22nd April – 5th May 2019

Just when you thought that spring was upon us we hit another cold snap. Temperatures over the last few days have plummeted and as a consequence the fish have been far less obvious on the surface. The good news is though that this has not severely impacted on the catching and as is normal here at Coldingham, the fish can be found quite near to the surface. The most successful technique over the last two weeks has been floating or midge tip line using a FAB on the point and a team of buzzers fished on a washing line. Often the fish are taking the attractor (FAB) but also the buzzers are taking their fair share of fish. Red and black seem to be the go-to colours.

Interestingly though, it only takes a small increase in temperature for the insect life to burst into action and just a few days ago fishermen were witnessing a massive hatch of pond olives from the narrows up to the reed bed and the fish were taking the adult fly off the top of the water before they could take off. As you might imagine, CDC buzzers and sedge patterns were working extremely well as was the muddler on more than one occasion.

The quality of the water at the moment is just about perfect and coupled to the amount of food available, the fish are in fantastic condition. Most people are reporting hard fighting fish that are giving more than their weight would suggest.

As a general statement the fishing remains very good from both boat and bank for the time of the year and as always the key to success is to be prepared to ring the changes throughout the day. This means a number of things:

  • Changing location
  • Changing techniques ie lines, flies, speed of retrieve, length of leader etc etc

I know that we say it regularly, but the most successful anglers are the ones that are prepared to try something different as and when the situation dictates. Try it, it works!

The swallows are now back in full force and an indication of the fly life is the activity of the swallows over the loch when they are feeding. This can also be an indication of where to locate to and it’s no bad thing to take in the surroundings on a regular basis rather than just concentrating on the line in front of you.

Catch and release continues to be popular with the majority of our anglers and so the usual plea remains that if you are intending to return fish to the loch use barbless or properly de-barbed hooks and handle the fish as little as possible, keeping them in the water at all times.

Club News:

  • Heriots AC – Another fantastic day for the Heriots with lots of fish taken off the surface. Mix of dries, yellow owls, shipmans and buzzers. Total of fish landed 93 fish to 9 anglers giving a rod average of 10.3
  • Hoy and Hope FFC – reported having had ‘Great club day out with fantastic fish as usual – will be back’. There were 106 fish for 16 anglers giving a rod average of 6.6.
  • Northumbria Police FFC – A good day for the boys in blue reported ‘a great day despite the cold and will be back’ they managed 27 fish for 9 rods with the heaviest fish going to Dave Woods, a 3lb rainbow caught on a hopper. Also worth mentioning Pete Scott who, using a hares ear muddler landed 10 fish, 6 of which he estimated to be over 5lbs
  • Border Bears FFC – Had a great day today landing 60 fish to their 10 rods using a variety of flies mainly dries, cdc and buzzers

Other News:

  • Tomorrow we will be hosting the second of our Coldingham Loch Youth Trophy days. We have almost a full turn out for this and it looks like the weather is going to be fine for the day. We are looking forward to the day and know that we are going to be more than impressed with some of the young talent that is coming through the fly fishing ranks.
  • One of our unfortunate anglers took his eye off his rod for a moment whilst fishing from the boat. He turned around just in time to watch it disappearing over the side thanks to the efforts of a hungry trout. As a consequence there is now a Greys rod and reel complete with a midge tip line somewhere in the loch. We can only hope that the fish managed to find its way off the hook and that someone manages to locate the tackle before too long. If you do manage to retrieve it, please let us know and we will return it to its rightful owner.
  • Just a reminder that evening sessions are now in full swing and that the loch is open until 10pm. Please ring to book.

Robbies Blog:


I am in three of these at the moment.

The first is the Ellem Fishing Club.

This is the Oldest Fishing Club in the World having been founded in 1829.

I am also a member of the Hoy and Hope Club which has the best name of any fishing club in the world!

In addition I am the Secretary  of the Berwick and District Angling Club. This is a small River Fishing Club founded in 1884.

Now the Ellem Club and the Hoy and Hope Club have recently fished at the Loch.

The Ellem had around 25 members there and the Hoy and Hope around 16.

Healthy turnouts for Fishing Clubs these days.

Clubs of all sorts are struggling for membership these days.

Bowls and Golf, Darts and Pool and I am sure almost every sport or pastime is looking for additions to their ranks these days.

So what can a Fishing Club offer?

Well if they are Loch Style Fishing you could possibly end up with an International Angler as a partner which would give you the chance to observe and ask a few questions. Even if there are no capped anglers in the Club they will almost certainly have some well experienced ones and you can always learn a thing or two from any angler.

Both the Ellem and the Hoy and Hope have friendly competitions. It is usually a 3 fish limit and heaviest bag wins. No time bonuses or additional weight for returned fish.

Just catch your three trout and you have a dog in the fight. In fact one big one may just win so everyone has a chance.

There is also a social side to the Clubs with often a meal after the day out and perhaps an Annual Dinner with a few trophies.

Joining can also lead to new friendships which may result in a regular fishing partner. If you already have one then both of you could join and perhaps end up on away days with other members.

Why not give it a try.

Best Regards



Robbie Bell 01289 302510

Visiting Clubs:

The following clubs are with us over the next fortnight:

  • Mid Lothian FFC
  • Ferry Fly Dressers
  • Oddfellows AC
  • Roslin British Legion FFC
  • Norham and Ladykirk

Let’s hope for an improvement in temperatures and some fantastic top of the water action.

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