12 Feb 2012 – Rays galore at Loch Leven

Weather:Calm, or light WNW wind. Dry and cloudy. Cold
Sea:Calm
Time:0845-1715 – 8.5 hours
Tides:HW0920/LW1530

Given two less than fantastic trips to Loch Etive this year I thought I’d revisit a loch that I’ve not fished for several years – Loch Leven. I snuck the boat in at the old ferry slip under the bridge – a bit steep and a fair run of tide past it, but pretty straightforward. A short spinning session under the bridge produced nothing at all, so I headed up towards the fish farm on the north shore and anchored fairly close to the cages, in around 90 feet of water.

The first couple of hours had me wondering whether I’d have been better off at Etive – only 2 thornbacks and a solitary dogfish put in an appearance. However things started to improve and more thornbacks were being boated regularly – mainly Etive sized 2-4lbs fish, but with a sprinking of larger beasts. The best was a really thick but tail-less ray that made 9lbs, with another of just under 8lbs. By 2 p.m. the total stood at 32 rays and 7 dogfish and I decided on a shift to see whether we could get any different species.

A move well up the loch saw me stop off for a bucket full of mussels – both for bait and dinner – and anchor close in to the south shore and try for a conger at the base of the rocks. Things were quiet, but another 4 rays turned up to make a final score of 36 ray and 7 dogfish.

Overall a good trip and better than I expected, as Leven has never been particularly kind to me in the past. Glad I made the effort!

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