Newsletter - December 2014     Yesterday's Catches, Today's River Levels, Tomorrow's Availability

Tweed Wins The FishPal Malloch Trophy

John Munsey with the 1st of 4 Spring Fish

We are pleased to announce the 2014 winner of Scotland’s most prestigious angling award. The Fishpal Malloch Trophy has been won by Wayne Longstaff fishing Hendersyde beat, River Tweed. The story of Wayne's fish caught on May 5th features in this newsletter, our last one for 2014.

It may be a quiet time of year for fishing, but it has been a truly hectic time for us here at FishTweed. Christmas and the New Year are peak times for booking fishing, as they are for the travel trade in general.

During December beats have been adding their 2015 availability and we have been working hard with owners and agents to have all availability now uploaded on to the system. To make the most of FishTweed we recommend you book a Rod Alert to receive emails denoting new availabilities on your selected beat(s).

If you are looking for a last minute present, consider a fishing gift voucher from FishPal. Their versatility means that the recipient can choose exactly when and where he/she would like to go and which species are sought. Our offices are open until Christmas Eve and gift vouchers can be emailed to you.

FishTweed are open on weekdays as usual during the festive period, but not on 25th/26th December or 1st January. Whether you are wetting a line or enjoying talking about the 'one that got away' with family and friends during the festive break, remember we are only a telephone call or email away to help you book your 2015 fishing trip to the Scottish Borders.

With best wishes for Christmas and the New Year

Anne Woodcock
Marketing Director

2014 FishPal Malloch Trophy Winner

May 5th 2014, was a normal spring day on Tweed. John Munsey had invited his friend Wayne Longstaff to share his rod on Hendersyde beat and after a visit to the local butchers for lunch and a trip into Tweedside Tackle to purchase flies, the guys were eagerly anticipating a good days fishing.

2014 Winner Wayne Longstaff
John Munsey fishing Cottage Stream pool caught the first of their four spring salmon. He then passed his rod to Wayne to fish the rest of the pool and half way down the pool Wayne hooked into the magnificent 33 pounder. John Kitchingham said "the sea liced fish was weighed and a photograph was quickly taken to capture the 'once in a life time achievement' and then safely released. The fish was so firm we could not get a scale sample and we didn't wish to damage it by scraping it hard. Normally there are scales in the net, there was not a single one from this beautiful specimen salmon".

The fish was caught on a Hardy Elite rod with a Hardy 2000 reel, a Mach 55 sink-tip fly line and a Pot-Bellied Pig fly. The fish was weighed in a weigh-net by Hendersyde head boatman John Kitchingham.

The net was verified by the local butcher during lunch, ironically the same butchers both John and Wayne had visited earlier that morning. John Taylor, Wylie Butcher's in Kelso, said "We could not find a pack of meat at 33lb but we got one at 32 & 1/4 so I added a one pound tub of beef dripping to it to make sure it was over 33lb".

At the FishPal Malloch Trophy Committee meeting on December 17th several possible contenders were considered, including Iain Wilson's spring salmon and Gordon Smiths fish from Birse on the River Dee. Mr Longstaff’s entry fulfilled the relevant criteria including best evidence and was endorsed as the winner for 2014. His name will be engraved on the Tay Foundation’s trophy, joining an illustrious list of previous winners which stretches back four decades. He will also receive a FishPal Malloch winners trophy to keep, a £250 FishPal Voucher, a Mackenzie DTX rod and a place on Scott Mackenzie’s Spey Casting Masterclass course - read more.

FishPal Malloch Trophy 2014

Lots of Tweed Availability released onto FishTweed!

As we go to press with this months newsletter we wanted to let you know that overnight there has been a significant amount of new available fishing just released onto the system. We anticipate more to follow over the days and weeks to come and if you want to FIND FISHING please follow this link. Lots of cracking fishing to choose from and likely to be sold quickly over the busy holiday period if previous years are anything to go by.

If you have already booked your fishing through us for next year and you have not yet taken out our new FishPal Insurance Cover then don’t worry, follow this link to find out all about the cover the policy provides as you can still take out the cover if you so wish - Fishing Insurance.

2014 Films

The River Tweed has always been internationally famous for its salmon fishing, with people travelling from all over the world to fish it. We would like to share with you some of our favourite fishing films during 2014.

Keith Arthur on Middle Pavilion

Game Fisher's Diary enjoyed some superb sport fishing and filming for Tweed Autumn salmon. To accompany the series Iain Wilson from Borders Gunroom in conjunction with Caledonia Fly Company created a selection of salmon flies. Iain's flies are available to purchase from Borders Gunroom.

Sky Sports presenter Keith Arthur fished for salmon and grayling on Tweed during October for his popular TV programme, Tight Lines. Keith was greeted with rather challenging conditions on day one as most of the river was in flood - read more.

Day two and a dropping river, Keith fished Boleside beat where last years Malloch Trophy winner Shamus Jennings caught his 50lb salmon. After casting tuition from Nigel, Keith fished the famous Glenmayne pool, followed hot on his heels by our Marketing Director, Anne Woodcock, whose junction shrimps and garry dog flies were attracting trout but salmon were still proving rather elusive - salmon film.

Day three and better conditions, Keith joined Tweed grayling and trout experts Fin Wilson and Mike Allan for a session chasing grayling. Did Keith hook more than the lady of the stream - grayling film?

Message From Mark Cockburn

Message from Mark

As we fast approach Christmas and the end of 2014 I am sure you will all have already packed away your rods, reels, lines, etc and are hopefully now enjoying the beginning of a well earned festive break. This time of year for the FishPal team is one of the busiest times of the year as we try to sort out everyones fishing for the new year. Despite the poor 2014 season I have been literally overwhelmed with the number of anglers desperately keen to sort out their fishing trip for next year. I was reminded in a call earlier today that despite everything, getting away to fish with your pals is still top of the list of things to sort over the Christmas period. 

Can I just say again, thanks to all the anglers I and the team have had the pleasure of meeting this year on rivers across the country and to all the very kind comments received about what we strive to achieve here at FishPal which is quite simply to bring as much available and affordable fishing to as many anglers as possible. 

The office will be closed on the 25th and 26th of December and also on the 1st of January but you can always access whats available to book 24/7 on the websites.

I hope you all have a fantastic Christmas with lots of nice fishy gifts under the tree to get you in the mood for the new season which is now only several weeks away!!

Tight lines everybody, heres to a 2015 season to remember! 

Mark Cockburn

FishPal CEO