Posts Tagged ‘River Derreen’

Fly Fishing In Wicklow, Blustery Day on the Derreen

Saturday, April 28th, 2012

Wind angled off my left shoulder as the weight forward number four line snaked out at a forty five degree angle to the current. Fishing a long line the twelve foot leader uncoiled depositing the kill devil point fly and its spidery team mates in the still water beyond the gut close under the far bank. Feeding a foot of line to sink the flies, entering the seam a boil followed by a heavy tug and a tight line, the fish bored deep and my reel screeched, zzzzzzzzzzz a good trout.

Casting a long line while keeping low, River Derreen, Co. Wicklow, Ireland.

Twisting and turning the brownie gave a good account of itself, running towards a bed of ranunculus I applied side strain, the fish turned, a few hops more and it was in the net. Between a half and three quarters, a fine fish for the Derreen, two plump trout in three casts from the same deep run, the God’s are smiling. Ten minutes earlier a riffle further upstream had delivered three fish, all flies had scored from the kill devil to the greenwells but the partridge and orange had its nose in front and was to keep it there.

A River Derreen trout fooled by a partridge and orange.

Although bright and sunny a stiff north east breeze blew and with snow lying on Lugnaquilla, the highest mountain in Leinster, it was chilly to say the least. Gusts ruffled the surface and although a few terrestrials were flying about there was no hatch as such, that said a few trout were rising. The Derreen flows down off Lug’ crossing the border into Co. Carlow then flowing past Hacketstown before meandering through rich farmland towards Tullow. The river bed is gravely well suited to spawning salmon which run up from its parent River Slaney. Today however the target was trout and although not giving themselves up they were on occasions obliging.

A plump River Derreen trout.

My tactics given the strong downstream wind were to keep low and cast a long line down and across keeping false casts to a minimum. The wind helped in this matter by ruffling the surface so breaking up the trouts field of vision. By combining the broken riffled water, where the trout would be positioned along the seams with the disturbed still water while keeping low I could get close and cover potential fishy lies. The system worked, it’s great when it does, with at least a half dozen wild brownies to the rod for a short two hour session. Later in the month as the weather warms up evening dry fly, in particular to the black gnat, should come into its own. I’ll be back…..

Click on: Guided Fly Fishing for Wild Trout.

Exploring the Derreen.

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

The River Derreen flows off the Wicklow Mountains in a south westerly direction, passing close to Hacketstown and Tullow, Co. Carlow before it joins the Slaney upstream of Aghade bridge. Running through tillage and pastureland in its lower reaches, the Derreen with its sandy, gravelly bottom is a prime salmon spawning tributary of the Slaney. One April morning above Rathglass bridge, with the river clearing after a flood I connected with a fresh run fish, only to be broken a short while later. I can still hear the slap of its broad tail and the hiss of line as 10.lbs of salmo salar took off down stream.

Downstream wet fly on the River Derreen, Co. Carlow, Ireland.

Today with a big high pressure sitting over Ireland creating clear blue skies, but still cold due to a north east breeze, I drove across country past Shillelagh and Clonegal to park up beside the old mill at Aghade bridge. Heading upstream I cast a team of spiders into various runs, eventually crossing the Slaney above a weir to fish the left hand bank due to the strong breeze in my face.

River Derreen, Co. Carlow, Ireland, trout tempted by a partridge and orange.

An odd fish showed along with a few parr. Reaching the Derreen confluence I proceeded to fish upstream for about three hundred metres. Again stepped weirs are in evidence, a legacy of the great salmon runs which hopefully will pick up in the future. Another trout and that was that. The water is still cold and fly life was minimal, give it a couple of weeks and it will be perfect for fishing dry.