Cool conditions get salmon in the mood

Crathie Ghillie returns an Autumn salmon
Crathie Ghillie returns an Autumn salmon

Salmon catches picked up last week on Deeside with Thursday providing over 70 salmon as a result of much cooler and fresher weather conditions which saw the river temperature drop significantly and put salmon back in a taking mood.

Whilst there were days where it was very bright with little cloud cover, the sport nevertheless picked up throughout the length of Deeside.

FishDee beats have reported 265 salmon to 26lbs as I write with perhaps some late catches to be added.

Park reported 34, Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld 20, Crathie 19, Lower Crathes and Ballogie 17 apiece, Birse 14, with Culter and Altries reporting a dozen for the week.

This week’s catch was a good increase over the previous week.

Beat Catches Reported

Week ending September 10

SALMON & GRILSE: Kingcausie 7, Culter 12, Altries and Lower Drum 12, Middle Drum 1, Tilbouries 6, Upper Drum and Lower Durris 17, Park 34, Lower Crathes and W Durris 15, Knappach 1, Invery 4, Middle Blackhall 1, Cairnton 1, Woodend 1, Lower Woodend 2, Commonty 4, Sluie 10, Ballogie 17, Borrowston 14, Kincardine 9, Carlogie 5, Dess 5, Birse 14, Aboyne Water 6, Aboyne Castle 8, Craigendinnie 1, Waterside and Ferrar 6, Dinnet 1, Deecastle 11, Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld 20, Crathie 19, Mar Lodge Estate 1, Total 265

SEA TROUT: Upper Drum and Lower Durris 1, Park 2, Sluie 1, Ballogie 1, Dess 1, Birse 3, Waterside and Ferrar 2, Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld 2, Total 13

Prospects

I suspect that we may have a week with over 300 fish and keeping my fingers crossed that this will transpire. The weather forecast models I have been studying this morning suggest that air temperatures will continue to drop this week with an air temperature maxima today of perhaps 14 degrees Celsius. During the week this will fall and a result of falling air temperatures will see river temperatures drop back. This should hopefully put more fish into an aggressive mood resulting in good catches. There will be rain showers, some which may be heavy at times with blustery winds that will swing round to the north. It will feel autumnal so remember to wrap up well and fish appropriately to suit the conditions with intermediate lines and larger flies. The maritime influence sees tides peaking at 4.6 metres until Wednesday and then dropping back to 3.7 metres at the weekend. This may encourage a run of new fish into the lower beats where good sport may be had with fresh silver salmon.

As has been reported to me by visiting anglers, the ghillies are best placed to offer advice on where and how to fish on your chosen beat. Whilst water levels are quite low it will pay you to heed their counsel and follow their direction. If the Ghillie advises to fish deep, then make sure you get your fly well down. You may lose the odd fly as a result of fishing deep, but it is a small sacrifice to make in pursuit of sublime sport. I know of one talented angler who did very well last week by fishing a plain black snaelda tube slow and deep. Fly choice is as always a matter of suggestion, choice and experiment. You may wish to fish with a Dee Monkey, Black Frances or Black Snaelda, Flamethrower, Park shrimp, Calvin’s shrimp or a Red Allies shrimp.