Low cloud, sea mist, frett or more locally know as a haar, has dominated proceedings for the past three days with the odd glimpse of the loch being granted now and then. Despite the cloud cover catching has remained very steady and the clubs that fished at the weekend managed to return some very good figures. More of that later.
As we mentioned in our last report all the boats are now equipped with good quality Grey’s nets and these have been well christened by those that have used them. We have also bought scoop nets for the bank anglers and again these are being well received. Most fishermen travel far and wide in pursuit of their sport and with an ever growing number of fisheries out there, it is more important than ever that everyone does their bit to ensure the best conditions for their stock as possible. Good quality nets also ensure that the fish can be landed as safely as possible with the least chance of damage during handling and this is particularly important when the fish are being released. With the summer and perhaps the warmer weather just around the corner this is particularly important and as the water temperature increases our attention to getting the fish into the net and then returning them as soon as possible, with the minimum of handling is very important. The flat bottomed nets are certainly well designed to facilitate this.
It’s fair to say that during the last two weeks we have witnessed an explosion of fly life both around and on the loch. More hawthorns than we have ever seen before have been in all areas of the loch and we have also seen some of the biggest daddies ever. Some reports are saying that this is a consequence of the hard winter that we experienced and if so then this has certainly been of benefit to the loch. Fish are now taking readily off the top and just yesterday Bob Harrison manged to catch a fair share of his 10 fish in a four hour session using the dapping rod …… great to see. There is also a profusion of the very small apple green midges around the loch and some people have had good success using a range of small dry flies including yellow owl, black gnat, black foam beetle, shipmans buzzers and grey dusters. At times during the evening sessions some people have switched to using apps bloodworms and other such patterns and have had good success just below the surface. All in all a great time to fish.
Here is a quick run-down at the success stories of the last two weeks:
- Larry Henderson – 9 to the boat. Black and green.
- Ken Mason and Dave Roberts – had a great week long stay at the loch and managed to return good numbers on each day. A good range of rainbows, blues and browns ensured great sport throughout the week.
- Bob Cockburn – 14 to the boat and his dad James managed a further 4. Foam suspenders and black hoppers.
- Les Lockey staying in Lochside Cottage for the week once again maximised his stay and produced excellent returns. Double figures for all of his sessions with as many as 20 on two occasions meant another great week for Les. FAB, hawthorns, foam beetle, summer bibio and various dries.
- Ramsay Gillies and Doug Scott – 9 to the boat. Buzzers.
- Bob Grant – had yet another great day landing 11 to the boat. Olive Apps and buzzers.
- Ricky Taylor and Fergus Aitchison had a superb session from the bank landing 21 and 28 respectively. Fishing a slow intermediate line and pulling yellow fritz worked very well for them.
- Neil Keillor – 11 to the boat for one session and 7 to the bank for the next. FABs, buzzers, and crunchers.
- Johnston Hillen – fishing for the first time here from the bank had a day to remember with 30 fish landed and the best a rainbow which he estimated to be at least 10 Lbs in weight.
- Colin McIssac – 9 fishing from the bank including 1 brown. Various small black dries.
- Shaun Eales and his pals had the first of their bi-annual stay in Lodge & Elm Cottages and had a superb time on the loch. Good returns for each of their outings and plenty of food and refreshments in the evening meant that another successful stay was had by all.
- Tam Donnelly – 9 rainbows from the bank. C. Midge.
- Karl Ferguson fishing with his da Bill fished a 3 hour evening session and between them they had 20 to the boat. Black snatcher, red and orange apps.
- Steve Kelley – Had a great week staying in Lochside Cottage. As usual he landed loads of fish and apart from the odd outing with the lures persevered with the dries.
