Sunday, 13 December 2015

3 days Pike Fishing on Lough Derg Ireland

Took me a while to put my toughs together of my last pike fishing trip down the south direction of Ireland. Lough be honest it's quiet hard to find the right words to describe this lake. I can not deny I fell in love with it first sight when I arrived in Killaloe. Killaoe is a a village, close downstream from where Lough Derg empties in to the Shannon  . Stunning little village and one of those few places when people see you with rod in your hands walking down on the street not give you strange looks, instead they all ask where I have been fishing , what did I caught or give you locations to go fishing as a friendly advice, even in the small grocery shop, you are not just "next please". So the local people has the famous very friendly Irish welcoming atmosphere, and it's all about the fishing there, really, like in the pubs in the B&B's has the pictures up from recent catches and "wall of fame's " of huge pikes all over. Nice to see that the angling and the tourism is all blended in to a tradition in this village.....the proper feeling of  "hunting the mystical green Irish monsters"!!!

When I planned my trip there I decided to get a guide for 3 days, plenty of reasons behind why. It's a huge body of water and shooting in the dark with fishing spots for 3 days wasn't what I was going for. Plus you need a boat as well because very limited places available from the shore. I was going for catch a big girl and without any knowledge of this water you need a big bucket of luck if not more if you wanna do this alone! So I did my research and also listen to the recommendations I get in touch with Pierre Monjarret who is a professional guide on Lough Derg. Few chat on facebook and fix the dates, very easy going. And the date arrived to get on the train with shaking legs, I'm always getting over exited when it's up to fishing but this trip I just felt that good chance for my dream girl! Arrived early afternoon to Killaloe and take a quick tour around discover everything while still daylight. Than dinner and just sit back and counting the seconds till next morning to head out, then got a txt that I would go to the pub and join them for a drink or two with the other french guy Florian who was out with him fishing earlier. Yeah why not sounded good I love Irish Pubs but alone as a girl to head out it's not my cup of tea like so I was happy with the invitation. Wasn't long to get the conversation on the pike fishing! Like connecting with people who has a similar toughs about pike fishing with lures, but pretty quickly it was clear that a hardcore pike angler sitting across to me,  which is pretty cool. Obviously the tackle talk on the topics as well and I love lure fishing tackle! As he is in a Pro Team of Strike Pro, CWC,BFT of course made me to ask some questions about they tackle and how is the proper way to use them etc, it was super to sneak peak behind the scenes and learn a lot about the company,tackle history  and other members of the team how they developing  the gear in Sweden. And one more super exiting stuff  what unfortunately I can't talk about but I'm a huge fan! So after a few drinks and checking the weather we kinda know that by the weather conditions looks like sunday will be the day, but I was go to sleep with anything could happen tomorrow until  the lure is in the water!

Finally the morning arrived and get picked up in the marina, man that boat is super cool and if its not enough 2nd Captain Guiness on the board as well, she is a super cool dog. The weather was grey and rainy as usual with a bit of roughness on the water but let taps fire up and off we go. When turn  of the marina part that was some scenery.....the huge lake is front of your eyes surrounded by the mountains, even in grey shades it as an awesome breath taking view! As we talked a night before about conditions and this time of the year we know it will be tough, not many bites but still potential for a good day fishing and the tactic for the day will be cast, cast, cast, cast and more cast to cover much water as we can. It was a super day out even with a few showers in the neck but managed to caught 2 smaller but still lovely fish between 80-90cm. Head back to heat up dinner and get ready for tomorrow, when as the forecast promised no rain with slight cloud coverage and dropping pressure ,  which means good chance that the fish will come up from the bottom and a bit sunshine will turn them on to start feeding.

Day two morning woke up and straight up to look out in the window, yes perfect pike weather as it says in the big pike book. Get some coffee and breakfast and off to the marina again. It was something in the air that we gonna have a good day today and my theory was proofed by Pierre as well when I get into the boat so everything looked bright. Pick the first spot and start drifting and casting, not quiet end of the drift we saw that the sun will be out in the next few minutes for a while so quickly drive back wait until the sun out and start drift again, it was one of those moment when you know, I don't know how but you feel now or never! or just simply because something changed but its just a weird thing what you can feel when you fishing and make you so exited the tough that in any second your rod can slam over because everything is just perfect! And yes it was not even half way of the drift the lure stopped like stuck in something, strike and yeah fish on and the rock and roll started, the fish did a few really good runs to the deep but after the anglers worst nightmare happens when the fish start head to the surface and jump! Can feel in the deep of the head shakes that she wasn't small but that heart stopping moment when they jump and you just start pray that don't shake out the hooks and also see her in full size how big she was and concentrate the rod tip down to keep the tension on the line plus all this happens in a quarter of the second......such as Pierre shouted it's a big fish Gina and he runs to grab the net......few more runs and she was in the net. I couldn't believe we did it....she was in the net with all her beauty, i know its not nice to say for a lady but she was fat.....beautiful fat 107cm green irish monster....i was over the moon and back really just stand front of the net and kept looking her in the water in the net. One of the best moments of this year! Get her out of the net and get some photos of her.....I have to admit I struggling to hold her for the camera. Then put her back to the water.....just still looking her and don't want to let her go, I was lucky she was so peaceful between my hands and use the old trick to pet it on the side a little bit  so she didn't move but eventually she had enough and slowly slip out from between my hands and headed back to the deep where she belong to. IT WAS AWESOME!! I just sit in the boat at least 10 min it was super awesome feeling really!! Than back to casting again and not long after the rod bends again and Pierre has a super condition pike as well in the 95cm mark. Which situation is put me back behind the camera what I love as much fishing and I shoot one of my best picture ever, it's hard to get the light the background and the angle all click together to shoot a photo like that but hell when its all in right order. Still fishing away all day but in winter days like this you know it's not many shot and feeding windows opening up and specially that we had the big fish what we where after bite one shot.....can't be greedy and that wasn't even on the cards. I couldn't even sleep that night, I think I can say the dose of happiness of that fish is take over beyond any tiredness.

Third day, well the weather is just became pure rough, we head out on the morning but called lunch time 2 o'clock. It was more like a rainy chatting day, pressure is off with that fish a day before and some point you need to know when to call it. I was the last of his clients for 2015 and his boat closed the season with my beauty 115th pike over 1m mark landed on the mad is that??!!!!! Hardcore cast machine!!!

I decided to move to Ireland in next year but I didn't know where.....well with this trip I secretly half decided where to now, I had an absolutely super time and be back definitely soon if not for permanent.......Thanks for read, enjoy the pictures and tight lines ;)