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Sheelin gets busy as season comes to a close

October 11th, 2017 | by

September 25th –  October 7th 2017

“The trout is still with me, as are my memories. The future is somewhere between these two forces, but it lives in mystery.”
Daniel J. Rice

Lough Sheelin

Setting up’ the start of the LSTPA stream rehabilitation competition at Kilnanard, October 1st

 Over the past week, those subtle and not so subtle seasonal changes reminded anglers that we are being gradually sucked into autumn. Winds are taking on a perceptibly cold edge, Friday last required an extra jumper and there was a scattering of mornings that were draped in trailing mists, a familiar autumnal chill and a myriad of magical cobwebs taking their temporary residence on the shoreline bushes.  It is getting to that stage in the season that it almost feels as if you shouldn’t be out on the lake, a feeling of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

A beautiful trout for Chris Meadows (September 26th)

A beautiful trout for Chris Meadows (September 26th)

Despite the rapidly approaching end of the 2017 fishing season here, Lough Sheelin over the past week has been a relatively busy place what with anglers who like to mop up those last few days of ‘chances’, a few competitions and the fact that Lough Sheelin’s closure date of October 12th gives it an extra leg over most other Irish trout lates who close their angling doors on the last day of September.

A lake olive moulting from dun to spinner

A lake olive moulting from dun to spinner

The heaviest fish for this week weighed in 8lbs 2ozs caught by Dublin angler Aleksander Mlynarski using a black & silver Humungus fishing out from Church Island

 Total number of trout recorded: 97 

Stuart Topp, The Orkney Islands with his 54cm trout (www.loughsheelinguiding.com)

Stuart Topp, The Orkney Islands with his 54cm trout (www.loughsheelinguiding.com)

Selection of Catches

  • Cian Murtagh, Cavan – 2 trout at 2 ½ lbs each using a Gorgeous George and a Pearly Dabbler.
  • Mike Sutherland, Aberdeen – guided by LoughSheelinGuidingServices – 2 trout at 61 and 53cm on Dabblers.
  • Stuart Topp, Orkney – 1 trout at 49cm and 54cm fishing wets.
  • Pat McGee, Northern Ireland – 2 trout averaging 2lbs each caught on Humungus and Octopus variants.
  • Michael Trent, Dublin – 2 trout heaviest at 3lbs caught on Claret Dabblers and Peters.
  • Pat Brady, Cavan – 1 trout at 3lbs on a Green Peter Hopper variant.
  • Des Elliott, Dublin – 3 trout heaviest at 3 ½ lbs using Black Pennells and Golden Olive Bumbles fishing out from Kilnahard
  • Franciszek Lisowski, Dublin – 1 trout at 5lbs using lures, fishing mid lake.
  • Jan Nowak, Dublin – 3 trout heaviest at 5 ½ lbs using lures fishing out from the Western shore.
Mike Sutherland, Aberdeen with a 61cm fish

Mike Sutherland, Aberdeen with a 61cm fish

The McEntyre/Guider Cup was fished on Saturday September 30th and this cup was taken by Northern Ireland angler Pat McGee with a trout of over 4lbs using an Octopus/Gorgeous George combination.  Following on Pat’s heels was his Northern Ireland contemporary Cathal Rush who took second with a trout tipping the 4lb mark.  Weather conditions weren’t ideal with bright sunshine and difficult changing winds.


Happiness is a Sheelin trout – Raymond McClelland, Kesh winner of the LSTPA Rehabilitation Competition, 1st October 2017 with a 4.75lb trout caught on a Silver Dabbler using a size 8 hook

Sunday, October 1st saw the biggest trout fishing event of the season being held on Lough Sheelin when the local angling club, the LSTPA hosted their annual Stream Rehabilitation fly fishing competition on this lake.  Now into its 12th year this popular competition attracted over 100 anglers with the Northerners dominating the entrance numbers but with a respectable number of locals, west of Ireland and midland anglers as well in the mix.  Weather conditions weren’t ideal with changing strong south to south westerlies keeping anglers away from good fishing areas.  Angler reports at the end of the day varied considerably from ‘not seeing a thing’ to witnessing plenty of pitching and surface breakers.  Despite being a tough, moody and unpredictable stretch of water, Lough Sheelin produced the goods for its anglers and although this competition set the bar high at a requirement of over 16”, 47 trout weighed in at well over that measurement, with 15 fish clearing 3lbs in weight.

