Angling Reports/News

Boat League Night 3 – still on the top

The 3rd Night of the boat league looked like a good night for the dries and that was again the method. Top rod on the night was Brian MacKenzie with 10 fish on dries. He started at the gap but after a while moved to the Malling shore as there were too many boats. Keir and Harry were in 2nd place. Harry on Dries, Keir on a Di3 with lures then dries. Harry Green gets the heat prize of the FARIO FLYS and Craig Ingles gets the Menteith 1/2 boat voucher. We still have the charity money for last year FYI – plan to add it to this years….

Chilly for July

Cold nights and cooler days has kept the fish high in the water and dry fly remains the best tactic – accounting for some high number catches (Gus and Andy with 40+ on dries….). Best areas have been in the shelter..Butts, Malling Shore, Tod Hole, Arnmach…. Traditionally this is our quiet week as everyone buzzes off abroad but with the current situations we weren’t sure what to expect. We are still relatively quiet. We have got new Fario Fly stock in and we are open for fly sales again!! Mr.Fario is supplying the boat league Heat Prizes (as pictured below).

A few stories from the anglers to set the scene.

My son David Cruikshank (Scottish Youth Team Captain) and I were out on Sat on the Lake. We landed 25 to the boat. I was given a good thumping as I lost 18-7! All fish came to dries. We had 4 to the boat in first 20 mins in the middle of the East Basin. Then went off. Tried Rookery and cages and landed 1. Then headed to The Butts where the rest were landed. Not many coming up blind. You mainly had to cast to a rising fish and they were out in the more open water. Rises were quite small as fish seemed to be “supping” in the surface gently.

George Murdoch made a wee video on first visit. Thanks for sharing George!

Stuart Malcolmson was out recently instructing on methods for collecting CDC

Thanks for these two photos Dan….fine looking troots.

Menteith Boat League 02.07.20

Boat League

On the second evening of the 2020 Menteith boat league sponsored by Fario Flies 20 anglers caught 129 fish, which works at an average of 6.5 fish per angler. The winner was Brian Mackenzie with 19 fish with his first fish being caught at 6:01 (the boats went out at 5:55pm), Second place was Keir Hardie with 15 fish his first was caught at 6:17, in 3rd place was Bill Ramage with 13 fish his first was caught at 6:15. The fish were caught on a variety of different methods throughout the night with dries being the top performer, especially in between inchmahome and Inchtalla. Other successful methods were boobies and emergers in the Cages and Butts down to Lochend.

Fish back up on Dries 30/6/20

The water temperature at the Lake of Menteith has fallen quickly (15C at 6ft and Clarity 2.3m on the Secchi disk) and surface fishing is now easily producing the best bags. Apart from the popular Grunter (see pic) which was working at the Malling shore for one boat which had a catch in the mid 20s, the Paraloop spinner and the grey wolf were working for another boat with a similar catch but who were fishing around Arnmach point and the Islands.

Blue with Hue 23rd June

Lake of Menteith 23rd June 2020

Water Temperature at 6ft 17.5C;  Secchi disk Clarity 2.2m

Latterly in the week the Lake warmed up to 20C and the memorable rises in many parts of the lake became confined to a few areas of the Butts, Arnmach Point and Tod Hole. It became a choice of Sink8 lines in the North Inchmahome Deeps/Gateside Bay/Rookery or stick to dries in the afore mentioned areas. Best bags were on dries probably for those that located the surface feeders but the bigger stamp of fish were definitely down deep in the deeps. We put in a stocking yesterday so there are plenty of fish about and todays reports are that they are continuing to rise up in the water column and some very good bags starting to come in.

