Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Lets Tackle Cancer, Glengavel Resevoir and mixed emotions

As a few of you know, my dad has been battling cancer for nearly two years. Unfortunately, at the end of August he lost his fight and I lost the strongest man I have ever known, as well as my best friend and fishing partner. At the beginning of this season I had won an auction from the excellent charity Lets Tackle Cancer. The auction was for a days fishing on Glengavel Resevoir for two rods. I had bought this as a gift for my dad. Unfortunately we never got round to setting a date to go.
It was with a heavy heart that I had decided to let the day pass and just leave it as a donation. That was until a chance conversation about Glengavel on a forum I frequent led to myself, fellow forum lurker and keen blogger Donald, arranging a day on Sunday.
To be honest I did not think I was entirley ready for a day on a boat. I have spent so many happy hours on boats with my dad that I thought it would tip me over the edge! Dramatic eh? 
One of the last conversations I had with my dad was a few days before he passed away. I was feeling sorry for myself and told him I had lost the notion for fishing and didn't think I could go for a while. Good day or bad on the water, he was always the first person I rang for a chat afterwards. His exact words were "you fuckin better keep fishing!, I will be with you every time you are out." haha
It was with these words pushing me on that I decided to go.

I arrived about half an hour before my boat partner Donald and I was made very welcome by one of the club members "Alby" who was there to greet us and show us the water. First impressions were excellent and I was eager to set up the boat.
 Conditions were looking great. Overcast and slight breeze. Glengavel has a reputation for throwing up some excellent brownies but they do not give themselves up easily. We decided to follow advice and set up a drift on the far bank. It wasn't long until I hooked and released a typical wee fish on the ever present and reliable " wee black flee"
The fish seemed to be very close to the shore and we pottered about searching for them and picking up two a piece. Then we stumbled across a wee area which seemed to hold a few and had some sport for about an hour. Best fish was about 1lb and a few were lost as well. These wee brownies really are lightening quick.

                                                    My dad called these fish "three to the pund"

The next one was full of wee pin fry. Picture didn't turn out too great but they were spilling out it's mouth!
Best patterns on the day were black snatcher and cormorant for me. I ended up with four and Donald had two so not too bad a days fishing really.

It was a really enjoyable day out after all my worrying and I didn't get too emotional in the end. It's just a shame that the bigger fish didn't show up but I will be back for them! 

Oh, just to tug on the ol' heart strings a bit, here is a picture of my dad on one of our last days out on Loch Ruskie earlier in the year. 
Here is a link to Lets Tackle Cancer website... They really do excellent work and there is a chance to pick some cracking days out.

Here is a link to my boat partner, Donalds blog... Fishing Scotland Many thanks for the day out mate.

Finally, here is a link to the Upper Avon Angling Club who run Glengavel and made us extremely welcome. A special thanks to club member "Alby" for his help on the day.


  1. It was a good day Paul, tinged with sadness at times but the trouts came out to play so maybe they know something we don't.I feel privileged to have shared a boat with you on what must have been a tough day and to have listened to some of the stories you shared with me about your dad who seems to have been the kind of fisherman I would have been priveleged to have shared a boat with as well.

    Thanks again for the kind invitation.


  2. Yeah Donald It was a good wee day. Many thanks for sharing the boat with me and for your kind donation to LTC. I've got my bug back!

    Tight lines