Christmas is just around the corner; buy all your presents here.
There; got the tackleshop plug out the way... that's what you think! Read on… :-)
Fortunately for the local women the Troutbum Convention was more like a Troutbum Convent. Held up by floods, good fishing and women, only four of us managed to converge on Te Anau, and one was a day late (well done Brad). But three troutbums is still a very dangerous number and the Te Anau authorities expressed concern and considered closing the roads until, that is, it was pointed out that we'd probably just float in.
Camouflage was discussed a good deal this weekend... the question being should one dress like a tree and is it taking things too far if one uses face-paint? Of course this was treated with disdain until it was pointed out that this was very common practice in New Zealand, and the only reason we were unaware of this, was because it was so effective.
So yes, there was drink involved too. Although not at the same time, which was interesting.
The three of us who managed to arrive on time (Guy, Riley and myself) went to the "Mystery Lake". The original concept behind the Mystery Lake was, I had optimistically supposed, was that it was so good that it should remain a mystery. However it transpired that the "mystery" was actually in relation to what the fish were doing.
The technical term is that they were lying "doggo". Why they were lying doggo was the mystery. The conditions looked good. The fish should have been swimming around eating insects and doing fishy things, but they were lying doggo instead.
I caught rather a nice brown of about 5 or 6 lbs and I managed to take this fine photograph of it. Note that the photo is also somewhat of a mystery. I think that we have a theme developing here.
We all caught fish, Riley catching more of course, because he fished better than everyone else. Unfortunately I my camera battery ran out and so I don't have a picture of Riley - he shall have to remain a mystery. Mr "X".
Guy on the other hand successfully demonstrated that when trout are lying doggo, they can be netted, weighed and released all in one smooth fluid movement. He demonstrated this twice just to prove the point.
You can buy one of these nets in the tackleshop and they make excellent presents.
I pronounce this river the "Y-O". I believe that I am alone in this pronunciation, but that doesn't mean that I am wrong either. It's rather an exciting river, especially if you loose you footing. Before you know it you'll be 100 yards downstream feeling rather wet and foolish. That makes it swift.
And it gets a dramatic sedge rise. Mostly. And when this happens, it does so right on dark. This time, just to be different, the trout decided to do little in the way of dramatic rising and more in the way of sporadic rising. However, I may have absent-mindedly discovered the method: a muddler fished down and across. I'll be sure to let you know or I may just keep it a mystery.
Riley forgot his torch and so had trouble finding his way back to the car. I on the other hand remembered mine, and you can see the torch I was using in the tackle shop. They make great stocking fillers.
Pic of the Day
"Pic of the day" last week finally lived up to its name when we released a new picture every day. The Sexyloops frontpage changes every weekday and so too now does PoD. Not only that, but the pictures are getting kind of funky...
"Gone to pieces"
While I've been busy acquiring content for Sexyloops in the field and river, Steve has been doing his bit working on the Sitemap. The problem with Sexyloops is its size. Currently we have over 300 pages and no single routine appears to be able to cope with this depth, and so it has to been done by hand. Steve has this job. Thanks Steve :-)
Steve has been busy practising his flycasting in his mole field. The Experience successfully taught Karen to cast and fish, now it's time for Steve to get out into the bitterly cold French winter and blast some sexyloops out. His teaching will go up on site for the benefit of everyone. He will be making deliberate mistakes as well, since this is part of the whole learning experience.
In order to help him fulfil this noble quest, he has enlisted the help of his wife and a video camera. So Steve's casting and my dissection of his stroke will be appearing on site.
Here is Steve's introduction to the first video analysis
Steve BTW is casting with a Redington rod and reel coupled with a Rio flyline, all of which are available from the Sexyloops Tackleshop. Why he has so many moles in his garden is a mystery.
"Chaos and a stick"
There are currently four great threads going on in the Bulletin Board...
Last week we allowed members to chose their own avatars. It was a close thing, but we decided that using our own heads, would frighten too many people away and so we became birds instead. Steve is very unhappy with his bird... says it looks dead.
It seems, however, that the avatar thing is starting to go down well and although the heads thing is still too far out for general consumption, we will be becoming a little funkier this week.
Raising the bar
It has been pointed out to me that there are a number of sites trying to imitate this one – and one in particular (I think that they might stop now). This week I plan to launch two new sections and next week the same again. I have saltwater, rivers, the glossary and a "mystery" section ready to go.
"A mystery section... what's that then?"
The Christmas Barbie
Not long to go until the festive Christmas barbie. This year will be different compared to lasts on a number of levels. For a start I'm a vegetarian, and, unless something radical happens between now and then, I'm now single again :-)
Last year I "borrowed" someone's kids and had a go at the family thing. This year I'm going fishing :-)
I'll be wearing my Vision Extreme breathables...
Have a great Christmas wherever you are.
(Steve and Big Paul)