The River Spey


This splendid Salmon river runs through Elginshire, and a nobler one

there is not to be found for fishing with the salmon fly, particularly

in high water, and in the large pools when the water is low. In summer

there is little sport to be had, except in these pools, with a good

ripple, and towards the sea, from the bridge at Fochabers, a capital

station, with an excellent inn. Early in the morning and late in the

eveni
g, are the best times in the heat of summer. I had a fly sent me

some years past, by McPherson Grant, about the size of C or drake size,

with which he killed a salmon, twenty pounds weight, in the Spey. The

body of the fly was made of yellow silk, red cock's hackle, toucan tail

ribbed with gold, jay at the shoulder, a neat gaudily mixed wing,

feelers of blue and yellow macaw, and a small black head. It was one of

my flies, which, if made on large size hooks, will kill anywhere. The

above little fly is just the sort for low water, and should be adopted,

made very small, in the summer months. The salmon should be thrown for

with this sort of fly, in rapid currents rushing into deep holes, where

the fish lie. The winged larva would do well in such places for grilse

and sea-trout. In the spring, flies the size of No. 12, are used, with

long thin silk bodies of orange, yellow, red, and green colours, red

hackles, jay and mixed wings, with red feathers prevailing in them, and

black heads, ribbed with gold and silver tinsel. The fifteen painted

Salmon Flies will be found great killers in this river, varied in size

according to the state of the water.



There is a river which runs past the town of Banff, the Keith, in which

there is good angling a few miles up from the broad part of the water.

Guinea hen and jay hackles kill here, with grouse and brown body,

mallard wings mixed with turkey tail, and small size hooks, say CC or

B.



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