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New Bay area proves to be wise choice in Dounreay Fly Fishing Association boat competition

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Winner Alex Donald (left) and Billy Thomson, who had the best fish.
Winner Alex Donald (left) and Billy Thomson, who had the best fish.

The New Bay area of Loch Calder proved to be the best choice for Dounreay Fly Fishing Association members in their boat competition last Saturday. In a repeat of the 2021 event, some extra boats were required and, thanks to the help of some of the competitors, the 12 anglers were able to launch for a 9am start.

As they left the berths, a light north-west was giving a light ripple on the water and the sun was obscured by heavy cloud. The light wind varied slightly in direction during the day, the sun broke through occasionally and some rain fell during the afternoon.

However, by lines up at 4pm, the rain had stopped and the sun was shining for the weigh-in back at the berths.

Alex Donald and boat partner Billy Thomson decided to try the New Bay to start with and then spent the rest of the day there to take the top two places. As Alex placed his fish on the scales it was obviously a very good bag as the pointer wound round to read 11 lb 12.25 oz for the 17 trout.

This was enough to give him the Parry 66 Trophy and 12 Boat League points and came from a Midge Tip line with a Cahill fly accounting for most of his catch.

For his second-place, 11-trout basket weighing 10 lb 4 oz, Billy had used a Cortland Blue line with Sunburst Kate McLaren and Olive/Silver dabbler flies. His best fish, a nice one at 3 lb 0.5 oz, added the bonus to the 10 for his placing.

For third place (eight points) Ian Cannop had completed a tour of the loch, catching trout at the north end, the east side near the marker buoy and the New Bay. Most of his bag of 14 for 7 lb 14.5 oz fell to a Floating line and Mayfly imitation flies.

The top six was completed by Aivis Kreslins with seven points for 10 fish weighing 6 lb 6 oz, Toby Bracey (11 for 5 lb 5.5 oz and six points) and Neil Clyne (five points) for seven at 4 lbs 3.5 oz).

Also weighing in were John Campbell, Peter Creasey, Kevin Imlach, Bill Robertson, Callum MacKenzie and Les Robertson.

Toby Bracey still tops the Boat League on 47 points but his lead has been reduced by Billy Thomson, who is only three behind on 44.

Alex Donald is up to third on 41, James Simpson is next with 35 and boat partners Aivis Kreslins and Bill Robertson change places for the final places, with the former on 27 and the latter on 26.

The club's next event is the Loch Watten, Early Bird competition on Saturday, July 16.

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