Friday, September 30, 2011

Ballycotton update....

Colm Sliney, skipper of the Sarah Marie, reports on a good day recently. Colm had a gang out who wanted to target pollack. Dropping anchor on a peak that's less than 30 minutes from Ballycotton Pier, Colm had his client's on one of his favourite hotspsots. The lads soon got cracking and lashed out the gilling gear. Within minutes they were all into fish and a steady stream of fish came onboard all day. A good portion of the fish were touching double figures which was great to see. The lads stuck at it all day and even while releasing many fish still had quite a sizeable box of fish by the end of the day.

If you'd fancy a day out with Colm have a look at his website here for contact details. Colm operates on the eastern end of the Angling Hub and fishes the waters off Ballycotton Island and east towards Cable Island.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Summer action onboard the Wreckhunter

Joe Lynch, skipper of the Wreckhunter, is reporting on a great season so far. The Wreckhunter is the biggest boat in the Harbour Charter fleet. Its a fine catamaran with ample deck space. The wheelhouse boasts state of the art electronics with pride of place going to the 3D depth sounder which gives a graphic illustration of the ocean floor.

Joe gives us this report '...Wreckhunter's season so far has been dominated by the very uncertain supply of mackeral all season, as has been the case for all other skippers aswell. Cod have figured highly, on occasions catching them like mackeral; sometimes not much bigger. On one memorable evening we had 150 cod in 45 minutes, right at the end of the session. Best cod so far was a lovely 17lber (pictured above) caught by James O' Callaghan on the Ling Rocks. Pollack have been relatively scarce and noticeably smaller than usual; are cod out-competing them for the food supply?

In the Cobh International we had the biggest conger on 3 of the 4 days; 15kg, 13kg, and Danny Kane's 19kg specimen on the last day. Conditions were tough this year and there were very few fresh mackeral. We are looking forward to catching some fine cod this Autumn in the predicted first cold snaps of the winter. The boat will be staying in the water this year, where hopefully it will be safe from the fingers of Jack Frost and ready for some BIG cod action!!!'

If you'd fancy a day's fishing out on the Wreckhunter contact Joe directly. Contact details can be found on the Wreckhunter website here.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

2011 International Festival...the results

Danny Kane, Cobh SAC, has won the Cobh International Deep Sea Angling Festival, held in Cork Harbour last week. This is Danny's second year in a row winning this event and comes just two week's after finishing third in the National Boat Masters. Well done Danny!!!

Danny, didn't have it easy, though, and was lying in 6th position coming into the final day. He beat off stiff competition to reach the top spot, narrowly squeezing past Steve Williams of Wales by only 55 points!

This year's competition was a superb event with numbers up on last year. 52 anglers from 6 nations participated with a few new faces amongst the hardy annuals. Some of the international anglers have now been participating year on year. In fact one group of Dutch lads have now fished the Festival 36 years on the trot! That's dedication for you but is also a testament to what a great event this Festival is.

As is the case every year, the boats used were from the Cork Harbour Angling Hub fleet. This year the following boats were used; the John Boy, the Lee Star, the Naomh Cartha, the Cuan Ban, the Wreck Hunter, and the Lagosta II. Many thanks to the skippers whose facilities and expertise were second to none. Indeed, with the tough conditions that prevailed their expertise was
called upon. Weather conditions for the week were extremely tough with frequent gale force winds, intermittant squalls, and sea-states at times exceeding three to four metres. Despite this the skippers did put the anglers on fish.

On two of the days the boats were able to get out to the outer reefs; the Smiths reef on one day and the Pollack Rock reef on another. On the other two days the boats were confined to the Harbour mouth and within 1 mile of Roches Point. Fishing as a result was tough. Nevertheless, a good mixture of fish were landed with good numbers of pollack, cod, ling, and conger, along with whiting, grey gurnard, red gurnard, cuckoo wrasse, ballan wrasse, whiting, dabs, huss, and dogs. Good quality conger were landed every day with many conger up around the
15kg mark. Fish of the week, though, was a superb specimen conger of 19.0kg landed on the final day by Danny Kane.

In winning the event Danny collected a cheque for €1,000 aswell as an array of crystal and trophies. Steve Williams of Wales, as runner-up, collected a cheque for €400, and Tom Johnson, Ireland, in third place won €200. The winning two-man team of Steve Williams and Paul Tennant collected a cheque for €400. Most species went to Andrew Tucker of Wales with 8 species and most number of fish went to Pat O' Shea, Cobh SAC, with 48 fish. On the ladies side two old salts, Sandra O' Shea and Tina Kneeshaw slugged it out for pole position. This year was to be Tina's year; well done Tina! For a more detailed report and results have a look here.

Once again the social side of this event was memorable. Many thanks to the pubs and restaurants that sponsored each night's entertainment where the craic, banter and slagging went on till the wee hours. The one that got away certainly seemed bigger after a few pints of the dark stuff!

