From the Riverbank Part 12: Mayflies

From the Riverbank Part 12: Mayflies

  The English countryside has settled comfortably into summer, with trees heavy in leaf, and the borders along the little lane leading down to the river brimming with wildflowers; cornflowers, irises, poppies and celandine with pink willow-herb and thistles towering over them all. Robert Byron, in his prose-poem All I...

Read more
Kingfishing

Kingfishing

The original binomial name for the kingfisher, Gracula atthis, was devised by the great Swedish toxicologist Carl Linnaeus, but later re-named Alcedo atthis, which actually stems from the Greek ‘alcedo’, meaning halcyon, in turn derived from the Greek goddess Alcyone, daughter of Aelous, God of the winds. Atthis was a...

Read more
From The Riverbank- Part 10

From The Riverbank- Part 10

  It’s been a six month since I last cast a fly on the river, six long months of feeling the autumnal chill enfolding the evenings and penetrating one’s very bones, russet and parchment leaves cracking underfoot, shortening days shuffling into night, a white confetti shower on scrunching grass, ponds...

Read more
Upstream Part 9

Upstream Part 9

A six month season seems like a reasonable span, stretching from around Easter to the end of September, but it just whistled past, and as the days get shorter and autumn turns to winter, one is immediately thinking about  next Spring. Having well-defined seasons is one of the joys of...

Read more
From The Riverbank: Part 7

From The Riverbank: Part 7

Although there are now few UK rivers, certainly less than 15%, for which the flow regime can be considered natural, the rivers and streams have basically followed the same course since the last Ice Age, around 12,000 years ago. The need to drain land, to protect it from flooding, to...

Read more
From the Riverbank. Part 6

From the Riverbank. Part 6

By Don Grant   Everything was perfect for a day’s fishing. It was warm without being too hot; there was some wispy ‘cirrostratus’ to take the edge off the summer sun; the water was, if not gin-clear, certainly ginger beer clear; there were some mayfly coming off the water virtually...

Read more
From the Riverbank

From the Riverbank

Three of my most treasured joys all came together one glorious summer‘s day in June, with the sun splattering through the beech trees and dancing on the bonnet of the little Morris convertible as we drove from the cottage in Sussex down to a riverbank, some 40 miles away. With...

Read more