Once again the action this week was experienced in short periods as fish seemed to switch on properly for brief spells, during which 5 fish were landed and several others lost. For the rest of the time, lots of fish were raised and moved to anglers' flies but without any real commitment.Sunday 22nd May 2022
The promise of rain was given on many occasions throughout the past week but as is so often the case failed to fall in the quantity required to make any significant difference to the water levels. Even the wind always welcomed in low water was at times too strong and never quite in the right direction to give the desired ripple. Nevertheless, anglers found concentrated moments of success and did well to land 6 fish in these tough conditions.Sunday 15th May 2022
Faced with less than ideal conditions and with little prospect of rain on the forecast, this week's anglers had resigned themselves to a tough low water week on arrival. It's fair to say that the 12 fish landed exceeded expectations and once again demonstrated that there is always hope!Sunday 8th May 2022
With largely reasonable conditions, fish have continued to be caught throughout the river during the last week. When blowing, the northerly wind was a welcome aid against the falling water levels and helped as anglers managed to add another 7 fish to the book.
Yesterday's rain may not have amounted to the quantity desired, but has at least raised the water levels slightly and will undoubtedly help during the start of next week.Sunday 1st May 2022
The water height remained reasonable at the start of the week with still enough flow to allow anglers to swing a fly although overhead conditions were becoming less favourable. Taking these conditions into account, the final tally of 6 fish was a good result and certainly could have been higher if fortunes had been kinder as a number of fish were also lost.
Wielding a salmon rod for the first time this week, Ellie Measham took to the river like a natural and was quickly rewarded with her first salmon weighing in at 10lbs.Sunday 24th April 2022
Following last week's washout, fishing began on Monday with the river sitting at an almost perfect 16 inches and favourable overhead conditions to match. Midweek saw another rise of water that slowed fishing briefly but ensured anglers enjoyed fantastic conditions for the remainder of the week with 11 fish landed and numerous more lost along the way.
Without doubt, the highlight of the week was for Cameron Lipp, aged 13, to hook and land his first ever salmon which weighed 9lbs. A first fish is always a huge achievement at any time, but to accomplish this feat in April deserves even more recognition!Sunday 17th April 2022
So often anglers spend the weeks and months leading up to their fishing trip studying various weather forecasts and praying there will be sufficient rain to raise water levels to favourable heights. After this past week of weather, this week’s anglers will agree that you can in fact have too much of a good thing!
On a positive note, the lochs are full to the brim and the hills are soaked. All much needed following last season’s drought and will help to continue to restore the all-important groundwater levels.Sunday 10th April 2022
Fishing effort increased this week as we welcomed back anglers into the cottages and across the river, following two years of cancelations for some. The mixture of weather experienced throughout the week reminded all just how changeable conditions can be during these early months, sunshine, and flat calms through to strong northerly winds with snow! Precipitation of any kind was gladly received as was the slow 4-inch rise over the course of several days: not exactly a spate but a welcome increase in flow.
Long-standing stalwart of the Halladale, especially during the early months, Roger Edwards, got the season off the mark with a beautiful 12lb fish. This is the third time Roger has managed this feat and I wouldn’t bet against him repeating it in the future.
Fishing the river for the first time, Angus Ritchie added a second fish for the week and season of 7lbs on the following day and was unlucky to lose another later in the week.Sunday 3rd April 2022
As the north enjoyed another week of glorious weather, even by summer standards, sightings of fish and a couple of offers were as close as anglers came.
While the change in weather forecast during the coming week looks substantially cooler, hopefully, it will also bring sufficient rain too.Monday 28th March 2022
For the most part, the bright sun and cold winds which dominated over the last week meant fishing conditions were far from ideal on the river. Even so, the visiting anglers were encouraged not just to see fish but to have interest also.Tuesday 22nd March 2022
With an improvement in the weather and conditions recently, rivers across the North have slowly started to awaken with the first fish being reported from several rivers over the last week. Unfortunately, there is no such report for the Halladale yet, but low rod effort in these early months is always a factor.
