2011 – Early April Blog

The river season may be over but I appear to be busier than ever. This past week I’ve been out a few times with mixed results. A day on the canal throwing soft lures didn’t produce so much as a follow. The sky was clear, the water even clearer and there wasn’t a breath of wind. It was the perfect spring day and although I visited four different lengths it simply wasn’t to be my day.

To be fair, baring spooking a 12 inch jack pike from beneath a bit of marginal cover, I didn’t see a single sign of fish movement. Not one fish topped.

With age comes experience and I knew I was on a loser, so I packed up early, took the circuitous way home and dropped in on a few fisheries. I do like to keep in touch with the owners whenever I can and a bit of publicity does them no harm, especially after the rotten winter we have just come through.

First up was Alderfen. Unfortunately Dave had disappeared off somewhere but who should I bump into but Ian Cougil and Alan Dudhill. They were perch fishing and had enjoyed a little success. Who in their right mind would turn their noses up at a 2lb 10oz perch – especially if you caught it on maggot while trying to catch a livebait!

From there I called in at Bank End. A superbly well run fishery that offers a lot more than match-sized carp. By all accounts it has thrown up a few nice roach this winter and the carp are now running to the mid-twenties. Of course, the match lake is regularly producing ton-up bags. David McCallum was also telling me about a rather exciting fishery project he’s on with but more of that at a later date.

And finally I called to see Phil and Irene at Tyram Hall. I’ve occasionally fished the syndicate lake in the past and it’s been great to watch the place develop. They lost the biggest resident this winter, a fish topping 40lb but there are at least half a dozen thirties following on. Casper the ghost is still a prized capture and rightly so at around 35lb.

The match lakes looked in superb nick, quite unlike most commercial-type waters in that the pegs are well spaced and it’s surrounded by mature trees. Indeed, I decided a commercial break was in order and sorted out a return visit.

The match lake has an abundance of silver fish. Indeed it is solid and if the late Ray Tinkler was still around he’d be thinking he’d already died and gone to heaven. It would be right up his street because Ray loved small fish and bites. Carp, you could keep.

Most anglers target the carp using pellets to avoid the smaller bream and roach. I went in on wag and mag with a view to getting plenty of bites and maybe a few nice slabs. Alas I simply couldn’t feed off the ‘bits’. Honestly, I must have had a bite every cast but hitting them was a nightmare although that didn’t worry me at all. I missed the net with at least a dozen fish and dropped a load of skimmers due to laziness, swinging them on hooks that were too fine for their soft mouths instead of netting them.

I also landed a carp or two up to about 5lb so all-in -all I probably had 25-30lb of fish on a day that was all about pleasure. Indeed I can’t wait to get back there for a return visit. I doubt I’ll see Phil or Irene, though, as they’ll be spending the next 4 months ferrying carp anglers back and forth to the Chateau Lake in France. Sounds like they’re practically booked up for the whole of the season.

It’s Alright For Some…

Our Andaman Adventure can now be watched on YouTube, in HD if you prefer, as Stu has done a lightning quick job of editing the footage. At almost 20 minutes long I have to say he’s done a superb job although it did leave me wondering where all the bad weather footage had gone. Then I realised, he was wise enough not to get the cameras out in the pouring rain unless we were  beneath cover and there was precious little of that on our boat. But watch it and you’ll get more than an idea what I meant when I told you the weather could have been better…!

Fancy A Trip In A Time Machine?

I came across a fantastic tool the other day that allows you to go back in time. Seriously. You can scoot back through time.

This isn’t my first web site. I had one ten years ago called World Of Angling. I actually thought it was dead. disappeared, kaput. Long gone and forgotten but the nature of the net is that all those noughts and ones are stored for ever, somewhere in cyberspace. Intrigued I took a journey back through time and now, so can you. Just clickon the picture and be whisked to a time before all the backstabbing and backbiting rose up and consumed angling on the Internet.

