New salmon season has begun on the two Esks

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A new salmon season has started on the two Esks and a totally new system is now in place.

The government has decreed that all salmon must be returned to the river all over Scotland and we now wait to see what this will mean to the proprietors by way of lets, and whether they will be taken up on the catch and release basis.

I fished the upper beat of Pert on the North Esk last Wednesday and was pleased to hear from the proprietor that they had already passed 10 fish for the season (on a par with last year) and that their bookings were as they were for the past few seasons, good news.

I fished the boat pool most of the morning and saw a few fish move but no takes so when my friends arrived we decided to walk to the top of the beat and the three weir pools.

The water was quite heavy and the clarity was crystal so se spaced ourselves out and was finding it difficult in the heavy flow but soon I had a take in the weir pool itself, a fish which lay doggo on the bottom and was not in the mood to move.

Eventually it did and how and when I held it my 10lbs leader went ping and that was it.

Turning to look downstream to the Lower weir pool I could see George Keir trying to break my fly rod (he forgot to bring his) and it was clear that he was into a good fish which sparkled in the spring sunshine from my view point on the high bank.

When he brought it in I estimated the fish at 14lbs and a true Scottish Springer, “a bar of silver”.

This was the peak of our day and only one other fish offered to Ken Mackie’s fly but we were all truly satisfied with something special to remember.

Another fish was taken on the lower beat, a 8lb fish from the Luther Pool.

Jennifer Gibbs was fishing at Morphie, North Esk, with her husband Nigel on the opposite bank

Jennifer Gibbs was fishing at Morphie, North Esk, with her husband Nigel on the opposite bank

By the way the fly was a Black Shrimp.