Fly Fishing for everyone – Rothiemurchus Fly Fishery

Aviemore is an outdoorsman paradise, it straddles the mighty River Spey perhaps one of the most famous salmon rivers in the world. Its the main hub in the Cairngorms for mountain bikers, hikers, fishers and shooters. Whilst the prize fishing around Aviemore is obviously the Spey, I would be focussing my attentions upon the lovely Rothiemurchus Fishery.

As a family man myself my first impressions of the fishery were excellent, the fishery is in a very touristy location and the owners have obviously made efforts to cater for the whole family. There are 2 main ponds, there is an any method pond for kids to experience fishing for trout and a larger pond for the big boys in big boy pants, who want to catch big trout. This larger pond also has a small any method section, during my visit one of the guys from the fishery was teaching a family how to cast a fly. I think this is great seeing young kids introduced to the sport in such a manner.

The horseshoe shaped big pond was really well established and a real mix of open water combined with lots of knooks and crannies to try and stalk out some fish. One of my favourite features of this fishery is the amount of fresh water flowing through it, in places it feels as though you are fishing a small stream it really aids in your presentation of small nymphs and dries.

I was fishing with Jamie on the day and we arrived at midday and fished to around 4pm also known as the worst part of the day for fishing. We spent the first couple of hours blind casting the open water using a combination of lures and nymphs, it must be said we were not overly successful throughout this spell. I eventually decided to have a bit more of a stalk around, with my main target being a secondary inlet on the opposite side of the lake from where I had spent much of the day watching trout rising and taking flies just below the cover of an overhanging tree.

I slipped on a little black buzzer and a Diawl Bach and snuck up to the inlet keeping low so I wouldn’t spook the fish in the shallow clear water. Crouched a yard or two from the waters edge, I threw a few false casts and managed to land my flies right at the mouth of the inlet, the flies sunk quickly as the line drifted a foot or so downstream. Almost immediately, the line pulled tight and I knew a fish was on. I struck into the offending fish and after a perilous fight I managed to pull the fish over the lip of the net. It was a tidy fish of around 2lb, in case your wondering the black buzzer was the fly the fish succumbed to. It was the first fish of the day to come out of the lake. Victoriously, I let the swim rest for 10 minutes before smugly recasting into the flow of water. Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to coax another fish out of the little inlet so I decided to go for a wander.

As I walked around the lake I came across an angry Yorkshireman whipping the main inlet to a froth. Jamie was casting to a pack of 4 ‘bows in a few feet of crystal clear water. He was fishing a pheasant tailed nymph and receiving lots of interest from the submerged trout one of which was an absolute clonker. Despite a few good takes Jamie didn’t manage to land anything, so reluctantly I strolled “downstream” to see if I could find any chunky fish cruising around. I decided to leave the net with Jamie, this proved to be a significant decision.

I didn’t have to walk far until I found a lump of a fish cruising about 6 yards out, just under the surface. I eagerly prepared my rod and cast out, unusually, my flies gently landed about 10 inches in front of the fish. The fish turned and there was a flash of white as the trout gulped down my only just submerged pheasant tailed nymph. A long fight ensued with the fish making constant dashes for the margins, the battle was made all the more difficult by my aforementioned lack of net combined with a thick barrier of reeds about 4 foot deep. I tired the fish out as much as possible before hauling him through the reed where I managed to tickle him out with my hands.

As I laid the trout on the ground and caught my breath, I quickly realised this was my P.B. rainbow trout, a fish which on any other day, I would put back but I decided to keep him as me and Jamie were wild camping and a big fat trout like this would fill up our big fat bellies nicely.


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