River Dee Report – June 24th

Recent Catches

Last week was shaping up to be a really productive week - perhaps one of the best for the season, but the heavens opened and we had a big coloured river on Friday and Saturday that slowed down the action somewhat in areas of the catchment. It wasn’t a total washout though as FishDee beats reported a creditable 177 salmon and 118 sea trout. There was some good sport encountered at times and the Ghillies I have been speaking to this morning have been very positive about recent sport and the current prospects. It appears that there were good runs of new salmon and grilse coming in last week before the big lift in river levels, which should encourage another good run of new salmon to run the river. At this time of year if we get water we can get good runs of fish and anglers fishing this week could do very well. In terms of salmon catches the Ballogie beats reported 31 salmon with many lost, Dess reported 15 salmon with many lost, Park and Lower Crathes and West Durris both reported 11 salmon and grilse and many other beats did well.

On the sea trout front, conditions at night were not ideal as the air temperatures during the evenings were on the cool side. That said FishDee beats saw Kincardine report 16 sea trout, Dess 15 sea trout and Park 11. Anglers were catching sea trout as a by catch when fishing for salmon during the day. If we get warmer evenings this week then conditions may be ideal for anglers wishing to have a crack for sea trout with lighter tackle at dusk. I visited the lovely Lower Woodend beat on Saturday morning for a cast and the river looked in really good order until it started to rise.
I have chatted with some of the river Ghillies this morning who were very upbeat. Eoin Smith at Dess remarked ’We caught a good number of fish and lost quite a few too, mostly sea liced fish to boot. We had 10 salmon and 5 grilse. George Chan from Chester did well and had a good number to his rod. Ian Wilson from the Borders Gun Room did well with salmon and sea trout and I expect him to do well this week. Ian’s the inventor of the popular Posh Tosh fly and this did the trick for him when the river rose on Friday night.’ The pools have stocks of fresh and river fish and new fish are arriving regularly.

Robert Harper at Lower Crathes advised ’A good first half of the week with steady river levels; alas a big rise in river levels towards the end of the week coloured the river somewhat and fish went off the take a bit. We had a decent week with salmon, grilse and sea trout. Successful anglers were shipbroker Gordon Dickinson and John and Anthea Fielding. Cascades and Shipbroker Shrimp flies did the business for us. I would like to see the river levels drop slowly throughout the week and we should fish well.’ It looks likely that we should see decent fishing conditions until at least Thursday evening when heavy rain is suggested.

Sean Stanton at Ballogie commented ’We had a good first half, a little quiet spell and then a strong finish to the week with 5 salmon on Saturday at Carlogie. Lots of new sea liced salmon and grilse coming forward which are perfectly shaped and in good condition. The Weir party, who were fishing Ballogie and Carlogie had a good week however we lost as many fish as we caught. Ian Jardine had 9 for his week and also lost 9, with 5 lost on Thursday morning at Ballogie. If temperatures rise as forecast we could do really well in the evenings when fishing for sea trout. We have a good team fishing this week and I expect them to do very well.’ Based on Ghillies feedback anglers fishing this week could enjoy some excellent sport. For those pondering a flying visit, then please do as conditions appear to be as good as you could ask for at this time of year.

Please ensure all visiting anglers sign the Gyrodactylus salaris declaration forms and follow Ghillies instructions closely. Bio-Security is vitally important to the river, ensuring all visitors are vigilant in ensuring we take necessary precautions and don’t see this devastating parasite wiping out our stocks of salmon. If you are not offered one to sign then I would urge you to please ask for one to be provided to you prior to commencing fishing. The new FishDee blog will have reports through the week as I hear of them so please keep me informed of any news. As always please let me know how you get on during your visit to the river by dropping me an e-mail to ken@riverdee.org with any anecdotes and pictures about your experiences. Ken Reid © FishDee Ltd