Taking shelter from the windy conditions, Craig Sheridan, Brady with his companion at the LSTPA Rehab. competition Sunday October 1st

Taking shelter from the windy conditions, Craig Sheridan, Brady with his companion at the LSTPA Rehab. competition Sunday October 1st


The winner of the much coveted first prize – a 19ft Sheelin boat & the Paddy Sheridan Memorial Cup was Northern Ireland angler, Raymond Clelland with a 2.155kg fish followed by a hare’s breath in second place by Brian Stansfield with a 2.135kg trout.

A September Sedge

A September Sedge


A spent lake olive – there were plenty of olive hatches on the lake for this week but the trout showed little or interest in feeding on them

I think perhaps my favourite event for this week was the newly established Ronnie Cox memorial competition which was held on Sheelin on saturday last, October 7th. This was a fund raiser for Cancer Research Ireland in memory of the late Ronnie Cox, an avid trout angler and devotee of all the main Irish trout lakes with a particular affinity to Lough Conn.  Over 50 anglers took part and there was an atmosphere of relaxed angling solidarity as participants donated to this very worthy cause with over  €1600 raised on the day.  Eleven fish made it accross the required 16″ limit with Northern Ireland angler William Craig taking the top prize with a 5.42lb fish and Carrick On Shannon angler Colin Walsh’s at 4.84 lbs taking second place.  Colin’s runner up status felt particularly sweet because he caught his fish with a Ronnie Cox special, a fly with long stream line dark hackles and a sliver and green body.  As the light faded over the pier at Kilnahard and as the draw for the many donated prizes reached an end I spotted one of the best names ever on a boat – ‘Just Add Water’, it was as if Ronnie had had the last say by producing a smile.

William Craig, Northern Ireland with his winning 5.42lb fish at the Ronnie Cox memorial competition in aid of Cancer Research Ireland, Kilnahard, Lough Sheelin, October 7th

William Craig, Northern Ireland with his winning 5.42lb fish at the Ronnie Cox memorial competition in aid of Cancer Research Ireland, Kilnahard, Lough Sheelin, October 7th

Results of the Ronnie Cox Memorial Competition – October 7th

  • 1st William Craig    5.42 lbs
  • 2nd Colin Walsh      4.84 lbs
  • 3rd Connor Dunne   3.88 lbs
  • 4th Steven Collins    3.44 lbs
  • 5th Basil Shiels         3.42 lbs

Results of The Lough Sheelin Stream Rehabilitation Competition – October 1st

  • 1st Raymond McClelland  4.75 lbs
  • 2nd Brian Stansfield           4.70 lbs
  • 3rd Peter Roche                  4.03 lbs
  • 4th Joe Masterson               3.77 lbs
  • 5th Richard McGowan        3.76 lbs

McEntyre/Guider Cup – September 30th

  • 1st Pat McGee               4 ½ lbs
  • 2nd Cathal Rush             4 lbs

Putting the competitions to one side, Lough Sheelin was its usual contrary self over the past week with the weather as always dictating the pace. The Green Peters fished well as did the bigger lure type flies such as the humungus and minkies both of which needed that hint of silver threaded through the body.  The trout are on the move here and there was plenty of evidence of that with the jumpers and pitchers but as always at this time of the year although they do not stop feeding our piscatorial friends are not too interested in the teams of imitations thrown at them.  The fresh water keeps the fish more active and if a well presented fly is in their line of vision then there’s a good chance that it will be taken but it could be more out of aggression or curiousity than hunger.  The trout that do take the flies are doing so in a half hearted kind of way with little or no strong takes.  The water is still discoloured so flies with abit of flash in them was necessary.  The Dabblers always fish well particularly in Silver, Green and Gold.  Many of the variants that caught fish had a common dominator in that they all seemed to have a block of luminous green at the back and as with Pat McGee’s Octopus/Gorgeous Geogre variant ginked up to sit in the surface film earned him the McEntyre/Guider Cup.  Stimulators as a top dropper , Silver Daddies and Bumbles had their own degree of successes for their users.   Many of the wet fly variants had those hopper legs – spindly legs with the little joints akin to the Daddy make up.