We have been busy de-winterising the river and huts in preparation for the return of our visiting anglers In the coming weeks, hopefully, the report of the first fish will follow soon after.Monday 7th March 2022
At last, the real rain we have been waiting patiently for since May eventually arrived on Sunday night much to the delight of this season’s final groups of anglers. Rising water (with more than a touch of colour) put a halt to proceedings on Monday with the river peaking at a little over 4 feet late in the afternoon, but as the water levels fell the river exploded into life with a total of 110 fish landed over the next memorable 3 days!
Few would disagree that the 2021 season has been one of multiple challenges; the lack of water being the cause of many of them. So, while we have finished the season on the most spectacular of highs, we are also mindful of the many loyal anglers who have endured some of the most torrid conditions this summer, and as I convey our thanks and appreciation to all who visited this year, a special note of thanks is due to those anglers who found conditions far from ideal.Friday 1st October 2021
The fishing was nicely set up for anglers this week following a rise to 6 inches on the gauge on Sunday night. While again not a spate, this added water, after such a dry summer, had the desired effect on the fish with 21 fish landed on Monday alone - the weekly total of 75 fish is our best by far this season.
This evening's overnight forecast looks promising with a decent band of rain covering the north and with only 4 days of the season remaining, another lift in water levels would help to bring the season to a satisfactory close and would certainly please next week’s rods also!Sunday 26th September 2021
As can only be expected following such a long, dry spell lasting since May, the additional water this week made the river extremely dirty during the first half of the week, and coupled with the bright overhead conditions, fishing was much slower during this time. With better overall conditions for the final three days, anglers found fish to be much more responsive and enjoyed the luxury of being able to swing a fly in flowing water once again! I’m sure that the 34 fish landed will encourage next week’s anglers too.Sunday 19th September 2021
There will have been very few anglers either already in the North or about to visit who were not watching this week’s weather forecast with huge amounts of hope and even anticipation…. Unfortunately, like so often this season, the rain amounted to much less than the experts had predicted with the result being an 8-inch rise overnight on Saturday. On a positive note, although not a roaring spate this is the largest rise in water levels since May!
Another positive note was the 12 fish anglers managed to land this week, in spite of the fact that a few days were effectively lost through soaring temperatures and lack of wind.Sunday 12th September 2021
While continuing to adopt unorthodox tactics, and aided by the cloud cover, anglers managed to tempt another 6 fish this week. Unfortunately, as the week progressed, the river levels dropped further and the wind was lost resulting in lower fishing effort.
Having now slipped into September, the chance of more unsettled weather increases and with it, the hope of a real change in conditions does too. Anglers will be watching next week’s forecast with great interest – and hope!Sunday 5th September 2021
To add to the challenge of the continued low water, anglers were faced with bright sun, rising water temperatures, and a complete lack of wind this week. Unsurprisingly, fish showed little interest for the majority of the week with even the trout parties finding a lack of cooperation. Finally, with better overhead conditions on Saturday fish became more responsive resulting in 3 fish being landed. With little sign of rain on the forecast, we can only hope that enough wind and cloud develop to help next week’s rods.Sunday 29th August 2021
Proceedings began this week with 2 inches registering on the gauge which, given the average water height over the summer, almost looked like a spate! This extra water, strong winds, and favourable cloud cover gave anglers reasonable conditions as they landed 29 fish for the week.Sunday 22nd August 2021
A small rise of 3 inches mid-week helped to improve conditions for this week’s anglers who took advantage to land 22 fish during the course of the week. With water temperatures continuing to drop, resident fish have also become more active with some even showing a little cooperation. While we have again missed out on the substantial rain that continues to fall on the west, we must be grateful for the little we have received and hope that one of these days we are blessed!Sunday 15th August 2021
Thunderstorms surrounded us many times this week dropping large amounts of rain in sight of anglers, but unfortunately, we always remained just on the edge of the weather. Similar to last week, the cooler weather has had benefits, and the little rain that fell on the catchment at least stopped the river levels from falling further. Given the conditions, anglers did well to land 20 fish during the week and were grateful for the company of the wind when it arrived.Sunday 8th August 2021
As torrential downpours and thunderstorms travelled through Scotland this week many rivers finally received the much-needed spate that has eluded us all this summer. Unfortunately, as so often happens, the rain stopped short of the far North leaving some of the rivers across the North coast needing more. On a positive note, the rise of a few inches we received has helped to reduce water temperatures, something we must be grateful for as fish welfare is the priority.
