Week Commencing 5th June 2023

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Afternoon all

We are into June the weather is glorious for the sun worshippers but for anglers, the fish and the rivers it is nearly catastrophic this year.

I have never seen such an extended period of heat and sunshine, although the thunderstorms forecast for certain areas may give a short respite as it looks as if this is set to continue.

In note on social media that some rivers have closed beats due to the rising water temperatures to protect this fish and this may become more widespread if this weather does not break for an extended period to provide relief. these are very concerning times for the iconic King of Fish.

Ok lets see how the river fared last week.

Heading up river this week, Andy Milne of Fochabers Angling Association reports only one fish landed for the week and that was by himself, weighing in at around 17lbs. The rest of the week got too bright really but Ian Tennant lost a grilse on Tuesday afternoon in the same spot (upper pot).

Andy Milne’s fine 17lber

The next stop is Gordon Castle/Brae Water where David Buley advises that the week was another tough one, the weather wasn’t very kind. We managed to land 5 and and drop a few. Wednesday was our best day with 3 fish landed. There’s definitely been more fish starting to move though and we’ve a few settling in. With the water temp rising please take care of fish caught trying to minimise contact and keeping them in the water.

a bar of Silver in the GC sun
A first fish
another nice fish with an attentive ghillie

David is right when it comes to fish handling in these conditions, do not take them out of the water, where possible, hold on to them until they are fully recovered -take them to slightly deeper and streamier water if you can to allow them to re-oxygenate quicker. If conditions are not good then do not fish unless it is early morning/late evening as ghillies hour before dusk can be super sport.

Orton head ghillie, Andy Gunn confirms that due to the tough conditions they managed just three fish this week. The successes were 7lb John Wraight from Willows, 12lb Kevin James from Willows and a 3.5lb Grilse, again for Kevin James from the House pool. A number of other fish ere lost but now seeing a few more fish.

At Delfur they had their best week of the season to date reports Head ghillie, Mark Melville who himself made the scoresheet. This weeks report comes from guest David Wood. David writes:-

We were exceptionally lucky with our trip to Delfur this year, with each rod catching a fish to contribute to a total catch of just under 20. The fish were a mix of very fresh, liced and a few river fish, which may have dropped back from upstream due to the low water. Biggest fish of the week was a 19lb fresh fish for Mark Melville on Wednesday evening and the smallest a 2 1/2lb grilse for Paul Sardeson. Fish were caught from most pools during the week. As a team, we cannot thank the ghillies enough for their hard work, enthusiasm, good humour, as well as knowledge of the Spey, its history and the wildlife that makes the strath its home. it is a great joy and a real privilege for us all to fish with them.

Many thanks to David for his report and his comments about the ghillies as we rely on them heavily each and every day of the fishing season for their advice, support and craic to keep us going during the tough times. The ghillies are a credit to their profession and deserve the plaudits for what they do.

David Wood with his fish from Sourden
James Cheer and his fish in Sourden
Jill Elkington with her fish in Hollenbush being carefully watched by Cuba
Lyn Wrisdale and summer silver
Mark Aitchison with his bonny fish
Dvaid Wood with Mark Camachos’ fish in Sourden, well netted for a change by David Wood
Paul Sarderson with his fish in Hollnbush ably assisted by Islay
Raqui Campbell -Hill with more Delfur silver
Sam Elkington in the Bridge Poll with ghillie Hector
Teresa Jolly’s cracking fish
Stephen Wrisdale with his lovely fish in Otterhole
19lbs of Delfur muscle courtesy of Mark Melville

Next upstream at Rothes and Aikenway, Robbie Stronach reports a quiet week with a few offers but nothing decided to stay attached to the flies on offer. On a positive note more fish seen during the week.

At Easter Elchies, Orn Sigurhansson reports another hot and sunny week at Easter Elchies. We were very pleased to welcome the very fun Price party from the Midlands. Water temperature 16-17 during the day and up to 20 in the evening. Gauge now -10. Despite the conditions fish were caught all week. We focused on our streamy pools of Fiddich Mouth, Heathery Isle and Lower Dips. James Griffiths got the week off to a flying start, landing 3 fish on Monday. Another fish was landed, totally 4 for Monday. Other successful fishers included Malcolm Gillan and Mick Price. Mick landing a brace on Thursday. Total of 11 salmon for the week. A really enjoyable week with the Villa fans.

James Griffiths with fish number 1 on Monday from Fiddich Mouth
James, fish 2 Red Craigs
James with his best of the day, fish 3 from Lower Dips
Malcolm Gillan with a nice fish from Fiddich Mouth
Mick Price from Fiddich Mouth
Orn with more silver in the sun

Upstream at Craigellachie, Dougie Ross reports a week of 4 salmon and 7 seatrout in the book.

Aberlour Angling Club only had on success for the week a small grilse to Charles Brew.

small grilse for Charles Brew

Across the river at Wester Elchies, Malcolm Newbould reports they managed to land three fish is a week of tough conditions.

At Kinermony, David Brand reports they finished thier week with 2 salmon, a small grilse and a sea trout.

Mark Leech with a fine fish

David Smillie at Delagyle advises that they were on the scoreboard with 2 fish to the Nardin party from France.

Upstream at Laggan, Max Mackinstrie confirms chances most days this week with 2 salmon and 1 sea trout landed all in Millionaires. An 8lbs Salmon for Mr John Oakes on Thursday morning , a 4lb Sea trout for Mr Alistair Rogers on Thursday evening and a 10 lbs Salmon for Mr Rogers again on Saturday morning. River showing it’s bones now with it reading -3” on our gauge. Water needed soon!

I am aware of fish being caught at both Ballindalloch and Tulchan this week but have no more details other than that.

No further reports this week.

The week ahead looks as grim as the one just gone weatherwise so fishing effort will most likely be before the sun hits the water first thing and again when it starts to drop late evening. Fishing is such an unknown animal at times so you never know what is going to happen from one day to the next.

This is my last report for a couple of weeks as I head away on my annual trip to the River Ewe, although it looks like there will be very little fishing done due to the conditions. The Loch Maree catchment has not seen rain for some time and the river is currently at its lowest level ever since the early 1900’s. Ghillie Raymond Dingwall has not seen conditions like this in his 20 years on the river. Never mind it will be an enjoyable break with any fishing a bonus.

Paul Hughes from the Board will be compiling the next two reports.

Tight lines for those out and about.


1 thought on “Week Commencing 5th June 2023”

  1. As a long long time ago, 1980’s 90’s fisher on the Ballindalloch, Delnashaugh water on the Aa’n , and also July 1977 on Tulchan D beat, shared with Col. Edmund Drury, would like to hear more reports from those beats. I also was most fortunate to fish way out in wild Wester Rosshire under the great guidance of Mark Melville, now head man of the river at Delfur. Sorry to hear of the extended drought reports from the west coast and the diminished returns so far on Speyside. Wishing the coming weeks bring improvement, optimism always required when in pursuit of Salar! What great places travels with the fly rod lead to!

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