Sunday, 26 February 2012

Day 3 Carlogie 25/02/2012

Well today the wind had all but disappeared and the water had dropped back to around the 1' 8" mark. After a welcome overnight frost the river temperature dropped to 41f. No excuses today as not to hook anything! I stared my day in the Boat and Village pools and in the afternoon I headed to fish the Mill pool all the way down to the Flats. Lovely area to fish. Some beautiful looking pools. The whole beat fished today so some new water for me as it's been too high in the past. The 3 days ended with no fish to report but very enjoyable none-the-less. We did see lots of fish moving through the pools so the Upper Dee, when it opens on 1st March, might have a good start to their season. Just an outstanding beat to fish in a lovely area of Deeside. Sean and Ian, as ever were very welcoming and always willing to help. I gained a lot of information regarding lies etc from them. Sean knows his beats like the back of his hand and was only too happy to share his knowledge with his fishers. I am fishing the opposite bank (Kincardine) in August so this will be very useful. Cheers guys! Will be back next year to try again. Here are some pictures from my day.
Mill Pool. Looking accross to the Lower Dess huts. Such a lovely area and the pool is not bad either! An angler landed 2 kelts here in the morning but I didn't see or touch anything here.
Looking downstream in the Mill Pool.
The Mill on the Lower Dess bank which the pool is named.
Fishing down through Jock Rae. The fish all lie on the left hand side of the fast water. Another cracking pool. I did see a few splashing in here at neck of the pool.
March Pool. Didn't see anything in here but the fish lie on the far bank in the faster water. A long cast is required to cover them but the wading is easy. You don't want to wade too far as it will disturb the fish.
The Calm Pool. Sean Stanton was telling me how a massive gravel shift during the winter has filled in a good part of this pool. The lies are shifting further over to the Kincardine bank each year. Another pool requiring a good long cast and wading out about a third over. Again, easy wading and a delight to fish.
The well equipped Carlogie hut. It has a sofa, cooker, toilet, table and chairs and the all important wood burning stove.
Lucky Hole and Whin Bush pools. There are some big stones mid river and each one is a good lie for running fish as they stop for a rest. You can see why as they have to navigate to really fast water to reach here.
The Flats and Clay Pot. Didn't really have the time or energy to have a cast in here. I covered a fair bit of water today and was shattered by the time I got here. Pity though as it looks a nice bit of water. Maybe next year if the water is low enough. Fingers crossed!

Day 2 Carlogie 24/02/2012

My second of 3 days on the Carlogie beat, River Dee. Today the water was dropping away nicely which opened up more pools for us to fish. The gauge at Potarch Bridge read 2' 6" first thing in the morning but it finished the day about 1' 9". I started my day on the Boat and Village pools and in the afternoon I headed up to another new pool called Alan's. This pool is named after long serving Ballogie tennant Alan Lankshear. He has fished on the estate for an amazing 50 years. Well done! The wind was a howling gale all day and it must have been gusting to 40mph. Not the easiest wind to cast into and made it really difficult to get a line out straight. You had to wait until the gust past and cast as quick as you could! Nothing landed for the day and not much from the whole river. Only 5 fish from the Dee! Last day on Carlogie tomorrow so hopefully the wind will have died down a good bit. Here are some pictures from today.
The new pool called Alan's. Again Sean and Ian have spent hours cutting away trees and bushes to make this fishable. They have been rewarded already with a sea-lice 10lber. Well done lads. Cracking job and lovely pool to fish. I'm sure it will produce good returns this year.
An up-stream look of Alan's pool. It is very deep just feet from the bank and you can see why the fish would rest here after pushing up through the fast water of the Long Haugh pool.
The Long Haugh pool. The fish all lie to the inside of the current as the water is really fast flowing here. The eddy at the end of the shingle is an ideal spot for a fish to rest. I seen quite a few show in here as I fished it down. It is quite open here and was really hard to fish it properly due to the gale force winds. I tried anyway.
Pitslug pool. Another good pool at this height of water. I had a kelt out of here year at the tail of the pool but nothing to report this year. The fish tend to lie from mid-stream over to the Carlogie bank all the way down. The cross over form the Dess bank at the tail of the pool.
The hut on the Pitslug pool. I like taking pictures of all the fishing huts as it makes you think of the history and stories that have been told by anglers.
Rossach Pool. The last pool I fished today. Another nice bit of water at this height. Again was not easy to cast a line out due to the wind. Did see a couple of fish showing near the tail of the pool though.

