Monthly Archives: June 2014

Fishing Report 30 June 2014

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Richard Eaton with a fine Ballogie salmon.
We finished with 66 fish last week and 114 sea trout. An unremarkable week salmon wise, but the sea trout fishing has been consistently good throughout June, which is heartening. The river is getting low now, which will have affected a number of the beats. Late June sees us betwixt and between; there are early summer fish creeping upriver, but we await the real summer runs of salmon and grilse. A good spate to kick July off would be welcome, especially to see what comes in off the back of it.

Cairnton ghillie, Brian Brogan, tells me they had a four fresh fish last week. Tay ghillie Glen Kedward, from Meikleour, had a couple of 8lb fish on a Junction Gunn, while Tweed ghillie, Lee Craig, from Carham, had a 10lb licer on a Rusty Gunn tied with a drainer disk. Colin Tait, another fine Tweedside angler, had a 10lb fish on small Willie Gunn variant.

The biggest fish of the week was a 20lb from Borrowston, which fell to a young angler, one of two he landed, while the prolific Phil Fairchild also added to his Dee tally. Borrowston topped the charts, sharing top spot with Birse, on 7 fish- hardly record breaking, but top spot is top spot! Borrowston ghillie Bill Palmer advised that it was hard work all week and that the fish were taking small Silver Stoats and Park Shrimps.

I had some correspondence last week that was too late for the report. Its handy having a reserve as news is thin on the ground this week.

Mike Eaton got in touch to share his week at Ballogie and Carlogie.

Dear Ross, as usual we were on Ballogie and Carlogie last week and expected an even harder week than last year! I fish with my son for part of the week and I was delighted to have a rest when he arrived. Against the run of things we caught 5 fresh run salmon on our rod mainly on Monkey tubes but also some unusually large sea trout. It all depends on being in the right place at the right time and getting up early. We will follow the rest of the season with keen interest to see what happens. Sean Stanton was right about new fish arriving and kept us motivated. Mike and Richard Eaton.”

Arvid Manseth and friends had a fine time at Park.

“Maybe a bit late…but still. Just a quick summary from a nice 3 day experience at Deeside at the end of last week. 3 fellows from Norway had the pleasure of fishing the Park beat 19th – 21th of June. All fellows caught fish even if the weather was better for other activities. 4 salmon beached and many others on the rod ranging from 8 pound to 17 pound. One 2½lb pound sea trout.
Sending some pictures from the fishery, also with the release of the largest fish that week – 17 pound cracker – nice and neat without sea lice or marks.
Best regards, Arvid Manseth et. al.”

I did my bit for the cause- I am nothing if not a trooper for the Dee. I enjoyed a day at Park on Saturday, courtesy of William Foster. I landed a sea liced fish of about 10lb in the House Pool on a ‘wee brown pig’, a fly much loved by my late father. My sparring partner Jim Coates lost a belter in Greenbanks and landed a couple of sea trout up to 4lb- all on the Monkey. It was fine day out with both Jim and head ghillie Keith Cromar on top form.

PROSPECTS

We need a drop of water now, as the gauges are all heading in the wrong direction. There is some rain forecast this week, but it doesn’t look like it will have much, if any, impact on water levels. Daytime air temperatures will be around 16 degrees Celsius at the start of the week, warming up to 20 degrees towards the end of the week. The breeeze will be from the east early in the week, swinging west later, which will help the air temperature. We should have good cloud cover for the majority of the week.

The usual floating line tactics will work well, but if that is not working get the fly down a bit, either with a sink tip or by fishing a weighted tube. The standard hairwings will all work- Silver Stoat, Crathie, Munro’s Killer etc. As the water drops, small plastic tubes are very effective. I was speaking to ghillies Jim Paton and Keith Cromar last week about the Yellow Stoat- a tiny wisp of a fly, dressed on yellow electrical flex with a pinch of hair above and below- it can work wonders. If you can lay hands on the flex, let me know! Many anglers are trying the hitched tube as well, so that’s another one to have up your sleeve. Other flies to try include the Monkey- always worth a cast on the Dee- Frances, Franc N Snaelda, and various long tailed flies like the Flamethrower, Cascade, Ally’s and Park Shrimp.

Please send your stories, photos and anecdotes to me at ross@riverdee.org I am always keen to hear from anglers directly.
Tight lines for the coming week
Ross Macdonald

 

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Fishing Report 23 June 2014

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Tom Moule with a fine fish from Monaltrie

 

We finished with 96 fish from the FishDee beats last week, bolstered by 111 sea trout. All in all that’s not a bad return in light of the poor start to the week, which delivered just 8 fish on Monday and the same again on Tuesday. I was feeling somewhat underwhelmed midweek, but things improved culminating on Saturday with 28 fish, which is much more like it.

George Chan’s party at Dess had a good week with 10 fish and 18 sea trout, topping the table for both species. Ghillie Eoin Smith tells me they worked hard all week, fishing mornings, leaving the pools in the afternoons and returning in the evening. At this time of year, the best fishing is often out with office hours!! Small Stoats and the Posh Tosh scored, which is no surprise as Iain Wilson of the Borders Gunroom was back on the river.

