Wet weather sees reasonable catches

editorial image

Another week of cool wet weather saw river levels maintained at a good fishing height and resulted with another week of reasonable catches with FishDee beats reporting 195 salmon to 24lbs and 94 sea trout to 5lbs.

The biggest fish reported for the week was landed at Woodend but I have no other details about this fish. Lower Crathes and Dinnet beats both reported 16 salmon each which was decent sport as only two anglers were fishing each beat for the week. Crathes and Invery both reported 13 salmon, with Birse reporting 12. The river is not as heavily fished just now as it is in the early spring, which is a pity as there are good runs of fish coming forward, and lots of availability at super beats-River levels are ideal to encourage fish to run the river in good numbers. If you have a chance to come fishing then I would recommend that you come to the Dee to fish.

I met Jeremy Clayton, the Dess proprietor on Friday who reported that he had some good sport with a fine 22lb salmon to his own rod. His last 4 fish caught very recently from Dess have all been over 15lbs which has delighted him.I was also delighted to hear that Ron Low had a fine 21lb sea liced fish from Tilbouries. Ron is the proprietor of the Raemoir Trout fishery in Banchory which is a great place for local youngsters wishing to learn to fly fish during the school holidays as they have equipment available to hire and good numbers of stocked brown and rainbow trout to catch.

Regular Dee fisher Philippe Koehler from France was back on Deeside staying at the Tor Na Coille Hotel and fishing Tilbouries and Park. He sent an e-mail advising: “Back from The Dee, my friend Bernard and I had a good week at Park and Tilbouries, we fish very hard and manage to catch 6 salmons, 5 were sea liced 1 was not. One was a grilse and the 5 other fish were over 12 pounds, the biggest was 17lbs . I caught my 3 fish with the Frank n snaelda, on a little conehead tube, black and yellow (thank you Mr Sean Stanton!) Marguerite saw you at Tilbouries, she was receiving some casting lessons from Willie Banks, she began salmon fishing this week! We will come back in September and hope we will meet you.”

I also received an e-mail from Sam Harris advising: “Hi Ken, just a quick line for you to consider for your blog, it would make Mark’s day if you include it! I had a fantastic day with my father and best mate, Mark Roxburghe at Cairnton today. Mark was my pupil until today, having recently mastered his Spey cast, he put it to good use and took a sea trout and two salmon. Good luck for the future Mark! Thanks Ken, Regards, Sam Harris” Delighted to hear of Mark’s success at Cairnton. This is a lovely beat where new Ghillie Brian Brogan I hear is doing a great job with visiting guests. I visited him for a brief chat and was pleased to hear how much he is relishing his role at Cairnton. I was pleased to get the chance to fish for an hour or so in the evening and was pleased to land a nice sea trout of 3lbs.

Visiting anglers to the river will see enhanced bio security measures in place as all beats have had disinfection kits provided. Anglers will need to follow the beat Ghillies instructions on disinfection, which will take a minimal period to carry out. The new FishDee blog will have news through the week so please keep me informed of any news. As always please let me know how you get on during your visit to the river by dropping me an e-mail to ken@riverdee.org with any anecdotes and pictures about your experiences. PROSPECTS

The river is still carrying a bit of peat stain as I have spent the day with a flim crew at Glen Tanar filming their beats. The water is at a super fishing height and should remain so during the week unless we get a dramatic rainfall. The Sepa gauges are running at 9 inches at Mar Lodge and 2ft 6 inches at Park,great levels for summer fishing on the Dee. The Met Office are suggesting that there will be heavy rain on Tuesday with perhaps a little bit more rain later in the week. It will be predominantly an overcast week with light northerly breezes. Air temperature maxima will be around 15 degrees Celsius. The maritime influence sees tides falling though the week from 4.1 metres to 3.6 metres. Providing we don’t get any dramatic rises in river levels then fishing could be very productive with night sea trout fishers getting a good opportunity for sport too if the evenings stay warm enough. I suspect salmon anglers could do very well this week if we can get enough to come and fish.

I always recommend anglers speak to their Ghillie to discuss tactics and fly choice; this advice is as valid today as it was when I first started writing these fishing reports a number of years ago. If you don’t have a Ghillie on hand to consult then your fly choice could include Crathie fly, Franc n snaelda, Park Shrimp, Calvin’s shrimp and silver stoats tail; perhaps a Ally’s shrimp in peaty water. Anglers fishing dusk and into the darkness could get good sport from sea trout with flies such as Stoats Tail, Dark Mackerel, Teal blue and silver and monkey. If you need to stock up on flies you can visit Somers in Aberdeen, Orvis in Banchory, Kincardine O’Neil Post Office, Strachan’s of Aboyne and Countrywear in Ballater where you will find a good selection of Dee flies. Make sure you have floating lines and some poly leaders to help sink the fly just under the surface.

There is a good selection of quality hotel accommodation on Deeside with some hotels offering tremendous value for money to visiting parties of anglers. I understand Tor Na Coille Hotel, Raemoir Hose Hotel and Banchory Lodge Hotel are offering special fisherman’s rates of just over £50 per night for B&B for stays of 3 nights or more-this is tremendous value for money from these top establishments. Please look at the good selection of accommodation providers who specialise in catering for visiting anglers who will make your stay both pleasant and comfortable at www.fishdee.co.uk