Week Commencing June 12th 2017

Can I start this weeks report with the tragic news of an angler’s death on the river on Monday? I cannot really write it better than the way Angus Gordon Lennox let me know.

You may have already heard, but if you haven’t I am writing to let you know that we had a tragic accident on the river on Monday. In full it is a horrific story but in summary one of our regular and experienced guests, from Germany, fell into the river in the Lord March pool, when the water was still quite high, and was swept away. Ian Tennant who was not close to him at the time jumped into a boat and with a Herculean effort caught up with him in the Pipe pool, managing to get him ashore in Lower Aultdearg. By this time he had been under water for a considerable amount of time and was unconscious. He was not wearing a life vest.

 Ian and Kevin gave him CPR for approximately 30 minutes before the emergency services arrived on site. He was taken by air ambulance to Aberdeen but was pronounced dead soon thereafter. 

 Kevin’s and in particular Ian’s efforts can only be described as heroic, but as you can imagine they are traumatised and deeply saddened that their efforts were not able to save him. This tragic event has had a huge impact on the whole gillie team and the rest of the estate and on many fishers up and down the river.

 Peter Kleine absolutely adored his fishing and was much loved by the team for his charm, enthusiasm, engagement throughout the year with gillies and office staff alike and for being a thoroughly wonderful man. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and particularly with his wife. 


The weather forecast I am told was pretty accurate with a mixture of sunshine and heavy showers. Next week is similar with some sunshine but some heavy showers mid week. The tides are building all week.


Catches, having returned eventually from a week on the Laerdal where the entire river’s catch was twenty-eight fish it shows what a classy river the Spey really is. If anyone is travelling to Norway avoid British Midland who treat their passengers with total disrespect, we found out the flight was cancelled as one of the party’s wives had phoned to find out why our flight was cancelled. BMI staff were in hiding and never showed their faces as we struggled to get a seat on the last SAS flight out tonight. A disgraceful way to treat anyone, livestock transporters treat the animals with more respect.

Gordon Castle finished the week in the mid thirties, it does not seem right to put up pictures this week following Monday’s tragic event.

Orton were in the high twenties and thanks to Richard Hold for this week’s pictures.




Delfur ended up with over thirty fish, I can only add David Wood’s comments.

The Wood party from Lincolnshire were fishing at Delfur this week. They finished the week having just got into the thirties. John Ketchingham, head Ghillie at Hendersyde on Tweed, who came up to have a day’s fishing on Saturday was successful with an 8 pound hen fish from Sourden. First Delfur fish were also caught by Stephen Wrisdale, renowned wildlife artist Clare Shaw, William Haggas and Rosie Sword. It was Rosie Sword’s first ever salmon after years of trying on different rivers. Rosie was presented with a coveted Delfur Badge by her ghillie Grant Morrison. 3 of the 4 Ghillie’s had a cast during the week and each caught a fish, with Davie Macintosh catching the largest fish of the week, a 21 1/2 pound sea liced salmon from Collie.

David Wood’s fish Delfur

David Wood Delfur.

Will Haggas Delfur.

Will Haggas again

Simon Caswell Delfur

Simon Caswell

Simon Again.

Paul Sardeson Delfur

Clare Shaw Delfur.

John Kitchingham (Ketch) Gillie’s day off!


Rothes had sixteen salmon and five rainbows, which must have been washed into the river following the high water. Pollution incidents like this should be dealt with, with much heavier penalties.

Arndilly also had over thirty fish for the week including their first grilse.

Craigellachie were around the double figure mark. Thanks to Dougie Ross for the use of his pictures.





Aberlour Angling Club were also around the double figure mark. Bruce Cameron had a fish measured at 42” and estimated to be around 29lbs.

Ross Meldrum Aberlour

Rob Morrison Aberlour

Jim Betts Aberlour

I will fill in some of the blanks when I am back in the loop!

Grantown was lightly fished but had at least five salmon the largest was 15lb from Tarric Mor. The seatrout numbers are still growing.

Des Duncan Grantown.

Freidrich’s salmon Grantown.

James Lang fishing Kinchurdy wrote he had 2 salmon of 8 and 11lbs and lost another. He went on to say how much he enjoys Kinchurdy with the company of Bobby Hall.

James Lang’s fish Kinchurdy


Many thanks to my youngest daughter Melanie for keeping the reports going and keeping an eye on my birds. The Delfur swallows are growing daily.



There is 1 comment for this article
  1. Peter Graham at 6:27 pm

    Very sorry to hear of the death at Brae
    Really tragic and having been involved with several over the years my sympathies to all especially the family of the bereaved and the Ghillies
    It does just show how important wearing a life vest is and we should move as a river to making it the norm

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