River Ythan Fishings
The Estate includes three contiguous beats on the spectacular River Ythan, all of which are within the middle or upper section of the river.
The catch average over a 21 year period is 77 salmon and 114 sea trout per year. The 10 year average (to 2010) is 99 salmon and 119 sea trout. Since 1998, catch and release has been practiced along with a restriction on the number of fish that anglers can keep. In 2010, 56% of salmon and 89% of sea trout and finnock were returned to the river.
The topmost beat is known as ‘Gight’ and comprises single and double bank fishing below Gight Castle. The fishing is let by the season to The Ythanbank Angling Club, which is also responsible for bank maintenance and overseeing all angling activity. Although there are approx. 6200m of bank, the opportunities for catching fish are less than on the other beats as Gight only tends to be successful during high water conditions.
Next is the middle, longest beat known as ‘The Public’ or ‘The Methlick’ water, and consists of the single, southern bank between Waterloo Bridge and the Tangland Bridge. The fishings are let under a lease to The Haddo House Angling Club which is responsible for bank maintenance and all angling activity. The beat extends to approx. 6400m of bank and there are some very productive pools which can yield good returns of both sea trout and salmon.
The lowest beat is known as the ‘Private’ or ‘Tarves’ water. This was originally reserved for guests of Haddo House, but was little used and so has been let on a seasonal basis to up to fifteen anglers for the season since 2001. Bank maintenance is carried out by The Estate, which also imposes rules on the season ticket holders. The beat extends to approx. 3900m of bank, including some excellent pools that provide the opportunity to catch good numbers of salmon and sea trout. The Estate does not employ any ghillies to assist anglers. Most ticket holders have held tickets for a number of years and know the river well. New Ticket holders are shown the water by the Water Bailiff (Ythan District Fishery Board), who lives in a property overlooking the beat. New ticket holders are introduced to existing ticket holders so that they can gain from their experience.
The river is not wide at any section and wading is not necessary. Any power lines crossing the river are properly signed by Scottish Hydro Electric so as to ensure that anglers do not cast beneath them, and anglers are reminded to wear buoyancy aids.