(Last updated: Tuesday 9th June)
The week began particularly horrible, with unseasonably cold winds and continuous rain falling on Monday and well throughout the night. This torrent of water provided a staggering increase in river height on the SEPA gauges, with the Bladnoch rising to over 3 ft, the Cree over 5ft and the Urr, a whopping 8ft by Tuesday! Anglers were not deterred by the rise and upon the Minnoch, up to 9 salmon were caught by Tuesday night - four of these by Jamie Ribbens within a very short time fishing through Glentrool Estates water at the end of the day.
Lower down the River Cree, Galloway Estates was doing well and added 6 salmon during the week (including 3 salmon on Monday up to 13 lbs in weight) to their seasons tally which sat at 13 salmon on Friday.
On the Bladnoch, Mark Godfrey released a 10 lb salmon at Killiemore on Monday and Mochrum Park recorded two salmon on Thursday, including a fantastic 14 lb beauty caught on the fly at Titos by Mr Watson.
Upon the Urr, Dalbeattie Angling Association recorded a salmon on Monday. This may well be their first salmon of the season - keep it up!
Following a terrific 7ft spate, Jonny Haley caught and safely returned this year's first Cree salmon (a 9lb springer), beneath the A75 road bridge (Machermore beat) on Tuesday 10th March. Jamie Hyslop added a further 9lb salmon to the Cree catch on the 18th March at Linloskin.
By April, another nice lift in water at the very start of the month brought fresh fish to Galloway Estates on the Cree and the first reported springer to the River Bladnoch - caught and released at Barhoise falls by Graeme Parks. River levels fell away quickly as longer and warmer spring days commenced but with cold, showery weather (even some snow) returning across the weekend of the 11th April, catches were not far away and three salmon were recorded on a small rise on Monday 13th April - including the first springer for the Minnoch (tributary of the Cree) and two salmon from within Newton Stewart Angling Association water and Galloway Estates water. River levels dropped from herein and it was not until Wednesday 29th April that a good rise provided some sport. On this day, Richard Bellamy recorded a small salmon on the Minnoch - his first April catch since 1965!
By May, more regular small freshets appeared to spur fish on and Colin Richardson landed his first springers on the Bladnoch - of 10 and 11 lbs in weight across the 6th/7th May. At the same time, Jock Rennie reported an 8lb springer at Barhoise Dam, upper Bladnoch. A good spate across the weekend of the 9th May produced a couple of really good fishing days on the 11th and 12th May when 6 salmon were recorded - mostly from the lower Cree (including a cracking 12 lb fish on NSAA water) - but also one for Mochrum Park at Crannas on the Bladnoch. Mr Watson added a 9lb fish to Mochrum Park totals on Friday 15th May. By Tuesday 19th May, another flush of good water through the systems brought fish to anglers on the Cree and the Minnoch at Glentrool Estates reported four springers, bringing the season total to 19 salmon for this productive Cree tributary. The Bladnoch also faired well during this week and three salmon of between 7lbs and 9lbs were reported from Mochrum Park landed by Alex Keachie, Euan Keachie and Malcolm Adkin. Newton Stewart Angling Association recorded a salmon of 10 lbs on Wednesday 20th. Regular showers kept conditions favourable, particularly towards the end of the week beginning 25th May and ten salmon were reported to the website - four from Mochrum Park on the Bladnoch (including Georgie Botham's 12 lb springer) and six from the lower Cree (including the largest fish of season so far of 15 lbs from Galloway Estates).