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Loch Drunkie

Loch Drunkie (often mistaken for the protected SSSI Loch Reoidhte with no fishing) is an exceptionally pretty little wild trout loch in the ‘Three Lochs Forest Drive’ in the Trossachs within the Loch Lomond National Park. At 127m above sea level and a circumference of nearly 4 miles lined with thick woodland, it is a rare day to see more than a breeze on it. Mirror reflections, the ripples of wild brown trout sipping flies, and the backdrop of Queen Elizabeth Forest Park. What a spot!

“ It’s a beautiful hill loch, and anglers should treat it just like one to be rewarded with some of it’s 1-1.5lb stunning speckled wild brown trout. It has no pike in it, a few perch, but it’s a trout fishery only.”

Loch Drunkie Bailiff

“Wading the margins on the south bank with a muddler or a big surface fly in a breeze is so exciting in the Summer months. There’s actually some really good brownies in here. Perch too!”

Local angler

Permit Outlets
  • Forest & Land Scotland Office Aberfoyle
  • James Bayne Fishing Tackle, Callander
  • Aberfoyle Post Office

Location

10 minutes drive from Aberfoyle, or a 20 minute drive from Callander, the loch is located directly south of Brig o’Turk in the Menteith Hills of the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park. Accessed via the ‘Three Lochs Forest Drive’ off the A821 ‘Duke’s Pass’ by vehicle on a well maintained one-way loop track (small toll fee) that any car will cope with. The road is closed for winter after the 31st of October and a reopening date will be determined throughout each winter.

Boundaries

Fishing is permitted on the road-side only. From where the road meets the top of the loch on the one way system round the west side of the loch to opposite the last (and most northerly) carpark on Loch Drunkie. The far bank is Invertrossachs and Moray Estate and no fishing.

The Fishing

Catch and release only – Wild brown trout seem to do very well in this loch, and you should not be surprised with a few 1lb brownies for an outing. It’s thought though, there could be some really good sized brown trout in it too due to it being very deep inplaces. All legal methods are permitted between 15th March and 6th October, and the most productive fishing tends to be on a clothesline of traditional weighted nymphs and Kate Mclarens etc. of up to 3 flies, or if you are on the dries sedge, Mayfly, and daddies in July can be great fun for fly anglers, and for those spinning with small Tasmanian Devils, Tormentors and Mepps etc. you should have a good outing most of the season. Bait fishing under a float can be productive too, just make sure whatever discipline you use is natural for best results. The trout are spread out the length of the loch and no location seems better than any other, however, to get out of the way of tourists, the upper end ie. the last carpark before you come away from the loch on the one-way loop track is preferred by most anglers.

Kayak/canoe, inflatable dinghy, and float tubing is popular on the loch and as long as you set off from the permitted bank, you can fish anywhere in the loch from your craft. Absolutely no engines/motors whatsoever on the loch.

Everyone that fishes the loch has demonstrated a sense of pride for the loch and making sure each fellow angler has a permit is important to the regulars. The bailiff regularly visits also. Permit outlets are listed below.

Facilities

One of the best serviced fishing locations in the Forth catchment area. There are:

  • Toilets,
  • Easy car access,
  • Tent camping sites galore (booking only http://www.lochlomond-trossachs.org/things-to-do/camping/get-a-permit/),
  • Fresh running water in the cabin
  • A small fire is permitted as long as you bring your own fuel.
  • Shops in Aberfoyle and Callander locally.

Top Tips

  • Don’t mistake the first little loch you come to in the Three Lochs Forest Drive for Loch Drunkie. This loch is called Reoidhte, and is SSSI protected and absolutely no fishing is permitted there.
  • Flies to use on Drunkie are weighted Hares Ear, Pheasant Tail, Kate Maclaren, Daddies, Mayflies and Sedge.
  • Spinners – Tasmanian Devils, Tormentors and Mepps
  • Bait – small worms are best
  • Fish are not put off by heavier tippet, so use 5lb breaking strain and up for best fish welfare recommendations.
  • The loch drops off very quickly after a little bit of shallow water, so fish short to cover the shelving drop-offs rather than the deep water.
  • Float tubing (or similar) can open up far more water. Be safe and always wear a lifejacket and tell someone where you are and expected return time.

Equipment

  • Small light tackle is best:
  • Fly – #2 #5 single hand rod, floating line, midge tip, and/or intermediate lines. 5lb tippet minimum for the welfare of the fish. They are not put off by the thicker nylon as the water is very dark.
  • Spin/float – very light spinning gear, but be sure again to fish heavier mono/braid.
  • Always carry and use a net for C&R purposes.

Factfile

  • Species fished for: Wild brown trout only
  • No other species is fished for. No pike (nor fishing for) in Loch Drunkie.
  • The fishing is from the West shore only (road side)
  • Access is easy and cars can get to the loch without any problem (small toll at entrance)
  • Barbless hooks are recommended
  • 100% catch and release
  • 15th March – 6th Oct only, no fishing outside these dates
  • Unpowered craft such as canoe, kayak and float tubes can launch from the roadside (no fuel or electric motors)
  • No boat rentals
  • Permits are from James Bayne Tackle Store in Callander, the Forestry Commission office in Aberfoyle, the Post Office in Aberfoyle and the
  • Fishing by permit only

The loch is a camping management area in the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park – book early is the advice if you want to fish and camp, otherwise you will be moved on.

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Permits

Permits available from James Baynes Tackle in Callander, Forestry & Land Scotland office in Aberfoyle and the Post Office in Aberfoyle .

Permit Type Cost
Annual Trout/Pike Permit (All waters) (Adult) (Forest and Land Only – South Bank)  £150
Annual Trout/Pike Permit (All waters) (Concession) (Forest and Land Only – South Bank)  £100
Annual Trout/Pike Permit (specific fishery) (Adult) (Forest and Land Only – South Bank) £50
Annual Trout/Pike Permit (specific fishery) (Concession)  £35
Weekly Trout/Pike Permit (Adult) (Forest and Land Only – South Bank)  £25
Weekly Trout/Pike Permit (Concession) (Forest and Land Only – South Bank)  £20
Daily trout/pike Permit  (Adult)  £10
Daily trout/pike Permit  (Concession)  £7
Daily trout/pike Permit (Child) £7

* Under 16’s go free with a paying adult.

 

 

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