River Leven

River Leven stats

Image shows current temperature and water level of the River Leven at the Bonhill Pool, it also includes high and low tides at Bowling and water levels at Linbrane (©SEPA).

The River Leven must surely be central Scotland’s premier Salmon and Sea Trout fishery. All methods except prawn or shrimp and float fishing are allowed on the river.

Fly fishing is probably the most popular, due to the fact that the fish are traditionally free risers to the fly. From the 11th of February ’till the 31st of October the Leven provides Salmon and Sea Trout, though it is usually the last week in March that provides the first decent run of spring Salmon. The Leven gets a good run of larger early Sea Trout throughout April and particularly in May.

To be in the right place at the right time when fish take a rest as they pass through, is the key to success! The same applies to Salmon, the Leven is a fairly short river at six miles long. Part of the reason for its success, is that every fish has to go through the Leven in order to get to the Loch and the spawning rivers.

Summer fishing

Throughout the Summer and Autumn the whole river provides excellent fishing. Night fishing for Sea Trout is popular from late June, with good catches recorded by anglers every year.
The lower reaches of the Leven are tidal and many anglers like to be on this stretch of the river from one hour after high tide during darkness, to cover fresh fish moving in and out with the tide.

The one thing that is unique to the Lomond system, is that the Leven and Loch Lomond continue to fish well during a drought year when most other fisheries are suffering. After prolonged dry weather, most rivers have weeded up so badly that it is difficult to prevent your fly from collecting weed. The river Leven does not have this problem. Even in a drought year, your fly will swing round unhindered other than by the attentions of the Salmon and Sea Trout!

Printable map of the upper River Leven

Printable map of the lower River Leven