May 2016 was a glorious month and it was gladly welcomed by many throughout the country as we saw a return to some dry settled weather which it must be said after an extremely wet winter was badly needed. We had the driest May here since 2010, when we had only 55mms (2.16”), which was an exceptional period of weather when we had three months of extremely dry weather when even the rock in the middle of the Grilse pool was out of the water, which I had not seen before or since.
This year we had 94.5mms (3.72”), with the early part of the month still cool, grass min falling below 0 on a number of occasions. The latter half of the month was milder and sometimes warm with highs of 22.4 degrees C. This made fishing challenging to say the least, but we still managed to land twenty eight fish for the month, which wasn’t bad considering the conditions.
Week 18 started the month and we had an experienced group of German and Swiss anglers. Conditions during this week were probably the best for the month and we had some nice fish landed. There was nice water on the 2nd and Urs was first off the mark with a cracking fish of 12lbs7ozs from the Horseshoe. Werner, Peter Schiessl, Nico Mittmann and Markus Merz also had fish. Finlough produced two fish on the 5th, Yvonne and Peter Schiessl having one each. Urs had two more for his week one of approx. 10lbs and another of approx. 13lbs. Most successful patterns for the week were Collie Dog’s, Delphi Collie’s and Willie Gunn’s. The party also managed to land three fish on the Erriff.
Week 19 saw a mixture of nationalities fishing and the water was well down by the beginning of the week. We also experienced some beautiful sunny weather and first fish of the week was taken by Hugh Brennan off Doolough on the 11th of approx. 7lbs. Persistence is probably the most important element of spring salmon fishing and it paid off for Leo and Jakob who had fish on their last afternoon on the river. Leo’s were both caught on a size 12 Stoats Tail, weighing in at 5lbs15ozs and approx. 14.5lbs. Jakob’s fish was 11lbs3ozs and taken on a Flamethrower.
Week 20 saw a serious group of regulars return who it must be said enjoy the social aspect as much as the fishing. Water levels were down to about 5. Christopher Jarman struck first with a nice fish of 9lbs4ozs, closely followed by Peter Milne who had one of approx. 7lbs on the Monday morning. Christopher had another of approx. 7lbs from the Grilse pool on Thursday morning. Leigh Hookes landed a lovely fish of 11lbs off the neighbouring Erriff. The first decent rain we had in a couple of weeks fell on the Friday and Ciaran Boland managed to land a nice fish from the Turn Pool of 10lbs1oz. Saturday saw lovely conditions and we duly landed three fish. Steve Smith and Iwona Grochowska had one each off the river of 10lbs15ozs and 9lbs8ozs and Mark Corps had one off Fin of 8lbs6ozs.
Week 21 saw seven landed. Conditions were good to start and then the sun came out again and the water tapered off. The fish were taken on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Thursady and Saturday. Three were off Finlough and four off the river. Fish were taken by Simon Albertini, Nick Foden Patterson, Bertrand Verhasselt, Arthur Jardine, Paul Wymes and Jussi Stromberg who is normally out fished here at Delphi by his fishing partner Mikko.
The last couple of days of the month saw water levels drop off to 5 and still going down. So far this week Paul Wymes was only one to catch with a nice sea liced fish of 9lbs4ozs from the Whin Pool on a Frances. For the moment the weather looks settled for the next few days so fishing is extremely challenging to say the least, but there is always the beautiful scenery to sit back and admire. D.McEvoy