Dour Lochs

Cap'n Fishy

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I wonder if water depth is also a factor.

Well, I would reckon that the very deep lochs have a tendency to be the more oligotrophic ones. And the more oligotrophic lochs tend to be the ones that do not support a big head of large fish. And the lochs without a big head of large fish are more likely to be labelled 'dour'. So, yes, water depth probably is a factor. But not all deep lochs are like that. Loch Lochy, just as a 'for example'... average depth 230 feet, max depth 531 feet - but it is great fishing when they are on the pop...











And some giants in there, too...



😜
 

codyarrow

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I wonder if water depth is also a factor.

Not in my perception. Lochs that are less than 6 feet deep can be dour. Big expanses of water can be daunting but I always feel if I cover fish there is a chance they will take. A dour loch is one where the fish may be in abundance but will not co operate until the switch is flicked. Sometimes this is just down to timing; one loch close to me fishes best between 10 and 11pm in May. Others that fish it believe it to be impossible; I've caught more 2lb fish from that loch than all the others combined. The transformation from lifeless to a pure boil can be spectacular.
 

bignedkelly

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I'd say what makes a 'dour water' is a place that hold no appeal.
For me the thing that puts me off a water most would probably be a lack of features.
I have never been in the know when it comes to Leven and have fished there many times without seeing a fish but theres always somewhere to try that you have heard of fish being caught or somewhere that just looks fishy.
 

Cap'n Fishy

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From Dictionary.com...
dour
[ door, douuhr, dou-er ]

adjective
sullen; gloomy: The captain's dour look depressed us all.
severe; stern: His dour criticism made us regret having undertaken the job.
Scot. (of land) barren; rocky, infertile, or otherwise difficult or impossible to cultivate.

I guess the Scottish definition can be applied to water as well as land...
 

aenoon

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From Dictionary.com...
dour
[ door, douuhr, dou-er ]

adjective
sullen; gloomy: The captain's dour look depressed us all.
severe; stern: His dour criticism made us regret having undertaken the job.
Scot. (of land) barren; rocky, infertile, or otherwise difficult or impossible to cultivate.

I guess the Scottish definition can be applied to water as well as land...
Much prefer the adjective description Cap'n;););)
Regards
Bert
 

Liathach

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It is odd though. Some waters are just always dour and not all are waters with low fish numbers.
 

Scotty Mitchell

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There has to be optimum activity times where everything aligns in favour, and then very sub optimal times. Maybe what we perceive to be optimal, up on the bank or boat, and we anticipate good sport, is sub optimal to the fish for whatever reason.
Would explain the on/off scenario, maybe not so much the apparently continuously dour waters...... Would be great to get a week or so worth of good underwater footage of some of these places.
 

Liathach

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The Cross Lochs at Forsinaird are classic. Big fish, dour as death. There it may be super-rich feeding just means the fish can be choosy.
 

Cap'n Fishy

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It is odd though. Some waters are just always dour and not all are waters with low fish numbers.

I would reckon if a water is known to have a good head of fish and is also one that few people ever catch much on, it points towards the fish behaving in a way that doesn't make them naturally prone to making the mistake of taking our offerings. For example, if they tend to feed mostly on stuff on the bottom/weeds - cased caddis, bloodworm, hoglice, snails, etc, then they won't be roaming around looking for Kate McLarens. Also, if they are pelagic types, feeding on Daphnia and copepods and other zooplankton, they are not going to be much interested in Clan Chiefs and Invictas...
 

Cap'n Fishy

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The Cross Lochs at Forsinaird are classic. Big fish, dour as death. There it may be super-rich feeding just means the fish can be choosy.

The big fish is a clue... the bigger the fish, the fewer there are. It's about 40 years since I fished them - and they were just as dour back then! Is it not a case of them having little in the way of natural spawning? The ones on the other side of the road were much livelier - Sletill, and Leir.
 

Liathach

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Is it not a case of them having little in the way of natural spawning?
Very likely. I also remember when Sletil fish were about a pound average. Leir they were always small. Like you it's years since I've fished there so who knows what they are like now. Not a lot of fishing pressure I expect.
 

easker1

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the lochs with us can be variable, I went up to a high lochan with a pal after 2 hours we gave up , the following year I went up as I was passing to go else where and had a great after noon nothing huge but some hard fighting fish to 1/2lb this little lochan was missed off the Metric sheet 19,its about as big as a tennis court, with a small island rock in the middle ,Arthur Ransomes Book " Rod And Line" states that he reckons the tides affect lochs as well as the sea, so it may be worth paying attention to that," I don't play tennis so my estimate may be way out"easker1
 

Naefearjustbeer

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The Cross Lochs at Forsinaird are classic. Big fish, dour as death. There it may be super-rich feeding just means the fish can be choosy.
Had some cracking trout from the cross lochs last season, never made it up this season. One of the lochs has very acidic water and poor feeding but still held big trout.


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Liathach

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What's the situation with the Forsinard Hotel? I'm sure someone told me it had closed a few years back, but I have not been up that way for years so don't really know what's going on there fishing or otherwise.
 

gg76

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Very likely. I also remember when Sletil fish were about a pound average. Leir they were always small. Like you it's years since I've fished there so who knows what they are like now. Not a lot of fishing pressure I expect.

Fished Slethill in August most fish around a 1lb good sport though in blazing sun. The cross lochs were a mixed bag. Good sport on Mac until the sun came out.
 

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