Scottish Fishing Guides
By Jock Monteith 22nd August 2019
Never underestimate the value of having a professional Scottish salmon guide overviewing & adjusting your salmon fishing approach even if you've been salmon fishing for years. The difference between success & failure in this fine pursuit can often be something minor!
The Importance Of A Salmon Guide
Unless a professional Scottish ghillie really focusses and advises accordingly on the effectiveness of your salmon pool coverage or the elegance of your Spey cast then more often than not nothing will be said and an angler will be allowed to bed in bad habits and carry them throughout their fishing career. There's way much more to salmon fly fishing than 'launching' a salmon fly out as far as you can and hoping something big and silvery intercepts it on its route back to your side of the river! Follow this link for full package details for booking Scottish fishing guides.
Get Your Salmon Fishing Tactics Perfected
If you're new to this fine pursuit then a professional salmon fishing guide's grounding is completely necessary to teach you the best tactical approaches. To fish any of the Scottish rivers for the first couple of times without professional guidance is a waste of your time and permit money as salmon are not as easy as some may think to catch unless your pool approach & water coverage is perfect. To gain 'true value' from a salmon fishing permit then having the right level of salmon fishing equipment and necessary fishing skills are of huge importance for obvious reasons.
Professional Salmon Guide Fine Tuning
The important aspects of salmon fishing that really make a significant difference to the outcome of the fishing day only starts 'after' you've learned how to deliver a consistent fly line to the river! Many salmon fishers and instructors seem to think it stops there but the aerial performance of a salmon fly line would possibly be of more relevance to a flying fish but is of zero relevance to Atlantic salmon. A good consistent 'fishing length' cast is completely wasted unless good riverbank movement follows to separate each 'swing' of the fly correctly making sure your water coverage is correct & maximised.
Other Important Salmon Fishing Tactics To Learn
Important skills like training your ability to stay 'composed' when a salmon starts pulling at your fly is one of the hardest skills to master and thousands of anglers on the Scottish rivers each year react to the take from a salmon way too quickly and miss the hooking opportunity they've worked hard for. Salmon are true masters at catching an angler 'off guard' when they take a fly so unless an angler has been trained (brainwashed!) on composure tactics then his 'take to landed fish' ratio will remain low. There's always several seconds between contact from a fish and you tightening into it and if you're feeling that you've given the fish too long you'll be not far away as time speeds up significantly when a salmon is messing with your fly!
The Salmon Pool Wading Approach
Another big aspect of this business that I've seen many salmon fishers make errors with is the depth they'll wade in and through a salmon pool at. If you need to go out that deep to try to hit the far bank with your fly then logically you're fishing the wrong side of the river! In addition to that you'll more than likely have completely 'wrecked' your chances of success and the chances of all other salmon fishers who are fishing the same salmon pool that day. Salmon are highly sensitive creatures and although they may keep appearing after they've been 'rattled' by a deep wader they will become exceptionally difficult to catch after they've been disturbed. Stay back and wade carefully which includes a smooth slow pool entry and don't just charge in like a rhino!
The Presence Of Your Salmon Fly Only
The only thing a salmon should be aware of is the salmon fly and not the angler so watch you're not casting a shadow over a pool or silhouetting yourself against the light sky while moving to the neck of a pool before fishing. A moving shadow to a salmon's mind equates to a predator and while working as a boatman on the Tay I observed salmon would only move off their lie the split second the shadow of the boat moved over them and seldom due to the noise of the engine or any other aspect of carefully conducted boating duties. Always be aware that salmon could be lying close to your side of the river and adjust your salmon fishing mindset to consider how salmon may be viewing you!