Fishing: Isle of Bute is known for big fish - this one broke my rod

It's coming to that time of year when we make our pilgrimage to the Isle of Bute so I decided to go over early to try out the water before the big competition in October.

Loch Fad always has big, double-figure fish but, when I arrived, it was cold and wet and not what I was looking forward to. But black and green, as well as orange, always seem to do well on the Fad and who was I to change things.

I went out with an intermediate with a black cat, white cat and a cruncher in between.

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The dam wall has always been a happy hunting ground for me and, just two casts in, I got my first offer followed by an almighty crack. The top section of my rod had snapped as I tried to play the fish and it turned into a comedy of errors as I tried to land the fish, which managed to slip the hook.

Changing to my spare rod, I decided to cover the whole of the loch in search of a specimen but all I managed to find were perch.

I did get one trout at the back of the cages which took a black cat about five feet below the surface.

Despite the lack of fish, I enjoyed the time away and look forward to the competition.