The amazing thing is that it’s practically all there and working. Articles, FAQ’s, images, the lot. Takes a few seconds to load but it’s worth it. Go on, waste an hour!

Get Your Fingers Out If You Want A Copy Of Barbel Mystique

Dr Terry Baxter’s new book Barbel Mystique has practically sold out already! I only announced its release a few weeks ago and by all accounts copies have flown off the shelves. I’m informed that there are less than 20 copies of the cloth bound edition left and just two of the leather bound.

Books As An Investment

Thelimited edition  books produced by Little Egret Press are not only proving popular, they are fetching fabulous prices in the second hand market. Take these examples:

Willow Pitch, cloth bound, (original price: £35) sold for over £150

Life and Times of Bill Quinlan,by Bob Buteux (original price: £18.95)  sold for £92

Spirit of the Pond, 1st edition leather by Tom O’Reilly (original price: £125) – Currently being offered on eBay with a ‘buy it now’ price of £695

Wild Rover, by Tom O’Reilly (original price: £18.95) – Currently being offered on eBay with a ‘buy it now’ price of £50

Carp Pitch, by Tom O’Reilly (original price: £18.95) – Currently being offered on eBay with a ‘buy it now’ price of £47

To browse the publisher’s catalogue, visit the LEP web site.

Fish With Tom Pickering For A Fiver

There aren’t many blokes who I’d rather have a day’s tuition with than Tom Pickering. I’ve known him a lot of years and even filmed with him. The first time we fished a match together, I was sat at home waiting for him to come and pick me up and all I could think was, ‘Bloody Hell, I’m going fishing with Tommy Pickering!’

The match was a 200 pegger on the Trent, we drew pegs 28 and thirty, or something similar, and the club angler pegged between us spanked both out backsides.

Anyway, you could share a day with Tom for as little as a fiver. As part of the ‘Big Bash’ charity fund raising Tom Has put himself up in the ‘Chances’ raffle. You pay a fiver for a ticket and the winner gets a day for two under the personal tuition of a former World Champion and current England Feeder Fishing Team that will compete in Italy this year.

Even if you’re always unlucky in raffles, every penny goes to a breast cancer charity.

Indeed, don’t take my word for it, go to the Big Bash Web Site where you’ll find instructions on how you can pay by cheque, cash, postal order or even paypal. And remember, if you download this form your contribution will be worth considerably more as the Taxman will generously refund the tax.

Don’t hang about, mind, as the winner will be drawn out at 2pm on Thursday 7th April.

If you have any other questions, need information or have positive contributions to make, give Kev a call on 07878706752

Well Worth A Listen

Music lovers might care to check out a site called the Live Music Archive. There are over 90,000 live recordings on there by acts big and small that you can listen to or download –  all legally and above board. If there’s a problem with it then it’s because there are too many concerts to pick from. There’s practically an entire career record of the Greatful Dead (7,504 concert recordings!), , a couple of hundred Smashing Pumpkins sets, umpteen featuring Hayseed Dixie, Billy Bragg, David Gray and hundreds of bands you’ve never heard of. There’s some fine stuff by the late Lowell George and Little Feat and it’s well worth checking out Paul Barrere’s post-Feat acoustic stuff (Dixie Chicken, Sailin’ Shoes, Skin it Back, Willin’ and so on) with Fred Tackett.

Most can be played at the click of a button from a top of page set list, some are in high quality FLAC format and may need converting after you download should you want to stick it on an Ipod.

This week I downloaded a recent Jason Mraz concert and it’s simply superb. Fantastic quality and a great performer to boot.

One way of cutting through the maze is to use the ‘This Day In History’ feature which lists a number of recordings according to the current day’s date. Today threw up a list that included a set by Warren Zevon (Werewolf In London), recorded in 1999. Can’t be bad.

