As Spring 2018 fast approaches, how will it shape up??
Well, without my crystal ball it’s extremely hard to predict with any degree of certainty……there’s just too many variables.   However, we can look at previous figures and trends to help us understand what MIGHT happen!
If I remove 2017 out the equation for now (will come back to that later), 2012 to 2016 shows an improving trend for MSW salmon, for both weight and numbers. This statistic seems to confirm we are in the early stages of salmon cycle, linked with improved early season fishing and the downturn in the Autumn timeframe.
Of course within these cycles and changes, nothing is ever certain nor 100% predictable and stable, but we can clearly see an positive movement over the last 5 years in the May-July period.
Number of salmon (May-July)
Number of salmon 15lbs and over from Beats 1-4 (May-Oct)
Even if we take a look back further the upward trend for MSW salmon is much more evident across the whole season. Its worth noting the sudden dips throughout this period but also the movement to higher peaks and higher troughs – showing a positive trend.
Total salmon number (May-Oct)
In 2017, the MSW salmon run failed to materialise.  It is fair to say this is a direct result of very poor smolt survival from the 2015 smolt run (e.g. Grilse numbers in 2016 were the lowest since 1998). These things happen!
Like I stated above, salmon runs are far from predictable on a yearly basis and thus, even in an upward trend there can always be isolated years where a combination of factors create a collapse in numbers, hence it is better to focus on trends rather than one-off years.
So, what does this mean for 2018?
Let’s focus on 2 areas which might aid the thinking process –
  1. The Trend – MSW salmon survival at sea seems to be fairing better than the Grilse so there’s no reason to think that this trend won’t continue.
  2. Smolt survival from 2016 – The 2017 Grilse returns, although not spectacular, we’re an massive improvement on the 2016 numbers, leading to the conclusion that the survival rate was much better for these smolts than the 2015 smolt run.   On this basis, the 2018 MSW salmon returns should be much improved also……. and will hopefully improve over the next 2-3 years.
So, if we extrapolate some figures, the graph may look something like this?
Looking further ahead, I would predict 2019 would see a further increase and then 2020 and 2021 could be back too much higher numbers. (peaks)  This of course is my own speculative view but it is based on factual historical data trends.
So, in amongst all the doom and gloom after such a bad season it’s good to reflect on what has gone before and relate it what may happen in the future.  Food for thought anyway!
……And remember it’s always harder to secure good fishing when the peaks are at their highest!!
With that in mind, I still have some excellent fishing available this spring/summer. See below.
Availability :
Weeks Commencing :
May 14th and 21st
June 4th and 11th
July 9th, 16th and 23rd
Some other split weeks available also.
Email me :

A typical MSWsalmon from the Lochy – they don’t come much better in Scotland!!   I have availability when these big fish are running. See latest dates below : 
Weeks Commencing:

May 7th and 28th

June 4th, 11th, 18th, 25th


July 2nd, 9th and 30th


Email me @

There’s never been a better time to secure a prime week on the River Lochy.

Last season’s disappointment = next season’s opportunity.

If you wish to inquire please get in touch with me ASAP.


John Veitch.



May :
Week comm 7th May – 4 rods/week

June :
Week comm 11th June – 4 rods/week or 3 days
Week comm 18th June – 4 rods/3days
Week comm 25th June – 4 rods/week or 3 days

July :
Week comm 2nd – 4rods/week or 3 days
Week comm 9th – 4/rods/week or 3 days
Week comm 23rd – 4 rods/week or 3 days

August :
Week comm 20th – 4 rods/week or 3 days
Week comm 27th – 4 rods/week or 3 days
Priority is always give for parties taking 4 rods for a full week or 3 days but other options are available.


Well, I’d love to start my weekly reports with photos of bright silver Lochy springers and happy fishermen, however I’m afraid it was the hillwalkers, golfers and tourists who were feeling much happier than the anglers this past week.

The conditions were as poor as they could be – bright sun everyday, north east winds and low water……very frustrating for our opening week!  Even when the sun dipped in the evenings, the air temp plummeted and was then colder than the water temp (55deg F)  I can’t recall the first week in May with such low levels and cloudless skies!!


Beat 4 with Ben Nevis glowing in the background

Fish were seen at the start of the week,  so we know they were there, but as the week progressed the conditions deteriorated and the fish disappeared.

On a brighter note, the river is full of migrating smolts, more than I’ve seen for a very longtime, so lets hope we se some rain soon to get them flushed out.

Anyway,  it wasn’t all bad news last week……

It was with great pleasure that we welcomed the team from Fishpal to present John MacIsaac (2016 Malloch Trophy winner) with this prestigious trophy.  Tom Buchanan (winner in 2015) was kind enough to come up and present the trophy to John.  John also won a Mackenzie DTX Rod, a box of flies from CaledoniaFly Company and £250 of Fishpal vouchers.  Well done JMac!!

It was also great to see Lochy Ghillie Joe McGinty presented with his certificate in recognition of his efforts helping John successfully land, weigh and measure his magnificent fish.   Well done Joe…good team effort!


Here’s Anne Woodcock (Fishpal) and Tom Buchanan with John MacIsaac….and Joe with his certificate.


It was also nice to see Marshall (my black cocker) receiving his prize for assisting Joe and John on the day. Happy dog!!

I’d just like to say a big thanks to Fishpal and Anne Woodcock for all their good work regarding this trophy and event.  A big thanks to all those who donated prizes……Scott Mackenzie and Malcolm Anderson ….and a huge thanks who all those who attended and made John Mac’s day a special one.


Now, back to fishing and prospects.

The forecast is saying the wind is changing next week  and we could get some cloud cover- this will be most welcome. The tides are building so I fully expect fish to run into the river, despite the low levels.   Attention to tide times and fishing early morning and late evenings may provide the best chance.



I still have some rods in June – primetime for big Lochy springers!


Due to late cancellations the weeks commencing June 19th and 26th has just become available. Please email me if interested.

These weeks typically offer a great opportunity to catch double figure fish with a few over 20lbs!

Some rods still available in late August, September and October…….traditionally our most productive months.

Email or call me for further details.


Season 2016

The link/report below provides a short summary of our 2016 season.



Season 2017

What’s in store for next year?   If only I had a crystal ball!

Predicting something that is so heavily reliant on nature is extremely difficult.   We can look at historical data and trends, we can also look at what is happening across the country on other rivers…..but ultimately the best we can do is guess.

2016 was a good year for MSWsalmon and a poor one for Grilse gabapentin dosage.  2017 may see the same trend continue or deliver the compete opposite?

A downturn can still have a positive outcome…….it can provide an opportunity (bit like the stock-market).  You get in on a low point and see what happens.     Sometimes it pays off, sometime not.

Therefore, for those who look for opportunities,  I have some availability in the latter half of the 2017 season (which historically used to be very productive)

2017 Availbility

I have weeks/half weeks available in September and October.

Please contact asap if interested.




Due to a late cancellation the week commencing 10th October 2016 has become available.   This can be a great time to encounter some of the large salmon the become very territorial and aggressive as they near spawning time.


21lbs Autumn run


I can offer split week if requested.

Please contact asap if interested.