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(Last updated: Monday 18th June)
We had a bit of a break with conditions last week and enjoyed an upturn in catches. A small rise in water levels and much better cloud cover helped matters greatly. I am still keen on a proper spate, but there are different views among the ghillies about this- some want a spate, others, small regular rises and others prefer lowish water levels.
Ardoe picked up a couple of fish, benefiting from the low water. Brian Ingram fished Middle Drum where he landed one on a hitched tube. Across the river, Tilbouries ghillie Daniel Wright filmed fish going over the gravel bar on several occasions last week, so there are some coming in despite the low water. For those of you who use Facebook, check out the Tilbouries page here to see the videos. A couple of those fish ended up in the catch book, falling to a black and orange fly.
Park picked up four, including fish for David Muir, who had a 6lbr from Cooper's Pool (named after the late George Cooper, who ghillied the beat for many years. His claim to fame is as the creator of the Stoat's Tail). Murdo Watson had a 16lbr from Silver Spoon on the south bank. Alan Dillon also had a fish.
Adrian Bristow had a grilse on Monday at Lower Crathes. They waited until Saturday for another, when John Young duly obliged with a 12lbr.
Banchory landed six, including a lovely fresh fish of 17lb-18lb for Charlie Robertson. Charlie also had a grilse on his Editor tube fly. Neil Stephenson picked up several sea trout and a grilse. Sea trout numbers picked up a bit last week, although Neil, who targets them, tells me he had to work hard for his rewards.
Little Blackhall and Inchmarlo had a couple. Cairnton and Middle Blackhall had two David Waters had a 9lbr from the Grey Mare on Monday, which was his first Dee salmon on a Dirty Cascade. John Downing had his first Cairnton fish from Glisters.
Sluie had a couple of fish, meantime Commonty had a large fish measured at 44 inches and estimated at about 29lb, caught by Anthony Tilly from the Blue Chair. Congratulations Anthony. Craig Fleming was also on the scorecard with a bonny fish of about 10lb, taken on a hitch. The beat also picked up ten sea trout, including seven on Thursday.
Simon Brown and Alan Wilson had fish at Ballogie. Martin Knowles party had two salmon and a dozen sea trout at Carlogie. Kincardine had one for the week.
Nick and Phil Parker, who are usually at home on Hampshire's Test and Itchen, had a cast at Dess last week. Phil landed a fresh run fish from the Mill Pool on Wednesday evening.
Upstream at Aboyne, Chaz Booth reports fish for Keith Herselman had a grilse from Red Rock on a Black and Yellow. Tony Coe had a 10lbr from Irrigation on a Stoat. And Stuart Donald had a grilse on a Durris Shrimp.
Thomas Christensen and Erwin Nielson returned to Birse last week. Thomas landed four salmon and Erwin came off second best against two good fish in Cowdray and Quithel. Thomas tells me they had a very enjoyable week on the beat and are already booked up for 2019.
Chris Pullman had Craigendinnie's fish and ghillie Will Peake was exasperated by several lost fish during the week.
Malcolm Abrines's party had fishing at Waterside and Ferrar, Dinnet and Monaltrie and Lower Invercauld and had fish on each beat.
Brian Flanagan and Geoff Featherstone had a grilse and a 9lbr respectively at Waterside. Richard Bradshaw and Phillip Taylor were had two each at Dinnet and Deecastle.
Headinch and Cambus O May had three. Dougal Long had one from Kate. Eric Mitchell had one of about 6-7lb from Tassachd and Chesh Pacynko had a fresh 9lbr from Clarach.
Birkhall had one for the week and Mark Brook had Balmoral's only fish.
Crathie continued to pick away finishing with seven. Graham Young had three at 7lb, 7lb and 10lb. John Fyfe had one of 9lbs and Mr Barnes had a brace at 6lbs and 8lbs. Ghillie Archie Hay says that the Taggart, Cascade and Red Francis did the trick in the peaty water.
Check out this short film, The Gift about good practice in Catch and Release.
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Tel Harangen with the first fish of the season. An 8lbr from Lower Woodend.
Andrew McHardy landed a 10lb springer from the Long Pool at Woodend.
Joe Sinclair with a superb 19lbr from Park
833 salmon to 16 June 2018