Too Many Adverts & Not Enough Humour – The Problem with today’s fishing magazines

The problem with modern fishing magazines was hi-lighted again today in a post over at Maggotdrowning about some guy named Syd Huggins, who used to scribble for the magazines, apparently.

todays mags are far to serious with no humour at all and when ever they try it makes me cringe ,no idea at all .just like readin a set of instructions

Was the view of one poster, with another mentioning

very, very few articles are actually written by the anglers themselves anymore – it’s all done by the staff writers which is why all the articles seem identical.

90% of the articles are the same anyway…… sponsored angler X turns up at venue Y, catches a few fish on the latest ‘method’ (generally involving the use of his sponsors products) and thats it.

I’ve also seen plenty of posts in the past critical of the mags having too many adverts and not enough articles.

If you’re a magazine publisher, and wondering why your sales are going down the toilet, this probably explains why.

If you want to fix this, here are some ideas…..

  • Get some writers who know how to write more creatively
  • Get your existing writers to read stuff by Angling writers such as John Bailey & John Wilson & Chris Yates to show them how it should be done
  • Get your existing writers to read stuff by people away from the Angling world who know how to write in an interesting way, such as Jeremy Clarkson, James Delingpole, Daniel Hannan, Boris Johnson + the late Sir Patrick Moore.

If something isn’t done about it soon, fishing magazines are probably either gonna go extinct, or only get bought by kids who want to look at the pictures.

Posted in Fishing News, Rants

We’re nearly all set for the site update

The new website is all ready to go. I was going to do the switch over to the new site a couple of mins ago, but the 1&1 Internet Ltd “Control Panel” area I need to get into to perform the switch is down for maintenance right now.

Posted in Site News

Changes to the site coming sooner or later was originally built on my PC when it was running WindowsXP with Netobjects Fusion MX software I blagged as a freebie for joining 1&1 Internet hosting several years ago, and I’ve since upgraded to Windows7 and newer version Netobjects Fusion 10 (which doesn’t seem to like the save file for created by the older version of the software).

Therefore some changes may be coming along sooner or later, including…..

  • The directory part is being transferred to a section of my other website, AlltheInterweb. This will be stackloads easier to manage than the existing directory, and neater, and I’ll probably link into it via a subdomain such as soon as I remember to log into the hosting control panel to set it up. It would also enable site users to submit links themselves, except spambots have shagged it up already – I can manually add links myself, but can’t approve submitted links ‘cos spambots have submitted so much crap to it already that all that happens when I click on the Approve links button in the admin panel is a page giving an “Error500 – Internal Server Error” message.
  • A new frontpage built with the newer Netobjects Fusion software, so I’ll actually be able to regularly update it again.
  • Closer integration with Twitter – aka a Twitter feed widget box like on the front of
  • Ask fishing questions via a link on the site to another of my websites – AlltheInterweb Answers > Fishing.
  • A link so that if you like our website, you can leave a review for us at ALEXA, where at time of creating this blog post we’re ranked 22,596,224th most popular website in the world (surely gotta put that right at least and get into the top several thousand).
  • Probably also a new Logo / Banner, not Flash Animated, so the site is more iPhone & iPad friendly.
Posted in Site News Spreadshirt goodies

A few months back I cobbled together some promotional goodies using a website called “Spreadshirt”, which was announced on’s Twitter feed…….. you’ll find them here if you’re interested:

Posted in Site News, Shopping

Fishing video of the week

To keep the post count up, and try make this place look interesting, I thought I’d start regularly posting interesting fishing video clips I’ve found here on the interweb.

To kick things off I’ve found one of match angler Mark Pollard bream fishing on the River Yare (cross your fingers this works):

Posted in Bream, Coarse Fishing, Freshwater Fishing (General), Tutorials, Video Clips


This article is carried over from one of my previous efforts at a fishing website (which I’m about to re-do, and maybe tag team the old Articles section there with this blog). Originally written sometime around 2006/2007.


The line on your reel is one of the most important items of tackle you’re likely to buy, as that’s what (along with the hook) connects you directly to any fish you happen to catch.


However, one of the most commonly asked fishing questions I see posted around the internet is about how to attach the damn stuff to your reel in the first place. As this is something you generally need to do every couple of years regardless of condition (even sooner still if you often fish among lots of snags, lure fish, or come across any other problem that doesn’t do your line much good), here’s an (almost?) definitive guide on how to go about it.


