The average length of each beat is just over 1 mile, with typically 15 to 20 named pools per beat allowing for 4 rods. Novar own both banks throughout the length of the beats. Most of the fishing is accessed from the southern (right) bank, except for some pools on Beats 2, 4 and 5, accessed by footbridge or road bridge, which are fished from the left bank only, or from both banks. Over the course of a full week's fishing, anglers will generally fish all 6 beats on the rotation, though shorter lets are also available.
A number of rods are syndicated, or let out for the season with holiday accommodation, some fished for only a few weeks during the season.
Access to the beats is provided by a network of Estate tracks. All beats, and each half beat, can be reached by most types of saloon car, and there are parking areas throughout the beats. There are also some additional '4WD Only' designated tracks, providing access to the full length of each beat for those with 4 wheel drive vehicles.
There is a considerable amount of infrastructure throughout the beats that improve access to the fishings, and provide areas to rest and 'take in' the surroundings. These include footbridges, catwalks, huts/shelters and seats. There are fishing huts on Beats 1 and 2, and fishing shelters on Beats 3, 4 and 5, with another on Beat 1
Although the season on the Novar Fishings starts at the beginning of April, the best runs of spring salmon are normally from early May to mid-June. The main grilse and summer salmon fishing generally begins in mid-July, peaking in August and September, but fresh run fish can be caught through until mid-October.
The Alness is a hunter’s river; ‘rivercraft’ and persistence are generally rewarded, and long casting is rarely needed. Fish can be caught by traditional 'down & across' fishing of the main pools, and also on short lines in the heads of the pools, and in small runs and pots between the main pools. A 12-13 ft double-handed rod or 10-11.5 ft switch rod with AFTM #8/9 lines are suitable for most conditions, though in summer months, great sport can be had with a 10-11 ft single-handed rods
Favourite flies for low water conditions are shrimp patterns such as Ally's Shrimp, Yellow Ally's, Cascade Shrimp, Stoat's Tail (and variants), Munro Killer, Willie Gunn and Collie Dog (and variants) tied on doubles and bottle tubes. Towards the end of the season and in higher water conditions, 1" to 1.5" brass and copper tube flies such as Willie Gunn, Findhorn Killer, and Ally's Shrimp are preferred.
There are three cottages and houses available for holiday lets on Novar Estate as well as Ardtalla, a superb sporting lodge that sleeps 18. The estate also offers a high quality driven partridge shoot as well as driven pheasant, rough shooting, duck flighting, walked-up grouse and deer stalking in season.