All the salmon rivers in the Scottish Highlands have now closed for the season apart from the River Alness. The Alness will close tomorrow and then all eyes will turn towards the 2019 salmon fishing season. So, what is like to salmon fish in the Scottish Highlands and what can salmon anglers that come to Scotland expect?
The Scottish Highlands is a beautiful part of the country and offers a unique experience to the salmon angler. There are a number of prolific salmon rivers in the area which is usually classified as being north of Aviemore. There are not just a wide variety of salmon rivers to choose from but also a great variety of rivers. In the north of the region, there are many smaller rivers like the Borgie, Brora and Halladale amongst others. These rivers are spate rivers and so are more productive after there has been a lift in water following heavy rain. In this part of the Highlands, the scenery is very rugged and beautiful. It can often be quite dramatic with mountains adorning the skyline. Rivers like the Naver, Helmsdale and Thurso are larger rivers in the region and also offer excellent salmon fishing opportunities. Many of these rivers open their banks to salmon anglers in January and often an early springer is landed. Salmon are caught on a more consistent basis on these rivers from March onwards. Depending on water heights spring catches can peak in April and May.
There is also excellent summer fishing in the area. All the above-mentioned rivers produce good numbers of summer salmon and grilse from late June onwards. If the water is low and the weather is hot the best time to target these fish can be early in the morning and then again at dusk. The summer salmon run usually peaks in late August and the best times can often be dependent on water.
The world-famous River Spey is also classified as being in the Highland region. It is the largest and longest of the Highland rivers. It has an excellent spring run and summer fish usually start entering the system from early June. The River Spey is a fly fisher’s paradise and many of the pools are just mouth-watering.
As you can see there are no shortage of salmon fishing options in the Scottish Highlands. Whether you are looking to salmon fish on a smaller more intimate river or chase your quarry on a larger river like the Spey there is a river that suits even the most discerning of anglers. So if you are looking for fantastic salmon fishing in remote unspoiled surroundings then the Scottish Highlands could be the place for you!