fuze

The Reel Deal


In a recent edition of the Trout & Salmon Magazine, around page 100 you will find their segment for the latest fishing gear for discerning game anglers. As of last year, Stillwater released a brand new fly reel called the Fuze. A lightweight, high-quality Aluminium fly reel that features optimised spoke design and a reliable disc-drag system. Well, the good folk from Trout & salmon decided to review the reel and give it their seal of recommendation. Below you can read the review:

"While we'd all love to own a beautifully engineered fly reel, something we could appreciate as a piece of angling art every time we fixed it to our rod, many of us cannot afford to invest in such piscatorial pampering - especially when a more reasonably priced reel will do more or less the same job.

The Fuze from Stillwater meets the main needs of a modern fly-fisher: it's made from light aluminium, has a large arbour and reliable disc drag. True, it doesn't have the Swiss watch detail or Space Age finish of the prestige brands but it is strong and durable. The reel foot, handle, drag knob and captive spool-release nut are aluminium, not plastic and are finished in an eye-catching green. The drag knob has more travel on it than a top-end reel, but it has plenty of range and the drag is surprisingly smooth with plenty of stopping power.

The Large arbour spool picks up line rapidly and provides ample capacity: 5/6wt 100yd/20lb; 7/8wt 180yd/20lb. It is supplied in a protective cloth bag."



Monday, 2 March 2020

RNLI Lifejacket Clinic at the GAC Spring Open Weekend

GAC Spring Open Weekend

The RNLI Safety Roadshow have confirmed they will once again attend our Spring Open Weekend Event on the 6th, 7th and 8th of March 2020!

They will be in our exhibitor's marquis at the front of the store all weekend carrying our FREE lifejacket clinics as well as providing safety advice to keep you safe every time you are on the water.


Visit the RNLI in our Exhibition Tent

The purpose of the roadshow is to increase awareness of safety on and around water during any fishing activity and with the recent tragic loss of some anglers in the UK we want to do all we can to prevent these accidents happening in the future.
Get your lifejackets checked for FREE!
In addition to issuing general safety advice, the RNLI will run a lifejacket clinic where anglers can bring their life jackets to be checked and where they can receive advice and instruction on the correct use and maintenance of life jackets. A particularly important focus is on the automatic inflation type of jacket, the most common type used among recreational anglers in the UK. Please make sure you pay them a visit while you are at our event - you never know when you might need the help of the RNLI! https://rnli.org/
Auto-inflate lifejackets are preferred by anglers

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 entry and FREE parking, 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!

Casting Demonstrations and Lessons at The GAC Spring Open Weekend

GAC Spring Open Weekend

Come and meet the experts, including SGAIC instructors, who will be providing free fly casting lessons and demo's for all anglers of all ages and abilities for the entire weekend.

Some of the world’s finest fly-casters and instructors, including Scott MacKenzie, Stevie Reid, Steve
Peterson and Stevie Munn will be on hand to help you improve your technique and get the
most from your tackle!

Scierra Pro John Milne will be in place at the casting pool to help you make your first cast, learn a new one or add a vital yard to your personal best.

Free Casting Lessons


What better way to choose a new rod than under the watchful eye of a qualified instructor
or fly rod designer?


TIMETABLES:


Friday 6th March

Saturday 7th March

Sunday 8th March
These guys will also be instore over the weekend showing off the new gear for 2020 demonstrating different setups with lines, rods and reel for you to try. Ask any of them for some help to pick out and balance your outfit.


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!

Friday, 28 February 2020

Angling Life with Paul Young

My Angling Life - Paul Young



Highlights of a 2018 interview with the angling legend,

With an acting career spanning decades Paul is a renowned angler and host of the BAFTA-winning Hooked on Fishing TV Series and currently plays the much loved Shug in BBC's Still Game.






So, what was it that got you started in fishing and kept you coming back?


Living down by the Firth of Forth, we fished for Flounders in the winter and Mackerel in the summer.

When my family got a car, I was able to travel to the rivers in the Borders with my grandfather, who was a keen fisherman and I took great delight in catching little fish.

I started off fishing the worm, catching Trout or Perch and progressed to swinging a wet fly before learning more sophisticated styles and even starting to catch bigger fish.

