I attended our annual AGM for one of the clubs I'm a member of last weekend
and got chatting to one of the long-standing members about a local guy I had
heard - and read - a lot about. I knew he was once a member of this same club
(Derwent Anglers Club). The fabled guy was Eric Horsfall Turner.
I'm sure you're aware by now that I have a bit of a thing for old fishing books
and one of my favourites is Angler's Cavalcade, written by Eric, part of which
covers some of his exploits in and around my local area of North Yorkshire -
Scarborough to be exact.
My favourite section of the book is all about how he came to create the
infamous 'Eric's Beetle', which is especially relevant as I regularly fish the exact
piece of water where this fly was invented:
I'm sure that the story must have been embellished quite a bit over the mists of
time, but here's what I can gather happened, based on a few conversations:
Eric says the idea came to him on a sunny summers afternoon after he and
a good friend had a massive meal and quite a few beers in the Everley Hotel -
just near the bank of the Yorkshire Derwent. By the time Eric had ventured to
the river the fish had all retreated to the shade provided by all the overhanging
trees. He could see that the fish were taking something which was dropping
from the leaves and eventually discovered that it was a small black beetle. Eric
searched through his fly box, only to realise that he had nothing that even
resembled a beetle. In his fly box he found "a big and useless fly given to me
by the Town Clerk of Rotherham ... its only advantage was the body, which was
peacock and similar to a beetle. I cut off all the massive hairs and tied on the
body to be dropped like the natural beetle."
He poked his fly rod through the foliage and dapped the hastily improvised
beetle on the surface, to his surprise a trout took it immediately. This happened
all afternoon ... and so was born Eric's Beetle.
*As you can see from the header image in this email, Eric was also one for the
larger species as well - specifically Blue Fin Tuna (or Tunny as they used to be
called). Scarborough was the headquarters of the Tunny Club of Great Britain
and Eric was a regular. The fish above was caught in 1949, weighed 582lb and
was caught by rod and line from a cobble - similar to a small rowing boat, all
without putting his pipe out! They were all heroes in those days!
You may be wondering why I'm telling you about my local hero, well ...
A few months ago I got the chance to test out some Vision fly rods. We don't
normally go for the 'mainstream' brands when it comes to rods - we prefer to
search out the niche rods which others overlook, but two of the rods I tried
really did pique my interest.
The two rods in question are from the Hero range of rods and are at the
shorter end of the scale, namely the Little Hero and Dry Hero (see - that's why
this email is about Heroes).
I didn't really know much about this range of rods (except for the Nymph Hero -
which has rave reviews and is a stunning rod). But when I tried the Little Hero
(7'6" 3wt) and Dry Hero (8'0" 4wt) I was immediately hooked (excuse the pun).
So much so, that I have kept 2 of the rods we have on offer today for myself -
they will be replacing my Scott rods for my river and small stream work - yes,
they're that good.
These two rods in the range are undervalued gems that seem to have gone
mostly unnoticed. The quality is superb, and the action is nice and crisp - but
not too fast. They are ideal river rods:
Little Hero - 7'6" 3wt - Ideally suited for the small streams, rivers and
becks targeting wild trout in wild places
Dry Hero - 8'0" 4wt - If you're looking for one river rod to do it all, this is
the one. Equally at home on both larger rivers and smaller streams.
All in all, they are stunning - especially when you can pick them up for under
£200 - yes, we were very surprised (I can also imagine that it took a few other
well-known companies somewhat by surprise as well)!
These rods are from a mainstream manufacturer & distributor so there are
pretty tight controls on what discounts etc we can offer. But we've managed to
get a pretty good offer on these.
Here's what we are going to do. We currently have a few of these in stock (4
of each - as I've kept one of each for myself) and as we cannot discount the
retail prices, we are going to bundle them up with two of our most popular
dry fly selections (Dry Selection and Specialist Dry Selection).
All of the specifications, manufacturers' bumf and more images can be found
on our website - just click any image or button on this email to be taken to
the secret product page!
The price for each of these rods is £199.99 - which includes free delivery, but
for every one we sell (until midnight on Friday) we are also including two of our
dry fly selections free of charge - which is a saving of £36 or roughly 20%).
Please Note: We do only have 4 of each of these rods (as I've kept one of
each for myself), I think they are stunning value for money and rival rods which
are 4 times the price (anyone want to buy some Scott rods!). They will not hang
around long, so if you do want one, please be quick.
As these rods are at the retail price we are aware that you can buy them from
any number of fly shops at the same price - we'd really love it if you'd consider
us if you do want one.
Also, if you would like one and the website shows them as out of stock, please
contact us. There may be more available to us.
Go on, treat yourself - you know you want to - there's nothing like a new
rod to start the season!
Whilst we are on the subject of rods. If you fancy the 'Rolls Royce' of river rods
- but at a reduced price, then we have our Maxia rods on sale - for this week
The Maxia 10' 2wt MX is a steal at only £299 - it's only the best nymphing rod
available - used by multiple world champions. The sensitivity of this rod is
something that has to be felt to be believed.
Tight lines & have a great day.