River Tay - Scotland

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★★★★ (4)

1 mile double bank, boat and bank ghillied fishing with a comfortable hut and wc at Stanley Mills.

Streamy water, pools and rapids with an emphasis on traditional anchored boat and bank fishing.

Fly fishing friendly.
In 2020 Pitlochrie is fished on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays.

The beat is situated about six miles from the top reaches of the tidal water in Perth. In the spring with water temperatures being low the salmon tend to have their first stop in these waters because of the increased gradient causing lots of fast water and the Weir at the top of the Catholes. This makes it a prime spring beat early in the season.

On the Pitlochrie beat we have been looking hard at modern fishing trends and how they can improve the experience of visiting anglers. As a result we have decided to reduce the number of rods fishing our beats at any one moment from 6 to 4. This will increase the time that individual fishers spend on the productive pools, give our fishers more time in the boat and give the pools more time to rest. We are confident that these measures will increase the catches per rod per day and elevate the experience of fishing our beats to a new level. Fishing is increasingly an escape from the pressures of the modern world and the reduction in rod pressure has been greeted with great enthusiasm by our regular rods.

Pitlochrie is situated in the village of Stanley up and down from the former Stanley Mills. This beat is very versatile as it fishes well all year and at different heights of water. When spring fishing dominated it was the place to be, especially in the early months up to April. After the last 5 years these signs are returning and hopefully will improve.

Pitlochrie has nine named pools including the world famous Pitlochrie Pool. This beat offers good bank and anchored boat fishing in all heights of water for fly fishing and spinning. Horsey Pool is one of the best pools on the river for fly fishing in higher water. Two boats are provided. It fishes six rods and has a hut situated overlooking the Wash House. There are good low water pools such as the Corner Pool, the Dyke, Kirkie and the Woodside. Horsey fishes well in higher water once the early summer or autumn rain arrives.

Spring Fishing
Pitlochrie is fished on an alternative day, (with Catholes), until the end of April for parties wishing to fish more than one day. This is one of the best spring combinations on the river. The last 5 years have seen an upturn in early spring catches as the river seems to be in the early stages of a return to spring dominance. In 1978 over 600 springers were caught on this combination.

Summer Fishing
During the months of May and June, day lets are available from the Stanley bank only. There will be no Ghillie present except first thing in the morning to show you the beat.

Autumn Fishing
During this period, until the end of the season, Pitlochrie is paired on an alternative day basis with Benchil.

Daily lets are available with 1 ghillie and 2 boats, we encourage fly fishing from the bank and anchored boat.

Bob White has over 40 years experience in angling for Atlantic salmon and has extensive fishing knowledge on the Tay. Bob can offer tuition in overhead and Spey casting techniques and is a G Loomis pro guide. Tackle can be supplied.

The owners are anglers and support the Tay District Salmon Fisheries Board conservation measures and consequently would encourage all tenants to follow these guidelines.


Salmon & Grilse

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Sun 4th October

It has been a busy end to September and early October with over 20 salmon caught on the Stanley beats. The weather has played a large part in determining the catches. Initially in September we were praying for water and a drop in temperatures. We witnessed a spate mid September but that did not really trigger off great sport but by the end of the month the river temperature dropped substantially after a couple of early frosts and although the water level dropped the older fish became more aggressive and catches improved dramatically. In the last week 15 fish were caught on very small flies on our 3 main beats of Benchil, Pitlochrie and Luncarty.

This weekend has seen very heavy rain causing a massive spate which may just bring in some more fresh fish which have been sadly lacking over the autumn period so far. Once the river settles back during the coming week we hopefully will have a good few last days of this current season.

Fresh water, cooler river temperatures, all you need to do is add fish!

September started off quietly with only odd fish caught. Tim Greenfield caught one in Luncarty on a floating Devon. As the month started to draw to an end the water temperature dropped and the fish became more aggressive. Alan Robertson and Charles Martin had a good day at Luncarty with 4 fish between them up to 8 pounds on Tobies.

In the last week including a few days in October 15 were caught, all on the fly from Benchil and Luncarty in low water and all on very small flies. David Brand caught a 10 pounds fish from Luncarty on a Micro Tube then towards the end of that week Graham Reid caught 5 fish to 18 pounds from Benchil and Luncarty on a Geordie Fly. Alistair Boomer caught 2 fish up to 16 pounds from Luncarty on a Black Shrimp. Ann Emsens enjoyed more success with an 18 pounder from the Long Shot on Benchil and Jim McLanaghan caught an 8 pounds fish on the Pitlochrie beat at the top of the Woodside. 

All in all it was a great week with hopefully a last flurry to come in the last 10 days of the season. 

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