A Memorable Night

I was in Sandy, Bedfordshire on Monday evening to present a talk to the Kings Arms Angling Club and help raise a bit of much needed cash for the local Sue Ryder Homes hospice. To say it went well would be an understatement. Great facilities at the Holiday Inn, a packed room, receptive audience and a few old faces from way back when for good measure.

My talk, which to be honest is a pretty easy for me as I just play two specially edited 50 minute films and talk over some of the interesting bits, was remarkably well received – especially the outtakes and bloopers where Stu and I send ourselves up a bit during the filming of Barbel Days and Ways. As well as previously unseen underwater barbel footage there’s stuff from Canada, India, Africa and even the latest Andaman Island trip. Pretty much something for everyone.

Anyway, enough of blowing my own trumpet, it was great to bump into old Bob Church again. I’ve got enormous respect for the old feller and he really has been there and done it. For an International fly angler his coarse fish captures are remarkable. Indeed he’s just had his 50th 20lb pike – on a fly, of course. Quite a guy. And he’s still passionate about Northampton Town – real football. You can tell a supporter of lower league football because they’ll always tell you they’re in a bit of a false position in the league, playing better than their results suggest. That will probably sound familiar if you read this column on a regular basis.

The show was worth attending for Mike Green’s short but very noteworthy slide show at the beginning. Mike is a regular fishing partner of Bob’s and has been a pioneer of catching pike on the fly. He’s had no end of twenties doing it and eventually got his dream fish, a thirty, but that was eclipsed by his PB, a fish weighing 40lb 8oz that he had, yes, on a fly, from Chew Valley. Top angling!

What interested me though was the number of big perch, chub and zander he’s had on flies. Maybe the seeds of a new project have been planted in my head.

Anyway, the final sum raised during the evening is still being tallied up but it won’t be far short of £3,000. I call that a good nights work and a worthwhile use of everyone’s time. Pleasure to do it and thanks for having me lads. Perhaps I’ll join you for a day on the Ivel this year.

PS: Don’t mention the cormorants…! (in joke)

Fish N Tips

I’ve just received a press release which previews the next Fish ‘N Tips magazine contents and I have to say it’s rammed full of spunky articles that’ll get your juices flowing. Guaranteed to make you want to get your rod out and give it a waggle. Anyway – here it is:

Press Release – Fish’N’Tips Magazine – April 1st, 2011

The second issue of F’N’T hits the newsagents shelves next week and follows on the back of its sensational launch at Vince Davies Phenomenal Farnborough Flea Market. Packed full of articles to get your juices flowing it’s a read you can’t miss. This month we’ve teamed up with Kleenex Tissues to bring you a cover mounted gift no reader should be without, a packet of lanolin impregnated tissues to go with our motto, ‘We think of everything’.

Here’s what’s inside…

Techniques

Got A Lob On? You will have after reading this. We strip down for summer perch.

Get on Top While The Sun Shines. Cast off your winter kit and go for it.

Baiting strategies. Is That A Bait Rocket In Your Pocket, Or Are You Just Glad To See Me?

Double Bagging. You know you’d like to.

Stockings or a Solid Bag. Which do you Prefer?

Match Fishing

Lubed Up And Shiny. We compare the best pole elastic lubricants.

Which Whip? This comparison is bound to please.

Head Girls. Ladies World Championship Special.

Short Pole Techniques. Where size isn’t everything.

If You’re Hard Up – Why Not Roll Your Own? Bait making special.

Tackle Tarts Live Test: Gagging For It. Does Monster Crab make your spicy sausage taste better.

Two Man Bivvy Erections. How quickly can you get it up?

Stripteaze. The FNT girls get lowdown and dirty with a Kryston favourite.

Picture Special: PVA or PVC? Our girls model it, you vote for which takes your fancy.

Happiness is holding your rod in your hand – our own Posh offers you some encouragement (see right)

All Our Yesterdays

Exclusive – Vintage Stuff – We dust the cobwebs off The Fish Handling Code. A real rave from the grave where we look at a flawed and ancient code of practise. It may have been done to death in every other comic but we sex it up.

