Monday, 30 April 2018

Pitlochry Angling Club - River Tummel

Last Saturday I had a day on the Pitlochry Angling Club stretch of the River Tummel. The water was sitting at 1ft 10in on arrival to the beat and there were a few fishing showing as I tackled up in the car park on the Port-Na-Craig bank. My set u for the day was my 15ft Vision Catapult with a Guideline Scandi shooting head with a 10ft 4ips poly leader. My initial fly of choice was a 1" Park Shrimp tube.

Looking downstream from the Pitlochry bank of the River Tummel.
The fishing at the beginning of the week had started off well with 6 on the Monday followed by another 2 the next day. However, things slowed up towards the end of the week and the fishing proved to be tough going for my day. The water was still on the cold side for the time of year though and this seemed to be slowing down the arrival of the salmon in their usually prolific numbers.

Starting my day on the Port-Na-Craig bank.
The same view as above but a few hours later as the sun came out.
I begun my day at 6.30am on the Port-Na-Craig bank and things started off well with a nice brown trout taking my fly within the first couple of casts. This was quickly followed by another which would have tipped the scales roughly at 1lb in weight. There were good numbers of salmon showing and I thought my chances were pretty good, especially after a discussion on tactics and lies with well known local angler, Ally Gowans who is world renowned for creating the famous Ally Shrimp and Cascade salmon fly patterns. Unfortunately, the fish stopped showing in any real numbers once the sun had came out by 9am and for whatever reason, the were not in the mood to take any of the rods offerings during the morning session.
Looking upstream towards the Pitlochry Hydro dam.
At lunch time I paid a visit to the viewing chamber of the the fish pass which allows fish to access the loch behind the dam. The counter was reading 21 fish through the pass and this was up only 1 from the previous couple of days. Sadly, my photo of the counter and viewing chamber didn't come out!

Another view of the Dam.
Looking downstream from the Dam. Note the fish pass on the right of the photo.
Looking upstream from below the footbridge on the Port-Na-Craig bank.
It was a similar story in the afternoon. The fish were reluctant to show themselves and the ones that were showing seemed to be moving further and further down the pool as the day progressed. I suspect this was due to them being constantly covered by anglers from both banks and getting away from the lines passing over their heads.

Looking across to the Port-Na-Craig Inn from the top of the big rock which is situated just above the foot bridge.
As the day wore on I decided to give the spinner a try just to mix things up a bit. I rigged up my spinning rod and opted for a 28g silver Toby. This allowed me to cover more water than I could with the fly rod. My change of approached didn't have the desired effect though and the salmon still remained elusive, not only for me but for all 6 rods on the beat. This was despite the appearance of what looked like a few fresh fish entering the beat around 4pm. They just weren't for catching unfortunately and I decide to pack up not long after and begin my long journey back up the A90 slightly earlier than planned.

Looking upstream from the Pitlochry bank as the sun shines brightly down the pool.
Despite the lack of success on the day it was still a pleasure to fish the PAC water on the Tummel again. The members who I spoke to on the day were only too happy to help and advise and both Ally and Jimmy are a credit to their club. One thing is for sure, when conditions improve, someone is in for a good time on the beat.

The upper part of the beat from the Pitlochry Bank.
For more details on fishing the PAC water on the River Tummel please follow the link to their very informative website. Pitlochry Angling Club

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