Chris McCully

Fishing Diary

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Quarry roach and rudd

Friday, 26 July 2019 at 17:45

Hybrid Quick session at a local quarry, which resulted in a mixed bag of roach, rudd, perch, skimmers and hybrids (see image). Allcock's Record Breaker and Mitchell 300, both of my vintage. Sometimes it's good to sit on a basket, watch a red-tipped float and dawdle in what's left of the day's heat. I enjoyed the roach...

Quarry skimmer

Friday, 26 July 2019 at 17:41

Skimmer ...and even these skimmers (though of all fish I am least fond of breams). I also released a perch that was so big (I estimated 1┬Żlb.) that it took line from the old Mitchell 300. Yes, really. It was a clever perch: I had it primed for its photograph - unhooking mat and everything - when it gave a heave of its tail, made a clean and beautiful dive, and vanished from whence it came. I tipped my sunhat to it.

Bustards on the Eden

Saturday, 13 July 2019 at 10:53

Camomile My reader will recall that earlier this year I spent time tying replicas of T.E. Pritt's bustard patterns (see 19th May). These Pritt fished at night on the Northern rivers in July and August. Last week, together with angler and photographer Richard Faulks, I spent time on the River Eden at Appleby, staying at the Tufton Arms ( We fished two nights, staying out until around 0100, and caught a number of brown trout on those bustard replicas (Brown and White Bustards, size 10), with plenty of activity after dark on fish which tweaked, pulled or were briefly hooked and lost. Richard distinguished himself by taking a splendid brown of 2lb+ in the darkness, though this last didn't come on the bustard but on a small (size 12) orange Muddler. It was a captivating couple of evenings, though I remember the smell of the night as vividly, almost, as the fishing: abundant camomile lined the field edges, and as they were crushed under wader studs the plants scented the darkness.

Stockie from Stocks

Saturday, 13 July 2019 at 10:48

Stockie I had a grand time on Stocks fishery in Lancashire (, fishing with my old friend Rod Calbrade. Our catches were modest but the rainbows did respond to dry flies fished from a drifting boat. Black Hoppers and the Ginger Midas - the last, a new pattern to me, and one suggesting some kind of sedge - did sterling work.

A poignant reminder

Saturday, 13 July 2019 at 10:40

Slaidburn So many Northern towns and villages have their war memorials. In Slaidburn there's a particularly poignant reminder of local lives lost in the Great War. It always astonishes me, just how many young men and women lost their lives, and of course those lives lost affected sisters, brothers, parents, lovers and friends. It touches me, too, when these memorials are - as at Slaidburn - so often so well tended and maintained. [W]e that are left grow old.... We will remember them.

At Slaidburn I was staying at the Hark to Bounty, a fine old country pub ( It's located in lovely countryside hard by the River Hodder, just ten minutes' drive from Stocks.

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