w/e - Sunday 10th April 2011      

    Monday 4th April 2011                           

David Mulkeen, one of the hot water stretches regular visitors during the spring, is running the London Marathon on Sunday 17th April so will probably miss out on some of the action whilst in training. He is hoping to raise as much as possible for the Irish Cancer Society.

Please visit the website and donate a little if you can at,-

I've said before how much I like nice blow in the morning and today was a good one. It took the fence down at the bottom of the garden, so fishing was totally out of the question until 2pm. Even then the conditions were far from ideal, but I got lots of small fish with just two Rudd needing the landing net. By 4pm I'd had enough and had one of Bridies lovely curries.

The wind was dropping all the time and so my evening session was a pleasure to fish. There was still a bit of a chop but that probably contributed to the fish being more than willing. I lost count how many fish I caught, but it was by far my best session so far with lots of Rudd up to 12oz, a couple of similar sized Hybrids and lots of Roach to 4oz. it was only when the light was fading that the bigger fish showed. There were several "rollers" below me and not surprisingly they were feeding. My last five fish were a 1lb 7oz Roach, 2 Hybrids of about 1lb 12oz, a 2lb Hybrid and finally a 3lb 11oz Bream.

I am confident that with the high overnight temperatures for the 48hours will see the fishing at Lanesborough at its very best.
    Tuesday 5th April 2011                          

There's something about April 5th, it always seems a special day and something usually happens. There was very heavy rain all night but it had all but stopped by the time I started fishing at 06.45. First cast saw a 4oz Roach followed by a pound and a half Hybrid and a 1oz Rudd which, as you may have guessed, became a sacrificial offering. I continued on the stick with a couple more Hybrids to 2lb 4oz, a Roach of about a pound and more of those beautiful Rudd to 10oz. Why there are so many this year, I do not know. Regular readers will remember last year, how few bigger Hybrids were caught, by me at least. In the last two sessions, I've equalled the number caught in my entire seven weeks of 2010.

The local wildfowl are a huge problem at the moment, I counted 99 at the weekend and Dan released three more on Sunday. Several anglers, including myself have had the misfortune of hooking the poor ducks. Luckily, none have suffered too much, but it is possible in the coming weeks that there will be a fatality. I've got a nice receipe for duck should this happen to you.
Baked Wild Duck Ordinaire
Ingredients 
1 duck 
2 onions 
1 apple, studded with cloves 
1 margarine, melted
Directions: Parboil duck 5 minutes with 1 piece celery and small 
onion. Remove and drain. Rub cavity and outside with salt & pepper. 
Place inside duck 1 small onion, apple studded with cloves, and a 
small white potato. Bake 20 minutes at 450-F uncovered. Reduce heat 
to 350-F and bake covered 15-20 minutes. Baste with equal parts 
melted butter, hot water, and wine and/or orange juice mixture. 

Just for your entertainment watch this clip of "Gourmet Night" from 3min 35sec

I've posted this at 12.45 after just having a walk along the bank. Its now raining quite hard and the wind is gusting every now and then prohibiting bait presentation on the stick. There are four anglers present but sport is slow. Andy Burnett has had just a couple of notable fish but has been pestered with sub 1oz fish. C'est la vie as the Italians say.

It's now 11pm and I've just returned from a 4 hour session. Earlier in the day, Roy Cuthbertson from Edenderry has set the benchmark for Tench with the first specimen of the year weighing in at a very respectable 6lb 2oz. He caught it just above the gap on maggots. Near the hot water, Andy Burnett amassed a good bag of Hybrids and Bream to 3lb 4oz for an estimated 50lb.  

Steven and Pat arrived from Navan at around 6pm and we all went for broke on the feeder hoping for larger fish. I was the only one to catch while it was still daylight with 8 Hybrids with an average weight of 2lb a piece. Steven had a nice Rudd which was pushing a pound but it was Pat who stole the show with a lovely Bream of 6lb 15oz. There was a lot of surface activity at dusk but after that none. The bites dried up and that's what prompted an early night. I'm up again at 5 for the anticpated morning splash. The outside temperature was 13c when I left and it is not expected to drop much during the night.
Pat Christy - 6lb 15oz                              Andy Burnett - mixed bag of about 50lbs
Cathal - 8lb                                            Roy Cuthbertson - 6lb 2oz
    Wednesday 6th April 2011                  

Sorry for this late posting, it's now almost 10pm and I've returned from a rather frustrating session, but more of that later.

Today was probably the best on the river for many years as far as all round sport goes. I started at 6am but caught just a solitary Hybrid before daylight. The following 2 hours was steady with Bream to just under 3lb and Hybrids. The smallest was about 1lb 4oz or so. I took time out at 9am to have a quick breakfast and fix my reel which was playing up.

