Simon Ashe reports from Ballynahinch Castle that the favourable water conditions accompanied by a late run of spring fish and an early run of grilse has given us the best start to our season in over a decade.  Given the fact that angling pressure has been quite low over the past few weeks, the catch per unit effort has been very high for this time of year.  The daily increase in the grilse run over the fish counter, along with perfect water height in the river bodes well for the coming weeks at Ballynahinch.

Stephen Cullinane landed a beautiful 9lbs salmon on 16th June after local guide, Jonathan Broderick, had taken a 12lbs fresh fish.  Jonathan was teaching a client to roll cast with a trout rod and 6lbs nylon when he hooked into this fish.  After 45 minutes (and with a very tired arm!) the fish was landed by the short pier on Beat 1.

A number of smaller grilse in the 4 – 5.5lb bracket have been taken by guests at the hotel with quite a number lost.

The numbers of sea trout finnock entering from the estuary has been quite low at this stage and we were expecting more to run this past week.  Hopefully the run should pick up in the coming weeks.  Watch this space!

To book fishing or accommodation at Ballynahinch, contact the castle at 095 31006, or check the website at