Leaping Salmon, Buchanty Spout, Sept 2018
One of the best places in Scotland to see or photograph leaping salmon, is Buchanty Spout in Perthshire.
As anyone who has tried to take shots of salmon jumping will tell you, it can be tricky. You have no idea when the fish will jump, or where the fish will jump.
This is why Buchanty Spout is so popular with photographers, it is a very narrow waterfall on the River Almond, a tributary of the River Tay. Because it is so narrow, it makes it a lot easier to take photos.
You still don't know when the fish will jump, but because of the narrow falls, you at least know roughly where they will jump.
- My technique is to set the camera up on a tripod, pointing at the spot where you are seeing most of the fish jump.
- Try and focus on where you think the fish will be - choose a spot in the waterfall that you think will be about the same distance as a leaping fish.
- Focus on that, and then point the camera back to where you are seeing most of the fish.
- Use a remote shutter release, and then just watch for fish jumping.
- Fire off a burst of shots using the remote release when you see a fish jump.
Only a small percentage of the shots will actually end up with a fish in them, and only a small percentage of those will be in focus, but you should have some usable shots at the end of the day.
Water level is important - too low, and the fish won't run, too high and the fish can just swim up the falls without jumping.
I've found that the best level is between 0.4 and 0.5 on the SEPA water gauge HERE
The map above shows where to park for Buchanty Spout. Park there, and walk down the hill towards the river - a small path to the falls leads off to the left.
Warning: The rocks around the falls are very slippy - wear boots with a good tread!
Below are images from Buchanty Spout - click on the images for a bigger view