Fishing Report 30 June 2014

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.


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 I am always keen to hear from anglers directly.
Tight lines for the coming week
Ross Macdonald



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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.

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