Fishing conditions on the Helmsdale this week have been reasonable despite the Summer water levels but numbers of salmon seen and caught have been poor. Once again the spring salmon run has really not materialised and this is not just the case for the Helmsdale, it is the same worrying statistic all round Scotland .

However the Association water provided sport for Alexander Cowie and Alasdair Jappy who had a couple of fine fish up to 11lbs. One fish caught on the Sunray Shadow again and one on a small cotton bud tube.

Prospects for the week ahead are not looking too great as most of the rain forecast is for the South. Small flies will be the order of the day again unless you set up with the Sunray Shadow.

I will be at the Trout & Salmon Tweed Angling Fair in Kelso on Saturday & Sunday this week so if you are in the area why not pop over for a chat. I will be in the Atlantic Salmon Reserve tent with the team tying salmon flies (or at the casting competition!!) I will also have lots of flies on display and for sale – The new Sunray Tsunami is getting its official launch and that is a fly well worth seeing.

By the way, The ASR still have a few amazing slots available for salmon fishing on the Kharlovka/Litza/Rynda rivers in Russia . The full team will be on hand to discuss all the last minute deals and there will be refreshments and a superb slide show of the incredible salmon fishing on offer.

Hope to see you there


It’s been another dour week on the Helmsdale but weather conditions were partially to blame. An easterly airflow and high pressure offered poor bright and dry fishing conditions all week. However the water temperature did rise sufficiently to coax fish up and over the falls. The first fish was taken on Saturday by Kildonan rods on beat 2 above in the Suisgill pool. Another 2 were to follow today on 2 and 3 above so most of the fishing will be focussed on the upper beats from now on. The Association water provided another fish - William Jappy had a nice 12 pounder from the Horseback pool on that deadly Sunray Shadow again! Prospects look good for rain by the end of the week so hopefully this may raise water levels again and coax in a few fresh fish. The Association water should be well worth a cast again and you can get your day tickets from the Tackle Shop. Members of the Helmsdale Angling club have 4 rods on the Lower Brora next week. Last year we had a super week of sport with 22 salmon up to 14lbs, let’s pray the rain comes!



After a long slow spring ...

Ronald Sutherland

After a long slow spring the fishing seems to be showing signs of improvement recently. Last week saw the first two fish off the Association water on the Helmsdale. Chris Cook didn’t take long to grass the first one (9.5lbs) in the Style pool after picking up his day ticket only 10 minutes before. The fly used was the Alistair which seems to have a habit of catching firsts! Andy Sutherland added to the total on Friday in the Flat pool landing an 8lbs fish on a black & orange Sunray Shadow.

Tickets are available for £26 per rod per day for this cracking fly water at the Tackle Shop.

The upper river was mediocre by all accounts and no fish have been caught above the falls of Kildonan yet. With water temps hitting the mid 40s it must only be a matter of time before one is found above.

I would get your supplies of Sunray Shadows ordered ASAP as the water temps keep rising, This fly keeps on producing explosive action when all else fails. Remember to fish it pretty fast and square on the surface for best results.

A delighted Chris Cook with the first fish from the Helmsdale Association water