On Friday morning the Bandon River was still very high and fairly coloured but the expectation locally was that it would be good for spinning as levels dropped.

By Sunday the river was at 0.31m, a beautiful height after the recent flood. The Bandon Angling Association tell us that they had reports of half a dozen grilse caught plus a few more lost over the last couple of days. One fish in particular was estimated to weigh in the high teens of pounds before breaking the unfortunate fisherman’s fly leader.

It wasn’t all hard luck stories though. There were some lovely catches were made over the weekend along the whole length of Bandon Angling Association club waters. Members report that the average size of fish is increasing as the autumn run kicks off.

5lb grilse
Alvey Kemp with his first ever salmon, a lovely 5lb grilse

One angler who was delighted with the fishing was Alvie Kemp, fishing with Peter Aspinwall on the Kilcoleman Fishery. Alvie caught his first salmon ever after a couple of years of effort. The fish came to a Stoats Tail variant tied by guide Peter. Peter had some good fishing himself and managed a 7lb salmon.

Another angler also caught his biggest salmon ever on the Bandon River on Sunday. The fish weighed in at 15lb and was  caught on homemade fly – a traditional single pattern. The angler said it was an incredible battle with the fish going down to the backing on his fly reel three times. To add to the drama he had no landing net but luckily another angler near by had one and did the honours.

Jason Nash of http://savagefishing.blogspot.ie/ blogs that he caught and released a couple of grilse earlier last week while spinning during the high water. Sunday was a good day for Jason too and he had an 11lb fish on a small cascade. Moments later he lost a second even bigger salmon… “With line fully extended, I had a lovely take on a small cascade pattern. A great fight ensued and after some hairy moments I slipped the net under a lovely 11lb fish. Moments later another, bigger salmo salar smashed my fly. Alas, after a few slow, deep and stubborn runs it shook the hook following some violent surface thrashing. Indeed, isn’t that why it’s called fishing and not catching!? At least prospects for the future are looking very promising. ”

Go fishing…


The River Bandon is a most scenic and prolific game fishing river flowing through some of the most picturesque country side in West Cork. It’s source is a few miles north west of Dunmanway from where it flows through that town and and on through the villages of Ballineen, Enniskeane, Kilcoleman, Bandon and Innishannon where it become tidal and widens into an estuary before meeting the sea past Kinsale.

Bandon Angling Association

Day tickets are available – http://www.bandonangling.com/visitors.html


Kilcoleman Fishery

Kilcoleman is situated on The Bandon River which flows through some of the most scenic countryside in the South West of Ireland. For centuries it has been recognized as one of the best fly fishing locations in County Cork.
Web: Kilcoleman Fishery

Guided fishing on the Bandon

To go fishing with Peter Aspinwall call him on +353 (0)86 849 2993
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Clonakilty-Bass-Angling-Guide/226025274212008