There are a couple of tests you can do to determine whether or not your reel needs new monofilament line putting on it – visual & by touch.


The visual test…. other than when you’ve bought a new reel out of it’s box, and it’s blatently obvious you need line on it ‘cos there isn’t any on the flamin’ spool yet… the main one is looking for kinks in the line, and perhaps the occasional split on the end. If it’s just in the first couple of feet / yards / metres of line you can usually just get away with trimming it off. If it’s alot further along, then it’s time for new line.


The touch test is simply a matter of running the line between finger & thumb, and feeling for kinks or any rough bits… and also if you see a white powdery substance on your fingers that’s come off the line. If you feel / see anything like this, then it’s fresh monofilament line time.


Once you’ve established you need new line, the next task is choosing which brand, and which breaking strain you need to buy.


There are many brands of line out there, many of which sell a few different ranges. It’s essential to pick the right one, as some are better and more durable than others…. and others aren’t always truthful with the breaking strain & diameter on the label.


A good starting point of where to look is the EFTTA Line testing section HERE.


My personal recommendations are: In the UK, go for either SHAKESPEARE, or the own brand bulk spools by mail-order fishing retailers MULLARKEYS.

 To Anglers in other parts of the world, I suggest either BERKLEY or STREN fishing lines.


For diameter & breaking strain… you should already have a fairly good idea, with a like-for-like swap with what you’ve already got on (e.g. replacing 6lb BS line with some fresh 6lb BS line). You should also know what your reel is capable of holding if you’ve still got the manufacturer’s catalogue with it in (one of the reasons I still have a few hold ones hanging about), but the data should also be printed on the spool of your reel….. though it’s started to fade off some of my newer reels now they’ve got a couple of years use on them (hint: make a note of this info, and keep in a safe place for future reference in case this happens with your reels too).


I tend to prefer buying line in larger 300metre or 600m (or bigger) spools where possible… you may have noticed it’s generally sold in 100metre spools, but the blurb for your reel says it holds more than this.


I prefer to buy larger spools for this very reason, as it saves tying together 2x 100metre spools, which I’ve noticed causes a few problems (and I’ve always been a bit cackhanded with line-to-line knots). The first, is the knot tying the 2 together is a potential weak spot should you hook into a big fish.


However, the main one which always drove me up the bloody wall, was that it usually results in buggering up your casting, particularly with Fixed-Spool/Spinning reels (never tried it with a multiplier / baitcast reel). You cast out…. everything going smoothly…. then the line departing from the spool catches around the knot, brings everything to a halt in mid-air, landing with a splosh (and probably scaring off any fish that was there)………. and also causing a lovely little tangle for you to sort out.


So, as a result, that’s why I use bigger spools of fresh line to spool up my fixed-spool/spinning & baitcasting multiplier.


Now we’ve come to the part that got you reading this article in the first place…. actually getting it onto your reel. It’s a pretty straightforward operation.


1) The first step (once you’ve responsibly got rid of the old stuff) is to set your rod up as if you were fishing with it (minus a rig) – put all the sections together, and attach the reel.


2) Next, thread the end of the line through the tip ring (the one at the pointy end of the rod), and down through all the others until you reach the reel.


3) This next bit all depends on the type of reel you’re putting the line onto…….


Baitcaster/multiplier type reels: Thread the line straight through the hole for the level-wind mechanism (bit on the front of the reel, mounted on a bar, moves from side-to-side so the line goes onto the reel evenly). Bring the line around the bar in the middle, and tie it in place with an ARBOUR KNOT.

 To finish the job off, just reel in like you would normally… but for the first few turns you may need to hold the rod between your legs (if possible), and put your thumb on the bit tied around the bar, otherwise it just goes round and round inside the knot without doing anything….. once it’s got a few turns of line around it to hold it in place, it’s pretty straight forward from there.

Fixed-spool / Spinning type reels: To do this with one of these reels (the most popular type out there), it’s a little different due to the difference design of the reel from a multiplier / baitcaster.

