Artur ‘Pike Seeker’ sent us in the report below where he describes catching a cracking pike on the River Barrow:
I bought a lure from Jacek Gorny, a “Disco Pike Size XL” and went fishing with a friend. We drove up the section of the Barrow River in Co. Carlow. It is a beautiful stretch of river. There was no contact for the first half of the day. At around 12 o’clock I cast a long throw between the reeds and started slowly retrieving the bait. After a while, I felt a strong blow. I have strong fishing equipment so there were no problems with hauling out. Beautiful pike and my PB 113cm, 11kg.
It has been a quiet week for angling in Ireland as the unsettled weather of last week continued with wet and windy wintry conditions in most parts of the country. The first days of December saw vast amounts of rain, and as a consequence, many inland fisheries experienced high water levels and flooding. Some estuaries were full of freshwater too and this no doubt impacted on the sea angling recently.
However, some areas escaped the windy weather for a little while allowing for almost perfect angling conditions. This was the case in West Cork where angling Guide David Norman of West Cork Bass experienced excellent kayak fishing together with a client in almost perfect conditions.
In sea angling news we have a further report of excellent late season fishing from Co. Kerry. Sea Bass Hunter Tomasz Eckert has been enjoying some late season sport recently, deep in the Kingdom of Co. Kerry. A passionate lure angler, Tomasz knows his marks intimately, and when they will produce. But even he probably didn’t expect the quality of the recent sport for late November and early December when he caught a fantastic bass of 73cm which wins our Catch of the Week!
Elsewhere, Sea-Angling-Ireland SAC hosted the annual All Ireland Open Cod Championships on Youghal Beach on Saturday last. Over 50 anglers took part in this popular event but the fishing in general was difficult. There were fish to be had by anglers willing to experiment with different ranges and smaller baits. Check out the full report and results here.
In pike angling we received a fantastic report from Ronan Murray of Irishpikefishingguides.com.Ronan fishes on a range of lakes in and around the Cavan area, and with water temperatures being so high for this time of year, he and his clients have had some great success fishing lures catching over fourteen 20lbs+ fish and two falling just shy of the magic 30lbs over the past few weeks.
Early tonight rain will extend southeastwards across the country, with further scattered showers following behind, some of which will be heavy with the potential for isolated thunderstorms, hail and sleet, particularly over higher ground in the northwest. Frost may develop in some sheltered areas with lowest temperatures of 0 to 4 degrees in moderate to fresh westerly winds. The weekend will be cold with more wintry showers and moderate to fresh west to northwest winds. The outlook for the week ahead is for more cold and unsettled weather with winds gradually easing but there will be further showers, some wintry, and spells of rain.
Dutch anglers Patrick and Ruben were looking forward to their trip to Ireland this year after having to cancel last year due to the travel restrictions. Both guys have stayed with host Kevin Lyons of Melview Lodge before, so they know the waters well. Their last visit saw them have some cracking Pike and Patrick managed his personal best of 107 cm that trip, so this trip he and Ruben were in search of a 107 +.
The week started with most of their Pike in 96, 97 and 98 bracket, then the Pike started to hit the 1m and up to 104cm. The last day had come and it was a case of it’s today or wait for the next visit. They were around four hours into their session using various dead baits and Patrick got into a good fish and was praying for something over the 107cm. They landed the Pike safely and measured in at 110cm, so celebrations all round.
Patrick said that on his next visit to Melview Fishing Lodge next year he wants to beat this new PB, no pressure then for host Kevin. Well done guys and thanks for your company and I’m looking forward to seeing you back next year.
Kevin has over 30 years experience of fishing in Ireland and is happy to offer a guided tour on your arrival, and to advise where the on-form waters in the area are. We can arrange your bait order so it’s here when you arrive. Melview offers free use of 17ft lake boats with engines to our guests (pay fuel only) and Kevin is happy to assist with any pre-baiting requests. Maps and other information regarding fishing are also available.
David Norman of West Cork Bass reports that the great late season action continues along the West Cork coast. David had an excellent time afloat on the yaks guiding Dublin based Andy Kish earlier this week having 6 hrs of near non-stop action in perfect conditions!
