As we entered into late August, river levels on the River Findhorn fell away rather quickly, reading 4″on the Forres gauge on Monday August 22nd. Weather conditions remained very hot and humid with very little sign of any rain to come as high pressure tightened its’ grip over the country. Leslie Tyson managed to hook a small grilse in the tail of Garden pool very early on Tuesday, August 22nd.
By Saturday, August 27th, river levels had fallen away to just 2″ on the Forres gauge, which was the lowest we had seen it all summer. Week commencing August 29th saw little change to our weather and still no sign of the much needed rain.
By Wednesday, September 1st, there was a hint of a change coming, but it seemed to take a long time getting here! River levels were still reading 2″ on the Forres gauge and some refreshing rain was falling for just a brief few hours later in the afternoon. Daryl Ewer managed to hook and release a nice grilse of around 5 lbs. from the top of Palamore Island Pool on a small hitched tube.
On Friday, September 2nd, there seemed to be more rain pushing across the Highlands coming in off the Atlantic. For the first time in weeks we suddenly started seeing levels rising at Shenachie gauge reading 6″ by late evening. A glimmer of hope at last!
By Saturday, September 3rd, levels had risen overnight reading 5″ on the Forres gauge and 6″ at Shenachie. Fishing conditions were feeling and looking better and the weather was cooler and fresher. Daryl Ewer managed to move two fish to a hitched tube before lunch, but neither of them took a proper hold. By mid afternoon, the fish were suddenly becoming a little more active with this small flush of water. Daryl Ewer managed to hook, land and release a cracking fresh salmon of around 15 lbs. from the Roehillock Pool on a size 6 Gene Genie. Just shortly after this, he hooked and released another even bigger fish, this time it was a coloured cock fish of around 20 lbs., also from the Roehillock Pool.
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Ian Neale, known as the Speycaster, is a seasoned fishing guide with extensive experience in renowned global fishing locations like the Ponoi River in Russia and the Rio Grande in Tierra Del Fuego. A published author, he has written extensively on salmon and sea trout fishing, with his first book, “Shadows in the Stream,” released in 2000. Ian has also appeared on various TV programs, demonstrating his expertise in Speycasting and discussing the importance of wild Atlantic salmon stocks to local economies. His passion for fishing and respect for nature are evident in all his endeavors.