Yesterday's Catches - Today's River Levels - Tomorrow's Availability

Newsletter - April 2016

Now's the time to start checking availability if you wish to fish the Tay in May as some Tay beats are showing limited availability - find fishing.

Thank you to this months contributors to the FishTay newsletter Bob White; Malcolm Anderson from Caledonia Fly Company; Angling Active Stirling; A Man Called Fish; ghillies and beats on the Tay system.

Please contact Tom in the office on 01573 470612 if you need any help arranging your Spring fishing trip, including recommendations where to stay and guides to use.

Tight lines
Anne Woodcock

Fishing Meikleour

Mike Brown with his first Tay springer caught on a Gold Bodied Willie Gunn.

Changeable weather today (Monday 25th April) with wind, rain, hail, snow and now and then a wee bit of sunshine! Despite that, or maybe because of it, we landed two fish this morning. An 8lb'er spinning in the March Pool and an 8lb'er on the fly from the tail of the Boxwood Bush. A third fish was also lost from the Boxwood - find fishing.

Meikleour Spey Casting Days

Due to popular demand and after some very successful Spey casting coaching days last year, we are very excited to offer a series of fly casting tuitions throughout the 2016 season - read more.

A Man Called Fish

A Man Called Fish spent a day with Claire Mercer Nairne on Meikleour Estate last year, in the hope that learning a few French phrases might improve his pescetary communication with salmon. And what do you know? It seems to work! - watch the video.

Dalmarnock Fishing

Italian visitor Luca Gugliotta with an 18lb sea liced fish.

This week so far Simon Munro has had a cracking 9lber from the Clachantaggert on the fly, and had a close encounter in the Stepps pool with another fish. Bill (aged 90) had a good pull in Sowerby whilst fly fishing from the boat. A good few fish seen in the beat - find fishing.

Now the river is falling. 1'7" and below on the gauge, pools such as clachantaggert and the stepps are a dream to fish with the fly. This is a Beat To Try.

How To Safely Release A Salmon

The best method of releasing a salmon is to leave it in the water and touch nothing but the hook with fingers or pliers. Whatever the method, care combined with speed, will give the fish the best chance of survival.

• Use barbless or pinched hooks
• Retrieve your fish quickly; release it immediately
• Keep the fish in the water
• Use a rubber or knotless net, if one must be used
• Cut the leader if necessary
• Remove the hook carefully
• Hold the fish gently in its natural swimming position.
• Face the fish upstream until it revives
• Do not move the fish back and forth in the water.

The Tay's policy for April and May is that all spring salmon should be released, i.e. the Tay has adopted a policy of 100% catch and release for spring salmon. Spring salmon are a scarce and precious resource. Please help preserve both them and the long term future of your sport by following the recommendations. It is vital the river system follows these guidelines to ensure the draconian rules do not get extended in seasons to come - read more.

Further details and the Tay District Salmon Fisheries Board's conservation recommendations can be viewed at: this page.

Cargill Beat

Cargill springers for the Vernon party.

A good start to the morning (Tuesday 26th April) for Paul Vernon's party at Cargill. Kevin managed a lovely springer from the rumbling stone. Neil French had a 9lber from the bridge stream on the fly and Martin Ashby lost two crackers on the toby. Fish going through all morning. For more information and to book fishing, follow this link to Cargill.

Royal Dunkeld Hotel

Set in a former coaching inn built circa 1815, this modernised hotel is 5-minute walk from Dunkeld Cathedral and the River Tay. A popular hotel for food, choose from the Larches Restaurant, Woodlands Bistro, Courtyard Bar and even the Courtyard Garden for alfresco dining - read more.

What do customers say "I have just returned from a salmon fishing trip and stayed at the Royal Dunkeld Hotel. Room, staff, food and location are all excellent, no complaints at all. Highly recommended. This hotel is very close to the Newtyle beat and to Dunkeld house beat." Alan, TripAdvisor.

James Armstrong fishing with Grant Tigwell on Loch Tay caught a 24lb springer, which was the first springer off Loch Tay this year - read more.

Fishing With Bob White

We took a trip this month to Stanley to see Bob White on the River Tay who manages four beats on the lower Tay; Catholes, Pitlochrie, Benchil and Luncarty.

Bob is also the author of the weekly Tay River Report which is an informative update on the latest news on the river, including what tackle to use and fishing prospects for the week ahead.

