Fly Fishing In Ireland Great Fishing Houses of Ireland

The Loughs

Lough Caragh

Located in Co Kerry

Permission: Free

Lough Caragh, sometimes referred to as Glencar Lake, is at the mouth of the beautiful Glencar valley and is noted especially for its spring salmon and grilse fishing and, to a lesser extent, for its brown trout and sea trout. The season opens for salmon on 17 January and the boats are out in strength from opening day. The majority of the fish are taken by trolling or spinning and this holds true throughout the season. There is no reason why they should not take a fly, but the tradition is for trolling and spinning. Access to the lough is very restricted, but there is a public access at the outflowing river. There are lots of boats and boatmen available for hire along the north and west shores, or a boat and boatman can be arranged through Carl Daly, Glencar Hotel, Glencar, Co Kerry.

The best salmon fishing is at the southern end along the west and east shores and along by the mouth of the inflowing river. The early season fish average 14 lb and the record for the lough is 24 lb. The sea trout arrive in the lough in July and the bay at the outflowing river is probably the best area to find them. The brown trout are to be found on all the shores. They come three to the pound and a day’s fishing should produce at least a dozen keepable trout, of which a few should weigh at least ½ lb with perhaps one near to 1 lb. The trout at the southern end are bigger than elsewhere and can average nearly ½ lb at the mouth of the inflowing river. A fast retrieve is recommended for the brownies and any bright fly stripped across the surface should bring a response. Try Black Jungle Cock, Alexandra, Peter Ross, Butcher or Delphi in small sizes. Lough Caragh is remote yet well serviced and the scenery is superb. Beware of sudden squalls if your are out on your own on windy days.

Excerpts taken from "Trout & Salmon Rivers of Ireland, an angler's guide" by Peter O'Reilly.