Steven was blanking just above the gap and tried an unsucessful move to the disabled pegs. The wind was still too high for suitable presentation. Pat continued his good fortune with two Tench going 4lb 11oz and 3lb 8oz with two more Bream of 5lb 13oz and 6lb 4oz. After my short break, Steven moved above me and whilst I continued to catch more of the same, plus two Roach of 1lb 6oz and 1lb 14oz, he somehow managed to tempt a succession of Bream to 5lb. I eventually packed up before midday with 24 fish for an estimated weight of around 45lb. Steven probably had more. Elsewhere some anglers struggled by comparison, Leigh Maitland had 16 kilos of mainly smaller fish. Arnie and John came down from Roosky simply to wash their nets. My float which I lost last week appeared where I lost it, my thanks to Dave Morris for its return.

In the evening a youngster caught a Pike of about 8lb on a wobbled deadbait near the gusher. I set up where I fished this morning for three Hybrids plus an Eel and Tim Collier caught 3 small Bream and a 1lb or so Roach. So there it is, what do ya think? Can you justify the effort to get here this week?

Incidently, Steven attributes his Bream catch to the CCMoore "shellfish extract" and "grubjuice" which are, of course available in Bridies shop.
    Thursday 7th April 2011                         

This is an embarrassing report to make after yesterdays superb returns. I was too tired for an early start but went for a walk to find Arnie and Rod starting their session which was to prove very hard. Arnie did catch a good number of smallish fish on sweetcorn but the few others who came really suffered. I caught two 4oz Roach near the bridge and a load of sub 1oz Rudd and Roach at the gusher but I couldn't really be bothered. When I spent a fruitless hour on the navigation channel, I knew it was time to admit defeat.

I sat on the river watching the two remaing anglers at dusk who never caught a thing whilst I was there. A bit of surface activty was evident but rest assured I will not be up at dawn tomorrow. We have temperatures down to zero predicted tonight, so my advice to anyone planning a session would be not to bother.
    Friday 8th April 2011                               

Don't really want to say I told you so, but...... Today was always going to be difficult with the overnight frost. Graham from Athlone turned up about 9 but was away by noon with a handful of small fish and a number of bonus Rudd. The other angler who fished from 6am deserved a medal for his effort which went unrewarded except a Hybrid.

By early evening a few hardy souls started to arrive for an all nighter. I had two hours with just one bite and a 2lb hybrid. I only saw 1 other fish caught. At 8.45 it was time to go back and watch "Benidorm" and leave the 11 others to enjoy their night out. It's going to be a long night.........

Saw my first Swallows today, 6 days after my first Sand Martins.
    Saturday 9th April 2011                         

I walked down the stretch at 07.45 to find some of the night owls were already leaving. Simon Scott from Co. Galway probably had the best catch of the session with a Bream of 6lb 5oz and 4 others around 3lb plus. John Nee sitting a few yards away had some similar sized Bream. They both reported getting liners and suspected there were more big Bream in their swim which were not feeding. Just below the gusher, Chris Mayes found two Tench, the largest going 4lb 2oz plus a few Hybrids and Bream. One lad had a Roach of 1lb 12oz and, whilst most anglers caught, the overall returns were, perhaps disappointing.

Surprisingly, there were not many turning up to fish the day shift. Daniel Hoare worked hard for about 12lbs including a very nice Roach. I mentioned a few days ago about the lack of Roach between 8 - 12oz and now the Rudd seem to have disappeared.

By early evening only Flano and Roy were still fishing. My three hours produced 3 bites two of which resulted in the net being employed to land a Bream of just over 2lb and a very manky Hybrid. The lure of a televisual feast of Golf and Formula 1 means I won't be putting in many hours on the bank tomorrow. Musn't grumble......
    Sunday 10th April 2011                          

You have to feel sorry for Flano and Roy who were packing up at 07.30 Having fished for the best part of 36 hours with little reward, their vacated swim was taken by Tony Hunt who managed to catch a Bream of 6lb 9oz and 4 Tench with two going 5lb 11oz and 5lb 1oz. There were 3 other Tench recorded leaving the seasons total at 16 so far which in my 20 years experience at Lanesborough is unprecedented. A few other fish were caught but to say it was easy fishing would be a lie. Pat Mulryan was above Ryans gate near the bush and had many smaller fish on the feeder without any monsters.

By early evening the stretch was deserted except for one idiot who wishes to remain anonymous because he was embarrassed to admit to foul hooking a 1lb Hybrid and eventually catching one a bit bigger. He was joined by Tim and Jamie then later by Steve and Willie whose catches will be reported tomorrow. 

And so endeth the second week, will it improve in the next few days? Who knows?