First up, you need to open the bale arm (the wire rail on the front with the knobbly bit the line goes against), and you may sometimes find it easier to take the spool off the reel to start off with. I’ve found there are 2 ways to get the line attached to it. The first is to use the same Arbour knot as in the method for doing it with multiplier reels.

If you have trouble doing it that way, there’s my way of doing it…. snap a small elastic band over the spool of the reel that fits fairly tight over it, slip the line underneath it so the band holds the line against the spool, then tie the line to the elastic band with a MAHSEER KNOT, or any other knot normally used for tying Eyed hooks / Swivels.

Once that’s done, stick the spool back on the reel (if you took it off)… close the bale arm, and start reeling the line onto the spool. I usually find it helps to hold the rod between your legs while doing this, to leave the non-reeling hand free to put some tension in the line somewhere between the reel and the butt ring so the line goes on properly. It also usually helps to have a willing volunteer holding the spool the line was supplied on to put tension in it (with a pencil through the hole in the middle to act as an axle).

Keep on winding until the spool starts looking full…. but not too much, or it starts falling off the spool and tangling (and too little, and your casts can be affected). To make sure I’ve got it spot on, the trick I’ve discovered is to hold a penny flat against the line on the spool. If you’ve got enough on, the Penny should sit flat with the lip of the spool (at the front).

Posted in Boat Fishing, Coarse Fishing, Freshwater Fishing (General), Pier Fishing, Predator Fishing, Specimen Fishing, Tutorials, Youth Angling

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Posted in Site News

Follow us on Twitter

In a bid to try an further this site’s  attempts at World Domination, you can now follow us on Twitter:

If you’ve got any worthy News Stories related to British Angling, and you’d like me to post it on Twitter, give me a shout HERE (you can also stick it up here on the Blogs if you want).

Posted in Site News, Fishing News

Flask Hunt – a Vacuum Flask buying guide

Thought this would be a good article to cobble together to keep trying to get this blog section rolling, seeing as it’s the time of year for it with Anglers up & down the country sitting by the sides of Rivers, Lakes & Canals freezing their nuts off and needing copious supplies of Tea, Coffee, Soup or whatever to keep warm (or something resembling being warm anyway).

In first place is the Aladdin Stanley 1.9litre Classic, which seems to get consistently good reviews.

In Second Place is the Thermos Work Series 1.2litre, which also gets high ratings & reviews.

In third place, the Thermos Originals 1.2Litre Stainless Steel Multi-Purpose Food & Drink Flask.

And for something a bit smaller to keep the milk in seperately, then the Thermos Everyday 35 0.35litre.

For something to take along some lunch in seperately (e.g. Stew, Casserole, Soup, Curry, Chilli, etc) then take a look at these…

One last option for Hot water on the bank to make a cuppa or a pot noodle or whatever, you could always get a Kelly Kettle like Chris & Bob used on A Passion for Angling….

Posted in Food & Drink, Shopping, Tackle Reviews

How much to get kitted out to go Pike Fishing?

I saw a Question along these lines over at Yahoo Answers recently, I even went to the trouble of answering it in exteme detail including sources of the prices….. only later to see some nob had reported it as “spam”, and had it deleted (I hate that s******e sometimes).

So, seeing as this blog needs testing out, and filling out a bit, let’s have a crack at it here instead!.


Abu Enticer Pro Pike Rod – £41


Shimano Baitrunner 6000 ST – £49.99


BERKLEY Trilene XL (330yrds) – £5.50 (and on Buy 2, Get 1 Free offer)


JRC Defender 42″ Carp Landing Net – £35


FOX Deadbait traces – £3.25 (you’re gonna need a few)

Snaplink swivels – make sure they’re quality ones like THESE Berkley ones, not cheap crappy ones.


WYCHWOOD Slingmat (unhooking mat) – £24.99

Curved 10-inch Forceps – £3.99 (for unhooking the fish without getting your fingers munched).

Of course there’s a few other things you’ll need, like a few extra unhooking tools (e.g. pliers + bolt croppers, etc) and it’s also advised to go out the first few times with someone experienced at catching Pike.

For more advice on Pike Fishing  I highly recommend visiting THIS SITE – except since originally posting this blog it seems Charlie has packed in his predator fishing site, and some buggers using it sell bloody socks instead.

Posted in Coarse Fishing, Pike, Predator Fishing, Shopping, Specimen Fishing