Simon Baer got in touch to tell me of his success at Headinch and Cambus O’May on a very hot June morning- 23 degrees he tells me. Simon took a nice 7lb fish from Glashen using that deadly summer combination of Factor 50 sun block and a Silver Stoat. Cambus finished with 8 for the week, second only to Crathie (on 9) on the upper river.

Craigendinnie and Aboyne Castle, which have a mutual arrangement shared 10, with sea liced fish among them. The usual hairwing flies did the trick, but ghillie Will Peake tells me a few were taken on small Monkeys fished a bit deeper in the water.

Quentin Webster had a first fish from Trochie at Dinnet- from the same spot he lost one last year. Quentin has been visiting the Dee for a number of years, so was delighted to make his mark with an 8lb fish.

I had the pleasure of bumping into Tom Moule and friends at Monaltrie on Tuesday. Tom had the afterglow of success having just landed a cracking fish from the Garden Pool and kindly sent me a photo of his prize.

“Hi Ross, just a bit more info on the fish I caught if you want it for your story. The Salmon I caught the other day was on a Gledswood Black and Blue Shrimp size 12 fly, in overcast conditions, from the top of the Garden Pool. This is the second salmon I have caught at Monaltrie, last year I had a 10lb fresh fish from the bottom of the Long Pool on a size 12 Silver Stoat on a bright sunny morning. Both fish released back into the river. I have been very lucky to have caught two stunning fish in two visits, persistence pays off, keep casting.”

I was also pleased to hear from Ade Bristow.

“Hi Ross. Just a note to let you know how much I enjoyed my time at Lower Crathes and West Durris last week. As the lower river goes through what is proving to be a very lean period, expectations were low, so imagine my delight when this solid, double figure fish snapped up my small Cascade and shot off down the Bulwark on Monday morning! I’m pleased to say that I was lucky enough to add a sea trout and a grilse to my tally before finally capping off a memorable week with another salmon from Greenbank on Saturday. My sincere thanks go to the ghillies, Jordan and Robert, and to fellow rods Gordon (and Peg), John and Anthea for their hospitality, companionship and inimitable banter!”

PROSPECTS

It looks like it will be slightly cooler this week with daytime air temperatures up to 16 degrees Celsius. It may go as high as 19, but it rather depends on which forecaster you prefer. We will have the usual mix of cloud and sunshine during the week. I see there are heavy rain showers forecast for Monday (23rd) and early Tuesday. The river has dropped back to summer levels but hopefully the forecast rain will keep us topped up.

The full floater is still the main tactic at the moment with the occasional use of sink tips to change the depth of presentation. Successful flies have been small hairwings in size 10-14. These include Editor, Crathie, Silver Stoat, Posh Tosh (on small tubes) and Munro’s Killer and various shrimp style flies such as Red Francis, Franc N Snaelda, Cascade, Flamethrowers and Park Shrimp. Anglers fishing early and late will have more success than those who fish 9-5.

Please send your stories, photos and anecdotes to me at ross@riverdee.org I am always keen to hear from anglers directly. Tight lines for the coming week.

Ross Macdonald

Fishing Report 16 June 2014

 

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Murray Stewart landed this beauty at Ballogie on a hitched tube.

 

There were 79 fish on the Fishdee beats last week and 128 sea trout. A quietish week overall, water conditions were variable with the river carrying a stain for a lot of the week, culminating in a muddy chocolate colour on Saturday. Its difficult to know what the impact on catches was, but it couldnt have helped. A number of beats reported seeing fish running hard.

Murray Stewart, who incidentally makes fabulous reels, has to get fish of the week with an 18lb licer from Ballogie on the hitch. There were also 18lb fish reported at Birse and Crathie, but its always instructive hearing of someone trying something different. Also at Ballogie, Stan Headley , fishing with my pal Ken Reid, landed a 5lb sea trout on a Claret Dabbler.

Local rod Mr Fraser reported a grilse and sea trout from Park, taken on a size 12 Munro’s Killer. The Munro does really well on the Dee and wee touch of colour in the water does it no harm either.

Still at Park, Paul Watson got in touch to report an enjoyable visit to Deeside, ‘Ross, always reading and enjoying your reports from The Dee. Just had a couple of days at Park with The Connon Party (13/14 June), even managed to catch some fish on Friday between us only to find river on Saturday up 2.5’ and chocolate brown! Had a couple of sea trout late on after it had cleared.

Attached is our ghillie Bert with one of the fish we caught Friday, thanks to Bert + Stewart for looking after us so well. Shame I don’t live closer, I’d be on that river much more often!’

I missed out Archie Hay’s report from Crathie last week as we had some technical problems, so a belated congratulations to Dr Mike Pacnko, Mike Bramley, Emmanuel Farinoli and Mr M Smith for adding to Archie’s tally. Successful flies at Crathie have included the ever reliable Crathie Fly, the Silver Ally’s and Francis.

