Angling Notes: Best of Times on a weekend fishing outing to Cobh

Quality of fishing and excellent accommodation ticks all required boxes for visitors

Cobh in Co Cork certainly lived up to expectations following the recent fishing outing with a group from The Irish Times. The weekend was hailed as ‘one of the best’ in terms of quality of fish and the excellent accommodation afforded to our group.

From the fishing perspective, we were, of course, blessed with probably the most experienced skipper in the Irish fleet, Donal Geary, aboard his vessel ‘John Boy’, a Lochin 33ft with 300hp Caterpillar engines.

With more than 40 years experience of charter angling to his credit, he ticks all the boxes when it comes to looking after his crew, especially with those nasty underwater cross-tangles and unhooking the ‘big one’! The mug of coffee/tea is always much appreciated too.

When it comes to preparing (gutting) your catch there is no better skipper to salvage every morsel of flesh. Asked nicely, he will even ‘skin’ the fish ready for cooking.


All aboard, our day started from the jetty beside the Titanic Museum and on our first stop adjacent to Roches Point, we encountered a few mackerel for bait and some herring. Here again, Donal’s experience shone through with a box of frozen mackerel ready for use.

Onward and outward, 10 miles south to be exact, we started our drift in 120ft of water on a pinpoint GPS mark. Straightaway, fishing began in earnest. Whiting, codling, ling, pouting, launce, wrasse and pollock, all to within 2.5lb were brought on board (and mostly released).

Later, however, with a tidal change, the real fishing began. The codling became cod, some to 8lb and the ling exceeded 10lb. This trend continued up to our final hour with a test of strength to the fore for each of the group. Exhausted, quietness prevailed for the return journey!

Our accommodation was somewhat different from the usual hotel set up. The Bella Vista Hotel, although full, recently refurbished a house (annex) to a high standard on a self-catering basis and within five minutes of the main thoroughfare.

With all the mod cons for cooking and five bedrooms (singles and doubles), the suite exceeded our expectations and met all our requirements. To cap it all, the main hotel sent a courier delivery each morning of hot scones!!

For booking John Boy, contact Donal at 021-481 2167 or Bella Vista contact details are 021-481 2450 or

World Cup trout fly angling champinship on Lough Mask

Entries are now being accepted for the 63rd World Cup trout fly angling championship. The event will take place on Lough Mask from Thursday 1st to Monday 5th August, 2019 with fishing out from Cushlough Bay in Ballinrobe, Co Mayo.

The competition consists of four heats, i.e. Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday with the final on Monday. A maximum of one quarter of competitors from each heat go forward to the final. A competitor may take part in one heat only.

Closing date for entries is Wednesday, 24th July and must include entry fee of €140 to Esther Sweeney, 30 Lakelawns, Ballinrobe, Co Mayo. Tel: 087-2222 867. For PayPal facility, visit

Weekend course at Drowes Salmon Fishery

Ken Whelan and Jason O’Riordan will host a weekend course (Friday evening to Sunday) at the Drowes Salmon Fishery, Lareen, Co Leitrim on August 30th to September 1st, 2019. The course will explain and demonstrate salmon behaviour, fishing tactics, rod and line selection, flies/lures, casting techniques and fish locations.

For local accommodation, contact: The fee is €195 and places are limited. Contact or +353 86 783 5900.

Frontiers Travel trip to Ponoi River in Russia

Frontiers Travel has the following vacancies on the Ponoi River in Russia from 17th to 24th August (3 rods) and 31st August to 7th September (4 rods). Also, for a week of amazing autumn-run fishing, join Tarquin Millington-Drake from 28th September to 5th October (1 rod).

If interested, please get in touch with a team member at 1-800-245-1950 or