Another season comes to an end and while it was disappointing to miss out on the summer rains there are always positives to be taken from this season. We ended with a total of 788 salmon and grilse which is up on the previous two seasons. The grilse run seemed to be stronger than in 2021 and this showed in the catches once we had steady water levels during September. High water during April pushed many springers up into the sanctuary of Loch More and the consensus was of a good stock of salmon destined for the tributaries above in November.
The final three days of the season produced 69. Mike leach and his team had over 20 between them with father and son team Peter and Pete Duncan catching their fair share, David Elder caught his first ever salmon from beat 8 on the final day, John and Jan Drummond had ten during the final two days with Jan catching two in the mid-teens on consecutive casts. Andrew Rettie took half a dozen, the best a twenty-pounder from beat 9. Andrew's daughter Kate had one from beat 11, Giles Wilson had five for two days fishing, and James Burke picked up a few on his first trip to the Thurso.
Two of our Irish team from the previous week, Bobby Bryans and Paul Smith stayed on for the final three days and had ten between them with Bobby catching the largest fish for the season on Tuesday from the Braal pool on beat 4 tipping the scales at 25 pounds, congratulations Bobby. Jonathan Stevens, Peter Grubb and Tom Smith all caught a few.
The final leg of the salmon's journey will start in the next few weeks when they take to the spawning grounds and for many the end of an amazing journey.
I would like to thank everyone who has visited the Thurso this year and look forward to seeing you all again next year along with some new faces. A huge thank you to Jess and the staff of the Ulbster Arms Hotel for all their hard work throughout the season.
And finally, a word about our ghillies, through both the tough times and the good times every ghillie has done an outstanding job whatever has come their way this season and are a credit to the river Thurso. You all deserve a well earned rest.
Stay tuned for updates throughout the winter months.