Paul Hanley had his first springer on fly this season from the River Lee…

12 April: Well it took a bit longer than expected but I got my first springer on the fly. I had been busy over the last few weeks but I got a small break last evening and went up to the Dam. The water was very low, still dropping but the clarity was good. I started at Beat 1 with my Switch fly rod using a floating line and a Rio 6ft sink tip and my trusted Ahilles hot orange shrimp fly. The salmon hit the fly very hard and almost caught me off guard by running at me and then heading upstream like an express train taking lots of line off the reel. It fought like a classic springer, good runs, some jumps – plenty of excitement. On landing the fish I saw it was wild and at about 11lbs a great specimen of a springer and my mind was made up – it was going back.

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Unfortunately almost all the spring fish caught to date have been killed and that is sad due to the fact that salmon anglers are complaining that there are very few spring fish around and still only a few are being released. Next time you catch your first salmon think and if the fish is healthy let it go you will always remember the ones you lose or release and quickly forget the ones you kill, you can take the next fish for the pot.

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