MENTEITH BOAT LEAGUE CASTS OFF TOMORROW 24th June 6pm start. If you are interested let us know you are planning to take part (before arrival). Boat partners randomly allocated on the night. £20 registration fee (100% for prizes) plus we have sponsorship from the FARIO FLY Company. The winner of each heat receives a box of 20 flies valued at £30 and the winner of the league receives a Big Box of Fario Flies. The league will run every Wednesday for 8 weeks (23rd June and ending on 12th August) finishing at 11pm but reducing to 10pm as the nights draw in. The final placings are made according to the participants top 5 nights out of a possible 8. There will be no nightly award gathering under current restrictions – the winner being announced online and collecting his flies the next time. The rules are Menteith rules..i.e. it’s a friendly with no fly size restriction and all hooks must be debarbed. Entrants need to PAYONLINE but boat booking isn’t required. Catch and release Boat costs are £17.50 per night for the 6 long evenings and £15 per night for the two shorter shifts….and £20 registration. For example…If you plan to attend all 8 evenings the total cost (inc registration) is £155. Monies can always be refunded or transferred to other Lake fishing if the fishing is not used.

Thanks to Mayfly Matey for the pictures of the blue with the hue and the tail fin. Him and his boat partner had 24 on dries. Matey also reported seeing the biggest pike he has ever seen – and estimatd it to be a 40 pounder. Its swirl literally rocked his boat. Dan Brown with a bow and Gus Kennedy with a 4lb 8oz brown. QG

16th June 2020

Water Temperature at 6ft 18C; Secchi disk Clarity 2.2m

Things at the Lake are starting to settle down with anglers going out two to a boat during our day and evening sessions. Catches have been superb on the dry fly with mayfly patterns but the fish are now going a little deeper and are a little cannier than when we first opened. A buzzer suspended 10ft down is a good option. In the warm weather in the calm water there has been phenomenal fish activity especially late at night as we approach mid-summer. We plan to build a new booking and paying system in the background which is more customer friendly and to continue with this system for the rest of the season. In the mean time please book and pay online prior to arrival. If you have any problems please phone.

We plan to kick off a socially distant boat league from Wednesday 26th June at 6pm. New members welcome. £20 entry fee. Prizes dependent on the number of entries. There will be no results given at the end of the night. Please contact the fishery to register or reregister an interest.

Some nice specimens this week – and happy liberated anglers. Greg Picken with a 9lb 9oz brownie taken on a dry fly yesterday – the 2nd biggest caught on the Lake that we can remember Below – Lindsay O’Hara about to return a wise cracking blue. Barry Tyndell playing a trout this morning.

Re-Opening Week News

Lake of Menteith 5th June 2020

Water Temperature at 6ft 16C;  Secchi disk Clarity 2.2m

It is great to have the anglers back at the Lake. In the initial first few days – their thrill of being allowed out was profound. Also, a tremendous relief to have most staff back at work, as well as the anglers. Sometimes a problem shared is a problem halved /thirded /quartered…. Please refer to the bottom of this post where our covid 19 arrangements are detailed. Social distancing is going well at the Lake.

We had tremendous dry fly fishing over the first week with record boat catches, the water quickly warmed to 18+ C and the best catches recently were deeper with buzzers or faster sinking lines. Best areas are variable but International Bay, Stable Point and Gateside have been outstanding. The water temperature is dropping fast (bunnet required) and the fish will be on top again. Sea eagles have been visiting and ospreys eggs have hatched – bring the binos.

Some pictures from yesterday. Derek Hesset with a fine Lake Brown. Duncan Glen still looking for that elusive 20 lb pike on the fly (and Paw needs longer pliers). Kevin McCabe with a Gateside Bow. Hand Sanitiser and Mayfly (please use both)and link to Gordon Buchanans Springwatch clip of the eagle and deer.

The authorities are happy with the arrangements that we have in place regarding COVID 19 and advisory before visiting the fishery is that anglers should be aware of the current Scottish Government Guidelines. We welcome all anglers and assist with social distancing measures and hygiene issues if required once they arrive. Please bring hand gel and use frequently. Other measures are: Our permit office/tackle shop is closed so all payments must be done online at the Voucher and Credit Page before issuing the boat number (we have 4G in the car park). You can purchase as much credit as you like – we will remove and email you with the balance. Please bring your #4 four digit invoice order number as opposed to the voucher code – as we are phasing this out (that code is too long). Two anglers in a boat is fine – thwarts are 2.6m apart. Our start times are now wider. Monday to Saturday 8.30am to 10am and Sunday 11am to 12 noon, and the duration of the shifts remains the same. Building is out of bounds except for accessing cleaned lifejackets and the toilets which are open. Re car parking. If you want to park apart can you leave enough space for a later arrival to park between you and another car because we are expecting more cars due to reduced car sharing. Best to park closely to an unattended car. In the event of the car park being full (not happened yet) please drop off your gear and then park in the Lake Hotel Car Park. We ask you not to load your gear in the boats before 8.30 or (11 am on Sunday) as your boat may need to be cleaned/pushed in/fuelled/ de-litttered etc. Please feel free to phone or email the fishery for further advice. STAY SAFE and read our RISK ASSESSMENT online.

