Despite ringing in the New Year with a bad dose of flu, kayak angler and blogger Gary Robinson of Kayak Fisherman Ireland took to the water and he reports:

The festive season has been and passed. Exams are off the agenda for a considerable length of time. I suddenly have a bit of spare time on my hands. What am I going to do?

With a mixture of respect and jealousy I have been seeing images of decent pike being captured from all around the country from the safety of the couch, where I have been wallowing with a near fatal attack of ‘manflu’. A break like this lets me plan some future escapades but thinking about it and doing it are two completely different things. A quick look at the weather forecast told me that today was going to be the only lull in the wind and rain for the next week or so. I had to get out!

Gary Robinson - Jan 2015 (1) GalwayRecent rainfall had swollen rivers and indeed when I arrived at my chosen location it was difficult to tell where the river was. Falling rain and rising levels meant that the meandering strip of water was now up in the surrounding fields, the meanders very much gone and the course of the river hidden from view. I knew instantly that the fishing was going to be tough. I also had a few photos to take for an upcoming article so I decided that while I was here I might as well fish for a couple of hours.

With the photos taken it was time to hit the water and my plan was to troll lures, traveling upstream until I either had a hit or marked some baitfish on the echo sounder. With the river high the water was coloured so my best option was a lure that was be brightly coloured and capable of emitting sound. The brighter colours and larger sizes may be easier to spot through the gloom and the rattling ball bearings within the lures may appeal to other senses. My weapons of choice were to be Sakura Rush Divers, Sakura Golem Cranks and a 14 gram spinnerbait.

Gary Robinson - Jan 2015 (2) GalwayI trolled the river for a couple of hours but unfortunately did not connect with any fish. With the river so high it was very difficult to troll. The main channel averages about eight metres in depth but with the surrounding fields flooded one minute I was trolling over ten metres of river, the next I was trolling over ten centimetres of field!!! Hardly ideal and baitfish were very, very few and far between on the sounder. Beaten by the conditions of the day and my symptoms I decided to call it a day after a couple of hours.

No fish and sick as a small hospital. Was it worth it? Yeah, time by the water is always time well spent. I’ll probably pay for it for the rest of the week though!

Gary Robinson

Kayak angling in Ireland

Gary discovered the thrill, freedom and pure joy of kayak fishing almost by accident. After purchasing kayaks with the intention of paddling trips with his long-suffering partner, he started to assess the suitability of such a craft as a fishing platform. Some internet searches showed him that he was not alone in his thoughts. America and Australia already had blossoming populations of kayak anglers. Needing no more encouragement, he set about rigging his first sit on top kayak and transforming it into a fishing platform to gain access to some of the more inaccessible waters. Now into his fifth year of kayak fishing he shows no sign of slowing down.

Find out more about Gary and his adventures at