Your Bit

Letters – including one from a Frenchie.

Happy Hookers. Your fishing girlfriend (not that many readers actually have one) could be our next Bivvy Babe Pin-up

Stories

Great Battles Of Our Time. ‘She was stuck behind a (gravel) bar but I knew if I kept the pressure on she’d soon be coming…’

One Swallow Doesn’t Make A Summer. Our thigh booted beauty waited all winter for a chance and then she blew it – A picture special you won’t want to miss.

She’s A Big Girl Now. Terry H cuddles up to his latest conquest. Old and round as his mum but he don’t care.

Cundiff  Heads Down South: ‘It was quite hairy.’ Reveals the Yorkshire stud muffin.

Talking The Talk

Brasses I Have Known. Danny Fairbrass talks about the early years.

Coming Next Month:

Hooters – The only way to start a fishing match!

Tarty Flavours – Cherries and plums do it for us.

(And if you believe all this then maybe you should check today’s date…)

I could go on, but does angling really need this? I don’t think so. And as the angling demographic is rather weak on the 13 to 30-year-old age group one imagines it’s doomed to failure. Surely, for it to succeed and appeal to that target audience you need trendy, young, hip and cool writers led by a fashionista of sorts and I just don’t see that. Guys, drop the titillation and give us a brand new cutting edge fishing magazine. Surely that’s not a lot to ask?

If the best you can come up with is a bit of underwear and a re-hash of the Barbel Handling Code then it’s time to consider just how much money this little indulgence is going to cost you.

I mean, what’ll be the next spicing up ploy? Racist jokes and homophobic rants? Guest columns by Roy Chubby Brown and Jim Davidson perhaps?

In the not too distant past we’ve lost the CEMEX mag, Coarse Fisherman, Coarse Fishing, Coarse Angler, Carp Angling News and Techniques, Catchmore Carp, Midland Angler, Southern Angler and Northern Angler. I’m sure there are others. IYCF and DHP’s coarse mag are dominant because they are good. They target their core readership. They don’t try to be soft-core porn mags. Come on guys, drop the birds and concentrate on producing a brilliant mag. Angling is crying out for a good one.

Footnote:

The following announcement was published on the magazine’s web site today:

Goodbye Fish ‘n’ Tips

Wednesday, 30 March 2011 08:48

Despite the  good response Fish‘n’Tips Magazine received at The Big One Show, online and via copy sales, the second issue has been cancelled.

Fishermen liked our fresh approach, our entertaining features and the fact that we intended to put them first; the average fisherman, rather than the sponsored angler.

However, as we struggled to get support from advertisers, which is half of the revenue stream for a magazine, we were unable to continue.

Many thanks to those advertisers & contributers who did support us, Subscribers will receive their refunds shortly.

Kind regards
The Fish ‘n’ Tips Team

I have to express a degree of sympathy for my old mate Steve. He posted an apology on his web site for the lack of recent blog updates, actually citing that he’d been busy working on articles for F’N’T. Indeed he promised that in his next blog he’d be putting up an argument as to why he believed it was right to support and be part of it. Steve, I think you should still make that case. It’ll be interesting to hear it in the light of events.

20 thoughts on “2011 – Early April Blog

  1. Like the ‘Time machine’, never come across that before. It was however not as spectacular as your 1992-93 Angling times Videozine which I watched today. I hope Diawa paid you extra sponsorship for that?! I definately think that Barbel Days and Ways is a significant improvement. It was funny to see you and Mr Hayes like that when you both are so natural on camera now. Not that I can talk, having only ever appeared on West Mids News once and being completely pants!!
    I don’t fish puddles or canals, so I’m relying on your blog to keep me going till June – keep up the good work.
    Cheers

    • It’s funny, you know, I can watch myself on recent Tight Lines programmes or any of the Days and Ways DVDs and the web site video clips in comfort, but I absolutely cringe at my nervous incompetence in those early steps into film making.

