(Written for elsewhere but thought you might like to see it).
The opening of the salmon fishing season on the Helmsdale was attended by over 90 anglers today, all trying for the first spring salmon from the river. Sir Michael Wigan, William Jappy and the Sutherland Schools Pipe Band led anglers through the village to the river, where, after a selection of tunes from the pipe band, Sir Michael addressed the gathered anglers and William Jappy performed the ceremonial Opening Cast.
The Sutherland Schools Pipe Band
First Cast Sir Michael watches as William Jappy makes the opening cast of the new season.
The Clynlish Trophy, for the first spring fish from the river hadn't been claimed by the end of the first days fishing. At least 5 fish were landed on the first of four days of free fishing, but they were all kelts (fish that have bread and are returning to the sea). In addition to the trophy there is a bottle of 14 year old Clynlish single malt and a ?100 tackle voucher for the Helmsdale Tackle Company (if the first fish is returned to the river unharmed) The prizes are still up for grabs. Anyone wishing to try for this prize can obtain a free ticket from the Helmsdale Tackle Company for free fishing until Saturday.
One of the kelts caught and returned
The Clynlish Trophy,