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Spring Salmon

Loch Ness Springer

Andrew Sage about to return a salmon caught at the mouth of the River Garry

Spring salmon run through the River Ness into Loch Ness and its tributaries and it is usually on the Loch, the Moriston, the Oich or the Garry that the first fish of the season is caught, and what beauties they prove to be.

In 2011 for example, salmon of 28lb (Moriston), 25lb (Loch Ness), 26lb and 25lb (Oich) and 29lb (Garry) were caught and, in keeping with the Ness Board’s Conservation Policy, released. The above fisheries collectively produce up to 800 salmon/grilse per year. There is reasonably good access to all these rivers throughout the spring months with both fly and spinner being the acceptable methods.

Spring salmon can also be caught on the River Ness but the river really needs to be low to be productive during the early part of the season. In normal spring flows the salmon pass through the river very quickly. Unlike other Scottish rivers there are no temperature barriers to slow the fish down as the water temperature in the short River Ness is kept artificially high due to the size of Loch Ness above it. Neither freezes!

Summer Salmon and Grilse.

The River Ness fishes best from July until the end of the season, with over 1000 salmon and grilse caught in a good year. This six mile long River Ness consists of five beats. Starting at the Dochfour weir (the outfall from L Ness) they are: Dochour, Laggan, Ness Castle, Ness Side and the Inverness City Water, which is run by the Inverness Angling Club.

All beats have superb fly fishing pools. Access to fishing, with the exception of the Inverness Angling Club waters, is fairly restricted as the private beats are either syndicated or let to parties of anglers who return every year. However, an enquiry to the beat’s representative may result in a let, as cancellations sometimes occur. With no requirement for tickets to be booked in advance it is easy to have a cast on the Inverness Town Water as day & weekly tickets are always available to the visiting angler.


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