Day 1 Carlogie 23/02/2012

I had my annual 3 day trip to Carlogie this week. On Thursday the water was sitting at 3' on the Potarch Bridge gauge which made some of the pools un-fishable. I was allocated the Boat and Village for the first day and another rod Craig headed up to Pitslug. There was 1 kelt landed about 10am but that was it for the day. I had a fish take at the tail of the Village but lifted into it and felt nothing. The river was dropping all day which was good. We seen plenty fish moving in both the Boat and Village pools. The water temp was high for this time of year. It was hovering around 45f! Sean gave me a cast with his new 14ft Mackenzie DTX shooting head rod. It was matched up with a Mackenzie G2 Intermediate shooting head. What an absolute wand!!! Very impressive casting tool and it was a case of the less effort you put in the further the line flew out. Have to save my pennies and invest in one. Here are some pictures from day 1.
Looking up the Boat pool. This is where we seen most of the fish. They tend to lie just of the main current towards Kincardine bank at this height. All the way down to under the wires.
Fishing down the top of the Boat pool. Sean Stanton and Ian Fraser the ghillies have spent all winter opening this area of the pool up and have done a fantastic job. Although the wading is pretty scary in places!
Looking up to the Boat pool from mid-stream in the Village. Lovely stretch of water must be one of the most productive high water pools on the Dee.
Fishing down the Village pool and looking into a new pool called Fraser's. This pool begins at the line of trees on the right bank. It has been named after Commonty ghillie Ian Fraser to comemorate his 35 years working for Ballogie Estates.

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Three Days At Park By Charlie Robertson

I had my annual 3 day trip to the Park beat on the Aberdeenshire Dee this week. I fished from Monday to Wednesday. The river was in good nick and was up slightly from the weekend. There was 5 (Jerrys) Springers caught during my 3 days. A beauty of 18lb out of the Boat pool from the North bank on Wednesday by a very good angler. It was dripping with long-tailed sea lice. There was also another angler who landed his first ever fish. It weighed 15lbs and had shoulders like a brick layer! Hope he doesn't think it's that easy all the time! I finished up with 13 kelts but the springers were playing hard to get. I did hook one in the bum and it took off like a steam train. Tearing all my line and backing from my reel and leading a merry dance down the pool. I finally got it under control and it came in tail first. When I first hooked it, I thought it was a prized Dee springer but not to be. Fairly got the ticker going though. Had a lovely few days and Keith Cromar is a topper of a guy and a class ghillie to boot. Here are some pictures from my trip and hope you enjoy them. Be back next year to try it all again. Charlie Robertson.
13 kelts for my 3 days. Keith Cromar fairly spurs you on. Great Ghillie.
The concrete path down Park Inn. Im using a int/sink1, 10ft fast sink tip and a 1.5" Monkey. Looking into the Boat Pool.
Two anglers making their way down the Durris Stream in hope of a Dee springer.
Fishing the Bridge Pool on beat 6. You wade out to the shingle bar and fish over to Jim Paton's Upper Drum/Lower Durris bank. Lovely cast. The bridge in the picture is Park Bridge.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

