Nigel Duncan on fishing: High hopes for Drumtassie with coarse ponds set to open in March

Lake Superior at Drumtassie, from the main parking lot. Photo: Nigel Duncan

The busy fishery is located in Blackridge Heights, above Harthill, on the busy M8 motorway between the Scottish capital and Glasgow.

He is now four years old and has a growing reputation within the angling community.

However, popular fishing is about to enter a new era with a tantalizing prospect for anglers, as the long-awaited coarse ponds are set to open in March.

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Drumtassie, looking towards the parking lot. Photo: Nigel Duncan

Bosses are expected to release the pricing structure at the end of this month and have confirmed the manager will be Chanelle Maver, daughter of Drumtassie manager Leeanne Aitchison.

Coarse lakes are about half a mile from the trout facility – and large numbers of anglers, including specimen carp hunters, are likely to fill the parking lot judging by the calls seeking information .

Leeanne said their intention was to make Drumtassie “the best coarse fishing spot in Scotland”.

The skippers have certainly made the trout rig a success and so the excitement is high that they can do the same for the coarse ponds.

Drumtassie, the Upper Lake which overlooks the facility. Photo: Nigel Duncan

Meanwhile, Drumtassie trout ponds continue to produce.

Recent catches have included a 22 pound, another 17 pound and lots of double digit fish.

Weekly storage is a feature.

Buzzers, cat’s mustache patterns, yellow dancer, diawl bach, FAB flys, mini lures including black and green, and buff patterns have consistently delivered over the winter and, if there is a small waviness in the surface of water, a sedge pig can be deadly, according to Leeanne.

Drumtassie’s fish are reared on quality pellets and the lakes are fed by a nearby stream, continuing to oxygenate the water which caters to anglers of many skill levels.

Beginners, for example, don’t have to cast far to locate fish.

The car park is a short walk from Kingfisher and Mallard ponds and access is flat making Drumtassie ideal for wheelchair users.

Indeed, wheelchair user Kenneth Harper fishes in the water several times a week – and he was all smiles recently with a 10.5-pound trout safely landed, after being tempted by a Millennium Bug.

Drumtassie welcomes customers from across central and western Scotland, as well as Fife and Lothians, and patrons say their growing attendance includes large numbers of regulars and an encouraging number of newcomers.

Others are likely to head for the coarse ponds when they open.

Meanwhile, James Woodrow produced a near-flawless performance to win the Del’s Fresh Produce Silverfish Series at Magiscroft near Cumbernauld with a perfect score of four, dropping the shock section he suffered in the third round.

David McAuley pushed it all the way to finish with five points and third was Gus Brindle with six points, narrowly edging out Chris Paton, who scored seven points.

Now on to sea fishing, and Mike and Chris’ heaviest winter cod league is in its final stages with round four today, Saturday January 22, and the final round on Saturday February 5.

Registration today is at the Victoria Park car park in Arbroath between 2:30 and 3 p.m. and all leave at 3 p.m. Fishing is from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Organizer Chris Horn asked anglers to bring the correct money, £15.

Matches are in the dark to give everyone the best chance of catching a few fish and he pointed out that anglers can fish each match individually without entering the league.

It’s £10 to get into the league and there’s £200 in the pot and the heaviest cod landed so far has been 6lb 14oz.

Contact Chris on 07872 944807 and the weigh-in is back at Victoria Park. The scales close one hour after the end of the match.

Scottish Federation of Sea Anglers rules apply, including minimum landing size limits, a five meter rule, rod and three hook maximum.

The league is still led by Billy Buckley of Glasgow with a 6lb 14oz cod.

Second is Tony Cook, from the North East of England, at 5lb 13oz.

Mike Horn, organizer, said: “Everything to play in the last innings.

Last week’s game was fished by 23 anglers in calm conditions which was not ideal.

Stuart Cresswell of Ayr with a 12lb 13oz bag and the heaviest fish at 4lb 8oz was top of the list and second was Sanny Wason, also Ayr at 12lb 12oz.

Third was Chris Horn of Kirkcaldy at 11lbs 11oz.

As a reminder that the Amble Open is tomorrow, Sunday January 23, with fishing from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. A number of Lothian anglers are to compete in the field which is expected to reach the top 400 anglers.

Registration is at Radcliffe Club – sat-nav NE65 0RA – from 8am and admission is £12 for all classes. There is a prize fund of £6,000.

In East Lothian, Chris Empson (Dunbar) won Round 10 of the Bass Rock Shore Angling League Winter League, with Jamie McHale taking the biggest bag.

Barry McEwan (Port Seton) finished third with Steve Biskup (North Berwick) fourth in windy conditions, gusting over 30mph.

The next round will take place on Wednesday.

See the club’s Facebook page – – for venue confirmation.


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