Posted in Family, Travel

Laura’s Fishing Tips

fly fishing in a riverA walk along the banks of the River Ness suggests my seven-year-old daughter Laura might be destined for a scientific career.

“Why does the ground stay there and not get washed away by the water in the river?” she asks me.

Cue for some improvised theorising, concocted by the very unscientific me, drawing on vague memories of  a documentary about soil erosion and news stories about flooding.

Strolling further along the river bank, we pause opposite the lay-by where fisherman park their cars.  They cluster together, comparing notes, planning strategy.  It’s clearly a very serious sport around here.

We see several cyclists arrive, perilously dangling their fully extended fishing rods behind them.  We hope they won’t hook any passing pedestrians.

We watch them don thigh-high waders before  they trudge through the fast-moving shallows to cast their rods into deeper waters.

“Don’t the fish notice them?” queries Laura.

I fail to dredge up any memories from school biology lessons about the fish’s field of vision.

“Maybe fishing rods are always brown or green or grey so that fish will think they’re just tree branches hanging over the river,” I suggest.  “After all, you never see fishermen with brightly coloured fishing rods.  And they tie things called flies on to their hooks – bits of feather and suchlike that are meant to look like naturally occurring river insects that fish usually eat.”

Laura considers this proposition.

“Then I think they should stick leaves on their rods, too, to make them look more like branches.  Otherwise I’m surprised that the fish fall for it.”

I was wondering why we’d never seen the fisherman catch anything.

POSTSCRIPT ON 18TH AUGUST 2010

Venturing into a branch of Aldi for the first time yesterday, I was rather pleased to spot something I’d never seen before – a “fishing t-shirt” and “fishing sweatshirt” for sale entirely patterned in camouflage suitable for a riverbank.  Where Laura leads, others follow…

Author:

Author of warm, witty and gently funny fiction and non-fiction, including the popular Sophie Sayers Village Mystery series, beginning with "Best Murder in Show", inspired by her life in an English Cotswold community, short stories and essays about country life. As Commissioning Editor for the Alliance of Independent Authors' Advice Centre, she writes guidebooks authors. She speaks at many literature festivals and writing events, and is part of BBC Radio Gloucestershire's monthly Book Club broadcast. She is founder and director of the free Hawkesbury Upton Literature Festival which takes place in April, a member of the Romantic Novelists' Association, and an ambassador for children's reading charity Read for Good and the Type 1 diabetes charity JDRF.

Join the conversation - leave a comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s