Fly Fishing on Roundwood Reservoir, Co. Wicklow, Ireland

What started as an idea over 18 months ago finally become a reality when the Jean Anne made its first drift before a stiff northerly breeze across Roundwood south lake. It has always been my belief that Ireland’s natural resources, utilised and managed correctly, can help alleviate some of our economic problems by generating real long term jobs, and in the process contributing financially on a local and national basis. Having joined the unemployed ranks over 18 months ago and seen an opportunity to create an international standard tourist fly fishing product, yesterday was the first baby step on the road to what will hopefully be a success for both east Co. Wicklow and yours truly.

Irish Fly Fisher, Liam Stenson cradles a Roundwood brownie.

Accompanying me for the day was Mr. Irish Fly Fisher himself Liam Stenson, creator of a wonderful fly fishing blog and dab hand at fishing north country spiders on the mountain streams of Co. Wicklow, today we swished our 5 weight rods, casting ahead of the boat while stripping lines fast and slow, absorbed by the peace and quite of this wonderful location. Early morning showers of icy rain accompanied by strong gusts eased in the afternoon to variable breezes, which ruffled the surface away from the lee shores creating ideal conditions to work a team of flies.

It was great to meet unexpectedly my daughter Emma Claire and her partner Gary out enjoying the lake, making their own way in the world having vacated the nest long ago, unplanned shore side lunches of home made roast pork and stuffing rolls with your siblings taste all the better. Boiling up water in the Kelly kettle to make chicken soup, teas, and coffees, along with all the other bits and bobs we had, sure where would you get it, the rat race completely forgotten.

Saying our goodbyes Liam and I approached the second half with renewed vigour. Having rose a trout just before lunch and with conditions improving it was not long before action commenced. Fishing a sinking line while stripping at a medium pace my silver dabbler on the point was taken by a sprightly half pounder. Liam fishing a floating line was next in, again on the dabbler. Over the next hour three more fish to a little over half a pound came to the boat, all hard fighting wild fish.

Playing a good trout on Roundwood south lake, Co. Wicklow, Ireland.

Allied to numerous rises and turns it had been a productive and most enjoyable afternoon. A highlight being giving a heads up to a new CWA member as to a particularly productive drift, result a beautifully spotted pound fish and one happy angler. With the season just kicking in as the weather warms up, on the strength of yesterday afternoon things look bright.

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Ashley Hayden

Note: Roundwood is a fly only water, An Irish Angler’s World secured permission to run a boat fly fishing operation on the lake from the owners Dublin City Council. Unfortunately and not surprisingly, after all this is Ireland, certain local people in word and deed made it very clear that the operation was not welcome creating an atmosphere which was not conducive to inviting tourists. On a positive note day tickets to fish the shoreline are available from Dublin City Council and can be purchased at the Vartry Waterworks beside the Dam on the south lake.

 

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