Fishy Tales from the Emerald Isle –

Lee Reservoir Angling Services……..Terry Jackson

Two of my closest angling buddies from County Cork have recently opened a guided angling business in the area. Their natural ability to locate and tempt specimen and record fish is second to none, and one of the main reasons that I have so much angling success and fond memories whenever I travel to that part of the world.

Sidney Kennedy with a small hybrid

Ross Macklin with a fine salmon

These guys are Sidney Kennedy and Ross Macklin. Their chosen venue for this new venture is the Lee Reservoir system. It has been one of Ireland’s best kept secrets for over twenty years, and now, the cat is out of the bag! With their combined forty years of angling experience on this waterway, it was a natural progression to set up a guiding and boat rental business on the reservoirs. It is worth noting, that until now, boats were prohibited, and most of the reservoirs remain virtually un-explored.

Terry with part of a massive haul of Rudd/Bream hybrids

So what can you expect if you take a holiday in this area? Talking from experience, there are massive shoals of Rudd-Bream Hybrids to just short of 7lbs. My first session here, two years ago, over a twelve-hour stint accounted for a 750lb haul, including over one hundred specimens averaging 3-4lbs and topping the 6lbs barrier! There are few places left in the world that can boast such numbers of coarse fish.

Ross Macklin with a double-figure Bream

The bream run huge and are almost totally un-explored. Ross has put in some research and landed fish to over 10lbs. There are large Rudd in this system and specimen Roach to over two pounds are beginning to show. There are also a few Carp, but in small numbers, if you run into one, it will be sizeable.

Terry with a fat County Cork carp

Sid with a fly-caught “croc”

Pike on fly, from the shore

This leaves the predators. Pike are the predominant predatory species, and as with all the species here it seems, they also have the ability to grow large. The lads are now approaching this from a fly-fishing angle with fabulous success, finding twenty-plus specimens regularly. With such a wealth of feeding, it is only a matter of time before a thirty appears.

Ross finds his twenty-plus on the fly

Perch are present, but totally un-fished for, thus far. Reports of large specimens picking up pike baits are well-known, and I fully intend to seek these out on my next visit. Tales of 5lb+ fish are mouth-watering; I wonder how drop-shotting and vertical jigging will perform? As I said earlier, these waters are almost virgin territory when compared to most fisheries.

a two-pound + perch safely returned.

If that wasn’t enough, Sid tells me there are double-figure Ferox Trout that roam the deeper areas, but again, until now, this is un-tapped. The water-ways are extensive, and with boat hire available for the first time ever, the potential is absolutely huge. Lee Reservoirs Angling Services can provide boats, B&B, guiding, bait supply, pre-bait areas prior to arrival if requested, and much more. They also have vast knowledge of the local shore angling if you fancy a change, targeting bass, rays, mullet, wrasse, and sea-trout to name but a few.
If you are looking for a new angling adventure in Ireland, check out these guys. The lads are more than capable of finding large numbers of fish throughout Ireland, but in particular, the Lee Reservoirs. If you are interested in booking an angling holiday, or simply wish to find out more, check them out at They will be happy to steer you in the right direction.

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