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Monday, 20 September 2021

Deep dark Brown Trout from a hilltop lough

 Thought I'd post a few pictures of some of our recent fishing escapades to far away mountain top loughs. Nothing much to say so I'll let the pictures do the talking 










 



Thursday, 1 July 2021

Mini crankbaits for trout

 As you know by now I'm an avid angler and lures are my passion and speciality. I've been doing a lot of trout fishing lately and experimenting with different lures to see if there is any common denominator in trout crankbaits, the results seem to be keep it small with a fast tight wiggle and it seems to make all the difference 



Nice brownie on a small firetiger crank



Unusual for a brownie is the deep red flesh, usually a sign on a shrimp and fish feeder..



Nice fat rainbow on a crickhopper crankbait in er..firetiger lol  , is there a pattern emerging here ?


The rod I caught the rainbow on was made in Kenneth Rankins shop in Belfast, a hollow glass hand built beauty that my Dad bought me for my 14th birthday, so it's nearly 40 years old now. This faithful companion has been with me on many an adventure and caught nearly every freshwater and quite a few salt water fish around the island of Ireland, it was a pleasure to bring it out of hibernation and put it to good use again. 

Tuesday, 20 April 2021

Ezekiel 34 - v25

 



And I will make with them a covenant of peace, and will cause the evil beasts to cease out of the land, and they shall dwell safely in the wilderness and sleep in the woods.

Ezekiel 34 v25.

Sunday, 21 March 2021

Petrified knife hones from Lough Neagh

 Lough neagh is the biggest freshwater lough in the British Isles and in years gone by there were pieces of petrified wood taken from the lough and fashioned into whetstones to be sold in the cities for sharpening knives, you can occasionally still find pieces of petrified wood along the shore line if you look carefully.. 


It looks just like a piece of drift wood


But when you pick it up you can feel from the weight that its not wood.



And when you tap it against another stone the clink sound is unmistakable, it'll take a bit of work to make it into a whetstone but I think I'll keep it just as it is, after all its supposedly 60 million years old !


Thursday, 21 January 2021

The Preppers Medical Handbook - a review

 I was recently sent a copy of the Preppers Medical Handbook by its author Dr William W. Forgey M.D. Although he never asked for the book to be formally reviewed I felt it was necessary to do so as it is an outstanding addition to any bushcrafters or preppers library.

All too often we prepare with kit, skills, weapons, and expeditions often relying on one person in the group to deal with any medical incidents that may occur, however should that person fall ill themselves the group could find themselves at a distinct disadvantage with no medical help, however there is now no excuse as long as you carry this book with you at all times.

This volume is quite detailed and I'd assume it's directed at people who already have some medical knowledge as certain phraseology or words might only be  familiar to those with a little first aid or medical background. In saying that, everything is clearly explained and laid out in a detailed and concise manner so that the average Joe or Jane can easily understand how to deal with any medical emergency, however I would recommend you familiarise yourself with the book's layout so that should an emergency occur you're not flicking through pages trying to find the necessary course of action while in a panic. Basically every possible scenario you are likely to encounter appears in the book, and it does go into deeper and more focused detail than a simple first aid manual. To be honest I can't recommend it highly enough, this book should be read and re-read often and carried in your pack on every expedition, also make sure your buddies get a copy and make them familiarise themselves with it too, you never know, having this book on hand may just save someones life one day.. again I must re-emphasise, bring it with you at all times, this should be as important to you as your knife! 





Monday, 21 December 2020

Sea Buckthorn

 A wonderfully helpful plant to find at this time of year when a lot of other berries have disappeared.

Bright orange, said to be the colour or mermaids blood, it springs up in prickly bushes around a lot of our coastline. To such an extent that its classed as invasive and is often removed.

However the berries are high in vitamins, particularly vitamin c, minerals and trace elements. It's got a great reputation for lowering blood pressure and as a skin emollient. Its incredibly bitter and sharp to taste straight off the bush, though I love that, but can be made into syrups and jams or mixed with other ingredients to make a delicious compote. Be careful of the thorns, but enjoy the flavour.









Thursday, 19 November 2020

Dried seaweed - palmira palmata

 In Northern Ireland we've been brought up eating a particular type of seaweed called Dulse ( in Belfast we pronounce it dulice). One of the red seaweed it's got a gorgeous salty irony taste and is a great reminder of my youth when my grandfather and I would gather lots of it and dry it out in the hedge around the hut.

These days I often usually just dry it, grate it and use it as an additive in food dishes, particularly stews and soups in which it gives a meaty salty taste.. 


So I gathered quite a bit, theres a lot more there than you think!


I then dried it out in the oven


Then ground it down, not to powder but more fine chunks. This little bag about 5 inches square is all thats left after the drying ! This will keep for a long time and can be added to any dishes that need a little extra kick of something different.