Peter Boyle and his brown trout
Peter Boyle with his 5lbs 12oz brown trout caught on closing day which he carefully returned.

Wednesday October 12th heralded the end of the fishing season on Lough Sheelin for another year. Lough Sheelin, from the words She Linn meaning Fairy Pool didn’t let its anglers down right up to the ‘final hour’ and worked its magic by producing excellent returns with the heaviest fish being caught by Peter Boyle, Monaghan with his beautiful 5lb 12oz wild trout.  Anglers respected the lake and the stage that its fish are now at (approaching spawning) and all fish were carefully returned to the water.
Anglers reported seeing a lot of movement of fish on Tuesday but the trout were difficult to catch and as was the case in previous weeks they appeared distracted and aggressive, churning the water up with little or no interest for the flies the anglers were trying to tempt them with.   A mixture of wet fly and dry fly fishing was used with a wide selection of flies being offered up – most popular were a variety of dabblers, stimulators and sedges.
21 catches were reported for the final 3 days of 2011.

Some of these catches were from:

  • Ned Clinton, Cavan – on Wednesday October 12th using a stimulator one trout at over 4 lbs.
  • Frank Kelly, Cavan – on October 12th, one trout at over 3 lbs.
  • Eamonn Ross, Cavan – on October 12th, one trout at 2.75 lbs.
  • Tommy Curran, Cavan – on October 12th, one trout at 1½ lbs.
  • Pat Gallagher, Duleek – two trout at 1½ and 2 lbs using a stimulator on Monday October 10th.
  • John Burke and Tommy Geogan, Trim – two trout at 2 ½ and 2 lbs fishing around Holywell and Arley using silver and claret dabblers.
  • Michael Kelly, Dublin – on  Wednesday three fish at 3, 2 ½ and 2 lbs all caught dry fly fishing, heaviest trout was caught using Michael’s LF fly.

The L.S.T.P.A will be running fly tying classes at Lough Sheelin starting in October for young anglers from 10 yrs upwards.  Anyone interested should contact Thomas Lynch at 087 9132033 (after 6pm).
On Thursday October 13th a stillness and ‘closed’ feeling seemed to have enveloped this lake, a few fishermen were loading up boats reassuring themselves that they only had a 4½ month wait until the fishing started again and ‘sure wasn’t one day of that gone already’.  I walked down to the lake in the late afternoon on that day, the temperature was at an unseasonable 17°C and curled up, spotted sycamore leaves chased across the concrete pier in front of me.   The water looked silver and the lake looked majestic and peaceful as if it knew that after the activity of the past 6½ months it can now have a well deserved rest and get on with other business.  Sheelin might look peaceful on the surface but below that the trout are on a mission and that mission is to head towards the lake’s eleven inflowing rivers, following their instincts to return to the rivers in which they themselves first began.
Sheelin’s fishing season reopens on March 1st 2012 and this lake will be ready and waiting for all of us again – deo volento.
Brenda Montgomery
Sheelin Stores
IFI Limerick
14th October, 2011

Closing day BBQ on Lough Sheelin
A selection of regular anglers that have a ritual end of season BarBQ on Church Island on Lough Sheelin