The past year has been very difficult for many people because of the pandemic and almost everyone has had to adapt their lives to major changes caused by the global pandemic. However, there does seem to finally be some light at the end of the tunnel with the vaccination programme gaining momentum across the UK. Many will be looking forward to the 15th of this month when travel restrictions are due to finally ease and the 26th April when holiday accommodation can open once again.
A few lucky anglers have been able to wet a line regularly so far this season as they have been living close to a salmon river. However, the vast majority have not been able to salmon fish because of the government restrictions. This is set to change if all goes to plan at the end of the month, so many anglers will be able to chase silver on their favourite river. So where will you make your first cast once travel restrictions ease?
There are many good salmon fishing opportunities in late April and early May in Scotland. On several rivers, this is the prime time of year for spring salmon fishing. It has been quite difficult to assess which rivers have fished well this season so far due to limited fishing pressure but there are a few rivers that have consistently produced fish despite the lack of anglers.
One river that has certainly caught the eye in recent weeks has been the North Esk. The North Esk is a productive salmon river which runs through the heart of Angus. The river enjoys a good spring run and given decent conditions can produce good numbers of summer salmon and grilse. Ghillies on the river have commented on the number of spring fish they have seen so far this season being more than has been, for many a year. There have been some cracking fish caught from the river so far this season and hopefully, this will be a trend that will continue well into May.
The River Spey is another river that can fish well in May. Indeed, May is often the prime spring month on the river. Anglers on the Spey has been plagued by high unsettled water for much of the season so far but there have still been some stunning fish landed. So, if you are contemplating a post lockdown cast the River Spey might be well worth considering.
May is usually the prime time of year on the middle River Tay. It is at this time of year that the runs of fish entering the system destined for the River Tummel peak. This in addition to the salmon heading up the main river to Loch Tay and beyond. This is why May can be such a prime spring month. Perthshire is also a stunning place to visit in May. The Tay is just one of the many rivers which have suffered from reduced fishing pressure so far this season. In spite of this, there have been some lovely springers landed from the Tay system in recent weeks including nice fish caught from the main river as well as Loch Tay and the River Tummel. The Tay could potentially be a very attractive option for many anglers post lockdown.
The River Tweed is another river that has produced some cracking springers so far this season. Usually, once water temperatures rise in May the middle river fishes well. If the water is low for a sustained period of time the bottom river can also fish well below Coldstream. The bottom Tweed tends to produce fish on a more consistent basis from late May onwards especially if the water has been low.
There is no shortage of options when it comes to post lockdown salmon fishing in Scotland. Many anglers will just be glad to get out and wet a line on their favourite river after such a testing year. The date when you can sit back and relax on the river bank with a wee dram is getting ever closer. For some, this day cannot come soon enough!
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