Be Aware 19th May

Will be in touch soon re plans for opening hopefully sometime between the 30th May and 1st June but – we need to hear a little more from the government.

In the mean time do not open any links in emails from Elma’s AOL account which is no longer used by the fishery. I suspect Malware and have asked her son to look into it initially as I shouldnt visit.

Coincidentally I have playing about with the data base with the intention of deleting past records. Unfortunately I forgot to turn off automatic emailing of customers so I think I have sent out about 40 emails saying your fishing was cancelled last year. Please ignore them!! Sorry my error – no virus involved. Quint

April 27th Deepest Lockdown

Water Temp at 6ft 11C (need to check that thermometer) and Secchi disk 2.2m

If you listen carefully (turn up the volume) you can hear the wood pecker just after the pheasant or maybe I just imagined that at the time LOL.

Why do the Dutch wear clogs?
To keep the woodpeckers off their heads.

Hopefully there are some hints of unlocking in the not too distant future.

17th April Update

Lake of Menteith 17th April 2020


Water Temperature at 6ft 7C; Secchi disk Clarity 1.9m

Just a wee report to say hello to you all and pass on all our best wishes during these difficult times. We are relatively lucky here in the Port – it is rare to meet anyone unless they are visiting anglers. My thoughts are especially with those deemed at high risk and those in the towns and cities in built up areas. It is providing quality access to the outdoors for these groups that is usually one of the most rewarding parts of the job.
I have refrained from posting till now – as I didn’t want to rub salt in the wounds. It now seems right to be in touch.

It was our shortest season on record. We opened on Saturday 21st March and closed the next day on Sunday the 22nd March just prior to total lockdown announced on the 23rd March. Needless to say, there were some fine specimens/meals in the catches (below).

All the staff, Douglas Connor and Elma are currently on furlough – apart from myself, albeit on reduced hours – or that is the plan . I have been kept very busy, as there has been, and still is, much to be done. First off was reducing the stocking density in the ponds and this involved the netting of around 24000 fish. 8000 went straight into the Lake at Gateside, and the rest were redistributed to the pens and the cleared ponds to allow us to reduce density which reduces aggression (fin nipping) and also allows us to reduce feeding and growth – so we will have some available to stock for later on (some perhaps even for next year), when we get the all clear to reopen.
The ospreys are back, the woodpeckers are drumming and the willow is about to bloom. It has been driest and sunniest four weeks and I can remember. Burns are a trickle and loch level is low. Our stocking rate is more than double normal and with no anglers it is not surprising that when conditions are good the number of fish on the surface and the buzzers – are a sight for sore eyes (this rising picture from Thursday 16th March). The cormorants left us early this spring and this was partly due to our intensive scaring tactics that we employed over the winter. Last week I counted 4 birds on one occasion, 12 birds a few days later.

I went up the Craig o’ Port on Monday and thought this might be a fitting glimpse of the Lake to share. This most perfect specimen of a Rowan tree is clearly seen from the Lake – on the skyline behind Douglas’s house.
I have a few more fish to move and I have to clear out all the cancelled competitions (National Championship, Scottish club Championships, Disabled National and International, Ladies International, Anglian Water and many more……) from the online diary, to allow the spaces to be filled by the optimistic. Please get in touch if you want to try to re-arrange for later in the year or look in the booking diary from Wednesday of next week.
As to the future, I was speaking on the phone to the Chairman Alan Simpson this morning and we discussed how this might be a good time to review our whole operation to see how we can come out of this crisis equipped to go forward as a top class venue that is able to withstand the challenges of the future.

Unusual to be using the I word.
Regards and keep safe and well.