The river's catchment area of 165 square miles lies to the northeast of Lairg on the southern slopes of the Ben Armine Forest.
The river rises to the north of Dalnessie and flows southeast for 15 miles where it is joined by the Black Water at Balnacoil.
From there it flows through flat grassland to Loch Brora.
The loch is 3 miles long and half a mile wide at its widest point. From the outfall of the loch the river runs for 3 miles to the sea at Brora.
This lower section of the river is a series of long deep pools, fast rapids and glides.
The Brora has the reputation of being one of the best spring rivers in the north of Scotland.
Fish begin to enter the river in late January and it is not unusual for fish to be caught on the lower river on the opening day of the season.
The runs of spring fish increase through the following months and the spring catch returns to the end of May are between 200 and 250. Grilse and summer salmon enter the river in late June and the runs continue till the end of the season.
The lower river has a run of large autumn fish and this is probably why the closing date is later than most east coast rivers. The yearly catch returns are in excess of 800 salmon and grilse.
The river also has a reasonable run of sea trout.