Making the most of the fresher feel to the water, coupled with good overhead conditions, anglers did well to land 21 fish for the week. As has become normal practice this summer, trout flies hitched across the surface accounted for the vast majority of fish.Sunday 1st August 2021
Thankfully, a cooler start to last week helped to lower the water temperature that had been rising to worrying levels, and although still without rain, anglers managed to land 3 fish during this time before the heatwave kicked in. With a more unsettled forecast for the week ahead, we live in hope.Sunday 25th July 2021
With no sign of the drought that is gripping the north breaking, it was remarkable that anglers caught 10 fish across the river this week. Once again, careful angling pressure has been applied with loch trout fishing filling in between the visits. This approach has benefits for both the anglers and the fish.Sunday 18th July 2021
With the river still sitting below summer levels the rain we received on Wednesday, although not heavy, was certainly most welcome and sufficient to add an extra inch to the water height. This slight rise, coupled with careful fishing effort, helped as we added 10 fish to the book this week. As is so often the case with fresh grilse, many others were lost, although the fun is always in hooking them! Unorthodox flies have again accounted for fish this week as trout tactics continue to be adopted.Sunday 11th July 2021
As the wait for rain continues across the north, the fishing has proved difficult again this week with soaring temperatures and blue skies on many days. The wind so badly needed for low water success was absent for much of the week and without a ripple, fish were easily seen in the pools – as were anglers by the fish! With cloud and wind making a rare appearance together, the only 3 fish caught for the week were taken on Tuesday, all were sea-liced grilse and two were caught on a trout fly. Anglers who headed to the hill lochs in search of trout did have success, but found that trout, like salmon, also have a dislike of the sun!Sunday 4th July 2021
Changeable weather conditions throughout the week, including a day of wetter weather on Thursday, gave hope of a more significant rise in water levels. Unfortunately, the resulting rise only equated to an extra 1.5 inches though this was enough to see a substantial increase in action for anglers. With 6 entries in the book and numerous other connections, fish were seen running all the way through the system and gave sport on all the beats.Sunday 27th June 2021
Faced with another week of difficult conditions, anglers had to work hard to register 3 fish in the book – 2 of which were grilse. While reluctant to fully commit, there were the usual inspections and shows of interest from fish that always help to keep morale up. While resting the river between morning and evening visits, exciting fishing was enjoyed targeting hill-loch trout. Some of which were found to run as hard as salmon!Sunday 20th June 2021
Without any meaningful rain this week, the river levels have continued to drop to summer lows and in response, anglers have adopted summer tactics to winkle out 4 fish in what has been a pretty tough week. Lack of wind during early morning stints compounded the issue but did allow for some exciting Icelandic-style sight fishing that resulted in all the action except the photo!
Next week’s rods will welcome both the wind forecast for the start of the week and the sightings of fresh fish on recent tides. I’m sure some rain would be equally well received.Sunday 13th June 2021
The conditions have proved difficult on the river for anglers this week as dwindling water levels and blue skies ensured fish kept their heads down during the day. With a little water remaining at the start of the week fish showed at least some interest but, as was the case towards the end of the previous week, failed to commit fully as numerous fish were lost. Mike Sanders contributed greatly to the weekly tally of 5 fish by using his low water experience to enjoy sport on most days.
Early morning and evening sessions are likely to prove most effective for next week's anglers as we wait for the rain to stir things up.Sunday 6th June 2021
Following torrential rain on Monday that put a stop to fishing from mid-day, the river was lifted over the gauges to peak at 4.5 feet in the late afternoon and set up the water for the week ahead. Good fishing followed for the next few days as water and overhead conditions remained favourable, but the arrival of the sun from Friday afternoon slowed the action considerably - morning and late evenings still proving productive. With close to as many fish lost as caught, the final tally of 25 fish could have been very different but it was a week of quality, not quantity!Sunday 30th May 2021
Although the water levels have remained favourable this week the fishing has proved tough at times with the cold, easterly wind continuing to keep temperatures well below the average and a day-time low of 3°C recorded on Thursday. Again, the quality of the salmon caught was exceptional with a high proportion of 3SW fish. The first connection with a grilse was made on Saturday but unfortunately, as is often the case, it was all too brief.Sunday 23rd May 2021
This week’s anglers already thought their luck was in as they began fishing on Monday with the river sitting at 12” and, more importantly, with fish cooperating. However, two further rises of levels during the week ensured good water remained as the rods make the most of the conditions tallying up 31 fish in the process.
