Fishing Report with a few lovely pictures

Recent Catches

The last few days of the spring period saw more snow falling in the mountains and the river temperature, which was starting to rise, stopped in its tracks mid week. You can see imagery of the weather encountered on the Gairn when the River Office team were out tree planting last week at River Dee News By Saturday, what a contrast, our weather provided a glimpse of what we all would like to see this summer; nice clear skies and mild air temperatures where people can enjoy their sport on the riverbank. FishDee beats have so far reported 128 salmon to 21lbs and a couple of sea trout for the week with some late returns for evening fish on Saturday perhaps to be added. At long last the middle Dee beats were starting to get some sport with Carlogie reporting 14, Ballogie and Lower Crathes 11 each and Crathes and Upper Blackhall 9 apiece. The largest fish of the week was a 21lb salmon landed by Altries Ghillie Kevin Fleming at Crathes which was described by Crathes Ghillie Brian Sim as a lovely fish. I was also delighted to hear that Lower Durris and Upper Drum Ghillie Jim Paton had a nice fish at Inchmarlo; his first ever from the Inchmarlo side. His son Terry Paton, Ghillie at Inchmarlo, forwarded an image of Jim and his fish and said he was delighted.

Floating Bank, Crathes Castle Beat

I have some news from Crathes provided by regular Dee visitor Charles Jeffrey who advised ‘Crathes was terrific with nine fish for our three days with Brian. The fish were evenly spread at two each until John Laurie had a 16 lber out of the Burn Pool late on Saturday, before the gungy water got down to him. I’ve never seen so many fish in May with 90% of them spanking fresh. I’d a wee 5lb fish on Friday covered in long lice, followed five minutes later with a 12lber, both from the Pantoch. It was a co-incidence to have Colin Reid, ex Head Ghillie from Gordon Castle and Brae 5 on the other side when catching both fish. I used to take a week up there each spring, but because there were no fish, did not take the week this year and of course they’ve had a terrific spring. Brian was in great form and we had many laughs as usual. We’re due up on Birkhall on 24th June and then a week at Crathes from 5th August. Cannae wait.’

Jock Rae at Dess-a lovely pool to fish at this height

Well it was nice to receive this news from Charles about Crathes and I was fortunate to visit the beat on Saturday with another regular Dee visitor Graeme Arthur, who kindly invited me for a cast. There were good numbers of fish showing in some of the pools and I was pleased to catch one of guard and get my first salmon from Crathes during the afternoon. Brian Sim spent a lot of time with me and I was most grateful for his sound advice. We had been fishing the top of the water with small flies and then a big monkey and nothing was doing. Brian said put fast sink tip on and fish a small fly a bit deeper due to the brightness, and within half a dozen casts of starting using his sound advice a fish co-operated at Kashentroch. I was also pleased to get the chance to get out of the office for an afternoon cast on Friday as a guest of Dess proprietor Jeremy Clayton, and lightning struck twice for me. On the same Friday last year I had a day with Jeremy and caught a nice fish and this year I was really thrilled to get a lovely fresh 12 b salmon at Jock Rae. Many thanks to Mr & Mrs Clayton and Ghillie Eoin Smith.

Looking down Jetties to Hollies at Dess

Philip Black was on one of his regular trips to the Dee at the end of last week and was successful at Lower Invercauld beat and also at Little Blackhall and Inchmarlo. Philip commented ‘Hi Ken a couple of pictures of my 2 fish I caught for my day on Monaltrie and lower Invercauld. It’s the first time I’ve fished this beat but it won’t be my last; an absolute stunning piece of water. It’s also the first time I’ve met Ian Murray, what a gentleman, couldn’t be more helpful and made it a great day for me. I also had a braw wee fish from the Roe Pot, Little Blackhall. It was hard going on Saturday as conditions weren’t great so this was a welcome wee fish.’ Philip and his brother Tony are regular fishers on the Dee and generally do very well.

Philip black with a small fish at the Roe Pot

Finally as part of the Inaugural Banchory River Festival there will be an opportunity for people who have always wanted to try fishing to come and spend a few hours learning to fish at the Raemoir Trout Fishery, Raemoir Road, Banchory on Saturday 8th June. This is a free to attend IntroDee session for parents with children commencing from 10.30 am. People who would like to attend just need to send an e-mail to to advise how many are attending or call the River Office on 013398 80411 to register.  News of catches, with or without images are always welcome so please drop a line to so I can share this news in the weekly report and FishDee blog. It should be a reasonable week for anglers and hopefully we shall get some good news to report next week. Tight Lines to you all! Copyright FishDee. Ken Reid © FishDee Ltd.