      The videozine was my concept. I thought there was a market for a video based angling magazine, published bi-monthly with a suporting pamphlet or slim brochore that could include the rig diagrams and any detailed explanations required.

      Back then the height of Matt’s ambitions writing-wise was to publish an occasional article in Anglers Mail (his preference over the Times). I set up a meeting with Keith Higginbottom, then editor of the Times (as I already had a Times column running), and sold the idea to him of using it as a reader special offer with Matt and I providing editorial support. This was Matt’s introduction to the Times and through that, his launch to the EMAP market.

      Of course, Matt’s ambition all along was to host his own TV series (even prior to this), and I still have the old pilot video tapes kicking around somewhere.

      Frustratingly my column space was reduced, my earnings halved and Matt took full advantage of his opportunity. I actually confronted Keith (Times editor) about the way I saw things developing and he said, ‘Bob, relax, you’re a columnist, you’re here for the long run, Matt’s just a contributor.’

      Of course, Matt went on to become the Times’ star manand even went on to nick my column with the juniors!’ But that’s water under the bridge and I have no regrets. He deserves to be where he is and I still regard him as a good friend.

      When volume two was released my role as joint presenter disappeared (perhaps rightly as I was totally wooden) and the Times had found the new star it desperately needed.

      The two videozines sold many thousands of copies ‘off the page’ and are still selling today almost 20 years on in DVD format. I personally received just £200 from the entire project – Lord knows where the money went, because there must have been some!

      It’s no different with about 10 other videos I made in those early days. Lots of promises, little return. Stuff that I see sold in multipacks, boxed sets and so on, I ain’t seen a penny of the royalties. But hey-ho, I’m still fit, happy and going fishing whenever I feel like it.

      Life could be worse.

      As for payments by sponsors, back then I didn’t receive a penny from anyone. Indeed my first contract was for clothing, two rods, two reels and a discount on anything I bought. Makes me smile when I read some of the outrageous claims made on the Internet about folk being paid to plug this, that and the other. The real world is very different.

      I shall do my best to entertain you through the closed season but time will always be my enemy. So much I want to do and writing isn’t doing. In fact I’m dashing this reply off now while I wait for the traffic to clear. then I’m going fishing, I hope.

  2. Hi Bob,

    Having to rewrite part of my Update for obvious reasons!

    The positive is that I have a number of articles to use elsewhere and I’ve got into the discipline required which you are readily conversant with.

    I will put up the “argument” because there is one, you only have to look at magazines in other fields which have successfully worked the formula that FnT was looking for

    For me it was an opportunity to promote barbel fishing from another perspective, promote the Barbel Society and to write for a whole new audience.

    There were plenty of front line writers waiting in the wings for the follow up issues so the fishing content was always going to be there.

    I’m off to the Ritz to spend my “wages” and then its all systems go on pushing my website because theres no doubt that is the medium for the forseeable future.

    All the best.

    • Surely Steve, if F’n’T was going to be a revolutionary new dawn, a completely different fishing magazine, those articles will be so different they won’t fit in an old-style magazine. Or are we saying the only difference was that it had half naked women in it and everything else was just the same-old, same-old?

      I’ll look forward to your justification piece, especially if it’s based on ‘the formula worked successfully in other magazines’. You can’t mean FHM or Nutz as their sales have crashed in recent years. If you mean Razzle, Playboy, Readers Wives, Penthouse and so on, I think you’ll find they’ve closed or are close to going out of business. If you mean Tit-Bits and Reveille, afraid they had their heyday just after the Second World War.

      Show me a w**k mag that a single fishing tackle manufacturer advertises in!

      Show me the demographic within barbel angling that this magazine was hoping to attract. And would you still want to encourage that element? Come on, it was never for grown-ups.

