Who am I?

An individual, of no great importance, who is unable to 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!


Saturday 20 April 2024

A very expensive day-ticket session!

 I was lucky enough to get a full day session down at Sandwich Coarse Fishery on Friday and am extremely grateful to Kevin & Ken for their understanding and support. It was a challenging session, due to the unsettled (and that's a very debatable description) conditions which dominated proceedings. I ended with four Carp falling to my 15mm Complex-T pop-ups, on German rigs. Three were doubles and all Commons. A guy fishing a couple of swims away actually landed a stunning Mirror of 31 lbs and asked if I would do some photos? 

"Snowy", from Deal, with his superb 31 lbs Mirror

It was a pretty decent time on the bank, if I'm honest, and I spent quite a while playing around with the camera kit in an attempt to get some additional blog content. It was this quest for images which was to result in disaster. I had just landed my fourth Carp of the day and set up the self-take kit in preparation of lifting the fish from the water. What happened next proved to be a catastrophe. As I lifted the landing net, containing the fish, to remove the arms from the spreader block, the handle knocked over my Benbo tripod, which was directly behind me, and smashed my camera onto the gravel swim. The result being that the rear viewing screen, which had been adjusted to allow me to see myself holding the fish, was completely disconnected from the camera body. Bollocks!! Double Bollocks!!, it was only an 11 lbs 12 oz Common that I'd landed. I didn't really need a picture, did I?

My first "double" of the day - 13 lbs 8 oz

Absolutely no way was anyone else at fault. I'd screwed up, big time, and it was me who now had to sort this out. Once the session was over, I packed up and headed for home, absolutely gutted with my stupid mistake. I recalled my calamity to Bev, once indoors, and explained that it would need a quick, yet costly, fix because being without a camera isn't an option for me.She muttered something about new wardrobes and a bathroom re-fit, yet agreed that another camera was doable. So it was just after 10.00 hrs, this morning, that we jumped into the van and headed off to West Sussex for another visit to Park Cameras in Burgess Hill. 

A bit of light rain on Friday

I am not being paid to advertise this retail outlet, yet every time I have been in the shop the staff have gone above and beyond to ensure my needs were catered for. Today all I wanted was to replace the Canon EOS 70d with another similar model. The guy who served us was obviously a very keen photographer, but didn't push sales pitch, or personal opinion, instead doing his absolute best to ensure I left the premisses with what I actually required. As it turns out, I did get another, pre-owned, EOS 70d plus a bonus "image stabilized" 18 - 55 mm lens all for £300! Advert over, all I will say is if you are ever in need of camera kit, Park Cameras is a great place to pay a visit. So whilst I'm in the promotion mood, I will also use the blog to point visitors in the direction of an upcoming publication by Medlar Press. It is a book written by my good mate Gareth (Gazza) Craddock and illustrated by the highly talented John Richardson. Forgotten Fen is about the flatlands, Gazza being far more eloquent, although maybe looking through slightly "rose-tinted" glasses, in his ability to portray the emotions aroused by simply becoming part of this environment. It is to be released in Autumn 2024 and I am certainly looking forward to getting my hands on a copy!


  1. Put it down to 'The Carp Strikes Back', Dyl. I understand though. Probably felt like I did when I put a pebble through a patio door (not mine) using the strimmer 😯.
    Still, upside is an excellent new combination of camera body and lens. Blog world will await results with baited* breath.
    * Leave the room Ric.

    1. Ric,
      The Carp Strikes Back indeed! This is the second incident since I retired and yes, that latest version proved costly, but it was a small Common which flapped, as I attempted to remove the hook and deposited right into my thumb which was the most painful. Never before had I been so grateful for the barbless hook rules of the C&DAA. Since that time I have never used a barbed hook again, even for my Pike fishing, so some benefit was gained from the experience?
      All the best - Dyl

  2. Inspirational Dyl?... I must consider that an "accident" could also occur to my now seriously dated camera kit?.. I'm sure "her indoors" would understand... right?

    Thanks for the heads-up re Gazza's book... how could I not read something dedicated to my old stomping grounds?

    Keep'em bent brother


    1. It is a fact of life that accidents happen but this, particular incident, was clearly avoidable if I'd engaged half a brain cell? No doubt at some point in the future I will do something equally stupid, yet I feel sure that this lesson will stick purely because of the pain in my wallet.
      Gazza's writing style is light years away from anything I could produce, so I'm confident that Medlar Press have found themselves a real gem with the publication of "Forgotten Fen"
      So until we meet in the Ethelbert, next autumn, cheers for the comment, all the best & tight lines - Dyl

  3. That's on my list . Gareth's writing is captivating and I'm privileged to know John well.

    1. BB, Gareth is a truly gifted wordsmith who is able to tell a story in such a way as to draw you into the whole scenario. That he is writing about the "flatlands" is going to be quite interesting from my point of view. I'm a tell it as it is sort of bloke, whilst Gareth orbits a far more spiritual plain? Rose tinted being my slant on his view of the world. However, he's a good friend and I'm sure that this book will do nothing other than elevate him further as a hugely talented writer? John's artwork won't do anything else but enhance the book's appeal to a far wider audience than just us old school anglers.
      Cheers for the comment, take care & tight lines - Dylan