Almost all of Scotland’s salmon rivers are now open for business. Last week, the River Spey opened on Monday and on Friday anglers on both the North and South Esk wet a line for the first time. Rivers like the Tay, Thurso and Helmsdale opened in January and the Dee and Tweed followed shortly afterwards.
Generally, it has been quite cold over the past few weeks and there have been frequent snow showers, even down to lower levels. On some rivers, there has been ice forming on the edges of the pools. This has led to difficult fishing conditions on some days. River levels have also been quite low for the time of year. However, temperatures have risen at the beginning of this week and subsequently, some of the snow has melted on the hills. Water levels have risen on many rivers because of the thaw and this can only be good news for anglers.
There have already been some cracking salmon caught from Scotland’s rivers this year. In recent weeks, the River Helmsdale produced its first fish of the season. The River Dee produced some lovely fresh spring salmon on opening day which was good to see. Last week there were also nice fish caught from the River Tweed, Teith and Spey.
So far this season, it has been the River Tay making all the headlines. The size of some of the fresh salmon being caught from the river has been extraordinary and the quality of the fish have been second to none. There have been numerous fish over the twenty pounds mark landed and also one fish weighing a colossal thirty-five pounds. Hopefully, this is a sign of things to come.
As we move through February and into March, there should be more fresh fish entering our river systems. With this, sport will improve. The great thing about early spring fishing is that the size of the salmon are usually big and the power they exhibit is second to none. Catching a spring Scottish salmon is always a very special experience and one that will live with the angler forever.
So if you have not already wet a line this season, what are you waiting for? With the 2018 Scottish salmon fishing season now in full swing, there is no better time to chase some early season silver!