Outdoors at Toberpatrick ttp://www.ashley-hayden.com/
Toberpatrick Old World Cottages are the ideal base from which to plan an angling holiday. Wild Brown Trout are plentiful in the rivers and lakes of the Wicklow Mountains, along with good seasonal runs of Sea Trout. For the sea angler, Bass, Smooth Hound, Tope, and Grey Mullet to specimen size can be targeted from the local coastline, along with a range of lesser species such as Codling, Flounder, and Mackerel.
The local Aughrim and Avonmore Rivers offer superb Wild Brown Trout fishing, and in their lower reaches the opportunity to catch Sea Trout in season. These rivers run off moor land, and in their middle sections flow through beautiful wooded valleys. Two local clubs, the Aughrim Trout Anglers and the Rathdrum Trout Anglers control the Brown Trout fishing, and day tickets are available.
The Brown trout average 6 – 8 oz, with the odd fish reaching a pound plus. They are free rising and on light tackle give great sport. Local fly patterns are the Greenwells Spider, Partridge and Orange, and Kill Devil Spider, all in size 14. Sea Trout average a pound, and start to run from mid July onwards to the end of the season. A state licence is required for Sea Trout, and useful flies to stock are the Butcher, Kill Devil Spider, and Teal Blue and Silver, all in size ten/twelve.
Other local rivers within easy reach are the Slaney and Derreen. The Slaney has a good run of spring Salmon from March through to May, with Sea Trout running from mid June through to mid August. Wild Brown Trout, again averaging 6 – 8 oz, are abundant in its upper to middle reaches. The river Derreen, a tributary of the Slaney, flows through rich farmland, and offers a real possibility of Salmon in the spring, along with good Wild Brown Trout fishing. Again, a state licence is required for Salmon and Sea Trout, with access to both rivers controlled by either the riparian owner or the local angling club.
Ireland recognised Bass as a sport fish and banned commercial fishing for this species in 1990. As a result of this initiative stock levels of Bass are on the increase, which is a plus both for the resident and tourist angler. Anglers should note that only two Bass per angler can be kept within any 24 hour period, with catch and release encouraged. A number of local marks varying from low rocky head lands, to surf beaches, afford the opportunity to catch this hard fighting bar of silver. Methods vary from surf casting with natural baits such as Lugworm (a local favourite), crab, and mackerel, to lure fishing with plugs, poppers, and spinners.
Besides Bass the shore angler can expect to encounter Smooth Hound to eight pounds, Flatfish, Dogfish, Codling, and Coalfish. A feature of late autumn fishing along the north Wicklow coastline is the possibility of catching shore Tope. Specialist fishing it is, but in recent years Tope to sixty pounds have been landed off the local shingle beaches, with October and November being the months to target.
Another specialist fish available to specimen size is the Grey Mullet. Courtown Harbour (early morning), the Broad Lough near Wicklow town, and the Breaches south of Kilcoole, have resident shoals of this species. Fish to five pounds have been caught using methods such as float fished bread flake, and fly fishing.
Toberpatrick Old World Cottages stock a range of frozen bait, flies, and lures suitable for the area. We can also arrange at two days notice supplies of Lugworm and Ragworm.
A local angler familiar with the area is Ashley Hayden. He maintains a web site which is full of up to date information and tips, and well worth a browse. The web address is; http://www.ashley-hayden.com/. Ashley has kindly made himself available to be contacted, his phone number is; 00353 (0)86 869 7370.
Ashley Hayden ©