There are €2000 in cash prizes to be won in this year's Cobh International Deep Sea Angling Festival. That's on top of the usual array of crystal prizes. In fact the total prize fund now stands at over €7,500. If you haven't booked in for this event, you should seriously think about giving it a shot, especially as the fishing out of Cork Harbour this year has been so good. The Festival starts on Monday 6th September and runs over 4 days concluding on Friday 10th September.
The fishing over the years at this event has been excellent. It is a unique competition in that points are scored mainly by weight. This is a throw back to the format of old competitions prior to the introduction of conservation in the '70's. In fact Cobh SAC were one of the first clubs to pioneer competitions run under a conservation format. Nevertheless, this competition is the nearest you'll get to the old competitions of yesteryear. The fish are still returned, mind!!! However, they are weighed onboard and recorded to the nearest 0.5kg. Points are awarded by kg and per fish. As a result many of the competitors concentrate on fishing for conger and quite hefty scores can be notched up as the average conger in these parts weigh between 10 and 20 kgs. The heaviest fish last year was a 15kg conger, but there were many of similar size. In prior years they have been even heavier. Here's a picture of Cobh SAC member, Richie Fortune, with one that weighed over 20kgs.
It's not all conger, though, and quality cod, ling, and pollack abound. Indeed, tactics come into play and many a previous winner has concentrated on gilling for pollack for the week.
What marks this competition out, though, is the banter and fun to be had during the week. Needless to say it doesn't just end in the boats, but carries on in the various watering holes that all competitors retire to from the pier. Its that mix of quality fishing and craic that has made this such a successful event over the years. Indeed, the competition is in its 44th year now and many of the international anglers from England, Scotland, Wales, Germany, Belgium, and Holland have been returning year in, year out.
The beauty about Cork Harbour, aswell, is that in the event of inclement weather there are still productive venues that can be fished. Its definitely one to mark in your calendar. If you are interested in fishing this Festival you can contact Cobh SAC Club secretary, Mary Geary, on 021 - 4812167 for more information, or download the entry forms at http://www.flickr.com/photos/cobhsac/. Don't delay, book today!!!
(There's a small bit more info here http://cobhsac.blogspot.com/)