One thought on “Fly Fishing in Iran

  1. The giant Barbus of the Tigris and Euphrates, once known as the Tigris Salmon.

    There was an Englsih gentleman by the name of Lt Col RB Phayre who contributed a chapter to a book that I read as a kid, The Fsherman’s Bedside Book. In it, he recorded fish of 140 pounds taken (in 1918) by a British army officer “on a 2-inch spoon”, and a 213-pound fish taken on a handline made from cable left by the retreating Turkish forces plus a large hook fashioned by the Regimental Armourer *blacksmith). The bait was “atta” (Indian chapatti flour) and water paste. Now, my memory is still pretty fine, so I remember the killer lines of Phayre’s piece (which, I seem to remember also once appeared in an old edition of The Field magazine) about the British Army ‘Tommies’ taking turns to man the handline and how one of them, on hooking a huge fish, failed to call his fellow Tommies to the latest Men v Fish tug-of-war and was dragged into the river by a very powerful, hard-running fish and drowned.

    Not the sort of thing you forget reading, at any age.

    Not that many years later, in my early twenties, I saw a handlining villager on the Cauvery River in south India have the same done to him by what was clearly a huge mahseer (a relative of the monstrous Iran-Iraq fish above) – 30 feet away from me, as I fished a bait off a rod and line, he was literally lifted clean off the bankside rocks on which was sitting straight into the water and towed a several yards across the surface of the river before his 80lb-test nylon snapped.

    Some fish.

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