Tope are tops in Lough Swilly
June 7th, 2012 | by Myles Kelly
Last week Boat-Angling -Ireland.com regulars Congereel and Rooster76 enjoyed some good tope fishing in Lough Swilly…
A day at Dunaff
Crew: Wilks, Harry, Phillip and myself.
Tide: low water at 12.30
Weather: Sunny with cool easterly breeze
Rigs: Animal rigs and other tangly ones
Results: lesser spotted dogfish,red and tub gurnards, spurdogs, mackerel, thornback ray and tope
With the weather looking good it was off to Dunaff for the day. Wwe managed to leave the marina on time today after numerous warnings to Harry that if he was not on time he would be left high and dry. We stopped at the cages for mackerel, but none were to be had there so on to the hole at Knockalla where we got enough there for the day.
Onward to Dunaff and let the games begin… …first in was Harry with a triple shot of dogs. Fishing was fairly steady with the animal rigs accounting for quite a few spurdogs, dogfish and gurnards. Then something more substantial took mine. I had a fair idea it was a tope but never thought we could land it. Ten minutes later and thanks to Harry’s tailing skills he was aboard. Now Harry, as you may know from previous exploits, has never caught a tope so we set him up for the trophey shot.
On with the fishing and Phillip had a double shot of spurs and lsd. You may find this hard to believe but both these fish were firsts for a man who’s angling career spans more than 30 years. Where has he been fishing? Not much else for the rest of the day so it was back to the marina and the watering hole to mull over the days crack
Tope and thornbacks
Crew: Bertie, me and Wilks
Duration: 6 pm—8.30pm
Tide: Low water 6.30
Rigs: tope rigs
Results: Tope and thornback ray
We fished on Monday with a few macks left from Sunday. We set out early and the anchor was deployed and we were ready for action around 6.15.
Ten minutes in and I had my first run of the year.15 seconds later, I had my first dropped run of the year…
Shorly after that Wilks had a run. After a good wee scrap from the senior citizan he had a fine tope on the deck, brought onboard by Bertie with little fuss. It was too heavy for Wilky too get a photo so I took his place for the trophy shot.
We weighed him in the sling and he came in at a fine 38-40 lb. I am sure it wasn’t too far away from that. Bertie then got in the action and decided to release his by the side of the boat, another good tope.
Things where very hectic all evening with myself and Wilky missing two good runs. That was one of the best tope runs I have had so far. It stripped plenty of line and felt really good but after 3-4 minutes it was gone I was starting to think am going be the new Gareth (cannae catch a tope)? Bertie got in the action again and released expertly at the side of the boat.
I then had good take on the rod and after several seconds this dose came up… Not what I was looking for but a decent thornie.
With half an hour left away my reel went again. This time it felt good and after a great run and 5 minutes of battle I had my first tope of 2012. Bertie did the lifting again and she was in and out of “Shazza“in seconds. I had to get the trophy shot to stop the guilt from sitting with Wilky’s tope.
A fine evenings action for a few hours and a big thank you to the skipper for the trip. Gareth…..you should have been out lad! I would have let you bring one of mine in! Great to see so many tope up the lough and with great weather, very hard to beat.