Afternoon all from a sunny and warm Elgin
It is hard to believe that we are now into July, well over the the half way mark of the season and I think it is safe to say summer might be here.
I do love this time of year, the countryside is alive with wildlife, the wild flowers are in full bloom and the farmers are getting crops in be they silage, hay or cereals depending on your location in the UK. In my greenhouse the tomatoes are making steady progress, so hopefully not to long before they start to colour up. I did have a cucumber and a chilli but somehow have managed to kill them, think I know why so will learn for next season!!
The week gone by gave a bit of a mix of weather, maybe not ideal for fishing but who would not want to be out when it is warm and bright? it has been a funny old summer so far with continual wind each week. I made an attempt at some trout fishing on Friday and it was supposed to be a light breeze where the loch was but on arrival it was blowing hard with white horses charging down the water surface. it definitely curtailed the plans for the day but it was just lovely to be back on water with a rod in my hand.
Right down to the important bit, were the numbers recorded in the lower beats last week a blip or the heralding of something better, lets see how everyone fared.
We will go upstream for a change today starting with Fochabers Angling Association. Andy Milne reports 7 grilse and 5 salmon last week including one estimated at 22lbs and one of 20lbs. Charles Brew, his brother Tom & father David had a successful 5 days with 8 fish caught and many more hooked and lost.
Lewis Webb, standing in for David Buley advises that Gordon Castle/ Brae Water had a good week. He confirms that they finished well into the 60’s with plenty more lost. A mix of great conditioned grilse and summer salmon with only a handful without lice on their backs.
Gordon Castle still have some availability for the coming few weeks due to last minute cancellations, contact the factor via the estate office for details.
With Andy Gunn currently fishing in Norway, Phil Leask confirms another good week for Orton. They welcomed back the Haggie and Bain parties this week and got of to a flying start at the beginning of the week with 27 landed until the sun came out Wednesday and slowed the catches down, which I believe was the same up and down river plenty runs of fish being seen daily but playing hard to get. They finished the week on 32 with the same if not more lost, almost a even split between salmon and grilse caught. A big congratulations to Sarah Hutchinson for landing her 1st salmon, it can pay to get up early in the morning for a cast. Well done Sarah.
Delfur head ghillie Mark Melville confirms another good week for them. They finished in the mid forties with a mix of fresh fish up to 16lb and good quality grilse again.
At Rothes, head ghillie Robbie Stronach reports that the beat had a good week, ending up with 36 for the week . Good proportion of them were grilse . Slowed down a bit on Thursday Friday then got amongst them again on Saturday .
Arndilly Head ghillie Euan Reid reports as follows:-
Well, what a fantastic week on Arndilly and it’s difficult to know where to start, so let’s start with Paddy Peake,you don’t know where I am going with this but you know something is coming!
For the first time this season there have been too many fish to mention every one which is great news.
Newly wed Jim Browne got our first fish as usual, top rod this week was Charlie Browne with 7 including 4 in a day, bonus points to Charlie DeBurgh for allowing him to steal a couple of fish during “lessons”! Party leader Simon Browne is always there or there about with 6 for the week. Bill Tyser also had 6, George Browne had 4, 3 of which were landed on Tuesday, Holly had 3, 14.5lb x 2 and a 20lb fish from Back of the Bog. Lucy Bardwell had a lovely 15lb fish from Back of the Bog and Georgia Browne a sea liced 16lb fish from the top of Cobble Pot and John Beames had a couple.
Now back to Paddy “two pound” Peake. Paddy did very well and caught 2 on Tuesday and had his little 2lb grilse just after Holly had her 20lb fish, what a gentleman. No splasher this year but still the wading skills need work! 37 for the week.
As we continue the upstream journey of the river, at Easter Elchies, Ghillie Orn Sigurhansson advised they were very pleased to welcome the Trafford fishing party this week. With the rise in water and build up fish of downstream last week, this week was eagerly anticipated and it did not disappoint. Straight of the bat first thing Monday, Robin Bramley landed a cracking sea liced 20lb fish which measured 38 inches long and an amazing 20 inch girth – as deep a salmon as I have seen for quite a time. All pools fished well and our grilse pools such as Lower Dips were to the fore. Highlights during the week included Donna Shuly’s first salmon and 84 year old Roger Bell landing a cracking fish. Overall total 37 salmon and grilse with a further good number of sea trout. Another really good week.
Dougie Ross at Craigellachie reports a week of 2 halves, the first half being the best, the second half a bit slower. They finished in the mid teens for the week.
Aberlour Angling Club have nothing to report.
Malcolm Newbould at Wester Elchies confirms they finished the week with 9 fish, a mix of salmon and grilse.
Upstream at Kinermony, David Brand reports a slightly better week with 12 fish landed, 5 grilse and 7 salmon. Best salmon 20lb and smallest grilse – pound and a half!!
Mike Murdoch, ghillie at Laggan reports a marginally better this week. They finished with 3 salmon and 2 grilse. Including one highlight ,a ‘first fish’ for Grace Miller-Day (sadly no picture). Still not seeing many though, think it might be a sticky few weeks to come?
Archie Baillie at Knockando Home Beat reports a lively first half but a quiet second half. A mixed bag of old and fresh salmon and some fresh grilse with a couple of sea trout as well. Ended up with 7 salmon, 6 grilse and two sea trout.
As out journey continues upstream. Simon Crozier at Castle Grant reports a quiet week with fish hard to come by. The week started well for the Bentley party on Beat 3, with a fish to Hugh Taylor from Pollowick on his first run down the pool, Matthew Gale had a 9lber on Monday also from Pollowick. It was quiet on the salmon front thereafter with only a few seatrout in the book until a fresh grilse was taken on Saturday. The same picture on Beats One and Two but a wee flurry of grilse at the end of the week gives us hope for the weeks to come. Katie Tighe landed her first salmon, a fine grilse on Saturday evening , losing a further 2, fresh grilse were seen on all the beats towards the end of the week so we look forward to some sport ahead.
Grantown water finished their week with 2 salmon and 2 seatrout, whilst on the Abernethy water they finished their week with 2 salmon, 12lbs and 7lbs and 2 seatrout.
Well the tap was well and truly turned on this week, fantastic to see a good mix of salmon and grilse, the grilse are so well shaped just like torpedoes and the quality of some of the summer salmon is phenomenal. We should not get carried away, it is only the reports for one week but we can only hope that this continues.
As we head into another week it looks like it is going to be warm, bright and dry if you take the forecast at its word, Perfect conditions for angling? Possibly it will be the early morning or indeed the evening stints that may prove more fruitful but salmon are fickle creatures and can surprise us.
Tight lines to those who are out and about.