- Graham Dea and David McAdam had 14 to the boat. CDCs
- Gordon Brines whilst here on holiday had 16. Small damsel. Reported ‘could not be better’
- I Gaston had 9 to the boat. CDCs and buzzers
- Allan Cook and Robbie Bell had 33 to the boat including 4 blues and one brown. Biscuit booby, buzzers & cruncher
- Malc Wyllie had 8 to the boat. Diawl bach
- D Deans had 7 from the bank. Damsels
- Mr Carr & Mr Wood had 8 to the boat. Blob
- Aaron Copeland & H Copeland had an ‘excellent morning’ landing 9 fish including a brown in a pretty thick haar. Buzzer and black bunny
- On the same morning, Neil Keillor landed 7 including a brown on a 4 hour bank session. Fab and buzzer.
- Bob Harrison had a couple of good sessions one when he fished with Judy Whitelaw and reported plenty of sport and rising fiah taking their dry flies and then coming off again and the best session Bob had in thei last period was 10 to the boat in a 3 hour session on a dapped daddy and mainly on small black dries -size 16 smuts
- John McGregor reported ‘wonderful misty night flat calm’ and managed 7 to the boat including a brown. Shipmans
- TOTGA FFC – Reported a frustrating day during which they had loads of chances but could not connect with the majority of fish. One rod reported having missed at least 20!
- Roslyn British Legion – A slightly tougher day for Roslin resulted in a return of 30 fish for 7 rods.
- Hoy and Hope FFC – 64 fish for 14 rods gave the club and average of 4.6.
- Wiremill FFC – Reported having and excellent day despite the haar. They managed to land a very impressive 79 fish for 15 rods giving an average of 5.3.
- Railway Inn FFC – A total of 41 fish for the nine rods resulted in them commenting on having a great day despite the low cloud cover.
- Nets – we now have a net on each boat and nets for use on the bank which we are asking all anglers to use so there is no need for anyone to bring their own nets. We consider this to be a step in the right direction in an attempt to reduce the risk of transfer of diseases and other such things. They are rubber Greys nets for both disciplines ………… long handled nets for the boats and large scoop nets for the bank. Initially we are prepared to run this without a deposit system but will obviously have to see how this goes.
The Biscuit is Back?
If you have read this “Blog” over the past few years you may know that I have caught a lot of fish on a Biscuit Fly. This is a Fritz type fly that comes in three guises of Blob, FAB and Booby.
Its success was quite unintentional as it was only ever tied on in the first place as an integral part of a washing line set up. This as you may well know is where you have a floating line with a very slow sinking fly on the point and then two or three Buzzers or Nymphs hanging off the droppers.
As per the washing out on the line.
However instead of the Nymphs and Buzzers catching most of the Trout it was the Biscuit on the point that did most of the work. So much so that I started fishing one on the top dropper as well with just the two nymphs in between.
The Biscuit on the top dropper only caught a few fish compared to the point one but reinforced the idea that this was The Fly.
It did catch me a very large amount of fish!
Last year it started to lose its charm. The fish did not seem to respond to it in the way they previously had.
Had it lost its mojo or was it me?
Either way it began to get a lot less wet with other flies taking its place with sometimes only limited success.
This lead to other methods such as straightlining being tried and their success got them promoted to the first team with the Biscuit and Washing Line more often than not on the bench.
All change last week!
I was out with my friend Allan who I had introduced to the Biscuit last year and when I found myself 6-2 down with most of his fish taking his Biscuit on it went to my cast..
And then the second one on the top dropper and normal service was resumed.
It just seemed to be back working as it had in the past.
I suspect when its success was limited it may have been more down to me rather than the Trout.
Maybe I was retrieving slower or faster or maybe I was just not giving it the positive vibes of previous years.
Mid you when a tremendous rise came on later in the day I had to “resort” to Dries but that’s another story.
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Over the next fortnight we are very pleased to welcome the following clubs, as always we hope the weather is kind and that the fishing will be at its best for them.
- Mid Lothian Angling Association
- Heriots AC
- Border Bears AC
- West Lothian Fly Dressers
- Black Bull AC