Fishing Report WE 20 May 2017

May 22, 2017

Fishing Report 

Low water conditions persist on Deeside and despite looking at half a dozen different forecasters, I have found no solace; we are merely teased with the prospect of rain. Far be it from me to suggest that Mother Nature is capricious, but come on, how about some water? I am not after a dirty big flood, rather a series of regular rises of up to a foot, with slightly more on a Sunday. While I'm at it, a word on sunshine. It's great, but there is a time and place for everything, so keep that for Sundays as well. Let's see how that works out!

We did get a rise of a couple of inches at the weekend, which is something and with more conducive overhead conditions, there is still a lot to play for and we need to adapt as anglers to what we are presented with.

Beneficiaries of the low water included Ardoe, which picked up another three. Altries winkled out two. Nigel Fraser had an 8lbr on Tuesday and Jim Cameron had a 10lbr. Jack Durno, had his first sea trout at 3lb. His pal Macaulay Tuck tied the Silver Stoat which did the damage. I am looking forward to meeting Jack on our Introduction to Salmon Fishing Day at Invery next month.

Park has been ticking over nicely of late and as the summer progresses they should be in full swing. They had seven fish last week and fifteen sea trout, the best of which was a 5lbr. Peter Renwick hooked and landed it in the Long Pool. That must have been some scrap! John Cole had three from Greenbank at 18lb, 14lb and 6lb. Phil Black also had one from Greenbank, a lovely looking 10lbr. Andrew Miller had a couple from the Durris and Greenbank at 9lb and 8lb. Alan Hamilton had a few good sea trout.

Lower Crathes managed four while Crathes Castle had two. One for Mr Marriot and one for Mr Cooksey. Invery and Tilquhillie had one and Banchory picked up three.

Cairnton and Middle Blackhall ghillie Brian Brogan has been pressing his rods to scale things back. The 15 footers have been put away, replaced by single handers, tapered leaders and small flies. It is simply adapting to the conditions. They finished with four fish, taken on size 14 Hairy Marys and Executioners. Sweden's Mats Bergman landed two liced fish from Invercannie and one of his friends had a 7lbr from the Grey Mare. Local rod Bill Cook, also had one from Invercannie, from the Blackhall side.

I had a very nice email from James Lewis following his recent visit to Ballogie with the Lockwood party. Pete Leather had an 18lbr and James believes this was a just reward for Pete's generosity. He had allowed James in behind him in Top Gannet and James had a nice wee fish. The next day, in exactly the same spot, Pete had his big fish. Good karma! As James notes, its important to 'celebrate friendship, comradeship and generosity of spirit.'

Aboyne Castle and Craigendinnie shared three. Experienced Dee fishers, Nigel Marriner, Tom Wheelwright and Andrew Robertson each had fish. Tactics were long leaders and s14 flies.

Dinnet and Deecastle shared six. Neil Fraser had a brace on Monday from Pleasant Walk and Highburn. Peter Horsborough also had two, including one from Bruiach. Jamie Clissden-Brown, followed the trend with his own brace from 29 and a new pool- the Birches. Amanda Kavanagh played a good fish in Top Slachd which, agonisingly, came off at the net.

Headinch and Cambus O May picked up seven springers. Tom Bruce-Jones had an 11lbr, from a new pool, Lower Bell Hole and grandson Jack Pearson had a fresh 10lbr from Fergie's. Long time Cambus rod, David Smith had two fish and Calum McCready had one from Clarach.

My pal Jim Coates had a nice fish from Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld, on the single handed rod. Ian Murray's rods finished with four for the week. Crathie continues to tick over with another four in the book.


There is some rain forecast, but it won't amount to much. Air temperatures will be warmer, up to 23c/73f. The wind will swing about, starting from the south-east, moving west and back south and east. Wind speeds will be up to 4ms/9mph.

With no sign of a rise in water levels, low water tactics will continue to prevail. Scale things back. A single hander, switch or small double hander of 12' should replace the long rod. Fishing a 15' rod and 10/11 line in the current conditions isn't going to help. Long leaders and small flies such as the Hairy Mary, Executioner and Crathie should be given a swim. Early and late sorties to the river are a good idea.

As ever, listen to your ghillie!

Tight lines.

Ross Macdonald