Catholes, River Tay

Trout & Salmon (UK) - - Fishing Reports -

The beat is about six miles from the top of the tidal water and of­fers good spin­ning and fly-fish­ing from the bank. Al­though known as an ex­cel­lent spring beat, it can of­fer good sum­mer and au­tumn sport as well. Catholes fishes six rods per day and has an ex­cel­lent hut at the bot­tom of the beat. Day-tick­ets for sal­mon cost £35 plus vat Con­tact Tom Carter, Fish­pal. Tel: 01573 470 612 Pur­chase tick­ets on­line at­­land/tay/ Catholes more. So it seems there was not just an early run, but a gen­uinely good and per­sis­tent run. How­ever, by June, the fish did not seem to stop long enough to get caught in the Tum­mel. Iron­i­cally, up­stream of the dam, things were not that pro­duc­tive, ei­ther. Loch Faskally re­ported only four for the month and on the Garry, Pit­lochry An­gling Club’s Ruan Ruarie beat re­ported only two. Again, as was also the case last month, a small smat­ter­ing of fish was re­ported from the up­per Tay. For ex­am­ple, Fin­dy­nate had five, Up­per Farleyer four and Lower Farleyer two. Loch Tay was quiet. Grant Tig­well’s Loch Tay “Fish n Trips” re­ported one. As to the monthly to­tal, my es­ti­mate is that June will end up with over 600 fish, which is a rea­son­able over­all to­tal for re­cent times but not as good as last year, which was very good. Of course, not all beats ben­e­fited to the same ex­tent, but that’s usu­ally how it goes! Last year was the year of the Dunkeld area, but this year it has so far been the year of Is­lam­outh and neigh­bour­ing beats. But now that July is just round the cor­ner it is time to be look­ing out for grilse. PROSPECTS While tra­di­tion­ally July was the month when the sum­mer grilse run peaked, in re­cent years Au­gust has been the main month for them. Last year was no ex­cep­tion. While we hope grilse will ap­pear at their tra­di­tional time, it may well be again that Au­gust will be the month when they ap­pear in their big­gest num­bers. Given a bit of water, the grilse will spread through­out the sys­tem, in­clud­ing trib­u­taries such as the Isla and Ericht, but low water should see the best sport, in the early part of the month at least, on beats such as Is­lam­outh. How­ever, by the lat­ter part of the month “au­tumn” grilse should start to ap­pear, and catches should start to rise on the lower beats par­tic­u­larly, but given water, the mid­dle Tay, too. That will her­ald the start of the true Tay au­tumn fish­ing. To look for late avail­abil­ity, check out the­ web­site. It is now the best source for ob­tain­ing fish­ing on the Tay. – BEN LUI.


OUR RODS caught a re­spectable 205 sal­mon in June, which is well above our ten-year av­er­age and three be­low our five-year av­er­age. Given the con­di­tions, this was a good re­sult. The river was low for most of the month and we had only three very small rises to bring the fish in. Lower beats, par­tic­u­larly Beat 2, did well, but fish were caught on all beats, which was good to see. Dur­ing the month we saw the start of our grilse run and it does look as though they have ar­rived in good num­bers. Small num­bers of fish have been run­ning the river in the low water, but the num­bers in the bay have slowly been build­ing up. The start of the month saw some ex­cep­tional fish­ing. The first four days of June pro­duced 61 fish. Ian Rae and Ian Adams, fish­ing to­gether, took 21 fish, in­clud­ing fish of 19 lb and 17 lb. John Good­man had a stel­lar few days, in­clud­ing six from Beat 2. Brothers Dun­can and Wil­liam Laird put a good num­ber in the book, in­clud­ing seven from Beat 12. Catches slowed dur­ing the early part of the fol­low­ing week as the sun came out, but when the clouds came back the fish­ing im­proved, the Chol­lett party from France tak­ing 12 fish for their week. Peter Grubb and friends had a very suc­cess­ful three days, in­clud­ing fish of 14 lb, 15 lb and 18 lb. Robin Bar­low, who re­turned to the river af­ter a lengthy ab­sence, took three nice fish from the Well pool on Beat 2. An­other re­turner af­ter a 20-year ab­sence was Michael Leather and Dou­glas Forbes, who shared six fish for their week, in­clud­ing a nice 16 lb fish from Beat 9. Stephen and Brenda Howard had six fish for their week, but I am not al­lowed to say how many Brenda had! The last week saw two big par­ties on the river: The Fo­ord party, mainly from South Africa, had a good week with 16 fish. A num­ber of the party had their first sal­mon, in­clud­ing Phillip Vout­sas, who not only had his first but fol­lowed it up with three more. The La­march party from Bel­gium took 22 sal­mon for their week.

