Apologies for the lack of news in recent months, in part driven by other commitments but certainly from my perspective the first months of the season on river to mid June were really slow.
The river has been uniformly low for much of May and June, the only saving grace being the occasional additional release from Castlehill Reservoir when they have been running their hydro-electric plant. These general raise the level of the river by 10-15cm for a couple of days and does help clear some of the silt/algae that forms in the prolong dry spells.
In the early season there were a couple of reports of decent fish being caught by bait anglers of up to 4lb. It is only in recent weeks with a bit more cloud cover and rain things have improved. I finally began rising and catching decent trout with the dry flies (including a cracker of about 2.5lb. There have even been reports of Sea Trout splashing in pools …….. the sceptics find this surprising considering how low the river has been
Annual stocking has been completed: these fish have now moved away from where they were released and can still be found. One angler recently caught nine stocked fish in one session (all released).
Pollution incidents continue on the river; with the usual suspects reported once again to Sepa (Scottish Water’s Tillicoultry and Alva WTW). The new Coal Authority mine water treatment facility at Mains of Blairingone, below Vicars Bridge is causing concern as ochre is now finding its way to the river. The Coal Authority contractors are supposed to return this month to attempt to remedy this situation.
River Work Parties
Work Parties have been busy for the last few months attempting to clear vegetation to facilitate access to the river for angling. At this time of year I guess the work parties must feel that it is like painting the Forth Rail Bridge. Approximately six weeks ago they cleared routes through ‘Alva Airfield’ (around the B908) laready the jungle has quickly re-established itself. They have cleared around the ‘Alva Airfield’ , Balguharn, March Glen, Sheardale, The Haugh to Rackmill and Linnbank to Vicars Bridge. This benefits anglers (and dog walkers) access, has helped to reduce the extent of the Himalayan Balsam infestation and involves a huge amount of effort!
By contrast Glenquey has been in excellent form!
The regulars have been ‘busting a gut’ setting unofficial records. Donald MacGregor managed in one session to land 39 trout. Jim Milne by all accounts heading up on Sunday to try and top that …… he couldn’t quite manage to but still landed an impressive 30 trout. Neither will probably be able to keep up with the local Ospreys which once again can often be seen at Glenquey and the other local reservoirs.
Glenquey has benefitted from water at good height allowing full access to all banks. Access has been further enhanced by the sterling work of the work parties over the Winter/Spring who managed to open up access right along the north bank with the help of chainsaws and a huge amount of bloody hard graft!
In May there were 73 angler submitted returns showing 345 caught which represents an average of 4.72 trout/visit with an average weight 0.59lbs [prize winner from the submitted returns was from Sauchie]
In June there were 72 angler submitted returns showing 445 caught which represents an average of 6.18 trout/visit with an average weight 0.65lbs [prize winner from the submitted returns was from Alloa]
Interesting despite there being two modest stockings, a lot of the fish were overwintered or natural breeding stock.