With the water holding up well and conditions still looking favourable there is much hope for next week’s anglers.Sunday 16th May 2021
The cold weather has continued this week along with the strong, biting N/E winds. Anglers utilised this wind in the early part of the week while the river remained low to land a couple of fish and receive lots of interest from other fish that just didn’t materialise. Following overnight rain on Wednesday, the river rose to 3’ on Thursday and a few more fish were added towards the end of the week giving a weekly total of 5. Encouragingly, the majority of fish were sea-liced so with another small lift last night, next week's rods will start fishing with good water and some fresh fish too.Sunday 9th May 2021
Following rain at the beginning of the week, there was the hope of a decent rise in water levels for our returning anglers. Unfortunately, a small, gradual upward tick of a couple of inches was all that it amounted to. Coupled with the cold N/E wind conditions were far from perfect as temperatures stayed low throughout. Although no fish were landed there were at least connections and increased sightings towards the end of the week.Sunday 2nd May 2021
As we all know, tomorrow marks the day when we will see a further easing of Covid rules across Scotland and the reopening of accommodations that will allow us to welcome back visiting anglers to the river. Although this comes too late for a number of our regular anglers who would have normally been fishing over the last month we look forward to when they return next.
The weather during the last week has been far from ideal for salmon fishing with bright blue skies throughout most days and the favourable southerly on Monday being short-lived before settling into the cold wind which blighted the rest of the week. Looking forward, the weather appears unsettled for the week ahead and the rain promised by the forecasters is now needed as the river level has dropped below zero.Sunday 25th April 2021
The week began with the river running at a great height of 15” but falling away swiftly. By midweek when a couple of rods ventured out, the best of the water had been, and the overhead conditions were challenging. Early next week looks like the most promising of weather, and with the chance of a little rain to help keep the water levels up too.Sunday 18th April 2021
The return to wintery conditions has seen snow on the ground on many days this week and kept fishing effort on the river to an absolute minimum. Snowmelt during the day has given us unsettled water levels in the second half of the week but will ensure we start next week with good water and with the spring-like weather forecast, the prospects look good.Sunday 11th April 2021
The rain arrived as forecast at the beginning of the week, lifting the river over the gauges to a little more than 4 feet on Wednesday. As the water settled towards the end of the week, we had our first fish for the season recorded; a beautiful 11lb hen landed in Ashills. The weather for the week ahead looks challenging, and the return to wintery conditions may have anglers question the term “Spring fishing!”Sunday 4th April 2021
With the river level slowly falling away throughout the last week to around the 1” mark it sits at now, the rain forecast over the next couple of days will be very welcome and, should it materialise, will lift the levels to a more enticing height for both anglers and fish! The spring tides at the start of the coming week will also help to push fish into the river.
Due to the continued disruption caused by Covid-19 to accommodation and travel, rods are available on the river over the coming weeks with prices starting at £25 per rod per day between the 29th of March to the 10th of April and £40 per rod per day between the 12th of April to the 24th of April. Please contact 07920 571026 for further details and to arrange bookings.Sunday 28th March 2021
This week began with excellent conditions and the anglers out on Monday were full of hope. Unfortunately, only a sighting of fish was reported before more rain overnight lifted the river to just shy of 3’. Conditions remained good as the water tailed-off nicely as the week progressed, though the strong northerly wind proved tiresome at times.Sunday 21st March 2021
Conditions on the river remained favourable all week as the water height sat predominantly around the 1ft mark. Although I am unable to report a fish being landed this week, contact was made on Saturday though sadly it was all too brief!Sunday 14th March 2021
The water levels dropped away quickly as the fair-weather remained with us this week. Unfortunately, the spring tides in which there was much hope coincided with less-than-ideal fishing conditions and the wait continues for a 1st fish. Today’s rain has lifted the river from zero to above the 1ft mark and with more rain on the forecast for the week ahead, it looks highly unlikely that there will be a shortage of water!
