Lough Sheelin Angling Report July 27th – August 2nd 2020
‘To be absolutely certain about something, one must know everything or nothing about it’
Lough Sheelin remained on the dark side this week as trout successes stayed firmly within the twilight hours with some beautiful ‘sedge’ fish being caught. There are a number of daunting factors to overcome now on this lake if an angler wants to stand any kind of a chance of hooking up with some Sheelin scaled magic – go out late, fish dry or emerger and ignore the rain.
It goes without saying that day time fishing is the most comfortable time because (a) you can actually see where you are going, (b) you can see the fly on the water, (c) you can see a rise and (d) you can get home early enough to be able to go work in a reasonable condition the following day. There were very few trout catches for day time fishing this week so anglers who crave success need to forget about those comfortable times.
We are in the middle of the sedge season here and sedges opt for unsocial times to make their appearance. The ‘real event’ is occurring in the evening when dusk arrives and casts shadows across the water’s surface. Anglers talk about the evening ‘sedge’ hatch but it’s not just this that is happening. In addition to the hatch, the egg-laden females leave their shoreline bushes and return to the water to lay their eggs. Trout have a diverse smorgasbord to choose from. There will be egg-laying adults, rising pupae, pupae trapped in surface film, crippled or spent adults and airborne adults skittering across the surface. Since the advent of fly fishing, fly fishers have their demons and the summer caddis or sedge hatch can be one of them, trout fishing at this time demands analysis and thinking. For the dry fly purist, fly fishing during sedge time can be a particularly frustrating experience. Trout will usually seek the most easily taken food sources, which in this instance are the pupae. However, occasionally a trout will break the surface, offering a target for a dry fly but unlike a mayfly hatch, an imitation fly presented will usually be refused for all sorts of design reasons.
Although temperatures have been at a muggy peak of 22°C, most of the fishing time has been punctuated by rain, sometimes heavy and persistent but rain unless falling in bucket loads has never been a deterrent to feeding fish. For some anglers once the rain ended and when it got calm, fish were caught. Wind was again the biggest enemy to the dry fly angler, many anglers fear the flat calm but for an angler who can imitate insects effectively and build leaders right, calm can be sheer bliss. Winds varied between south and south west but south easterly on Wednesday opened up other areas of the lake that would otherwise go unfished.
Although there was the odd Peter and Murrough hatching from mid-afternoon, the big hatches happened on most evenings usually between 10 and 11pm.
Going through the week:
Thundery rain featured heavily on Monday with brisk Northwest breezes picking up during the day. Only a few small fish, trout around 1½ – 2lbs, were caught on wets – bumbles, hoppers and octopus during the day, during the evening and at dusk fishing picked up somewhat in that there were good hatches of sedges in certain areas around the lake. Fish were taking both Peter and Murrough. Because of the poor visibility some anglers used large Murrough patterns with some degree of success. Fishing dry sedges on the blind resulted in a few nice fish, after the rain had stopped.
Tuesday had a slight autumnal feel to it with temperatures eventually climbing to 17°C and although winds changed from moderate to gusty northwesterly this was the pick of the fishing days with a number of 3 pounders being caught as well as a hefty 4lbs 5ozs (58cm) caught around 10.30pm on a dry Peter.
Wednesday was dominated by fresh south to southeast winds which opened up the eastern and southern shore to dusk fishing but there was a very sparse hatch of peter and although anglers reported a few rises of fish nothing moved to the proffered artificials.
Thursday was mild but very wet and this coupled with strong winds meant little joy for those that ventured out on to the lake.
Friday and into the weekend was dominated by heavy deluges of rain. Fishing was generally poor within the wet fly brigade who only succeeded in rising small weights for a day’s hard slog on the water. A nice 3lb fish was caught on a small Klinkhammer but the remainder of daylight 1½ to 2 pounders were caught pulling teams of wets.
18 trout catches were recorded with the two weeks with Pat O’Connor’s 5 pounder on a dry sedge pattern taking the top weight.
Most of the trout that were caught were during the late evening and at dusk and most of them were caught on small dry sedge and Emerger patterns.
The flies that did secure a salute from the trout were the Murrough, small dark olive patterns, dry sedge (12 -14), Green Peter both wet and dry, Shipman’s, Bobs Bits, Hoppers, Claret Bumble, Silver Daddy, International Dabbler, Sedge hogs, small Klinkhammers, Stimulators, Sedge pupae, Daddies, Zulu, the Grey Duster and a Red Tailed Peter. For those anglers after the daphnia feeders, head for the open water using a bright orange fly. When fishing small dry sedges along sheltered areas it is best to use a floating line with a 4 – 6 lb. leader.
The places that produced catches were down along the Western shore of the lake, Stony Island, at the back of Church Island, Merry Pt., Wilson’s pt., Inchacup, Chambers Bay and from Kilnahard down to Crover, Crane Island, Bog Bay, Corru and Sailors Garden and into Goreport, Lynch’s Pt., Derrysheridan and Derry Pt.
A catch & release policy is actively encouraged on the lake at all times
Please remember anglers to abide by BYE-LAW 949 which strictly prohibits from June 14th 2017 onwards:
- The taking of any brown trout of less than 36 centimeters.
- For a person to fish with more than 2 rods at any one time.
- To fish with more than 4 rods at any one time when there is more than one person on board the boat concerned.
- For a person to take more than 2 trout per day.
- All trolling on the lake from March 1st to June 16th (inclusive).
- To fish or to attempt to take or to fish for, fish of any kind other than during the period from March 1st to October 12th in any year.
Lough Sheelin Guiding Services (www.loughsheelinguidingservices.com) 087 1245927
Michael Farrell @ 087 4194156Telephone: +353 43 6681298 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Grey Duster Guiding
Tel: 086 8984172 Email: email@example.com
John Mulvany firstname.lastname@example.org 086 2490076
D.C Angling & Guiding Services – contact David @ 087 3946989
Please remember All anglers are required to have a Fishery Permit to fish Lough Sheelin which must be purchased BEFORE going out on the lake.