I had a lovely day in the company of Ian Neale www.speycaster.net on one of the beats he manages on the River Findhorn yesterday. I have to say, for the trout fisher, looking to break into salmon fishing, this river really has it all. However, don’t be fooled by that statement, its not the smallest of rivers and in most cases, in this part anyway, requires a double handed rod to make the best of it. This said, even here on this beat, some pools are perfectly easy to fish single handed.
It must be one of the most stunning rivers in the country, high banks, cliffs, some easy, and other “interesting” access, but basically it has it all.
We fished the left bank this time, focusing on the Garden, Meads, St John, Rowan and Scar [spelling] pools.
The beat is just a few miles from the sea so has nothing but fresh fish at this time. It’s below the famous gorge, which is a natural temperature barrier for fish, so on a spring such as this year, cold; this is just the most perfect place to fish. Its also good when the ghillie is totally confident you will catch a fish, I love this as it makes one fish with added confidence and enthusiasm.
Other than a good blether with Ian over lunchtime in the simple but adequate fishing huts, my reward for the day was to fish those wonderful pools at perfect water height, all I had to do was find a fish! The first of those came in the shape of one of last years models, a very big Kelt from Rowan, this was soon followed by another. However, nowadays, a pull is a pull, a wee bonus on top when fishing such lovely water.
However, the Fresh fish was waiting right enough. After lunch we headed to St John, a beautiful pool with high rock face made of sandstone and around 30 meters high. An amazing rock formation really and one I was in awe of whilst fishing this pool.
The middle of the pool looked promising, a deep run, very easy to fish, that you just knew would hold spring salmon, and the tail, well, this looked “simply lovely”, yes, the perfect description, some reading this will know exactly what I mean!
Anyway, on getting down to the tail with my trusty Willie Gunn, it was one of those times where, you “Just Knew” it would happen, the best feeling in salmon fishing, when you’re confident levels hit that awesome height.
The line tightened and the fish fought, and fought, my god, those Findhorn fish are just so strong. After a great fight and watching the bright silver sheen flash under the surface as the fish bored deeper and deeper, finally it was netted by Ian. Absolutely Magic! What an end to a great day. Made all the better because Ian was so confident there would be one there in the first place, even getting the timing of when the fish would arrive in the pool from the sea right. A great piece of guiding from a good lad.
This was the 5th fish they had caught with only 2 rods fishing since the beginning of the week. Not many places in the UK offering such potential. Ian has some nice opportunities for fishing and I’d recommend anyone to have a look at his site. Mentioned above. It will certainly be a go to place for my customers looking for fishing on the Findhorn.