LIKE it or not, technology is playing an increasing part in modern angling and it can be enormously helpful in a number of ways.
Thinking back 20 years, my bankside tech consisted of a 20-pence piece for the phone box, a cheap camera with a free film (the type you used to send off in a jiffy bag and get your prints back a few days later along with a new roll of film) and possibly a battery-powered radio and torch.
How times have changed…
Here are five bits of tech that you should take with you on your next long session.
Ignore the bizarre name; this is a great piece of kit for anyone doing sessions longer than a day or night when you need to have a working phone.
The Big Strawberry is essentially a giant battery that will charge any sort of phone, laptop or camera several times.
You can load it up with power at home and know that it’ll juice up your iPhone several times.
This has been invaluable on several occasions when I’ve done a 24-hour sessions or longer and needed a working phone or laptop for the duration. It’s always in the side pocket of my overnight kit.
Check out eBay / Amazon for versions of this device as the website no longer works.
Definitely one for the overnight angler.
This remote-control lamp lets you position the light source close to rods or outside the bivvy or shelter with you – all warm and cosy inside your sleeping bag – able to switch them on or off with the remote when needed.
It’s great for added security and easily scares off marauding rats or other wildlife, plus you can illuminate the swim quickly and safely when a fish shows up. The bracket allows you to attach it to a nearby structure like a fence post.
NOKIA 360’ SPEAKER
OK a speaker on the bank isn’t something I’d normally recommend, but if you’re considerate and just want less tinny-sounding noise from your radio or phone then this a neat option.
You can charge the internal battery and sync it to your music or radio via a cable or Bluetooth connection.
I’ve got a week’s carp fishing in France booked in late-March and this will be definitely coming with me – the thought of reclining in my swim with a glass Bordeaux’s finest and some classic Zeppelin, Sabbath or on quietly in the background is most appealing. Best not playlist any Amon Amarth though.
Like many, I’ve struggled to get on the banks with conditions as they have been lately, so I’ve had to resort to desperate measures to get my fishing fix. But this, I have to admit, is a new low for me in this department – the Carp Fishing Simulator.
You choose your bait, rig and swim, aim your cast, put the rod on the alarm and wait… if you’ve got the essentials right your alarm soon sounds. I’ve not got the playing fish bit right yet; it took me 10 minutes to land a 4 lb mirror the other day and my fellow commuters probably thought I was barking as I struggled to extract the fish from lilly pads and assorted other snags, all by waving my phone about on a packed train…
ANGLER’S MAIL DIGITAL EDITION
Last but by no means least, anyone with a tablet device can now take Angler’s Mail wherever they go, and I’ve enjoyed reading some classic back issues on the bank this winter.
It’s great value and you can get old issues too – essential reading when you’re hiding from the rain waiting for a bite!