      Compare your quote, ‘front line writers waiting in the wings’ with the one by the magazine owners, ‘entertaining features and the fact that we intended to put them first; the average fisherman, rather than the sponsored angler’. I’m afraid that is a clear message they were not aiming to use front line writers, or they were bull*****ing.

      Of course there must have been some front line writers waiting in the wings, hoping it would be a big success, another cash cow that they could muscle in on and regurgitate the same-old, same-old. Is that what you’re saying?

      Or were they just ‘invisible friends’.

      😉

      Steve, count your blessings. The outcome was so predictable. Only the timing surprised me.

      Steve, it was a mistake. A mistake by EVERYONE who got involved and allowed themselves to be tainted by association.

  3. Hi Bob,
    Long time no comment from me, I see your blog is still the best out in cyber land and some are still trying to emulate your formula. What some of them lack however, is the charisma or the knack you have of putting things over, or the personality to attract readers on a regular basis.

    You being an all round fisherman is the difference in my opinion. Single species anglers are limited in how many ways they can keep their blogs interesting; they do not diversify enough to keep readers coming back time and time again.

    I think you just about explained it as it is to Steve Pope in your last comments; Fish N Tips was never going to be a viable mag. I rather think some saw it as just another medium to promote themselves or their guiding, bait, businesses.

    Keep up the good work Bob.

    Kind regards
    Ray

    • Thank you for the kind words, Ray. Blogging’s all about what you put into it rather than what you can get out of it and of course, it helps if you go fishing a bit and have something to actually write about.

      I trust no-one actually thinks I’m having a pop at Steve for supporting the magazine. Long before the magazine launched we discussed it and my view has never changed – it was an ill-considered gamble and one that I would not associate myself with. But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t remain friendly towards those who did choose to be involved. Indeed Steve asked if he might use some pictures that I took and I readily agreed.

      It does seem wrong to me though that the core content writers for the magazine – the angling columnists – would invariably be paid a lot less than the scantilly clad waifs flaunting their completely irrelevant (in this scenario) bits.

      I’m genuinely interested to hear Steve’s reflections on a lost cause, and for that matter I’d love to hear Mark’s, and I’m sure I will when the time’s right, but right now I suspect he’s feeling a bit raw.

      A few years ago the Angling Times appointed a new editor, let’s call him Jake, a former red top journo who wanted to lift the paper up by its boot straps and Jazz (jizz) it up. Kind of a fishing version of the Star. The readership weren’t impressed and he wasn’t around for long.

      History has a habit of repeating itself.

      As for self promotion or anyone trying to earn a living, I have no truck with that. We all have to eat.

      However, it’s up to editors to make the rules and manage the contributors, not the other way around. In the end, we should get to share the editor’s vision.

  4. All failed business ventures are a disapointment because at the end of the day somebody is going to be out of pocket.

    In parts I enjoyed the mag, I thought it “amusing”

    In others it was stretching it a bit…especially the part about cloning two-tone…cloning the fish is well within scientific boundries…it was simply put across very thinly.

    some of the advertising was a bit OTT especially the lady bits covered in plastic maggots…implied nechrophillia does not float my boat.

    However on the whole I enjoyed it, £3.99 is a bit steep for the content but….nothing ventured nothing gained I suppose.

    On the plus side I now have a collectors item. edition 1 of 1

  5. Hi, Bob
    It seems my previous comment on your last blog has been making waves, amongst a certain fraternity ‘mentioning no names, of cause’ although I’d bet my bottom dollar, I’m sure you will guess first time round, who it is.

    I just cannot believe, he’s actually playing the racism card, this time around & why he has chosen to name quite a few others in the process ‘yours included’ absolutley unbelievable.

    What makes matters worse, he has even published a comment, referring to sexual discrimination, how very dare he.

    Does this man ever learn?

    Apologies in advance, for bringing up the subject.

    ATB,
    William.

