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Struggle for anglers at Loch Toftingall competition

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Winner Alex Donald (left) with Robbie Hawken, who had the best fish.
Winner Alex Donald (left) with Robbie Hawken, who had the best fish.

Dounreay Fly Fishing Association anglers struggled to locate trout in Loch Toftingall on Saturday as the water hadn't cleared after being stirred up by a strong wind earlier in the week.

However, as someone said, it was the same for all the eight members who preferred a trip to Toftingall (courtesy of Peter Hovig) instead of the televised cup final. The south-west wind was still fresh as signing on for the 9.30am start took place but the sun was shining, and the rain held off until an hour before lines up at 4pm.

Back in the welcome shelter of the loch-side boathouse, an average of only two fish per angler showed how hard it had been to find "keepers", but Alex Donald had managed to bag five (for 3 lb 2.25 oz) from his favourite area in the south-west corner of the loch. This was enough for him to retain the Bloody Foreigner trophy (donated by Mr Hovig) and take eight Bank League points.

Alex had used a Midge Tip line with Green Tailed Kate McLaren and Loch Ordie flies.

For the second-place six points, Robbie Hawken had fished most of the east bank to weigh in four trout (for 2 lb 9 oz) caught on another Midge Tip line with size 10 and 12 Olive Sedge Hog flies. He also collected the bonus point for the best fish, weighing 1 lb 1 oz.

Tony Chalmers had also fished the east side for the brace of three-quarter-pounders that secured third place and four points. He had success with Olive Sedge Hog and Peach Half Hog flies on his usual Wakesaver line.

The top six was completed by Toby Bracey for a pair of half-pound fish and three points, Neil Clyne (two points) and Aivis Kreslins (one point) for one trout each. Peter Creasey also put a fish on the scales.

After two rounds of the Bank League, Robbie Hawken leads with 18 points, only two ahead of Neil Clyne in second. Alex Donald is next on 14, then a gap to Kevin Imlach with nine, Leslie Robertson with eight and Peter Creasey in sixth with seven points.

The next event is an evening all-lochs boat competition this Friday.

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