Anglers & Ghillies in high spirits at Dinnet/Deecastle

Beat Catches

SALMON & GRILSE: Ardoe and Murtle 2, Park 5, Lower Crathes and W Durris 11, Crathes 9, Invery 3, Tilquhillie 1, Lower Blackhall and Kinneskie 3, Little Blackhall and Inchmarlo 6, Middle Blackhall 1, Upper Blackhall 9, Cairnton 2, Woodend 1, Commonty 3, Sluie 2, Ballogie 11, Borrowston 1, Kincardine 8, Carlogie 14, Dess 7, Birse 1, Aboyne Water 1, Aboyne Castle 2, Craigendinnie 3, Waterside and Ferrar 6, Dinnet 7, Deecastle 3, Headinch and Cambus O’May 3, Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld 2, Abergeldie 1, Total 128
SEA TROUT: Lower Crathes and W Durris 1, Deecastle 1, Total 2


The weather forecast shows a cool start to the week with a return to milder weather for the second half of the week. Air temperature maxima will be 15 degrees Celsius. There will be some precipitation today and tomorrow but hopefully not enough to affect water levels. The Sepa gauges are showing 1 ft 1 inch at Mar Lodge and steady and Park is reading 1ft 7 inches and steady; ideal river heights for fishing. The water temps are approaching 50 degrees Fahrenheit and will be around this temperature all week. Winds are going to be light and variable with the odd few hours here and there where they may become moderate. The maritime influence sees Tides starting the week at 4.4 metres before falling back mid week to 3.6 metres. Again it’s reasonably good salmon fishing weather but not great for sea trout fishing in the evening.

Ron Irvin with a nice fish at Dinnet

Your beat Ghillies will advise you on the tactics you should utilise but perseverance will be necessary. Anglers are still catching fish on flies fished well down but other fish are coming to small flies fished on floating lines. The migration of fish from the Lower Beats to the middle beats seems to be gathering momentum and hopefully fish will run to the upper beats too. As always heed the Ghillies wise counsel as they will give you the advice you need of where taking fish may be encountered on their beats given the water levels you encounter on your visit. If you don’t have a Ghillie to obtain advice from then you may wish to consider the following flies as worth a go with. The Park Shrimp, Silver Stoats tail, Black Flamethrower or Orange Flamethrower, Ally’s Shrimp, Tosh and of course the Sunray Shadow is always a good option if fish are seen and suspected to be running through your pool.

Jim Paton with a salmon at Inchmarlo

If you find you have the wrong flies with you for your fishing trip or run out, then pay a visit to some of our super retailers; George Strachan’s store in Aboyne have increased their selection of fishing equipment and River Dee flies tied by the Ballogie Estates Head Ghillie Sean Stanton, at very attractive prices too. The Orvis store in Banchory also has a vast selection of flies to choose from and equipment to hire. The Countrywear shop in Ballater is a favourite destination for visiting anglers, where Norman Clements is always delighted to meet visiting anglers. They have a good selection of fishing equipment available and provide good service and value. I would like to add Kincardine O’Neil Post Office supplies nice sandwiches and a great selection of River Dee flies too.

Looking over the river from Floating Bank, Crathes to Tilquhillie

Finally an important thing for you to remember when you arrive on your chosen beat. All anglers and Ghillies are being asked to ensure anglers have their waders and any landing nets sprayed with a mild disinfectant prior to commencing fishing, even when they are fishing different River Dee beats during their week on the river. It’s a condition of the River Dee Conservation code and must be strictly adhered to; all beats have supplies to ensure this is carried out prior to entering the river. It’s a quick procedure that will help the river and prevent ingress of unwanted pathogens and non native species entering any part of the River Dee watercourse. We also want to prevent the transfer of the highly problematic ranunculus from the lower part of the river to the upper part. Please write with any news of catches or anecdotes with images to Tight Lines to you all! Copyright FishDee. Ken Reid © FishDee Ltd.

FishDee. Ken Reid © FishDee Ltd.

About FishDee

The FishDee blog is your website for snippets and news items coming from the riverbank from anglers, ghillies and local people who have useful news they wish to share. The supporting business infrastructure which supports angling will also be providing items of news that may be relevant to people who have an interest in the River Dee.

Posted on May 27, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Fishing Report with a few lovely pictures.

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