Beat catches reported

(week ending 23rd June)
SALMON & GRILSE: Tilbouries 2, Upper Drum and Lower Durris 3, Park 11, Lower Crathes and W Durris 11, Invery 3, Lower Blackhall 2, Little Blackhall and Inchmarlo 4, Middle Blackhall 3, Cairnton 4, Woodend 2, Commonty 4, Sluie 1, Ballogie 8, Borrowston 5, Kincardine 8, Carlogie 18, Dess 15, Birse 9, Aboyne Water 9, Aboyne Castle 7, Craigendinnie 6, Waterside and Ferrar 1, Dinnet 4, Deecastle 5, Headinch and Cambus O’May 8, Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld 7, Abergeldie 4, Crathie 10, Mar Lodge 2, Heughhead 1.
Total: 177 Largest: Park & Birse 22lbs
SEA TROUT: Middle Drum 1, Tilbouries 1, Park 11, Lower Crathes and W Durris 6, Invery 9, Lower Blackhall 2, Middle Blackhall 1, Cairnton 2, Woodend 6, Ballogie 4, Borrowston 1, Kincardine 16, Carlogie 8, Dess 15, Birse 9, Aboyne Water 8, Aboyne Castle 1, Craigendinnie 3, Waterside and Ferrar 1, Dinnet 1, Deecastle 3, Headinch and Cambus O’May 1, Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld 3, Crathie 4, Heughhead 1.
Total: 118 Largest: Kincardine & Carlogie & Birse & Waterside and Ferrar & Crathie 4lbs


Good river levels allied to a reasonable weather forecast suggest potentially a very good week, time will tell as anglers tackle a falling river with new runs of fish coming forward. The river gauges are currently sitting at 1 foot 1 inch at Mar Lodge and 2 ft 10 inches at Park-ideal for the time of year. The maritime influence sees tides dropping back from 4.0 metres to 3.6 metres on Thursday and then starting to build again. The Met Office is forecasting a mostly overcast week with air temperature maxima perhaps reaching 20 degrees Celsius tomorrow with light winds through the week. There may be the odd isolated shower until Thursday PM when heavy rain is forecast and then brighter and showery conditions on Friday. It is too early to say how much rain will fall on the catchment on Thursday; hopefully it will not be too much to affect river levels drastically. There is good rod availability for anglers pondering a flying visit to Deeside this week.

Anglers will be advised to consult their Ghillie during their stay this week to ensure they give themselves the best opportunity of encountering good sport. With positive feedback this morning I hope anglers heed the counsel provided by their Ghillie who will advise the tactics to utilise on their chosen beat. As we have passed the summer solstice daylight hours are at their longest and anglers need to use their time wisely and don’t burn the candle at both ends. If you don’t have the services of a Ghillie to call on then perhaps you will fish with a sink tip combination whether speyline or shooting head. Fly choice could include Crathie fly, Franc n snaelda, Cascade, Calvin’s shrimp and silver stoats tail. Anglers fishing dusk and into the darkness could get good sport from sea trout with flies such as Stoats Tail, Dark Mackerel, Teal blue and silver and monkey. If you need to stock up on flies you can visit Somers in Aberdeen, Orvis in Banchory, Kincardine O’Neil Post Office, Strachan’s of Aboyne and Countrywear in Ballater where you will find a good selection of Dee flies.
There is a good selection of accommodations for visiting anglers on FishDee and we are pleased to welcome the Old Toll House in Kincardine O’Neil to FishDee. Irene Ross is mine host and welcomes visiting anglers to middle Deeside. Her website can be accessed here http://www.theoldtollhouse.co.uk/ At this time of year anglers need flexibility in the times of fishing effort, with a good place to relax in between hours on the river bank. Please look at the good selection of accommodation providers who specialise in catering for visiting anglers and will make your stay both pleasant and comfortable at www.fishdee.co.uk

As always please let me know how you get on during your visit to the river by dropping me an e-mail to ken@riverdee.org with any anecdotes and pictures about your experiences. Ken Reid © FishDee Ltd