Archive for May, 2010

Seatrout arrive at Finavon

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

For the first time for at least five years today we saw a shoal of not less than 50 seatrout in Willows and the Boat Pool. There is a good range of sizes amongst the shoal with some fish in the 4-6lbs range. They are of course absolutely fresh in from the sea. These early sea trout are often the biggest of the short sea trout season. Numbers of shoaling sea trout normally peak in the last week of June, but much depends on water levels. If we get a summer spate, many sea trout will quickly move upstream to the upper tributaries. But if the water remains low, with the occasional freshet to cool the water temperature and encourage fish to take the fly, we may well see a good year for sea trout fishing at night. The omens currently are looking good!

If the Boat Pool has a good shoal of sea trout, you can bet your bottom dollar that Indies Pool will also have fish.

Night fishing

The best sea trout fishing is at night

Dry weather, low water, a salmon and spring is here!

Sunday, May 16th, 2010

Releasing a sealiced hen salmon

The last week has not been good for fly fishermen at Finavon. With the water cold and clear, and both water and air temperature lower than average for mid May, conditions were much better for inspecting the bed of the river to see the changes brought by winter spates than fly fishing for salmon. Moray, FCW’s ghillie, saw a nice fresh salmon show in the dub of Tollmuir Pool, just off the huge rock on the left bank. He estimated this fresh spring salmon at 13lbs. But, very much against the odds, Andrew Bett took and returned a glorious 12lbs salmon from Melgund. Fishing the clear water in bright conditions he described the salmon taking his fly as it emerged from the deep water at the head of the pool. A beautiful fish in difficult circumstances. Well done Andrew!

On Sunday I found a dead salmon in Craigo Stream. The fish had extensive fungal growth all over its body. It had been a beautiful fresh springer of about 11bs. A very sad sight.

News from downriver is that sea trout are now being caught. These first sea trout are always a good size – usually 4lbs or more. They should be at Finavon next week.


A good April but will May be better?

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

These bulletin blogs represent news about Finavon and the South Esk, and my views as a riparian owner. They are not the views of any other organisation, nor are they designed to promote the interests of any individual or organisation other than Finavon Castle Water and factors affecting the fishery.  Tony Andrews

April turned out to be a good spring salmon month, quite like the old days, with three fresh salmon of 15lbs or more, all safely returned to the river alive to continue their upstream migration. The best one came from Indies Pool, where a minor adjustment by the winter floods of the stream at the head of the pool has made it a better place for fish to pause on their way up river. There seems to be a reasonable number of fish in the river, not quite a fish in every pool, but not far off. What I can say is that the river is in very good nick, with clean gravel and clear water, perhaps a bit too clear to provide the best opportunity for catching a spring salmon. Despite the poor conditions, and a river now beginning to fall towards summer water levels, Derek Strachan took a nice fish of 8lbs from Willows and our tenants have lost fish, or at the very least, had offers from the usual group of holding pools. The pools I really fancy in these conditions are Tollmuir and Marcus House, both of which always seem to hold fish, and both of which are seldom fished, and therefore are undisturbed.

16lbs salmon April 2010

April spring salmon 16lbs

The spring is now starting to get going, with the gean blossom out and the grass growing lushly. The river banks at Finavon are well treed and with the wild garlic now flowering and the best of the eating of it over for another year, we are all looking forward to the next big migration, which is of course the sea trout. This year, with George Pullar agreeing not to sell sea trout, and return as many as possible alive to the sea, we should see greater numbers of these fish in Finavon’s pools. Reports from elsewhere are encouraging, so we are all hoping for another improvement in returning numbers of these most attractive and mysterious fish. I regard sea trout as the defining quality of the South Esk from the angler’s viewpoint. Here’s hoping!

Playing a 15lbs salmon in Indies Pool

Nearing the end: a 15lbs spring salmon