April Roundup – High Winds and Waters

May 8, 2024By Kirsty AllanBlog, Fishing No Comments

April would usually see the cold grip of winter break allowing some much needed heat to kickstart the spring growth… not this year we’ve had unseasonably cool weather with the winds fluctuating from the North and East making for challenging casting conditions.

Although spring seemed to be late, the welcome sight of the osprey assured us spring had very much arrived. Closely followed by the aerial acrobatic team in the form of the sand martins and arctic terns who seem to have appeared in encouraging numbers and then the ever noisy sandpipers flew in piping their call. The last to appear will be the swifts who should be with us in the coming weeks. 

On the river, we managed to get some fish in the net but with the high water we seemed to be stuck in a frustrating spell of loosing fish, presumably due to running fish not committing to taking the fly in the “classic” way. 

It was great to host the River Spey Anglers Association’s lady’s day on Upper and Middle brae, it is always great to see regulars and also introducing new faces to our sport under the guidance of the RSAA team

April also sees the start of our invasive species control, with giant hogweed, Japanese knotweed, Himalayan balsam and white butterbur present on all of the beats we work closely with the Scottish invasive species initiative (SISI) we carried out a few days of spraying over all of the beats targeting giant hogweed which seems to get the jump on any other plant making it for easy spotting and spraying early in the season. 


As the Calendar turns to May , the weather is sure to break and as it does so will our loosing streak and unfortunately the grass will start to grow faster than we can cut it! 

Lewis Webb

March Fishing Round-Up

March 27, 2024By Kirsty AllanBlog, Fishing No Comments

Blog 2 – March 27th 

March started off with the river levels continuing to drop off from the high water in February. With not many guests out on the river, this gave us more time to continue the tidy up from the winter floods and also doing some preparations for the season ahead. We have installed solar power and a log burner into the upper brae hut along with some other minor works to “modernise” the hut.

On Saturday 9th while Angus was dropping off the pictures to finish off the upper brae decorations, Andrew Davie got the estate off the mark for the 2024 season with a cracking 7lb fish from the rock pool. Proving that unless you’ve got your fly in the water, then there’s no chance of getting a fish!

We went into the following week full of hope and with the river looking a perfect height, a fish was sure to be on the cards? Alas mother nature showed us how she dictates our season as a huge landslip on the Rothes and Aikenway beat turned the river into a mix of sand and clay. At times we felt there was more chance of finding an Oompa Loompa wandering by the chocolate river as opposed to some salmon in it! This coloured water lasted all week with it only dissipating on the Saturday afternoon after a small rise helped to wash the worst of it out.

As the month continued, we’ve had a fluctuation of water and weather conditions going from 17 degrees in glorious sun to 4 degrees with a bitter north / easterly wind and now great big dumps of snowflakes are falling, threatening to cover the grass. Whist this made it hard for casting, the conditions made the log burner in the huts all the more welcoming. We have had the odd offer of a fish but nothing that has been confirmed to be Salmo Salar.

It’s encouraging to see fish being caught further up and some fantastic specimens with multiple 20lb+ fish have been caught so there must be some quality fish swimming past us. After all, they aren’t taking the bus!

We still have availability throughout the spring and even a couple of weeks later in the prime season. To find out our availability and to enquire for your trip to Gordon Castle please contact Toby on Factor@gleco.co.uk or search for Gordon Castle on Fishpal to book online.

Look forward to welcoming you soon!

Lewis Webb – Middle Brae Ghillie

Gordon Castle Fishing

March 15, 2024By Kirsty AllanBlog, Fishing No Comments

After a very destructive off season, with 5 significant storms, which caused considerable damage to our river banks and tracks, we did manage to get fishers on the river for Monday the 12th of February.  Boats repaired and painted, huts revived, logs chopped and stacked, tracks graded, ghillies refreshed, equipment serviced, river blessed – we were off.

We had a wonderful opening day in which the sun (which we hadn’t seen since September) shone and the river behaved herself as if she hadn’t run rampage for the previous three months.

The storms and associated high waters have changed our pools considerably.  It’s going to take Ian, Lewis, David G and David B the beat ghillies, a bit of time to work it all out.  Actually, I detect an air of optimism for this year.  The challenges of a harsh off season may actually be beneficial!  Otters cave, particularly is unrecognisable – it seems to have turned into Otters Loch and has eaten its way into the left bank by 15-20 metres.

Spring is certainly upon us.  There is evidence of green shoots all around and birds are in abundance.  We have already started this years battle against the Invasive species – we hit the knotweed hard last year and are hoping we can really push it back this year.

Whilst our summer fishing is quite full, we still have opportunities for March, April and May.  All the signs are that this year will be significantly better than last.

Castle Water Hut under siege during the October 2023 floods.