Friday, 21 February 2014

Salmon Fishing Ireland 2014. Blackwater River.

Driving on the motorway i passed over the Blackwater river and noticed that there was a very large frothline going down the centre of the river, that didn't look good because the colour of the froth was cream and not white meaning badly coloured water. On arriving at the Lodge i met Ian and he had fresh information conserning the water clarity upstream which was only about 18 inches and also that the water had come up. Hearing that they had caught and released a fresh 6lb salmon on Wednesday and that there was also one lost upstream made me feel a bit more optimistic. In reality the water was very coloured with only 12 inches of visibility at Lower Kilmurray with a strong downstream gale blowing that made it very hard to slow down the spinner and gain proper depth. Starting off on a Black/Silver flying c and then moving over to Red/Gold and then finishing up on a Yellow/Gold i covered the lies as best i could with my upstream spinning method then changing over to a 28gr White/ Silver Toby i fished back downstream and hooked into a fish but it didn't stay long enough as it was more of a bump fumble and drop not giving me much time to tell if it was a kelt or a fresh fish and very understandable considering water clarity and Tobys. Unfortunately when fishing with Tobys they have such a great action that sometimes the hook-ups aren't great and you can lose fish, even when using a double split ring to move the hooks even further away from the spoon fish will still come off. Here are some photo's of Upper and Lower Kilmurray showing water heights and clarity.

                                          Water up to the top of the ladder in lower Kilmurray

                                          Water clarity only 12 to 18 inches early morning

                                         Heavy squall with sleet  / rain moving through
                                          A brief moment of sunshine

                                          Casting platform needs a bit of spot welding

                                          Upper Kilmurray

                                          The winds at upper Ballyhooley

                                          Lower Ballyhooley

Finishing up at lower Ballyhooley the water clarity was much better at over 2 ft and there was definitely a drop in water height so if it keeps dropping away like this and the water clarity improves there should be some more fish caught over the weekend. The water clarity was over four feet and there was a nice upstream wind when the fish were met on Wednesday, i didn't get the temperature but it had to be a lot warmer than today because it definitely dropped to less than 3 degrees in the showers and biting winds.


  1. Hi Paul, i spent a few hours today above the bridge spinning in Ballyhooley today but all was quiet, did not even see a kelt in the few hours i spent up there, the only company i had was an otter. Its a nice place to do a bit of spinning as its definately a place a salmon would rest up after running the heavy water on the other side of the bridge.I will definately be back for an other few days out on Ian`s beats over the season. Regards kieran.

  2. Hi Kieran, the good news is that with any luck all the kelts will have made it back and in two years time there will be some big fish returning back into the blackwater. Regards Paul.

  3. Paul when do they usually have permits in the Top garage for the dam fishery? as i went to purchase one today in the hope to have gone fishing, but they did not receive any permits yet. I would thought by now the start of March the garage would have had them. Its a shame because it was such a mild day, it would have nice to have done a days spinning. Hopefully by next weekend the will have them. I was wondering if a car without four wheel drive be able to get down the lane on woodside after all the rain without getting stuck? Regards Kieran.

    1. Hi Kieran, i have no idea when they will put out the permits, they are always very slow you would think that they didn't know that the salmon season was open over a month ago. I haven't seen the path on the woodside yet so i don't know what condition its in but normally you can get a car up to the dam or very near it. Regards Paul.

  4. Paul did you hear if they are issuing permits yet for the dam at the filling station? Also there are a few new trout/ pike / coarse fishing lakes after opening in Co..Waterford "Anne Valley Angling Complex" 15 euro for a permit great value for a days fishing. Check it out in the trout section of Ireland Angling Update. Regards Kieran.

  5. Hi Kieran, i didn't hear anything about the permits, there are people looking for permits but no news from ESB. Same as last year they don't care about the anglers. I will definitely check out those lakes and at 15 euros for a days fishing that is a bargain. Regards Paul.