The salmon season begins on the 1st of February and runs right through to the 31st of October, with fishing available from Monday through to Sunday (though some beats now operate a policy of no Sunday fishing). The length of the season is indeed a compliment to the numbers of migratory fish that run the Tyne system and good sport can be enjoyed from the first to the very last day of the season.
The sea trout season runs from 3rd April to 31st October and for brown trout 22nd March to 30th September. Coarse fish can be caught from 16th June to 15th March.
Spring fishing opens up on the river on 1 February and although not for the faint hearted, this month can offer the salmon angler a good chance of catching a 'springer'. Fish are frequently caught on the opening day and whilst less numerous than their later running cousins these fish are invariably in pristine condition. March sees the beginning of true spring with trees starting to bud heavily and the water temperature beginning to rise steadily. With the increased temperatures and the longer daylight hours, salmon start moving more readily upstream and lower Tyne beats should begin to enjoy increased catches.
Recent trends with warmer temperatures are improving the opportunities for catching early-season fish well up stream in both the North and the South Tyne. April and May tend to be the months of transition on the river when often the cream of the spring fishing can be enjoyed. Sink tips, intermediates and full floating lines become the most effective fly lines for presenting the fly to the salmon. As the water begins to warm up through May, classic floating line techniques with small flies close to the surface, can induce some heart-stopping sport. But, occasionally reverting to larger sizes often produces good results!
James Robbins with a early June salmon on the South Tyne
Spring salmon for Dave McCartney at Eltringham Beat
The warm weather months of June, July and August bring sustained runs of fish which means they have become very popular amongst Tyne anglers due to the simple fact that some excellent fishing can be enjoyed for very reasonable prices and is readily accessible. There is great potential for good sport throughout the system but like most rivers a falling spate brings fish in from the estuary.
Autumn fishing on the Tyne draws visiting anglers to cast a fly for its famous run of big back-end fish. This is the time of year when the river can be literally stuffed full of migratory fish heading for the upper reaches of the river system to pair-up and spawn. The runs of fish increase steadily from August through to October; given fresh water good sport can be had at any beat in the system. Large runs of sea trout make their way up the river at this time, though the principle quarry is the top-quality autumn salmon.