The delight has never gone out of it though. I don't fish as much as I'd like to any more but I love meeting and speaking to anglers, talking about the trips they've had and sharing stories. Fishing is a great uniter.






What about fishing now, how do you see it's changed?

It’s changed a lot now. Youngsters can catch fish I’d only dreamed of and the technology is unimaginable compared to what I started out with.

Fishing tackle has come such a long way, there are not really many bad rods anymore and youngsters can get started out with some superb gear with a wealth of information available to them.

It was decades before I caught my first Rainbow Trout. Now, you can go along to waters and be disappointed if you haven’t had a two pounder! There are so many opportunities river, lochs, fisheries are much more accessible and people are more mobile now than in my day, it's very exciting. although kids are much more supervised now and they've got an awful lot more distractions available to them than I ever did.

Fishing itself hasn't changed though, the excitement and the challenge of the unknown are always going to be there for generations to come.





Any fish that stand out for you? 

I've so many great memories of fishing in amazing locations, I’ve been incredibly lucky, caught some very special fish and seen wonderful places.

I am a game angler at heart and the one that stands out is a Sea Trout I caught in Tiera del Fuego in Argentina.

It might not have been the size of groupers and other fish I’ve caught but that one is probably the best.
Paul's 30lb plus Tiera del Fuego Sea Trout
Alongside a 40lb-plus salmon on the fly, that 30lb-plus Sea Trout make for quite a pair to have on your angling resume

                                                                                                     
Check out Paul's Hooked Series over on STV Player HERE
                                                                                                     


What's your fishing like at the moment?

I don’t get out as much as I used to but I love supporting charities like Let’s Tackle Cancer and seeing youngsters out there catching fish, getting out in the outdoors, having respect for wildlife and passing that on to the next generation.

Paul with a young fan


So do you have any fishing regrets?


We fished a lot in the UK for the programme but sadly almost none in Wales, and not as much of Ireland as I would have liked. My producer and I often talked about the places we'd like to cover there.

We fished the Bann in Northern Ireland, an unusual one for us concentrating on coarse species, but we never got to explore the big Irish Loughs for the show. I wish we'd been able to show that off to the audience.

Farther afield, I’ve always wanted to catch a Grand Trevally on the fly. We fished as far as the Seychelles but never got the chance to target them. It was the one that just never came together.

What was the most challenging fish for the series?


I’ve always been a Trout fisherman. That’s what I cut my teeth on and although I’ve caught plenty of Salmon and they are extremely difficult to catch on-demand.

They don’t feed in the freshwater, any Salmon angler will tell you there are lots of trips that just don't go to plan. You know trout have to feed at some point but if you are Salmon fishing to a strict filming schedule they are the most frustrating fish.

What is the future for Scottish Salmon fishing?


It’s changed dramatically over the years with the effect of Salmon farming. The lack of rain this year has had a major effect on fishing returns. But now Catch and Release has become the norm, I can see stocks recovering and with the right management we could end up with a fishery like the Norwegian rivers.

There's a lot more to Scotland than the famous rivers and Salmon though, I speak to lots of fishermen who are moving away from chasing big fish to targeting the little fish they caught as kids.

You can go to Sutherland and fish any of 365 lochs happily catching three-to-a- pound brownies in a water for every day of the year. There are a lot of people taking up Light Rock Fishing with tiny little baits and jigs targeting the host of species that we've got along our shores it's a refreshing change from specimen hunting.

Paul's hopes are high for the future of Scottish Salmon

Hundreds of anglers grew up on your shows. What do you feel is your legacy?

Often when I meet anglers at shows they tell me I’ve cost them a fortune in angling trips. Then they’ll get out their phones and show catches from all over the world.

We were trying to show the experience of it and often we were showing species and locations to fishermen that they’d never seen on British Television before.

I'm happy to still see that adventure and exploration in modern fishing programs,  I really enjoyed the new series on the BBC (Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing).

I know Paul (Whitehouse) well after meeting at an audition years ago. His programme really brought out the fun side of fishing with your friends and the benefits of being in the outdoors.

Paul with a fan's Prize capture immortalised by Fish Recreations




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