Dee Board and Trust Chairmen Richard Gledson and local minister Ken MacKenzie took to the hills on 8 June to walk the boundary of the Braemar and Crathie parish. A walk around the parish may not sound particularly onerous, but during the six days Richard and Ken negotiated 17 Munros during the 100 mile walk and in total made a vertical climb of over 9000m ending on Ben Macdui. The walk rasied over £4000 for The River Dee Trust and the TK2 educational programme in Romaina operated by Blythswood. Donations are still welcome at http://tinyurl.com/pze3lwy

Prospects

It looks like a warm week on Deeside with daytime temperatures of up to 21 degrees Celsius. It will be bright for the most part with showers expected from midweek. The breeze will be from the northwest for the most part. Water levels are looking good this week. The river is still carrying a peat stain, so flies with a touch of gold and orange in them might be worth a try.

The full floater continues to dominate tactics, with the occasional use of sink tips to change the depth of presentation. Successful flies have been small hairwings in size 10-14. These include Editor, Crathie, Silver Stoat, Arndilly Fancy and Munro’s Killer and various shrimp style flies such as Red Francis, Franc N Snaelda, Silver Ally’s, Flamethrowers and Park Shrimp. Anglers fishing early and late will have more success than those who fish 9-5.

Please send your stories, photos and anecdotes to me at ross@riverdee.org I am always keen to hear from anglers directly. Tight lines for the coming week.

Ross Macdonald

Fishing Report 2 June 2014

Fishing Report 2 June 2014

 

 

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Alison Dart with a nice springer from Aboyne Water.

 

There were 92 salmon and grilse reported to FishDee for the week ending 31 May. It was disappointing to drop below three figures for the final week of spring. We ended with 1259 fish from the FishDee beats and I think most of us are glad to see the back of this spring. We now look forward to the summer and to good runs of grilse and sea trout and buoyant weekly reports!

The lower river produced just 19 for the last week of what has been a very poor spring for those beats. There are some wonderful beats on the lower Dee and it has been frustrating to watch them toil. Their time will come and I hope the second half of the season pays a dividend to anglers and ghillies alike.

The middle river produced 33 with Borrowston recording the biggest of the week at 22lbs for ghillie Bill Palmer, taken on a 1″ Willie Gunn aluminium tube. The Willie Gunn accounted for most of the beat’s 6 fish last week. Over at Commonty Philippe Erieau from Paris got in touch to advise that he had a 7lb cock salmon caught on a Park Shrimp on a floating line in the Garden Pool.

The upper river finished the week with 40 fish. Up at Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld Ian Murray’s rods had 9, which made them the top beat. Meanwhile at Crathie Ian Child had 2 fish to 15lb on an Editor and Robert Bateson had one of 7lb. Ian had his first fish at Crathie in 2011 and so was delighted to follow up with his second and third. Ghillie Archie Hay reports several more offers and losses, but they had to settle for 8 in the end. The rise in water during the week brought a heavy stain into the river, which didn’t help matters.

Sea trout numbers are picking up with 95 of those beauties, up to 4lbs, reported to the website last week and those anglers that are serious about these wonderful fish are fishing through the night to get the cream of the sport. Plenty sea trout are caught during the day- usually by accident on salmon flies, but the cream of the fishing is surely at night. I was speaking to one rod who has three days this week- or rather nights- and he was very excited about his prospects- ‘…there is something special about hooking a good sea trout at 3 o’clock in the morning, when the senses are heightened by the darkness.’ Sounds tempting, doesn’t it?!

PROSPECTS

The river is getting low now and we really could do with a good cloudburst and a spate. That would reinvigorate us all- fish, anglers and ghillies alike. Rain is forecast, so fingers crossed that it delivers.

Daytime air temperatures are expected to be between 12 and 19 degrees Celsius. River levels on the main stem, are between 6 and 8 inches on the Sepa gauges (Mon 2 June), so a delicate approach is required. We will have good cloud cover. The wind will be light, but there could be gusts up to 18mph midweek. The wind will be mostly from the south and east.

The full floater has been the most successful line used by anglers, with the occasional use of sink tips to change the depth of presentation. Successful flies have been small hairwings in size 10-14. These include Crathie, Silver Stoat, Arndilly Fancy and Munro’s Killer and various shrimp style flies such as Red Francis, Franc N Snaelda, Cascade, Flamethrowers and Park Shrimp. Bill Plamer’s success at Borrowston on a Willie Gunn tube reminds us to try something different even if conditions suggest otherwise. Early morning and evening fishing is a pleasure at this time of year and is often the most productive way to fish the Dee. Sea trout fishing should peak over the next couple of weeks, so its worth thinking about rearranging schedules and fishing through the night for these wonderful fish. Sea trout flies that do well on the Dee include the Silver Stoat and Editor in small doubles and large singles. They are also fond of an occasional Sunray!

Please send your stories, photos and anecdotes to me at ross@riverdee.org I am always keen to hear from anglers directly.

Tight lines for the coming week

Ross Macdonald

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