FlyFishing The Welsh Borderlands by Roger Smith
Author Roger Smith has obviously done his homework in putting together this detailed compendium of fishing advice, locations, fly patterns, literature and more covering the Welsh borderlands. It is a book I will certainly be referencing in the future as I am sure will many others whether you already know the region are are planning a visit.
Flyfishing The Welsh Borderlands has everything you could wish to know about the rivers and streams of the region - the Dee, Severn, Wye and Usk and their many delightful brooks and streams. It discusses the ecology of the rivers, their history, the books that have been written about them, and the famous anglers of the Borderlands and their fly patterns and techniques. Walter Gallichan, the Reverand Powell and Canon Eagles all tell their stories, as do some of the most successful of today's Borderlands' anglers.
There are over 230 local trout and grayling fly patterns which have been specially tied and photographed for this book, together with selected excerpts from the best writings about the area, an extensive bibliography, and an up to date comprehensive catalogue of where to fish today, together with contact names, telephone numbers, addresses and websites. Roger Smith has done a great service for all the many anglers who know and love the region, and especially for those who have yet to discover its secrets.
Weighing in at just under 350 pages, this book as soon as you pick it up just feels right for what is billed as a comprehensive guide. The reproduced plate used for the front cover entitled 'Trout Fishing - First cast of the season' dates back to 1878 and also lends just the right air of history to this work.
Holding the book in your hand while you flick the pages from back to front as you do to get a view of the overall work provides tantalising glimpses of many different sections, layouts and colour plates which make the book visually interesting also and serves to break up the flow nicely instead of it all blurring into one long tome.
What is very obvious as you work your way through the 7 detailed chapters is that this is very much a reference book covering the Welsh Borderland region from top to toe and across many different aspects. Chapters on landscape-related poetry of the region and a full history of other flyfishing literature too, as well as the to be expected yet nonetheless excellently put together fly patterns chapter (225 local fly patterns for trout and grayling all told) plus a very useful where to fish chapter provide everything you would need to learn about, prepare for and then enjoy visiting and fishing in the Welsh Borderlands.
This has obviously been a labour of love for author Roger Smith and it shows. Thoroughly recommended for anyone already familiar with the area but particularly so if you are planning a visit and if you weren't then you might be once you have had a look at the book!
About the Author
Roger Smith caught his first fish on a fly at the age of twelve on the River Kennet and has been hooked on all things flyfishing ever since. Having retired from teaching and, feeling the effects of a lifetime of mountaineering and adventure travel, he now devotes much of his spare time to fishing as many of the Welsh Borderland rivers and streams as possible. Roger is an active member of the Worcester branch of the Fly Dressers' Guild and the regional secretary for the Grayling Society. He is a Life Member of the Wild Trout Trust, and a member of the Gamefishers Club and the Pheasant Tail Fly Fishers.
Standard Edition - £25
High quality paperback with flaps
Collector's Edition - £50
A cloth-bound hardback with dusts jacket, signed by the author and limited to 250 copies.
De Luxe Edition - £195
Leather-bound in slip case, with a mounted Dogsbody fly and limited to only 30 signed copies.
Published and distributed by Coch-y-Bonddu Books.
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