Thursday, 4 February 2016

Opening Day Success On The Dee At Park

I was delighted to accept an invitation from Philip Black to fish Park on the opening day of the salmon fishing season 2016. I had attended the ceremony earlier on that day (Monday) and made my way down to the beat around 11.45am. The water levels were sitting around the 31" mark but were beginning to rise due to snow melt. The gale force wind made things that bit more tricky as well but if your fly is in the water then there is always a chance.
A fresh run opening day springer from the River Dee at Park. 12lb and covered in sea lice.
Park Estate head ghillie, Keith Cromar unhooks my fish from the Durris Stream.
At around 4pm I had an offer in the Durris Stream and a strong fish took off down river like a steam train. It's first initial run had the backing tearing off my reel and I actually thought I'd foul hooked a kelt. I followed the fish down just to get the fly line back onto my reel. Philip called Keith the ghillie and he arrived with the much needed net. After a dogged tussle lasting ten to fifteen minutes I managed to get the fish up and I drew it into the waiting net. The relief and delight at seeing a fresh run opening day fish was fantastic. It was a cracker around 12lb and covered in sea lice. the fish took a 2" Willie Gunn tied on an aluminum tube with a black tungsten cone. A big fly for the big water.

Everyone was over the moon. Park has had a lean time of it during the Spring months these past two or three years and ghillies were just as pleased as I was to see the fish in the net. Hopefully it signals a return to form for the beat and an upturn in fortunes for the river as a whole.
Just another photo of me posing with my fish.
And one more before slipping it back.
 I'm back at Park again Friday and Saturday and I can't wait! Hopefully there are a few more sea liced springers about. Looking forward to it.

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