I think it is fair to say that my time at Loch Awe has seen me push myself, and my techniques, to new levels as I have striven to get to grips with the pike of this magnificent fishery. I've learned a great deal, but have never come close to mastering the venue; if such a skill is, indeed, attainable? Benno and Sye have also followed this route as they, too, developed their own pike angling skills - fly rods, lures and float tubes included! Our final trip was one of the best, not because of what we caught, but what we did, how we applied ourselves and ringed the changes as the session progressed. We worked as a team and every aspect of our fishing was talked about as we strove to maximise the effectiveness of our efforts. One of the benefits of being an "old git" is the ability to look back and use past experiences to assist the thought processes as we attempt to move forward. Sye has travelled a very similar path to myself, although he hasn't been side-tracked by birding/mothing or bumble-bees and has been chasing (and catching) big fish regularly since the early 1980's.
He had said, before we left his home in Aston Clinton, that he wanted just one more photo of both of us with Scottish pike - the original was taken at Loch Ascog in May 1982. Benno wanted a "double" on his Bruce & Walker Mk IV and centre-pin whilst I wished to see our doubles total pass the 100 mark - fortunately we all achieved our goals.
|Benno with a 14 lbs 0 oz fish on the Mk IV and centre-pin|
|The photo that Simon wanted.|
Me with a 15 lbs 14 oz and Sye with a 14 lbs 4 oz
I really don't think that I'll ever return - it's been a fantastic privilege to have spent time on the shoreline of Kilchurn Bay. Alan has now passed over the tenancy to Kenny & Krissy, the site remains in safe hands.