West Cork Bass
David Norman is a Clonakilty based Bass Fishing Guide and Coach specialising in Shore Based Lure Fishing & Workshops.
Notes: Having intensively fished for Bass (Catch & Release) on the West Cork Coast plus all of the recognised Bass fishing counties of Ireland I want to share with other like-minded anglers the thrills of responsible lure fishing for Bass on a One-to-One basis over a limited number of trips throughout the key times of the Bass fishing Year, which for me is June – Sept, sometimes earlier or later depending on how the weather is behaving…
I can offer a range of options around key tides, to include night fishing, in a safe and environmentally conscious manner including bespoke workshops to help build knowledge and confidence
Our thanks once again to Pete Davis, who is becoming a regular contributor to shore fishing reports, with another great write-up of a big competition at the weekend.
All-Ireland Cod Championships
Sea-Angling-Ireland SAC hosted the annual All Ireland Open Cod Championships on Youghal beach on Saturday last. This event kindly sponsored once again by Henrys Tackle, http://www.henrystackleshop.com. The Cod Open is one of the most looked forward to Open competitions on the calendar, it gives every angler the shot at winning €500 which is awarded (usually!) to the angler landing the largest cod.
You have the choice of hunting down that biggie or fishing standard match tactics to compete for the match prizes on top of that. There is a junior section also within this and all anglers, young or old are eligible to win the €500 main prize. With a pool for the longest Flatfish, Ray and Roundfish, there’s something for everyone to go target and be in with a realistic shot of winning!
54 anglers minus 1 or two cancellations, split into 3 zones made their way onto the beach to be greeted by calm seas and clear water. Like in my last report from the Munsters 2 weeks ago, unfortunately we are trapped in a cycle this winter of rising tides into darkness at the weekends coming on the smallest of tides. Unseasonably good weather despite a fresh Northerly blow the evening before had left the sea crystal clear. This as any regular beach angler will know is less than ideal but unfortunately there’s not a thing that can be done about it. Open fixtures have to be submitted many months in advance, as we all know, there’s no accounting for the weather and nothing that can be done about the tide book either. Still, always a chance and there was a degree of excitement around the beach as 4.30pm arrived and lines were cast out to the backdrop of a stunning winter sunset in a bitter northerly breeze.
The fishing in general was difficult. There were fish to be had by anglers willing to experiment with different ranges and smaller baits. Fishing the end peg with Liam, my son, we managed 8 species between us but unfortunately not the elusive Cod. We had a feeling in advance of the competition that given conditions and given 40 odd anglers hadn’t seen a cod 2 weeks prior in the Munsters that there was a distinct possibility there wouldn’t be one caught. Contingency plan was that in that event, the €500 top prize for the largest cod would go to the captor of the largest Ray on the night and so it came to pass. After 5 hours, lines up was called and it was clear that the fishing had been hard.
The €500 big fish prize went to Kevin Hayden for an 81cm Ray. Congrats to Kevin, that’s a grand fish on any day and all the better with a bundle of €50 notes attached to it! On the match front, results were as follows:
David O’Sullivan had the highest score on the beach with 11 fish for 300 points from Zone C.
Pete Davis took Zone A with 8 fish for 260 points.
John Diamond in 2nd with 4 fish for 114pts and JP Molloy in 3rd with 4 fish for 104pts.
Joe Carley took Zone B with 6 fish for 152 points.
Jim O’Brien in 2nd with 2 fish for 98 points and Don O’Neill with 3 fish for 97 pts in 3rd.
Zone C, (excluding the overall winner David O’Sullivan) was won by Stephen O’Donovan with 9 fish for 237pts
Troy Francis in 2nd with 4 fish for 186pts and Marco De Kleer with 5 fish for 153pts in 3rd.
Liam Davis won the Junior section with 11 fish for 279pts with Kaitlin de Kleer in 2nd with 7 fish for 149 points.
Longest Ray (excluding Kevins overall big fish winner) went to Stephen O’Donovan. Liam Davis (jr) shared the longest roundfish prize with Jim O’Brien with them both having a 43cm bass apiece. Josh Corbett won the longest flatfish pool. Whilst the fishing hadn’t been great, the prize table had been substantial with around €1400 in total given out across the board.
