I fished the Blackwater Lodge beats of Upper and Lower Kilmurray and the Ballyhooly Bridge on thursday morning the 9th of February last with my fishing buddy Kieran Conlon. We had heard that there were three salmon caught last week weighing between six to eight pounds on the Blackwater Lodge Beats so we decided to give it a go. The weather was extremely mild for this time of year and we were slightly over dressed to say the least as i was actually sweating, but at least you can take layers off when you are warm. We fly fished Lower Kilmurray early in the morning and then moved up to Upper Kilmurray a few hours later not having any luck or seeing any fresh fish. I then spun the beats with a twenty gram black and silver flying 'c' size four blade to get down deep and follow the bottom contours. Normally i would either move or meet fish with this method but this time i had no success.
We moved up to Ballyhooly Bridge later in the afternoon and again we fly fished and spun it down stream of the bridge only meeting the odd out of season brown trout which we released. Later that evening we fished the bridge pool under the pine trees where there is a nice salmon lie but again to no avail. We then moved up above the bridge to the flats where i changed down to a fiftheen gram black and copper flying 'c' with a size three blade because it was shallower with a nice gravel bottom and the lighter spinner worked better there. I saw a salmon head and tail above me at the bend so i walked upstream to cover the fish, i wasn't sure if it was fresh or not because it was some distance away but my motto is to cover what i see as best as i can. I caught six kelts in quick succession which i brought in and released quickly. There were a lot of kelts holding up in that pool so i decided to move away and let them in peace. We fished away until dark but didn't see or touch any fresh fish, it's hard days like these that make you enjoy the catching of a fresh salmon.