Ashly's First Fish

Ashly's First Fish

Paul Arden | Monday, 11 May 2015

I've been offline almost for one whole week while fishing and camping with Ashly in the Scottish Highlands. Most of our fishing was in the Lochinver region, fishing the Assynt Angler's waters (thanks Al Greig for the location hint!). The scenery was truly awesome, and perhaps the best in the whole of Scotland. The weather was... erm... rather cold! We had snow, rain, hail, strong winds - and of course we were camping! A truly enjoyable trip with some good fishing (especially the final night when we had a good evening rise). And best of all, not only did Ashly catch her first fish, but she also managed fish from every lake we fished!

It's been 25 years since I've fished the Scottish Highlands. My last trip there was in an old Land Rover for one month just prior to studying at Aberdeen University. It was cold then too! Quite frankly looking at the weather reports I wasn't sure that Ashly would be able to handle the 30 degree drop in temperature - in fact I wasn't all that keen myself! But it turns out that Ashly is pretty hardcore and because of this fact and also wearing a minimum of five layers at all times, including neoprene chest waders, we managed to get some pretty good fishing.

We lived on trout, camped on some nice hill lochs, visited some more remote ones, had some glorious sunsets, and experienced a lot of different weather!

If you do visit this area I can thoroughly recommend visiting Peter Hendrich ( who manages the Assynt Angling Group, who in turn manage a vast area that includes 150 lochs which can be fished for 5 pounds per day, or 30 pounds per week, or indeed I believe I'm right in saying, 50 pounds for the year! Peter has a wealth of knowledge of fishing in the area and has some self catering accommodation if you don't fancy tenting.

Lochinver is right near the top of the Scottish Highlands and while we had some chilly weather, it came with the silver lining that we didn't have any midges. There was one tick we discovered making its way around our car, but no bites!

We also hit Rutland on the way down, and Ashly said to me that if I had introduced her to this fishing to begin with she may not have taken it up. Which I found interesting, and i can certainly see her point, because while the methods are interesting, it doesn't feel the same. Mind you by the same token, had I not taken her to a) the Jungle first and b) Scottish Highlands next, she may have found Rutland more interesting. I still had a good time but I think that's more because it brings back so many childhood and adolescent memories, more than the actual fishing.

A few things I learned from Scotland: my small Claret Suspender buzzer is a killer here too, next time I visit (which I will) i need to really kit myself out with better clothing, I need more mini muddlers in different colours (five mini-muddler Grenadiers won't cut it) and finally Neoprene is King!

Photos to be added shortly to 

Now it's time to catch up with work, emails and pack again... this time we're off to Hungary!

Cheers, Paul

For more info on the fishing here: and are the places to visit.