I have been fishing since i was 6 years old, which we will just say here is a very long time ago! To put matters in perspective, my oldest grandchild is 6 in two weeks time and I hope to introduce him to the pleasures and the patience required to go after the big catch! I include a few sketches/photos with this blog some of which date back some 20+years but small fish shown were alas not caught on the May Fly which may explain their small size. A fisherman never lies about the size of his catch!! With the grandson, however, i will start him with a worm and bubble method because he is as yet too young to try fly fishing. However, I hope that he will soon experience the Mayhem and excitement of the May Fly season in the Galway/Mayo lakes. For those not familiar with this fishing method, let me briefly explain that the famous May Fly hatches out at the side of these lakes at the end of May/early June each year. So you can see dozens of fishermen in the early morning scampering among the rocks and low vegetation along these lakes picking up hundreds of live May Flies. These are then placed in the traditional timber boxes and are used on the Lake to fish by a process of dapping to catch large hungry brown trout. You simply sit in a boat for hours on end (this is where the patience comes in) holding a very long extended rod over the water with the May Fly just fluttering invitingly on the surface and waiting for a large brown trout to suck the bait down from below. Of course you must be on constant alert to strike at the slightest touch on the line otherwise the prey will rapidly disappear and all will be lost! So it honour of this special occasion I would like to set forth the following verse:
'Oh, its grand to be out in the old grey boat,
With a friend and a rod and a fly,
And to feel the lift of the boat as we drift
By the shoals where the brown trout lie'.
from Magic Camels' -W.P.F. (1938)
Note: some background information on fishing in Ireland can be had by clicking below: