Being very much a novice in this domain, any trip tends to be a learning experience and my trip to the far North West turned out to be just that.
Usually I manage to treat myself to a weeks fishing after Salmon and Sea Trout and squeeze in a day on the hills with the estate stalkers so I can get coached and ridiculed in equal measures!
The planned day of stalking was short and a wash out as we had minimal visibility and strong NE winds. Back to the river and I managed to land and return a nice coloured cock fish.
Day two was a retry to find a stag, but torrential rain ("it's only a shower" ) and the continual strong Northerly winds had us scurrying back down off the hill and an early bath with only catching a glimpse of a few young Stags.
Day three (remember - if at first you fail, try, try again!) , much better weather and a nice dry day with the wind veering around to the South-West. A long trip on the argo into the hils then a good tramp up and down the tussocks (only a few stumbles and ooyah-where's-me-leg-gone type of moments). We spyed a young beast, shortly followed by a nice old Switch which was deemed suitable for culling. We worked our way around to the best position to take a shot - trying desperately not to be seen by the group of hinds which always seemed to be in the way! Finally, having a good clear view down the Schmidt and Bender, the Sako .243 did its work and the Stag dropped after a short run. It's always a relief getting a clean shot (for me as a novice in particular) and no second shot required. The stalkers talked me through the gralloch as I could use my nice new Eka blade and the beast was loaded up for the trip to the larder. Fifteen stone six pounds larder weight and in nice condition. Great support and encouragement from Duncan and Peter and my trip next year seems so far away!
In addition to this I had a couple of hours back on the river and managed to land another Salmon (returned) in it's autumn finery - so 2/3 of a Macnab was completed!
The final days fishing was a struggle with rain and wind, but just at the final couple of casts, I looked up to find a spiker standing watching me from 20 yards away... He then wandered a bit closer....and a bit closer despite me talking to him and whistling (trying not to look anxious - oh no), I then decided that a short retreat was called for and I decided my day was done and knowing the Stags can be a bit frisky at this time decided discretion was called for and I vamoosed!
Brilliant week, stunning scenery and a great team.