    • I’m afraid that whatever certain ‘individuals’ get up to doesn’t surprise me in the slightest. I’ve added inverted commas to ‘individuals’ deliberately because we all realise they never act independantly. They simply exist to egg each other on and create a competitive audience for each other.

      It’s kind of a ‘Who’s The Biggest Village Idiot’ competition, or ‘King Of The Assylum’. Turns out I’ve been nominated as their judge and each attempts to impress me with his inane stupidity.

      Unfortunately I’ve grown rather bored with each and every one of them. They no longer amuse me so I choose to devote my time to more constructive, enjoyable things, like fishing, although I would be telling porkies if I didn’t confess to having amused myself no end at their expense in the past.

      But I’ve moved on. I no longer read their rants and fantasies. Occasionally I come across an odd post on a public forum but what they have to say interests me not one jot. Unless they insult a friend or a respected coleague and then it’s only fair to consider a little moral support. For example, insulting comments about Mark B when he could not really respond.

      It’s not quite so easy for them though, is it? Their all-consuming bitterness and jealousy has a half-life longer than plutunium. Each week I tend to get a selection of idiot mail from the likes of Joe Kerr, and Gerry France and each week I add another few IP addresses to the spam filter. It keeps them occupied though, and that alone should be seen as a public service rather than a chore.

      And each time they post, or someone like you alerts me to the latest rant, I smile to myself, knowing for certain that I’ve well and truly got to them. Got under their skin so far that they simply can’t let go, doomed to live in the past, whereas we know the future’s where it’s at.

      No need to apologise, William. And in answer to your question, no, he doesn’t. I’m his ticket to infamy.

      • Hi Bob…hope you have had a good weekend.

        Please don’t put this up if you feel it isn’t worthy but an interesting situation has arisen.

        Now at the present the BS doesn’t have a reliable way to announce information on BFW.

        I emailed Andy Frances privately to see if I could have my posting rights reinstated (I took myself off the forum to avoid all the hassle) a couple of weeks ago. I haven’t recieved an email in reply so I haven’t pursued it as I took that as a no. No problem if that is what he feels. An email in reply would have been nice though.

        Now strangely, the contents of that private email has suddenly appeared in another antagonist email written to another BS committee member. The writer, Mr.Tony Rocca.

        Now how do we think that he got that private information? It doesn’t take Sherlock does it!!…

        And the response from AFB… Nowt to do with us. But is is I am afraid… We only have to read between the lines.

        So my advice to anyone out there is don’t think that private emails to the owners of BFW are that because they are not.

        Rich.

        • The only thing that surprises me, Rich, is that you’re surprised!

          However, you would think a dedicated barbel site would encourage and support all barbel groups even-handedly.

          But one thing you must take from this unfortunate act of indiscretion is something else you are probably not aware of. Private Messages sent between members of a forum are NOT private. They can all be viewed by the owner of the forum. Be careful what information you pass through the PM system – nothing is secret.

  6. Hi Bob, just noticed your remote control for your camera.Would you mind telling me your camera setup?

    Great blog as usual

    Jon

    • Thank you John.

      You may not have realised until that clever ‘spot’ that the majority of the images of me that are used in the blog or by the magazines are self-takes. It’s a knack I’ve acquired over the past couple of years, thankfully, because I used to be an expert at chopping off my head, bits of fish, getting stuff out of focus and so on in pictures.

      The camera I’m using is a Canon EOS 40D, mostly with a crappy 18-35 kit lens, although I do intend to upgrade that very shortly in the interests of taking better images. I also have a 28-80 lens and a 75-300. Both are of better quality but I like the close-up advantages of the wider angle.

      The remote I use is manufactured by a company called Hahnel and the model is the Giga T Pro Wireless Remote. It’ll work at long range, certainly greater than 50 metres which can be useful.

      For single shots you simply plug the receiver into the camera and then half-press the transmitter button to focus, full-press to shoot.