First Outing Of The Season - Park On The River Dee 11/02/2012

Fished on the Park beat of the River Dee yesterday. I was drawn Beat 5 before lunch and Beat 1 after. Conditions were perfect, rising river temperature, nice height, clear and no wind. Sadly no fish either. A ghillie from the Spey's Wester Elchies beat landed a springer about 6lbs under the wires in the Durris Stream from the South bank. The beat was fished by some top class anglers on both banks(not me!) yesterday. Plenty kelts caught through-out the day and I could only lose 1 in the morning from Durris Stream and had another on and off later on. I tried various lines from a Guideline H/I/S3, Vision ACE S1/S2, an intermediate AFS and an AFS floater. A varied range of tips and many different flies of all sizes and weights. Nothing worked for me yesterday, just one of those days I think. I'll have to wait until the 23rd and try it all again. Here are some pictures from my day.
Fishing down the Durris Stream. The fisher on the South bank had a 6lb Springer about 5 minutes after I took this picture.
Making my way down the top of the Celler. Cracking pool to fish.
A photo of the hut at Park from the middle of the Celler.
Working my way down the Celler Pool. Most of the fish showing were over at the far bank and required wading out and a good long cast to cover them.

I started my afternoon in the Silver Spoon pool which is named after the spinning lure. Interesting to hear how pools get their names.
Looking down stream towards Bulwarks from the Park Inn hut. Fished all the way down from Silver Spoon through the Boat pool and Park Inn without a touch. A rod on the South bank landed a kelt from the Boat pool.
Keith Cromar the ghillie told me to fish Upper Kirks for the last hour before dark. I fished it all the way down to Lower Kirks but day light disappeared quickly and I called it a day about 5.15pm. Had a wee pull just off the stones but that was all for my afternoon's efforts.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Dangle A Carrot!

I have been at the vice tonight in preparation for my coming visit to Park this Saturday and have been inspired by Ballogie Ghillie Sean Stanton's blog . I have tied up some Red and Black Francis tubes and a Red Snaelda. Not nearly as good as his but enjoyed tying them up. Practise makes perfect as they say. Here are a few pictures of my tyings. Hope you like them.
Red Francis. Tied on copper and aluminium tubes.

Black Francis. Also tied on copper and aluminium tubes.

Red Snaelda. Tied on a 1" aluminium tube.

Group shot on my home made fly hedgehog!

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

River Dee Opening Ceremony 01/02/2012

I attended the 2012 River Dee opening ceremony this morning at the Potarch bridge. There was a really good turn out and excellent conditions for fishing. The first fish to filter through was caught from the Commonty beat about 10am. It weighed 12lbs. After some complimentary bacon butties and Dee Drams, the 200 strong crowd headed down to the Ballogie beat's Bridge Pool where comedian and Dee fisherman Paul Whitehouse had the honour of the first cast. He gave a speech about his love for the Dee and poured a quaich of whiskey into the river. Mark Bilsby also informed the crowd that the 2 week extension had been agreed to be made permanent. Good news! There was a few famous faces around from the world of angling here today and I managed to get my picture taken with fishing expert and Dee supporter Matt Hayes. I also had a chat with the inventor of the world famous Park shrimp fly, Ross MacDonald. Both were very nice guys and a pleasure to meet. After the ceremony I headed off downstream for a cast on the Aberdeen District Angling Association beat, Banchory Devenick. I didn't see anything but it was good to blow away the cobwebs and cast a line again. Here are some pictures and a video from today.
Comedian and Dee angler Paul Whitehouse giving an interview for TV shortly before officially opening the River Dee season 2012. Wonder if he used his new waders he bought with the money he saved on his insurance from Aviva!

Ross MacDonald and Matt Hayes having a chat. I did ask their permission to take this photo and Matt Hayes thought it would be a good shot to have them talking.
River Dee Fisheries Development Officer Ken Reid. Ken and his team have done a wonderful job promoting the river and Deeside in general. They have secured many funds along the way which all go back into improving this world class fishery. Also a big thanks for organising the event today which went smoothly from start to finish. Well Done.
Potarch Bridge. Lovely area of Deeside. The Potarch hotel supplied all the refreshments for today. The bacon buttie and coffee went down a treat! Whyte & Mackay also provided free Dee Drams. Cheers guys!

Paul Whitehouse blessing the river and Ballogie Ghillie Sean Stanton waiting to hand over the rod.

Apologies for the dodgy videos but I was taking stills with my other hand!!! Not such a good idea but it seemed like it at the time.
Myself posing for a photo with Matt Hayes. Matt has donated some fishing in June on the River Gaula in Norway. This is for the River Dee auction to be held in London on March 1st.