trout wet fly

Leggy Peter – Kevin Sheridan

The flies most used this week by anglers were the Stimulators (in Claret and Orange), Klinkhammers, Gorgeous George, Yellow Humpies, the Dabblers (Claret, Silver and Green), hoppers, the red-tailed Green Peter, the Sedge Invicta, the Pearly Invicta, the Mallard & Claret, the Black Pennell, the Claret Pennell, the Golden Olive Bumble, Silver Daddy, the Muddled Daddy, the F Fly, the Pearly Invicta, Silver Invicta.

A beautiful fish from William Craig, Northern Ireland 28/9/17

A beautiful fish from William Craig, Northern Ireland 28/9/17

A good combination in a wave is putting Stimulator as the top dropper, a claret in the middle and gold on the point.

All kinds of everything – a trout’s stomach contents

All kinds of everything – a trout’s stomach contents

The best areas for fishing on the lake this week was predominantly out in the deep but along the Western shore particularly Orangefield, Church Island, Inchacup, the Long Rock, Lynch’s pt and in and around Kilnahard and Chambers were good as well.

Pearly Invicta - Kevin Sheridan

Pearly Invicta – Kevin Sheridan


Go fishing…

Up coming events

Voluntary contributions.

Fishing from 11am – 6p.m.

This will be an enjoyable social occasion. Please support this worthy cause. All donations of prizes welcome. Any surplus prizes will be raffled off and the proceeds will go towards Cancer Research Ireland Fund.

Éamonn Ross Tel. 0866619834 Email: eamonnoruis@eircom.net


House Rules

A permit is required to fish Lough Sheelin. Buy your permit online at: shop.fishinginireland.info or from any of the permit distributors listed here.

A catch & release policy is actively encouraged on the lake at all times

A catch & release policy is actively encouraged on the lake at all times

 BYE-LAW 949 strictly prohibits:

  • The taking of any brown trout of less than 36 centimetres.
  • For a person to fish with more than 2 rods at any one time.
  • To fish with more than 4 rods at any one time when there is more than one person on board the boat concerned.
  • For a person to take more than 2 trout per day.
  • All trolling on the lake from March 1st to June 16th (inclusive).
  • To fish or to attempt to take or to fish for, fish of any kind other than during the period from March 1st to October 12th in any year.

Join the Club…

For anyone interested in joining Lough Sheelin’s Angling Club – The Lough Sheelin Trout Protection Association please contact Thomas Lynch @ 087 9132033.

Guides and ghillies…

Grey Duster GuidingGrey Duster Guiding
Kenneth O’Keeffe
086 8984172 Email: trout@live.ie

Christopher Defillon
Tel: +33 68 596 4369  Email: evasionpecheirlande@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/christopher.defillon

Lough Sheelin Guiding Services
Tel: 087 1245927 Web: www.loughsheelinguidingservices.com

John Mulvany
johnmulvanyfishing@gmail.com 086 2490076

D.C Angling & Guiding Services
contact David @ 087 3946989

Michael Farrell
Tel: 087 4194156 or  +353 43 6681298
Email: loughsheelinguide@hotmail.com

Michael Flanagan,
Trout and Pike Guide.
Email: mick@midlandangling.com Web: www.midlandangling.com

Lough Sheelin’s autumn moth ( Ennomos quercinaria)

Lough Sheelin’s autumn moth ( Ennomos quercinaria)


We would implore anglers and all other users to wear life jackets for their own safety as well as it being the law.

Life jackets are required by law – SI No 921 of 2005 – Pleasure Craft (Personal Flotation Devices and Operation) (Safety) Regulations 2005.Water  rarely gives second chances and a life jacket is just that – it saves your life.

Please put on and keep on that life jacket until you are back on dry land.

Sunset on Sheelin

Sunset on Sheelin

This post is in: Lough Sheelin, Trout fishing reports