Well as I predicted water temperature was not an issue this last week! On Monday the river rose to 4 foot six with some turbidity, Tuesday and Wednesday morning were fishable but on Wednesday afternoon the second rise of the week started and it peaked about six foot early on Thursday morning. Friday and Saturday were fishable all be it was a little on the high side for some beats. The weather is more settled for the next few days, sunshine and showers sums it up nicely. Tide wise the tides peaked this weekend and there will be no new water for the rest of the week. I have today received the official catch figures for the start of the season; I would describe them as encouraging. The 2011 catch till June 30th is 3856 up from last year’s poor total of 2154, but also up on the five year average of 3350. The release rate is an impressive 82% up from 79% and the best recorded to date. Seatrout catches are not so rosy, 739 down from last year’s 1557 though encouragingly the return rate is up from 61% to 63%.
Catches; although I was promised a detailed report from the Lower River, disappointingly none has been forthcoming. I did hear unofficially that catches have been good and I was speaking to some anglers who had fished the Brae Beats for the last few days of the week and they reported seeing large numbers of grilse and salmon entering the river and were very enthusiastic about the prospects for the coming week. Delfur finished the week in the mid twenties, down on previous weeks but there were a few first fish in amongst that total and Delfur is not renowned as a high water beat!
Rothes had a good week finishing with thirty landed. Tay Board chairman had two remarkable fish, one on Monday afternoon which might have been put down as a fluke except he repeated the feat on Thursday! Perhaps Bill is just used to fishing large fast flowing rivers.
I also heard that a beat upstream from Rothes had a twenty eight pound fish, but I have no more details. Craigellachie had a good day on Tuesday with seven landed but finished the week with nine. Things were tough at Wester Elchies but a few were caught, none by me I may add. Frank Whitney soon to turn 91 had a couple. Mark Hanson was the top rod for the week with three and Ruth Hosker kept up her catch per unit effort with this one from the Brock.
Carron had seven with Mr Whelan landing his first fish on Saturday lunchtime after losing a couple earlier in the week. Lionel Main, Castle Grant Head Gillie, tells me they were catching good numbers of grilse most in excellent condition around the four or five pound mark with only the odd skinny one. Perhaps that is why we found things hard going the grilse were all determined to get to Castle Grant. Grantown had a great start to the week with eight on Monday but surprisingly finished with only fourteen.