12th – 25th July 2021
The weed cutting has started in earnest with lots already removed and much more to follow. The difficulty with weed cutting is trying to hit it on the right day with the right conditions. Ideally, we try to go out when there are few, or no fishermen and when the wind is quite strong. Needless to say, the last two weeks or so have been extremely settled and the perfect conditions for cutting have rarely presented themselves. What has been noticeable whilst cutting though, is the quantity of perch fry and sticklebacks that are in the loch at the moment. This is great to see, as many of these smaller fish will become a valuable food source for the trout later in the season as the insect life naturally decreases. The weed being removed is also containing a vast quantity of pea mussels which serves as a very good indicator that the loch is in fine fettle. These little creatures would not survive in water that was not of good quality.
Weed cutting is always a bit of a catch 22 situation: if we don’t cut, there are areas of the loch that are impossible to fish. However, if we do cut, what follows is an almost inevitable algael bloom. Those of you who have fished recently will have noticed a brown tinge to the water and this is the algael bloom. To a large degree this is being kept in check by the constant use of the aerator which keeps the water moving and does not allow the algae to settle and therefore proliferate. As with all things in nature it is a delicate balancing act and therefore people need to be understanding during the summer months.
As we just mentioned, we have to run the aerator constantly during this period to try to avoid a large algael bloom and invariably the fish during warmer conditions will almost certainly want to bask in the cooler deeper areas of the loch. Again, this can cause a problem in that the aerator not only attracts fish but also fishermen too, which is quite understandable. All that we would ask is that people do not spend too much time in any one spot of the loch which of course includes the area covered by the aerator. This is not a new request and has always been included in the general etiquette of fishing wherever you might be wetting a line. Please try to ensure that you use your fishing opportunity to move around the loch and enjoy the varied areas that it provides and even though it might appear that there are a good number of fish around the aerator, please be assured that they are also in good numbers in all other areas.
Swing Gate Bay is currently holding a large quantity of fish which I can personally testify to having had a lovely evening around there from the bank, a few days ago. The fishing is not easy at this time of year due to a combination of factors, not least of which is the abundance of natural food available to the fish. However, last week some very good returns were recorded which should give encouragement to those of us who might be finding it a bit harder just now. On one day we had four anglers out, two in one boat and two single boats. Each person recorded exactly the same number of fish landed – 11. Quite unusual, but the one binding factor was that they had all fished on Orkney the week before, so who knows, maybe it was the Orkney factor at work??
The following day, two people in one boat recorded catching 21 fish to the boat and had vacated the loch before 3 pm. Very good I would say.
There does not seem to be any one fly pattern that is particularly effective above all others but sedges and daddies if you are trying the dries would be a possible suggestion. Or lower down, damsels and apps bloodworm along with the usual selection of buzzers and diawl bachs are always worth consideration.
Most people are still using floating and 4-6 feet midge tip lines although there are some that are going deep using DI3 lines and above, in order to plumb the depths.
One, Two, Three or Four?
How many flies do you fish with on a normal day?
Well like any Fly-Fishing question the only answer is “It Depends”
If for instance the Washing Line is the method of the day then at least 3 for me and more usually I will fish Four.
For Dry Fly fishing I would normally use two. I prefer them at least 8 feet apart so would use a 16 feet Leader.
However on a Peaty Water or perhaps in a heavy Algal Bloom I often fish 4 Dries.
This gives the advantage of covering more water as well as giving more options to the trout.
Of course there are down sides to fishing multiple flies.
A few weeks ago I was fishing four buzzers and my first four fish all came to the Top Dropper.
On this occasion the result was I had to make up a new cast after every fish.
Even fishing just two Dry Flies can result in lost fish if the second fly gets stuck in the weed.
A single dry is probably the best option in weedy areas.
Fishing on the Loch a few weeks ago with an exceptional angler he used a 20-foot leader with a single fly. More than half of his significant total came to this method.
One fly can make for accurate casting and is often best on a windy day especially from the Bank.
Now I have noticed that quite a few Anglers always seem to just fish 3 flies whatever the situation.
I have often seen three fairly large Lures on a short cast. Maybe only 3 feet between them! Surely this must confuse the fish?
If fishing large Lures I would only have 2 and make them 10 to 12 feet apart.
Of course you need to be happy with what you are fishing but hopefully this is at least food for thought.
Fishing Reports from other Anglers:
Unfortunately, we have not received any reports during this last fortnight and so are unable to share other people’s experiences. However, please keep your reports coming though as we know that lots of people are finding them very useful and informative.
Next week our club day is on Wednesday 28th July
The following week it is on Saturday 7th August
As always, we look forward to greeting our visiting clubs and hope that they enjoy their outings.
As we are approximately half way through this season, we are already thinking about next year and the continuation of the membership scheme, so please see the following information.
New Members 2022:
We are now accepting expressions of interest from anyone who might want to join as a new member next year, 2022. Places will be limited and so early contact is advisable. If you are interested in membership of the loch for the 2022 season, please ring either Carmel or myself on our land line: 018907 71960.
We will shortly be sending an email through the member’s portal regarding 2022 membership renewal.