Swanswater Trout Fishery is located a stones throw from where I live-  OK a 40 minute walk over back roads, or a 5 minute drive – but thats pretty close compared to the locations most anglers go to.

Finding Swanswater Trout Fishery:

There is only one real way to Swanswater Trout Fishery for the non local Angler. Coming into Stirling from the Stirling Sevices roundabout, taking the turning signposted Bannockburn, take the left hand opening immediately after the King Robert Hotel, signposted Swanswater, and North Third Reservoir.

You will pass some houses to your right and the road then veers right then left. It passes behind the Bannockburn Battle Site, and a Bowling club. Carry on straight through Chartershall, over the motorway and you will come to a sharp lefthand bend. Go straight on here onto a rough road.

Now hang an immediate right and the fishery is along the rubble track on the right and left. Parking on the right through the gate.

Tea and coffee in the “shop”, a small selection of flies and light tackle is available- monofiliament etc. I beleive a small selection of rods is available for loan/hire. Float Tubes are allowed and a few boats are available at an extra £5 but must be moored to designated markers.

Personal Opinions:

Winter at the Mill Pond
Frozen Mill Pond at Swanswater

I like Swanswater and consider it my “local”. I especially like going along there on a day off where I don’t have to travel far and it can be reasonably quiet during weekdays.

On the whole most of the regulars are a friendly bunch. There are a few who like to get their early and bag a few of the known hot spots, this is probably not unusual in other fisheries too, I just tend to notice it here more. Many will gladly share a few minutes with you for a blether, discuss tactics and the time of day so on the whole it’s a pleasant atmosphere.

Flies and Tackle:

Swanswater can vary throughout a day and so tactics need to change if you want to catch consistently. The fishery is not deep- around 9 or 10 feet at the deepest so a floating or intermediate line is more than adequate all year. Some anglers favour a sink tip.

The usual suspects

Angling reports feature, Yellow Dancers, buzzers, Diawl Bachs and Kate McLaren’s regularly. Black Hoppers do well in summer and Blobs are always popular as is fishing the Bung. No Boobies or lures under Bungs. Personally I have found, Humungus- not too large say size 10 or 12, White Bunny Leach, and Zonkers, are effective among the lures.

Occasionally a Damsel will work but while they feature in a lot of reports they are not consistent for me. Dry flies like Klinkhammers and Parachute buzzers can be deadly on their day as can Daddy longlegs and small olive or black dries when fish are selective.  In winter I have had a lot of success on bloodworm patterns fished slow and deep as well as with lures.

4-stars

Value for money

Pretty good, nice surroundings, not a bad price for a ticket, and you can share your ticket/limit with a child which is excellent. Where I think it is a wee bit tight is the price for a rowing boat. Foar £5 you can have a boat and fish from one of four or five fixed points.

If on a day ticket that makes it £33 on a take ticket. I think that is expensive. On a shorter session the £5 becomes a bigger chunk of your days fees. Perhaps, some time based adjustment needs to be made? Especially when you consider that some fisheries let you use a rowing boat for free.

5-stars

Catch and Release Policy:

Excellent. All the ponds offer Catch and Release at Swanswater Trout Fishery.

3-stars

Website: 

The fishing reports are mostly kept up to date and in bad weather it is worthwhile checking the opening hours. Overall though, a bit dated and could do with a refresh- especially the events page.  A webcam of the main loch would be good for assessing how busy it is before you go. Recent photos of good catches do not appear on site though an archive of reports is present. Suggested improvements would be to incorporate the current Troutmasters standings and use a more modern layout.

4-stars

Overall:

Taking all things into consideration I would rate Swanswater a 4.5.  The fishery has taken on board our previous comments on Catch and Release and its now available on all ponds in the fishery complex. The boat prices in my view are still too high.