      For multiple shots you programme the transmitter (which means you no longer have to hold it and the fish) and it will take as many shots as you like at the time interval of your choice. For example you might set it to take 20 shots at 1 second intervals, between which it will refocus, so in the space of 30 seconds you can lift a fish from the water, take a shot from every conceivable angle and release it. Compare that with some of the faffing self-takes you will have seen in the past, or even the two-angler jobs.

      I think it cost me £70-odd quid which is about £200 cheaper than the Canon version. For me it has been worth every penny.

      Oh, just a thought. If I’m near the van I’ll set it up on a tripod. If I’ve a hike then I’ll use a bank stick adaptor for lightness.

      It’s a pain in the backside but I generally set the camera up as soon as my gear is ready. That way I can get the action shots like the one on the front page slideshow drawing folk to this blog.

      Each day’s shots are downloaded to my desktop until I’ve finished with them and then they’re transfered to an external hard drive. Those selected for use in articles or blogs are tweaked in Photoshop Elements 8 and resized accordingly.

      At the moment I’m shooting in Large Jpeg format but quite honestly I really should be shooting in RAW. Maybe I will when I’ve invested in the new lens.

      Hope that helps.

  7. No problem in giving praise where praise is due Bob, yours is the best blog by far.

    I have just read Steve Pope’s latest blog as I wanted to see how he would put forward his argument for getting involved in “Fish N Tips”? I wasn’t surprised at the real reason.

    Still he is lucky Fish N Tips didn’t take him on a “Death Trip” and I hope he isn’t “listening to the blood drip oozing from a curled lip” or become “Mr Soft” he best remember his no “Judy Teen” these days.

    Nice to see he is diversifying he knows it is the only “Essex Way”.

    Look forward to the next instalment Bob.

    Kind regards to ALL” Bob’s readers.

    Ray

  8. Thanks Bob for all the camera info, I am a nightmare when it comes to camera work, my last effort was a Big Tidal Trent Chub, which went all wrong. Definitely a lesson learnt.

    Thanks again

    Jon

  9. went for a walk around elsecar res today…………..and low n behold “yours truley” was there on peg 1…….having a walk round clcking away ??? any good snapshots bob ??? i must admit them windcasts look good !!! wats your thinking stockwise we carp in there,are you thinking of wetting a line for the carp in elsecar ??? or were you just having a social walk……. iv been prebaiting a few swims on there so i mite get “lucky” or luck mite not come into it lol ?

    ttfn
    the “little englander” ha ha ha ha

    • Just out for a bit of fresh air and a social. Was considering a day fishing for the bream and bumped intoone of the Fishing Republic lads and stopped for a chat.

      Don’t really know anything about the carp stocks. Not an easy water by any means and a twenty is a big fish.

      I’ll be sticking a couple of pictures in my next blog. Hope to publish it on Friday.

  10. Word soon gets round Bob about your visit down Elsecar Res, a friend of mine was fishing today and as you was walking up, another Angler pulled out of a Bream, your remark to him was a classic which when told to me was rather funny imo.
    Not a big match weights water, but very fair and the odd high twenty swimming around.

    Roll on friday

  11. yes,not an easy water carp wise !!! “BUT” thers more carp in there than people think……and more than the odd 20s than you think !!! lad who was in peg 1 was told ther mite be 50 carp in it,but id treble it and maybe then some ! years ago in mid/late 1980s wentworth carp lads aka the “dirty dozen” use to fish it and get high doubles and 20s……….and there is a 30 in it !!! bream wise,small 6mm pellets we a 3ft paternoster and 6inch link will sort them out and get you 30lb !!! but ther are no 10lb bream in there,that i keep getting asked about ha ha ha be good to see sum pics we elsecar res in blog,you shud have stopped bob we found a grass snake on a coot nest,wud have been a great pic !!! anyway thats enuf kiss n tell ha ha

    ttfn andy o

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