Welcome to the first newsletter from the River Tay for 2016.
The Tay opening last Friday was celebrated by anglers across the river network with formal and informal blessings.
Dr Aileen McLeod, Minister for Environment, Climate Change & Land Reform formally opened the river with the symbolic first cast at Dunkeld Fishing in front of an enthusiastic crowd which included the Tay & District Salmon Fisheries Board, Tay Foundation, BBC and STV.
Whilst Dr McLeod was in the region she visited Claire Mercer Nairn at Meikleour Fishing. The minister was introduced to salmon fishing on a charity ladies day Claire holds every year. She also met world spey casting champion Scott Mackenzie, who gave her some top tips on the first cast. Scott was also performing the first cast further up the river at Kenmore.
Ian Gordon made a fantastic opening day speech accompanied by the youngest angler on the river, Eilidh McRoberts (3), daughter of Meikleour Head Ghillie Calum McRoberts who blessed the river with Champagne and Whisky.
We would like to thank Chris and Craig at Angling Active who captured opening day on film. If you have a story to tell, a photo to share, a beat you would like to see featured or something you think fellow anglers might be interested in, please give the office a call. It is always good to get news from the river and share it with the angling community.
David Summers of the Tay District Salmon Fisheries Board (TDSFB) has observed a gradual increase in the size of salmon returning to the Tay with more spring fish and fewer grilse.
We asked him if we can we expect a "Genuine 40lb'er" on the Tay in 2016? - read more.
Prices for a days spring fishing on the Tay start from as little as £20 for a bank rod and £100 for a boat and two rods - find spring fishing.
If you need any help with arranging your fishing trip in 2016, please give Tom a ring in the office on 01573 470612.
Congratulations to Gail ODea wife of Cohn ODea of Taymount, the first female on the river to catch a springer on a vision 110 whilst harling in the Linn Pool on Taymount.
Congratulations Peter Backhouse owner of No9 The Guest House in Perth who also had opening day success with a 24 pound springer on Findynate beat. Kercock beat also had opening day success with a spring fish.
Stobhall, Glendelvine, Newtyle, Farleyer, Upper Scone and Upper Redgorton have all registered salmon and sea trout - latest catches.
For each fish released on Meikleour Beat in 2016 anglers can claim a free pint of their very own "Lure of Meikleour". For every pint pulled £5 will be donated to the local charity Angling For Youth Development - read more.
This conservation initiative created by Sam & Claire at Meikleour has been so popular that a fishery in Norway is offering the same incentive to their guests with their own Norwegian brew.
Mark Cockburn with Tom Buchanan and Hamish Rae
The presentation of the 2015 FishPal Malloch Trophy to Tom Buchanan was a true highlight of the River Tay opening at Dunkeld.
Tom with his guitar in one hand and his own tied monkey fly in the other, a copy of the one he caught his winning fish on. He brought so much enthusiasm to the day, a true talent, character and worthy winner - watch the video.
Thanks to Angling Active Stirling who captured it all on film.
Anne with the fishing party on Saturday
The first two days of the season this previously under-fished beat was fished by some very experienced anglers/ghillies from Speyside and Deeside. On both days they enjoyed plenty of rod action from the boat and bank with kelts and a couple of fish possibly the ‘real thing. We too had success in just 10 minutes whilst taking photographs - read more.
“Lovely beat with more fly water than I thought the Tay had. Salt holes is a nice pool, fly fishes really well down it” say's Stuart who normally fishes the Dee, Spey and North Esk - read more.
With lessons from last year on the amount of fishing that was disrupted we would urge you to consider taking out the FishPal Insurance Policy to cover you in the event of being flooded off, plus other really welcome features.
A middle beat affected by the floods.
Here is the link to the insurance page which tells you all you need to know. Remember if your fishing is already booked you can still add insurance, giving you the comfort of knowing that you will at least get your money back if your beat happens to be in flood (less an excess of only £50).
Full policy details can be found on our insurance page or give the office a call on 01573 470612 if you would like a quote to insure your fishing
From the 15th of Jan to the 27th of Feb 2016, book two rooms at the Meikleour Arms and get a free day boat fishing for two on Upper Islamouth and Meikleour House Beat - read more.
It's here at last, all those long winter nights are coming to an end and it's time to get your kit together and prepare to brave the chilly air and cool water. Water levels have been dropping and fish have been seen splashing around which is always a good sign, as where there are kelts holding up there are sure to be a few Springers hanging around nearby. The Spring Salmon tend to slow down when they come across - read more.
The latest monthly newsletters for the River's Dee, Tay and Tweed can be found here.
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