Salmon fishing in the West of Ireland

Salmon fishing in the West of Ireland

Atlantic Salmon are a fish native to Ireland and most rivers will see salmon between spring and autumn. You can catch salmon in Irish waters from the start of the year, through to October and the larger fish called Springers, are more likely to be found in the earlier part of the year, weighing up to 9lbs. The graceful salmon are beautiful to behold and to say you’ve caught one, especially quickly, is a victory indeed! The best place to catch a Springer is on the River Drowes in County Donegal or River Laune in County Kerry.

The biggest salmon run consists of grilse or summer salmon. They are the most sporty and fast-paced, acrobatic fish and are ready to accept flies or well-presented baits. They can weigh from three to six pounds and are found throughout the country. The main running times vary between river systems, but most begin in June. This is when fisheries like Moy in County Mayo and Munster Blackwater in County Cork enjoy amazing sport in a natural atmosphere. Irish run grills are some of the most productive in Western Europe and offer salmon fishermen the best chance of success.

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Many Irish rivers also have a large flow of salmon with the first rain fall. This fall run is often the biggest share of adult salmon returning to the catchment. These fish continue to enter the system after the season closes and thus ensure productive fishing of salmon in many waters until the end of the season. If you’ve a passion for fishing, then consider a fishing break and get here with Irish Airports like


Lough fishing for salmon is a speciality in Ireland. Most fish are best if there are good waves.

Boat fishing allows anglers to gain access to water and fish that could not be reached from the river’s edge. They also allow anglers to cover a larger area of ​​water than when fishing at a bank. Boats can be rented at all major fishing centres. The echo sounder is a useful aid on a larger lough. This equipment is used primarily to ensure depth, and to find fish and the depth in which they eat.

Lough Gill

Lough Gill is pretty large, approximately 6.5 miles in length from east to west and 2.5 miles wide at its thickest point. It can be found to Sligo’s east by approximately 3 miles and conveniently there is public access and parking. The lough contains both salmon and brown trout. Some loughs have a reputation for having salmon as the dominant angler species and this is one of them. Most of the fishing here is done by the method of trolling with February and March being considered good months, along with May, but after that salmon fishing is over for this season.

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Bonet River

The Bonet River rises north of Manorhamilton, County Leitrim, on Glenade Lake. It flows south, past the town of Manorhamilton, then turns west, and on to the east part of Lough Gill. It is a great fishery for spring salmon and grilse, with fishing dependent on the water levels. This river has a number of private fisheries and syndicate waters.

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