Professional Scottish 'career based' salmon fishing guide advice on how best to align your salmon fishing approach to high water conditions.
High water conditions have always fascinated me as a professional salmon guide as on many occasions I've been astounded as to just how close to the riverbank resident or running salmon will position themselves. Naturally a salmon will take up a position in the river that doesn't physically tax them too much as will running salmon move upstream through the broken water at the side of the river where they'll have less water pressure to deal with. The above may well be a polar opposite of where you'd expect salmon to be located but trust my career experience and number one eyeball on this as I've seen too many instances where I've been personally shocked at just how close salmon will be found through the periodic high water levels on the Scottish salmon rivers.
With the above in mind you don't need to be in the river at all or if you do then just enough to give you enough upstream or downstream water space for the anchor point placement of your Spey cast. A short controlled salmon fly fishing it right into the riverbank is perfect and if the high water has added some discolouration to the clarity of the river going a size bigger and brighter than normal would be my advice. You also want a sink tip on the end of your floating fly line that's not too heavy to allow your fly to complete its swim right into the riverbank without bottoming out on the riverbed. Salmon lie identification becomes very easy in high water as all you need to do is scan for the pools that have calm steady water away from the main current as that's exactly where salmon will be found whether they are resident salmon or briefly pausing running fish.
I've written extensively regarding high water salmon fishing tactics on this website's sister website and follow this link for more information regarding fishing through high water conditions. Alternatively, if you'd like a crash course on optimising your general salmon fishing approach on a major Scottish salmon river then consider booking a professional salmon guide who will teach you from scratch or fine tune your salmon fishing skills.