Sunday, 8 July 2018

The Early Bird Catches The Grilse!

I had a night shift on the River Dee at Carlogie on Thursday/Friday in pursuit of salmon and sea trout. As the water levels were sitting at no more than 1" on the gauge, this was the most likely time to catch something. It proved to be worth staying up all night for!

Worth the wait. A fresh grilse of around 4lb from the River Dee early on Saturday morning.
I started fishing at 11.30pm and fished until 8.30am only stopping at 2am for a couple of hours sleep before restarting again at 4.30am. I hadn't had any joy and I was beginning to think that my chance had gone. At around 5.40am I had a very subtle take and lifted into a fish. It didn't really put up much of a fight at all and a fresh wee grilse of around 4lb was soon landed. It had snaffled a size 15 Executioner in the neck of the Mill Pool. After a quick photo, the fish was quickly returned having never left the water.

Looking across to the Old Mill of Dess from the Carlogie bank.
I have never seen the Dee as low as this and the fish can't be enjoying the high air and water temperatures we are enduring this summer. We desperately need some rain all over the northern hemisphere and many rivers are down to their bare bones. There doesn't seem to be any ran to speak of in the 2 weekly forecast so it's going to be another tough time for the fish and anglers alike in the coming weeks. Even when we do get a spate, it's going to take a lot of water to wash away all the dust and dirt which is likely to run off the roads and banks. It will probably be the spate after when the fishing will really improve. With a bit of luck there will be good run of fish coming in to rescue what has otherwise been a tough season all round.

Looking downstream from Jock Rae. It has been a long time since some of these stones have been out of the water.

Friday, 22 June 2018

11lb Salmon From Commonty

Last Saturday I had a day's fishing on the River Dee at Commonty. Commonty is a nice, secluded beat on the middle reaches of the river and can fish well in most heights of water. The Potarch Bridge was reading 5" when was there so full floating line and small flies were the order of the day.

Looking downstream from the high bank at Commonty. 
Catch and Release. 
I was fortunate enough to land this cracking summer salmon of around 11lbs from the Bend. Prior to landing this I rose 4 different salmon with a Sunray Shadow before swapping over to hitch and going through the pool again. The fish didn't put up much of a fight initially and I actually thought it was just a small trout I had on. I began to play the fish just by handling as the fish came in towards me and I could really feel much of its weight. As the fish drew nearer to the bank it finally realised it was hooked and tore off at lightning speed and taking all the fly line of the reel in one long, powerful run! I played a game of cat and mouse with the fish for several minuted and during that time it had another two of these lung bursting runs before I finally got some sort of control back. After what seemed like an age, I managed to beech the fish and was delighted to see it a fresh run "bar of silver".
A quick photo before releasing.