The world's best flyfishing site.
The Creel Path


Manual de Lanzado
Sección de Carlos
The Downloads


Monday: Paul Arden
Tuesday: Harps
Wednesday: Bernd Ziesche
Thursday: Mr T.
Friday: Ray
Saturday: Viking Lars
Sunday: Bruce Richards

Ronan's report

Sunday June 19th 2011

I discovered this new term yesterday. A Creel Path is an ancient pathway used by fisherman and fishwives, either to carry their fishing gear to the harbour, or (for the fishwives) to carry huge creels of herring from the harbour to market.

From ancient times, until the early twentieth century the east coast of Scotland was home to a massive herring industry, with tens of thousands of workers migrating – often on foot – up and down the coast following the herring shoals and the attendant fishing fleet.

There are legendary tales of fishwives hauling these huge creels on marathon daily hikes across country to get the fish to market. The fishwives were the sales and marketing arm of the operation, the herring workers were the manual labour. Women of all ages were involved: piggy-backing the men out to the boats in the morning; gutting and salting the herring when they got back to the harbour. Talk about hard work.

And now we have a spider's web of creel paths across the country, mapping these fishwife wanderings. Hard working women pulled too-and-fro by the twin tides of the wandering herring shoals and the people who ate them.

Today we're developing our own creel paths.

Our creels don't weigh over a hundred pounds and smell of kippers (although I think Paul's might). We carry a much smaller basket or more probably something funky from William Joseph or Fishpond, and it probably smells of floatant or midge repellant.

The paths we make are less obvious and much more personal: A labour of love. Our tracks mark out an internal cartography of the connections we make between ourselves, the landscape, and the fish.

Some of my well-used pathways seem almost tangible. I can think of the quick route out of London to the Thames in Berkshire, or further to the Wiltshire Avon. I'm sure I could've done those routes blindfolded.

Now I'm finding new creel paths here in Scotland. I'm scribing my own spider's web over the map, drawn by the glint of water and rumours of beautiful fish.


Pic Of Day

SL Promotions



SEXYLOOPS SCHOOLS - Flycasting in England and Hungary. Contact Paul Arden for more info.

Sexyloops on Facebook: Sexyloops on YouTube: www.YouTube/SexyloopsTV. This is Snapcast - our irregular monthly mailshot!

<-- Copyright Notice -->