A good run of salmon went through at the back
end of September. The River Lyon was very high
after heavy rain and many fish took refuge in
the Point Pool at the confluence of the Tay
and the Lyon (The Tay here is loch fed so the
water is clear). Many of the fish were dark,
so these were probably the Springers making
their second or final movement upstream to the
Radio tracking indicates that salmon make three
distinct movements during their stay in fresh
water. The first is when they enter the river
for the first time. Fish can take up residence
anywhere, but they tend seek out the deeper
holding pools. The second is when water conditions
are favorable with the fish moving close to
where they will spawn and the last movement
is onto the redds. The colour of these fish
indicated that they had been around for some
The first week of October went very quiet as
the river dropped back. The occasional fish
was seen heading upstream, but they proved hard
to entice. David Tomkin had a 7 1/2 pounder
from the Dairy on an Ally's Shrimp which was
returned. The Haxton party were due to be fishing
the Point, but found the road blocked with gravel
from a new house under construction. While this
was being moved they had a quick go further
down. Just as well too! Dr Haxton had a 6 1/2
pounder from Home Farm on a Devon.
We are now seeing bright silver fish coming
through as well. Yesterday (11th October) a
dozen or so fresh fish went through the Point
heading for the Loch before 9.30 in the morning.
During the rest of the day fish continued to
move through. Again they are proving hard to
get, seeming intent on making their way upstream.
Len Evans had a 7 lber on a flying C from the
Dairy and Nils Erik lost a 20lb+ fish from the
Point. His party were just getting the video
camera ready, when the line went ping! That
will teach them for being over confident.
While these fish are frequently called salmon,
it is just as likely that they are in fact grilse.
A grilse entering the river late has had just
that bit more feeding at sea and grows that
bit bigger. Without doing a scale reading it
is impossible to tell, and we are more keen
to see them go back than to start taking scales.
A fish is a fish and they all fight like the
Nils Erik had two salmon from the Point on the
14th of 14 and 8lb, both of which were returned,
followed by a third of 7lb from Pipers. Inspite
of valiant efforts over a 15 minute period the
fish failed to revive and had to be killed.
Nils is always very good at putting fish back
and he was quite upset at actually having to
Tomas Norberg (also from Norway) had his first
ever Tay salmon the same day from Pipers, a
fish of 8lb which was returned, while Ian Clatworthy
had two more fish from the Point (7lb and 10lb).
The bigger of the two was returned.
The closing party took place on Friday, sponsored
by Hello! magazine, Normark and Mitchells of
Pitlochry. The gala dinner was a particularly
fine affair this year - the first time the new
owners of the Kenmore Hotel have been able to
put on a real show. An auction was held on behalf
of the Tay Foundation.