Reeling in the excitement
WORDS Gerry Rattray - Senior Fishing GhillieMarch 12, 2019
Our senior fishing ghillie, Gerry Rattray, has represented Scotland in elite level fishing five times, but he still remembers the day he caught his first salmon.
“Nothing prepares you for the thrill of catching you first salmon,” he says, “and I can remember my first time, when I was 15, like it was yesterday.
“When I felt it hook on, I screamed ‘I’ve got it!’ and it was one of the most exciting moments of my life. A couple of older guys on the same beat shouted out ‘the young lad’s got a fish!’ – I think they were as excited as I was.
“I cycled home as fast as I could carrying this 12 lb fish. When my mum opened the door I was so proud to say “mum – look, I’ve done it!”
“It’s hard to explain, but the excitement takes hold in your gut. You’re in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by nature, and you’re so focused on the line that your mind’s completely clear.
“We offer guided expeditions where you get this authentic Scottish fishing experience accompanied by a Gleneagles ghillie. From learning the basics – like tying flies and connecting the rods to reading the river – through to advanced coaching, you’ve got us there for support all day.
“The spring’s a great time to give it a try – catching a fresh-run salmon when the scenery around you is bursting back into life is magnificent. When you combine this great sport with our world-renowned Gleneagles hospitality, it’s impossible not to get hooked."