All Change on the Riverbank

January 20, 2020

There has been something of a ‘ghillie-go-round’ on Deeside during the close season. Brian Brogan has returned to Cairnton and Middle Blackhall, while Terry Paton has moved up to Aboyne Castle and Craigendinnie where he takes over from Will Peake. Most recently, Daniel Wright has joined Lower Crathes as under-ghillie.

The biggest change on the river must be the merging of Lower Blackhall & Kinneskie and Banchory into a one double bank beat for up to six rods. The merging of the two beats follows discussions between proprietors Lawrence Ross and Mike Wilson.

The new beat combines good early spring fishing with summer salmon and grilse, which will be an enticing prospect for visiting and local anglers. Lawrence said, ‘Mike and I put our heads together recently and concluded that by merging the beats we could offer the anglers a greater variety of water as well as a good mix of spring and summer fishing. In a similar vein, we opted to reduce the number of rods by 25% which we believe will enhance the angler’s experience.’

Lawrence and Mike have appointed Jordie Sinclair as the ghillie for the newly merged beat. Jordie is an experienced ghillie who has served his apprenticeship as under-ghillie to Robert Harper at Lower Crathes & West Durris. Jordie, who is also a qualified casting instructor, is delighted with his new role and is eagerly looking forward to the opening of the Dee season on 1 February. ‘After six great years at Lower Crathes I felt it was time to try something new. When the opportunity to run my own beat came up, I was quick to take it. I am really looking forward to it. We have some nice spring fishing and when the summer arrives, the Banchory end of the beat comes into its own when the grilse arrive. I can’t wait to get started.’


The beat is now listed as Lower Blackhall and Banchory on FishDee where you can check out availability and book days. If anglers have any queries about the new arrangements, they can contact Lawrence Ross. email: lbkfb12@gmail.com tel: 01330 820156 or 07876 656755