I was born in a small town called Aberfeldy on the banks of the mighty River Tay in Scotland where I began fishing for wild brown trout over 60 years ago. While still at primary school my family moved south to within a few miles of equally iconic brown trout water, Loch Leven – I guess some people are born very lucky. In the mid 1970s, work brought me to Wales where I eventually settled in a small village near the west coast called Talybont.
Born lucky once again – my village lies on the edge of Snowdonia National Park and almost in the heart of the Cambrian Mountains. The perfect location to rekindle my love of fly fishing for wild brown trout in an area literary peppered with wilderness waters and mountain lakes.
In Wales, I fished solely for pleasure for a few years before being seduced by competition angling. Briefly, as well as competing in many UK matches, I fished my 1st four Nations international in 1988 and fished my last in 2017. I captained the Welsh team in the last International match fished on Loch Leven in 2003, was a member of the silver medal winning Welsh team in the World Championships in Ireland in 1995.
I also was fortunate to coach and be part of the Welsh senior Loch – Style team during 10 matches, winning 5 gold medals. In 2007, I was nominated for Performance Coach of the Year at Sofia Gardens in Cardiff – a great honour.
During 2012/13 I was elected Chairman of WSTAA ( Welsh Salmon & Trout Angling Association and also in 2013 I was honoured to hold the position of President of the International Fly Fishing Association.
During my Competition years I fished with many of the great UK anglers, learned a lot and made many lasting friends – I have also had the good fortunate during that period, to share a fishing boat with 6 individual World Champions.
Fishing apart – I have written over 150 features for numerous Fishing magazines and published two books on Loch-Style flies and fishing. I demonstrate at most of the major Fly Tying Shows in UK and Ireland and around the FDG circuit.
But my first love is to tie flies and fish for wild brown trout in all parts of the UK and Ireland. The Great Irish loughs are undoubtedly my first love from a boat but the Welsh mountain waters are where I feel most at home. There are more ‘ well-kept secret ‘ brown trout waters in Wales than most anglers realise – in 40 years I still haven’t managed to throw a line on many of them, but during 2020 my new year resolution is to cross a few more of them of my to-do list.
I’m happy to answer any Email enquires regards Welsh waters and pass any advice I can.
Similarly, enquires about my books = “At the End of the Line“ and “A Fine Line“ on the same email address.