I may well be accused of nepotism here (and they’d probably be right!) but the story of the night however belonged to 14 year old Liam Davis who absolutely fished his socks off on peg 2. He put together a fine card on the night of 11 fish by mixing things up, working the area in front of him methodically and continually picking off fish when all around him others struggled. His score, to put it into context, amidst a high class field with many ex international match anglers was bested only by David O’Sullivan on the night; he would have been second on the beach overall fishing as a senior. There is nothing flukey about this – he has been quietly doing this all year, fishing junior sections at various club competitions, leaving many of us in his wake scratching our heads and he deserves great credit for this. Kaitlin de Kleer one of the other junior anglers up the other end of the beach managed the 4th highest numbers of fish caught on the night with 7 in what was another superb performance by one of the young guns, it’s great to see it.
A massive thanks once again to Henry Lynam of Henrys Tackle in Ballybough in Dublin, http://www.henrystackleshop.com. Henry, without your support both of this event and the clubs regular competitions we would have struggled, its greatly appreciated. We would also like to thank Ken Forsyth for his kind donation of a voucher for the best junior.
Thanks also to the usual crew on the SAI committee in particular John Diamond who does an enormous amount of the donkeywork behind the scenes at our opens and throughout the year and deserves great credit for that.
Sea-Angling-Ireland SAC is a club made up of members from around the country and fishes various areas over the year. We will be taking membership very shortly, if you are interested in joining SAI-SAC, please get in touch via our facebook page or via the forums on http://www.sea-angling-ireland.org, we would be delighted to hear from you. You may also sign up at http://www.saisac.org/about/
Sea Bass Hunter Tomasz Eckert has been enjoying some late season sport recently, deep in the Kingdom of Co. Kerry. A passionate lure angler, Tomasz knows his marks intimately, and when they will produce. But even he probably didn’t expect the quality of the recent sport for late November and early December.
On Tuesday he landed a fantastic bass of 73cm. All summer and autumn he waited for a big fish, only to get it on the last day of November! A super catch.
And the fishing continues into December. Yesterday was a special day (happy birthday Tomasz!) so of course he went fishing! Although they weren’t huge on this occasion, he had two nice bass. One of the fish was tagged, and it turns out was tagged in Galway Bay last September. That’s a journey of approx. 160km in a couple of months, which goes to show how mobile these fish are. See the link below for more info on the National Bass Programme and tagging work, and how anglers can participate in citizen science to improve our knowledge of these fascinating fish.
Well done Tomasz, and keep up the good work!
National Bass Programme
IFI has established a National Bass Programme to collect data on bass in order to provide scientific advice to support management and conservation of Ireland’s bass resource. Bass is Ireland’s only marine fish species which is managed for angling. The programme is being developed to determine the status of bass stocks and also to improve understanding of their ecology and biology in Ireland for the long-term sustainability of the species. See further details on www.fisheriesireland.ie/Projects/national-bass-programme
Ronan Murray of Irishpikefishingguides.com has sent in some photos of the cracking pike he and his clients have been catching over the past month or so. Ronan fishes on a range of lakes in and around the Cavan area, and with water temperature’s being so high for this time of year, he has had some great success fishing lures. Several of his clients have caught their PB while fishing with him and with over 14 20lb + fish and 2 falling just shy of the magic 30lb to the boat in November, it’s not hard to see why…
The good pike fishing on Lough Erne continues with the biggest fish of the season for Michael at 22lbs. 1oz. In a bitterly cold day the bites came steady enough and were followed up with a 17lbs. and a few smaller doubles!
It was an enjoyable day with Michael and his brother and father!
The CM Lakelands continued their winter feeder league on Lough Muckno last weekend and had a good turnout with 33 anglers showing up on the day. Fishing was good, particularly on the South Shore swims and James O’Doherty came out on top with a bag of 7kg. Full results online here: CM Lakelands
Newbridge & District Pike Anglers held their annual open pike competition last weekend and had a huge turnout with over 100 anglers turning up to fish on Poulaphouca Reservoir. Fishing was extraordinarily difficult and only 21 fish were caught during the day with the prize being shared by two anglers (John O’Connor & Carl O’Reilly) who managed to catch pike of 10lb 03oz each. Full report online here Newbridge & District Pike Anglers