Overboard waterproof cases
I always have my mobile phone and a camera with me when I’m fishing, but the problem often is how to protect them during a downpour or if they are accidentally dropped onto wet ground or in the bottom of the boat.
I’ve tried all sorts of waterproof bags over the years but while searching the internet I came across a company called Overboard and ordered up two of their cases. Their range is huge with everything from technology cases to dry bags, stuff sacks and rucksacks, all aimed at keeping your gear dry.
But for my needs I chose a waterproof small phone case and a waterproof camera case at £18.75 each. Both of these products have been given an industry-recognised waterproof rating system of IP68, which means they are submersible to depths of six metres (19 feet) for up to 60 minutes.
The cases are made from a soft, flexible but tough TPU plastic and feature a simple slideseal locking system that seals the rigid plastic opening at the top of the case absolutely watertight. The phone case measures 6 x 2.95 inches wide and it has a large clear window front and back.
The real bonus, apart from it being waterproof and slime proof, is that I can use my touchscreen smart phone while it is sealed in the case. It comes with a neck lanyard and a karabiner with a large split ring so you have a choice of attachments.
It also comes with a small desiccant sachet so if you are in warmer climates you can insert the sachet into the case to absorb any condensation.
Wychwood Connect Series Fly Line
The Little Dipper and Big Dipper are sink-tip (midge tip) fly-lines that form part of Wych wood’s new Connect series. They are available in weight-forward 6, 7 and 8 wts and have Wych wood’s ‘distance’ fly-line profile that consists of a 33.5-foot head section and a 56.5-foot running, giving an overall length of 90 feet.
When I reviewed the original Wychwood sink-tips back in 2014 (when they were called Up and Under lines), they were olive green with a very slight colour change between the main line and the sinking tip.
This has now all changed and the Little Dipper is pale orange with a translucent white five-foot tip section that sinks at 1.5ips, and the Big Dipper is pale blue with a 10-foot translucent white tip that also sinks at 1.5ips. Both also now have neat welded loops at the front end.
Although the original lines were probably more stealthy in colour, the new orange and pale blue versions are a lot easier to see when you are tracking the line across the water.
The lines are constructed from a soft but durable PVC outer with a braided nylon core and they have a fair degree of stretch. As with any new line taken straight from the box, (and probably more so with sink tips), it took a little while for the tip to cut through the surface film.
But after a few casts the tip sank easily. Sink-tip lines are a ‘must-have’ for Buzzer or washing-line set-ups. While a normal floating line could be pushed around in the surface by the wind, the Little Dipper with its five-foot sinking tip anchors the line in the surface so the flies get down to depth quickly.
The Big Dipper works in the same way but with its 10-foot sinking tip it is perfect in brighter weather when you want to search deeper water and drop the flies further down in the water.
It’s longer sinking tip also makes it perfect for the washing-line technique, allowing you to use a buoyant fly on the point with nymphs on the droppers, putting a nice U-shape belly in the front of the line.
McLean net recoil leash
THIS retainer is designed to keep your landing net within easy reach, and should you drop it, it won’t float away. Extremely useful when fishing running water but can be practical on stillwaters as well.
You attach the large plastic swivel clip to your jacket, D-ring or belt loop and the smaller metal clip at the other end of the leash to the end of your landing net. This means you always have that secure connection between you and the net.
The pigtail lanyard between the two clips has a stainless steel wire core and it will stretch to over a metre in length. If you are fishing a river the leash works really well with a magnetic release system, as it will retain the landing net on your back where it is out of the way until you need it.
The casting and handling qualities of these lines was very good, they were supple in the hand and dropped in nice open loose coils. But they weren’t overly soft and line shoot was very effective. The ‘distance profile’ worked well with good turnover achieved at all distances. Buoyancy was also good and the lines sat high on the water’s surface.