Sunday, January 13, 2013

Salmon Fishing Scotland Prospects for the Tay, Perthshire, Scotland Opening Day 2013.

Salmon Fishing Scotland Prospects for the Tay, Perthshire, Scotland Opening Day 2013.

Prospects for the Tay, Perthshire, Scotland Opening Day.
Dunkeld where the Opening gathering takes place.

There is now only a day until the river Tay opens its salmon fishing season for 2013. The excitement is building slowly with anticipated large crowds expected at Dunkeld and Kenmore for the public opening day events. Cat Cubie
will formally open the Mighty Tay and perform the first cast of the 2013 season at the Hilton Dunkeld Hotel opening day gathering in association with THE TAY FOUNDATION, DUNKELD AND BIRNAM ANGLING AND TOURIST ASSOCIATIONS & the PERTH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE. This event starts with a Community Reception from 08:45am until 10.00am ~ALL ARE WELCOME at this Event in the Garden Room,the Opening with Pipes & Music at the Riverbank. Also available is a Business Breakfast– 8.00am for 8.30am at a cost of £15 per person or tables of up to 10 guests can be booked - Tickets to the business breakfast are limited and must booked in advance. Also planning to attend the event is the BBC One Show who are going to be doing an article on Ladies and Salmon fishing. There are numerous examples on the Tay when the ladies have excelled over the years with Georgina Ballantine being a fine example.

Current conditions on the Tay in Perthshire, Scotland.
At Kenmore a traditional opening of the salmon season on the River Tay will also be held with a parade of fishermen to the river bank with the Vale of Atholl Junior Pipe Band, the 1st cast of the season will be made to mark the opening of the River Tay and a speaker will wish the anglers 'tight lines' for the season.
A Tay spring salmon. Currently the spring average weight is increasing year on year with a 12 1/2 pound weight for last year.
On January 15th anglers will be competing for the Redford Trophy, awarded for the biggest spring salmon caught and safely released on the main river.

Currently the river is running at a good height following less rain and far colder weather. Colder and more settled weather is on the horizon at long last giving the river a great chance of producing some good sport and some early "Bars of Silver" on the opening day.
The scene in Perthshire today.

The weather is to be colder and and far more settled as the week goes in. The water temperature was high for the time year but has fallen back to around 40 degrees Fahrenheit or 4.5 degrees Celcius, which is more typical for this time of year but this could change by the end of this week. The temperature may come back further with the colder forecast during the week ahead but any salmon that are running may be spread throughout the system after milder conditions prior to the opening day giving everyone a good chance for the coming week. Hopefully there might be a chance of a fresh fish anywhere in the river. There will no doubt be quite a few kelts about on many beats and possibly some later run fish, which have yet to spawn.

As to methods, in settled conditions fishing by any method will have to be slow and deep with large lures to catch the elusive Tay Springer. Harling is also a favoured method at this time of year but be warned wrap up well or it will not be a pleasant experience.

Finally you are reminded that the Tay's policy for January - May 2013 is that all spring salmon should be released, i.e. the Tay has adopted a policy of 100% catch and release for spring salmon. Spring salmon are a scarce and precious resource. Please help preserve both them and the long term future of your sport by following the recommendations.

When releasing salmon please try to keep the fish in the water as much as possible to give them every chance to recover prior to release. Releasing fish from boats in the river is not recommended.

If you have any news or pictures of catches or experiences on the Tay and you would like to share them please email me on to be included in the reports.

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