What a spring we are having this year here in Ireland.  When I think of the horrible spring anglers and fish had to endure in 2013, this year’s spring weather has been much kinder with good average temperatures together many fine days and anglers are reaping some wonderful fishing on our inland waters.  High water levels still prevail in some fisheries but in general conditions on many of our waters have been excellent and some exceptional fish were recorded in the past week.

A twelve year old angler caught a fine 12 lb. salmon on his own tied fly on a beat on the Cork Blackwater at Blackwater Lodge.  Over in Mayo, there was some nice salmon reported from Carrowmore Lake.  In Connemara, the first salmon of the season were recorded at Ballynahinch and on the Costello and Fermoyle Fisheries.  There was mixed weather down on Lough Currane last week but the highlight of the week was a fine caught and released salmon for an Italian visitor.  In Delphi, there was some salmon lost and some nice fish up to 12 lb. reported in the past week.  On the River Slaney the Kilbride beat produced the first salmon after a seven year closure.  The River Bundrowes continues to fish very well producing very steady fishing with salmon to 12.5 lb. recorded this week.

It has been an exciting week for trout anglers especially on loughs where the first hatches of Duckfly brought some success for anglers.  There were good hatches on Lough Corrib and some excellent fishing recorded in some parts of this huge lough.  There were lesser hatches on nearby Lough Mask but the wetfly fishing was still very good on most days of the week.  The River Nire in Tipperary produced some lovely river trout fishing for clients fishing on nymphs at Clonanav.  The easterly winds did test anglers fishing on Lough Sheelin last week but the big trout were still brought to the net on most days.  The north east rivers like the Fane are still producing superb trout fishing and well known American angler and journalist wrote a fine article on his recent trip to the area where he enjoyed a great trip.  The Waterford loughs are producing very good fishing for Rainbows and good brown trout in the past week with midge hatches bringing trout on the feed.  Most of the well stocked fisheries in the south east are fishing well and offer great sport.

'Catch of the Week' winner Pierre Monjaret with his super 35 lb. 5.5 oz (16 Kilos) and 118cms Pike from Lough Derg
‘Catch of the Week’ winner Pierre Monjaret with his super 35 lb. 5.5 oz (16 Kilos) and 118cms Pike from Lough Derg

One of the exceptional fish caught last week was a huge brown trout of 14 lb. which was caught on Lough Muckno in Co. Monaghan by an angler dead baiting for pike.  Down in Longford, angling guide Kevin Lyons also took a fine trout of 8 lb. 4 oz. on a deadbait while pike fishing with clients.  A Leixlip angler had two fine pike outings in small loughs in Leitrim with many double figure pike recorded following careful planning and was culminated with a fine 20 lb. pike.  Down on Lough Derg however a pike of 16 Kilos (35 lb. 5 oz.) which measured 1.18 metre was recorded by well known french angling guide Pierre Monjarret from Killaloe on a busker jerk pro bait.  This the biggest authenticated pike recorded in Ireland in many years. Pierre’s fish is our ‘Catch of the Week‘.   He had another fine pike of 1.07 metres the following day.  US marines on holiday here enjoyed great sport in the loughs in Co. Monaghan while guided by Brendan O’Reilly.

There was two major coarse angling festivals were formerly launched last week and are open for entry.  The Ireland Classic Fishing Festival will take place in Co. Fermanagh in May and the great Canal Festival at Edenderry takes place in early June.  Entries should be made as these events are often sold out quickly.  The Oaklands Fishery at New Ross in Co. Wexford produced some excellent weight for match anglers fishing the Mother’s day competition.

We have no sea angling news this week but this fine spell of weather should see some activity soon.  There is plenty of other news items in this week’s angling update and finally if you are going afloat, please seek out an up to date weather report and be safe and wear a lifejacket please.  It is the law and we want all anglers to enjoy the best of Irish Angling.

Tight lines especially in Ireland

Paul Bourke

Catch, Photo, Release

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Drowes - The Island Pool
Drowes – The Island Pool