With further details on the easing of restrictions in Scotland expected by mid-March, we hope to be able to give some guidance in the coming weeks to the traveling anglers due to fish with us over the next couple of months.Sunday 7th March 2021
Although blustery at the beginning, the weather has improved as the week progressed blessing us with warm spring-like conditions over the weekend. The river levels have been favourable for the anglers out on the water, dropping slowly through the week from 15” to the 6” it sits at presently. As we slip into March, and with the large spring tides over the next couple of days, the prospects for that 1st fish of the season increase!Sunday 28th February 2021
With the snow and ice gone some local anglers were able to cast a fly on the river towards the end of the week and as the water levels dropped to a favourable height of 16” conditions were good. Now more than ever, the joy of being on the river is rewarding enough.Monday 22nd February 2021
A change in weather over the weekend has brought warmer temperatures that accelerated the thaw across the river, raising the water height and dislodged the thick sheets of ice covering the pools. Ice dams built up behind bottlenecks on the way downstream creating huge, glacial walls that burst through and washed through the system. Once the water and ice subside, we will be able to assess any damage caused to pools and riverbanks. Hopefully, any damage will be to a minimum. On a brighter note, fishing will also be able to resume again!Tuesday 16th February 2021
Welcome to the new, Halladale River website for the 2021 season where weekly fishing reports and updates from the river will be posted.
With temperatures plummeting during the past week we have seen the already ice-edged river become completely frozen in many areas. Needless to say, there's not much chance of swinging a fly at the moment!Friday 12th February 2021
The season has quietly drawn to a close following the final 3 days of fishing this week. With the river plagued by low water conditions since early July there was hope for a final spate and flurry of activity to end the season. Unfortunately, the rains arrived too late to aid this week`s anglers who, in difficult conditions managed a very respectable 34 fish to lift the season total to 401.
2020 has been completely unprecedented with everyone of us having to make adjustments to many parts of our lives. As so many are aware this has meant cancellation of the annual trip to the Halladale for large numbers of our regular and longstanding anglers, all of whom have been truly missed.For those who have managed to make the trip north this has only been possible by adhering to necessary restrictions and following the recommended protocols.For this we thank you greatly.
As the nights lengthen, thoughts turn to repleneshing fly boxes and browsing books and blogs for new exciting tactics to deploy on the river next season ! Until then, we thank all who contributed to such a challenging season and wish all of our anglers a safe winter.Friday 2nd October 2020
As temperatures dropped this week, with nightime lows of -3c, there was a real Autumnal feel in the air. This certainly helped to lower the water temperature and stir up the cock fish ! The lift in water levels to 3″ towards the end of the week gave the best conditions we have seen for quite some time and anglers made the most of it landing 16 of the week`s 32 fish on Saturday.Monday 28th September 2020
Anglers found the river height around 2" for the first 3 days of the week-almost spate like conditions compared with most of the summer! As expected fish were slightly more cooperative with 12 of the week's 15 fish caught then. To test anglers further we had a return to high summer weather towards the end of the week with bright sun and blue skies. As expected the fish were uncooperative then!Monday 21st September 2020
Following a 4″ rise in water levels anglers found the fish much more responsive this week. As well as landing 27 across the river, many more were raised, moved and sometimes lost as the level of interest from fish ramped up a notch ! With only a few weeks left before the season ends we all hope for a big spate and final flurry of action.Until then we will be happy with the small rise we are blessed with.Monday 14th September 2020
Unfortunately this week it is the same story of low water and the continued wait for rain as two months have now passed since the last real rise in river levels. However we have continued to catch a few fish every week and this week was no different as anglers landed 8.Monday 7th September 2020
With no relief from the weather anglers had their work cut out again this week.A very welcome small rise on thursday coincided with bright sun which cancelled out the benefit of extra flow. The total of 6 fish landed for the week was helped by the large tides which encouraged fish to enter the lower stretches. Next week`s forecast of cooler weather will be welcome to anglers.Monday 24th August 2020
