Who am I?

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An individual, of no great importance, who is unable to the see the natural world as a place for competition. I catch fish, watch birds, derive immense pleasure from simply looking at butterflies, moths, bumble-bees, etc - without the need for rules! I am Dylan and this is my blog - if my opinions offend? Don't bother logging on again - simple!

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Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Where's the fun?

It's my 58th birthday, today, and I'm starting to feel it! If I wake up and some part of me is not aching, then I must be dead! Life - simply time passing through your plans (credit Mark King - Level 42). A conversation at work, with a non-angler (he plays golf!), resulted in the question "where's the fun in that?" as I recalled yet another fishless session on the RMC. I immediately turned it around, unable to see the point of a good walk spoilt by a golf ball - so each to their own. Individuals have the right to decide their own definition of enjoyment and mine comes with the knowledge that I'm doing something that allows me to spend time in wonderful places, usually in the company of my son, with the chance of a big fish, or two, coming into the equation. If I fail in my primary task, then having the wonders of our natural world, as a back up, it is impossible for any visit to the waterside to be without interest!
A 1920's wooden centre pin, with a pike monkey indicator, and a new Sundridge "Optonic" bite alarm
I choose to use "old" tackle, the same gear as I used in the 1980/90's, and, as such, might not look like the real deal, but I know that should I hook a decent fish the ensuing battle will be interesting, without putting the fish in any jeopardy; my terminal tackle is state of the art, just my rods and reels are of questionable vintage. My pike fishing, in particular, hasn't changed in 30 years - the quarry being 150 million years old (according to the brains at the British Museum) - I can still use sea baits (Mackerel, Herring, Sardine, etc) without fear of Esox lucius developing some knowledge that these food items are not natural to their freshwater environs.
 
My Match Aeriel (Fred Crouch copy) and a Matt Hayes "Limited Edition" centre pins
I first used centre-pin reels when Fred Crouch introduced me to the Match Aeriel (copy) for barbel fishing on the R. Avon - c 1984. I purchased a Grice & Young "Big Piker" from Leslie's of Luton (St. Alban's branch) shortly after and used it on Tring and Lynch Hill to great effect - my best fish going 23lbs 4oz - generally with an ET vane-float and live bait. Since that time my collection of "classic" tackle has grown and I now find myself in the position where I no longer feel the need to up-date, purely as a fashion statement - what ain't broke don't need replacing!
 
A Shimano EX 3000 - one of the first Shimano reels on sale in the UK
Two of the true giants in angling history - at the back is an ABU Cardinal 66x; to the fore an ABU Cardinal 55.
It was this company that took angling reel technology to where we are today - truly visionary.

A tiny drain, a 1920's wooden cenrepin and a 1lbs 2oz T/C Tring Tench rod - "pike on" - where could be the fun in that?

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