PROSPECTS Heavy show­ers on July 1 and 2 pushed the river up to 24 inches and on July 2 we took 28 fish. As men­tioned ear­lier, there were a good num­ber of fish in the es­tu­ary wait­ing to come in, so we should be look­ing at some good sport in the com­ing week. – TIM HAWES.


I MEN­TIONED last month that we needed a de­cent spate to clean out the river and freshen things up. Well, we went right through June with only the odd small rise of a few inches. In the week be­gin­ning May 30 water tem­per­a­tures were up into the high 50s F and even the low 60s F on a cou­ple of days, but a cool north-east­erly breeze at the be­gin­ning of June knocked a de­gree or two off. This cool weather lasted through the week but, when the sun shone, it was quite warm in any shel­ter from the breeze. Even though we had a low, dirty and warm river, fish con­tin­ued to come in and run into the mid­dle beats. Just over 80 were re­ported from the two web­sites, with fish com­ing from Tweed­hill and Horn­cliffe at the bot­tom end, up to Bole­side

Good f lood needed to clean Tweed’s riverbed

Tues­day, then it was warm and sunny un­til more heavy show­ers on Fri­day. Tues­day’s rain gave us a rise of 6 in or so be­low Kelso early on Wed­nes­day and the water was car­ry­ing a bit of colour. Al­most 90 fish were re­ported for the week, 70 of them com­ing in the sec­ond half of the week. Thirty were taken on Satur­day with only five on the Tues­day. Birgham Dub had nine, seven of them on the Fri­day and Satur­day, and Sprous­ton’s 13 fish were all taken in the fi­nal two days of the week. Hen­der­syde, Up­per Mer­toun, Mid­dle Mer­toun and Ladykirk all had six, as did Ruther­ford. The best fish, a cou­ple of 15-pounders, were taken on the Junc­tion and Ladykirk, with fish into the teens of pounds each day. Twenty of the to­tal were taken on the bot­tom end and 26 from the mid­dle river and above the Junc­tion. As with the pre­vi­ous week, the qual­ity of most of the fish was very good with a good num­ber new and sea-liced. Tipped float­ing lines and var­i­ous small dressed flies or small tubes were do­ing the busi­ness with fish taken on spin­ning tac­tics in the qui­eter water. The week be­gin­ning June 13 be­gan cool with show­ers blow­ing in from the east. It was milder to­wards mid­week but then turned cooler and damp to­wards the week­end. Fri­day was a mis­er­able day with heav­ier rain on an east­erly breeze. The riverbed and mar­gins were get­ting dirty, with the gravel slip­pery in places, and care had to be taken when wad­ing. This was quite a de­cent week with 130 fish re­ported, 39 of them on the Mon­day. The Lees top-scored with 18, 13 of them to the rod of Gra­ham Witty, who had six of them on the Fri­day, in­clud­ing five be­fore lunch. At the bot­tom end, Tweed­hill and Till­mouth had 12 and Ladykirk ten. Ruther­ford, above Kelso, were the only other beat on dou­ble fig­ures, with 11. Ber­wick As­so­ci­a­tion Water on the Whitead­der had three and a cou­ple were taken on the Till. The best fish I could find was a 15-pounder taken on Milne Graden, with a num­ber of oth­ers into the teens of pounds. Con­sid­er­ing the con­di­tions, this was a very good week with fish still com­ing in on the low, warm water. The same tac­tics as with pre­vi­ous weeks were do­ing the busi­ness – both fly and spin­ner. I had a sea-liced

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