Work is already under way in organising and planning next year's event. The fishing should be very good next year as the event coincides with the first set of springs in September. If you would like to fish next year's event or would like more information why not contact Cobh SAC club secretary, Mary Geary, on 00-353-21-812167 or by email on

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Cork Small Boats Festival 2011

With less than three weeks to go to this year's Cork Small Boats Festival there is a heightened anticipation amongst the participating small boat anglers. Although, the closing date for entry is not yet upon us, Fetsival organiser, Jim Clohessy, is confident that all entries are now in and he's glad to report that this year's entry has matched previous years.

Now the real work starts for the anglers as they countdown the days to the start day. All will be busy collecting the required bait. Local anglers will be seen putting the hours in on the harbour lug beds, rag beds, razor beds, etc.,... Back breaking work but it needs to be done to make sure a sufficient supply of fresh bait is available.

It will be all worth it in the end, though, as the well prepared anglers chalk up the species count. Indeed, upto nearly 50 species of fish have been caught in previous years. To get into the top three positions teams will need to record over 25 species to be in with a chance.

Have a look at the Small Boats Festival website here for a look at previous years results. The site also features articles on the Festival from the 'Irish Angler' magazine. Its a treasure trove of information for the angler interested in species hunting and highlights the strengths of Cork Harbour as a host venue with its varied habitats both inside and outside the harbour. However, why don't you call down to the weigh-in every evening, have a look at the varied species being recorded and get the chance to talk to those participating. I'm sure they wouldn't mind sharing a secret or two!

The 2011 Cork Small Boats Festival starts on the 23rd September and ends on the 30th September.

Fishing so far on the John Boy....

Donie Geary, skipper of the John Boy, has reported that he has had a great season so far. According to Donie '....I've just come to the end of two hectic months, with July and August being the busiest for years.'

'It was good to see my annual groups from Wales, Holland, and England, and not forgetting the boys from Dublin, who I reckon will be having cod for dinner twice a week for the next 12 months. It was also good to see Tommy and the boys from Cavan who enjoyed excellent fishing in glorious sunshine last weekend.'

'Cod fishing has been at an all time high with double figure fish being caught regularly. In fact we've targeted cod fishing so much that I've hardly dropped anchor in about 3 weeks.'

'Last Saturday, after landing a good box of cod, I decided to give the boys from Cavan a taste of conger fishing. I dropped anchor just at the start of the flood and over the course of the incoming tide we landed 20 conger and a few nice ling.'

'On Sunday the boys wanted to go back on the conger and after a very slow start we finished up with about 30 conger, many over 20lbs, and a few ling. One of these was a fine fish of over 15lbs, which, when it comes to reef fishing, is not that common.'

All have re-booked for 2012, which is the best compliment a skipper can get I reckon.'

If you'd fancy a day out fishing on the John Boy have a look at Donie's website here for contact details and more information.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Cod feist continues...onboard Lee Star

Veteran skipper and angler, Johnny Geary, is one of the many Cork Harbour skippers who have been getting his clients on the cod this Summer. John has put his boat, the Lee Star, over some of the reliable cod marks of old and they have come up trumps.

John has sent us on some of the photographs from a group he had out last weekend. As you can see a good stamp of cod was caught by all.

If you'd like a day out on the Lee Star with Johnny why not contact him through his website here.

Bass 'n Blues

Charlie Hendron from Belfast and his buddy Marc from Zambia were on a mission - catch Charlie his first bass!!! Both lads opted to try Cork Harbour as recent reports were quite encouraging.

While they were coming down they decided to squeeze in a few varied fishing adventures to spice things up. A three day sojourn was organised using the Commodore Hotel in Cobh as a base. On day 1 they were to go shark hunting with Jim Linehan onboard Deora De; on day 2 they were taking a Warrior 175 from the Bellavista fleet to target the reefs and chalk up as many species as possible; and on day 3 they were going to devote the day to targeting that elusive bass.

Well how did the lads get on, I hear you say. Let's just say Mission Accomplished!!! Charlie did manage to get that first bass of his. Mind you he went one better and managed to get a beauty, weighing in at 8lb 6oz. Well done Charlie!!!

Marc also got in on the action and also bagged a few bass.

The previous two days the lads had exhausting but rewarding fishing. On Monday they bagged a fine blue of over 80lbs in weight, and had another who resisted the bait but played water polo with the floats. On Tuesday the species hunt went to plan but best of all Wednesday's bass brought a smile to everyone's face.

If you'd fancy a day targeting the blues onboard Deora De see here for Jim Linehan's contact details.

The Commodore Hotel are doing attractive accommodation rates for visiting anglers. Contact Mary at reservations at 00-353-21-4811277 or by email on Alternatively have a look at the hotel's website here.

If you'd fancy booking one of the Bellavista self-drive boats for the day have a look here.