With low water conditions continuing anglers this week had the added challenge of bright sun coupled with little to no wind. As a result fishing effort was concentrated to the days of slightly more favourable conditions. The final tally of 8 fish was greatly helped by the youngsters of the Fraser party who showed real perserverance- and as we all know perserverance pays!Tuesday 18th August 2020
The rain showers forecast throughout the week didn`t amount to much in the end. However the slight rise on friday was enough to register on the positive side of zero ! This was just enough to make fish a little more cooperative towards anglers` offerings which contributed greatly towards the final tally of 14 for the week.Monday 27th July 2020
Grilse numbers across the North show no signs of slowing yet. However, falling river levels coupled with bright sun at times, meant anglers had to work hard for results this week.As the gauge slipped below zero the final tally of 33 was impressive.Some rain now would do wonders to stir things up!Monday 20th July 2020
The anglers this week took full advantage of last weekend`s rise in water levels to land 85 fish. Effective flies and techniques varied as the water dropped through the week, from large swinging coneheads through to hitching small tubes. The resulting fish were plump and in amazing condition. With good numbers still nosing in on every tide the prospects remain favourable for the coming week.Monday 13th July 2020
The hope of a more substantial rise in the water didn`t materialise at the beginning of the week, though this didn`t do much to deter the fish with 24 landed to light rod effort. Heavy rain on Saturday night lifted the river to over 3 foot and will see us start next week with prospects looking excellent. Due to cancellations there is some fishing availabilty during the remainder of the season but regrettably we cannot offer accommodation. If interested please contact Audrey or Reuben by email in the first instance.Monday 6th July 2020
Numbers of fish continue to build across the North Coast rivers as the grilse run strengthens.Given the low water and continued light rod effort, 10 fish landed is testament to that.Thunder showers over the weekend have raised the river slightly and, with further rain forecast during the week, this rise could turn into something more substantial. Now the Scottish Government is easing restrictions onj fishing and tourist accommodation we shall be contacting clients with existing bookings to see if we can make a plan for them.Monday 29th June 2020
Extremely light rod effort kept the tally of fish landed to 5 this week, with grilse counting for the majority.With the river level below zero we continue to see small numbers of these grilse entering the system but some meaningful rain would be welcometo help them on their way. Of course it would do the fishing no harm either ! The Government `announcement` about opening up tourism( and fishing) was a damp squib with no meaningful details provided.Monday 22nd June 2020
The rise in water last week was helpful in `turning on` some of the staler and more reluctant fish which had entered the system during lock-down. The total of 27 fish included a small number of well conditioned grilse. Hopefully, later this week we will get further information from the Scottish Government about plans to open up Highlands tourism in mid July.Monday 15th June 2020
With the river height below zero for most of the week , local anglers depended on a good ripple with top water action accounting for most of the 15 multi-sea-winter fish landed. Friday`s rain saw the river peak at over 5ft early on saturday and will have helped fish to spread through the system.We eagerly await further easing on fishing from the Scottish Government which hopefully will allow more of our usual guests to enjoy some fishing.Monday 8th June 2020
With water below zero for most of the week, local anglers had to take advantage of the strong wind and good ripples with top of the water action accounting for the majority of 15 multi-sea-winter fish landed. Friday`s rain saw the river peak at over 5ft on saturday and will have helped fish spread through the system.Monday 8th June 2020
It was a welcome sight indeed to see local rods fishing albeit in less than perfect conditions – low water and wall to wall sunshine. Nonetheless,some keen early mornimg anglers had action before sunrise and landed the first fish of the season on friday morning. Even more remarkable , it was a 4lb grilse ! At present fishing remains restricted to local anglers ( please contact Reuben or Audrey if interested). Hopefully, further easing of Government restrictions will allow anglers from further afield to visit before too long.Monday 1st June 2020
At last ! Fishing to start tomorrow friday 29th May. Due to restrictions only local community anglers at this stage. If interested please call Reuben (mob:07920 571026) for booking availabilty and protocols. Hopefully we will be able to offer fishing more widely as Government restrictions ease further in the future.Thursday 28th May 2020
Just heard lock-down regulations on fishing to relax on 28th May. Will comment further when full details are known.Thursday 21st May 2020