Its been a beautiful week in Foxford and the river is in great condition with a few salmon splashing around the back of the town, we didn’t catch them all. P.J and I have taken it easy since the season ended. Well, when I say taken it easy, I mean we have not done any shop work. We have done some fishing and a bit of hill walking.
Our first outing was on Clew Bay last Sunday. A friend of a friend has a little boat which he wanted to try out and we said we would like to come along for the craic. Sunday was promised nice so the plan was made and we met up at 10am. A very relaxed outing which started with a coffee break, you know the sort, no rush, and no panic. We got the boat launched and were on the water before mid-day. We had a semi plan to try for Skate but when we got to the mark we wanted to fish there were four charter boats already anchored in the area. We quickly decided that it was not worth the hassle of competing for a space among them and chose instead to drift over a few shallow areas and see what we could pick up.
Mackerel, Dogs, Whiting, a Gurnard and a few Spider crabs. The wind was slack, the sun was shining, the boat was comfortable and the engine ran well, what more could one ask for.
It was a nice afternoon and we all vowed to do it again before too long.
A walk in the Bens
On our regular trips to Connemara to buy fish we often admired the twelve Bens. The Twelve Bens or Twelve Pins, also called the Benna Beola, is a mountain range in County Galway. On many occasions as we hurried past, we vowed to climb or at least stop and have a closer look at some of them some day. Well, it happened and on Wednesday last, we “tackled” Benbaun, the highest peak in the Twelve Bens! Yep, it was straight in and no kissing. Well, if we can make our way up the highest one then the others should be doable. We did encounter a few minor technical difficulties including a river that was too wide to jump and deeper than our walking boots (Soggy sock time) but overall, it was a brilliant experience and one I would highly recommend. The views from the top were amazing. Looking out over the coast we could see from Galway to Mayo while on the other side we looked at the Inagh and Kylemore River valleys. The sheer ruggedness was like something from another part of the world. I look forward to the other eleven.
By now most of us have hung up the rods, the Salmon and trout rods at least. I have been busy emptying jacket pockets and bags which like every other season are full of bits and pieces I was using during the season. You would imagine that a tackle dealer would have some pretty cool storage system and neatly organised boxes full of useful stuff. In the words of someone else “Ya never saw a tailor wearing a decent suit, did ya” and no, this tackle dealer lets the whole industry down. I have flies stuck in jumpers and hooks buried in corners of jacket pockets. That is enough detail, I’m sure you get the picture and at some point, I will get my act together. What I was going to say was that this is the time of year to giver the reels a quick service and check through the rods for damage. Make sure everything is dry before storing. One of my own fly rods is not looking great, I put it in the rod bag and placed it back in the tube after a wet day on Lough Mask earlier in the summer. A few weeks later I took it out and the cork handle was covered in mildew while the whippings on the eyes have gone discoloured, we live and learn. Its also a good time to return your Salmon licence, before the embarrassing reminder letter arrives, I speak from experience…
Soon time for some work
I mentioned we have been taking it easy, well that’s nice but it doesn’t keep the country going. We will soon be getting back to doing a bit. Our plan this winter is to do less hours in the shop and a few more working on the website. Over the next few months we will be streamlining the online store and making it more user friendly. As always we welcome your advice and comments.