Bob's latest river report:-

Spring salmon were landed throughout last week with better weather and catches have spread with higher river temperatures. It was another equaling best week of the season so far with 114 fish landed and the biggest one recorded was 18 pounds. It is early yet, but improving runs are coming into the river and better weather is making fishing easier with lower water last week which may have encouraged more fish to run the river as the run strengthens. The spring fish that have been caught so far have been superb quality and of a good size overall.

This past week saw a few fish from the lower river scattered throughout the beats with Islamouth proving the best beat, as fish hesitate at the mouth of the Isla. Lower Redgorton, Upper Redgorton and Fishponds all reported fish. John Douglas caught a superb 12 pounds fish from the Little Shot on the fly from Benchil and another one was lost on Saturday in the same pool by Alex Graham. Upper Scone had a couple in the week from the Pitlochrie beat.

Catholes produced a couple as well with Ed Slaven landing a small fish on a Toby from the Black Stones and Bob White catching a 10 pounds fish in the Black Stones on the fly. A few other fish were hooked on the fly as well but lost as fish bolt through the lower river. Burnmouth managed one and 7 fish came off the combination of Stobhall and Taymount. Find Fishing.

Spring Tactics

We are now coming into one of the most important months on the calendar for the Tay system as the Spring fish will start to move from the lower beats into the middle beats of the river spreading them more evenly through the system.

Fast sink tips, intermediate lines or even deeper will help you find your quarry but you will need the all-important flies on the end of your setup.

Newtyle Fishing

Ronnie Fraser with his 8th fish in three days.

The season so far has produced 34 salmon of which 21 have been caught in April. Anglers wishing to fish this popular Tay beat, one of the top performing beats of last year with 253 salmon, will find limited availability for the rest of the season - find fishing.

Tay Professional Chef

Peter Backhouse owner of No9 Guest House in Perth is an angler and a professional chef to 2 AA Rosette standard. Having worked in London and for private sporting estates in Scotland Peter creates bespoke menus for fishing and shooting parties in Perthshire read more.

River Lyon

Tom Buchanan caught his 35lb salmon on the River Lyon

FishPal staff spent three days fishing with the FishPal Malloch Trophy winner Tom Buchanan on the South Chesthill Estate last week. The beat has 5 miles single bank and 2 miles of double bank fishing with accommodation available from 4 to 15 people.

If you have not fished this hidden gem where Tom caught his magnificent 35lb salmon there is limited availability for the remainder of the year - read more.

Tay Salmon Flies

Malcolm Anderson with Bob White last week.

Caledonia Fly Company's Malcom Anderson touches on the newest range of Salmon flies available for 2016. These include some variations of old favourites and some completely new patterns like the “Lady Meikleour”

Not only does the Caledonia Fly Company provide Salmon flies, but also it designs and ties flies for every other fish that can be caught on the fly. “You name it, we tie it.” says Malcolm Anderson.

Check out the new 2016 salmon range with Angling Active Stirling here.

Watch this video and discover how much goes in to the flies that Angling Active Stirling stock and why they are the largest stockist of salmon flies in Scotland.

Tay Salmon Course

Due to a cancellation two places are now available on the 3 day spring salmon course on Lower Kinnaird beat on the River Tay, 23rd-25th May.

The three day spring salmon fly fishing courses include tuition with AAPGAI Masters Illtyd Griffiths, Bob Sherwood and Glyn Freeman. This fly fishing course is designed to suit the novice, intermediate or the advanced level angler and tailor made to meet your aspirations.

The cost includes three days fishing permits, equipment if needed, tuition with three instructors, lunch and evening dinner, two nights accommodation with breakfast - read more.

Where To Fish

Peter's fish ready to be released, Dunkeld Fishing.

Stenton Beat - Last minute availability has just been added on this great little beat which is fishing well. See:- Stenton Beat This is one of the most picturesque beats on the River Tay with seven superb pools offering the fly fisherman sport the whole length of the beat. If you need any help with arranging your fishing trip to the River Tay please give Tom a ring in the office on 01573 470612.

FishPal Newsletters

The latest monthly newsletters for the River's Dee, Tay and Tweed can be found here.

If you wish to be included in our mailing list to receive our newsletters please go to our subscribe form and tell us which ones you would like to receive. Alternatively contact the office on 01573 470612.