From Giant Tunas to shoals of Mackerel the deep clean waters off the coast of Clifden are full of exciting possibilities for all fisherman.
The season runs from March to mid October and every year Bluewater will have a number of days with over 1000 lbs of fish.
The two main techniques are drifting and anchoring. Drifting over reefs in 15m to 100m of water will yield Ling, Cod, Coalfish, Wrasse and Mackerel, to name but a few. Using Red Gill’s and lead heads for Pollack is a speciality and provides excellent sport with fish average about 2.5 kg (5lbs +) and frequently edge over 5.5 kg (10lbs +).
Summer cod are plentiful and fish in the 10 lb to 15 lbs range are common. Shoals of Coalfish vary in size from clouds of 1lb fish to smashing adults over 10 lbs.
A day’s drifting over reefs should yield 10 to 15 species and some additional bait could well increase this up to 15 or 20.
The annual average number of species stands at an impressive 34 over the last 5 years, with rarities like Bluemouth, Hake and Blue Whiting making up the numbers. Anchoring over any of John’s reef marks could well entice a whopper from the depths. A Mackerel strip or flapper fished on a flowing trace for Conger or Ling is often successful and there may well be a bonus Bull Huss or big Cod ready to take the bait. The many sand and gravel patches are home to different types of Ray, flatfish like Plaice, Dabs and Turbot and, if you’re lucky, you may run into a common Skate. UK journalist Alan Yates did on a recent trip aboard Bluewater and, after a battle lasting an hour, a truly magnificent fish in excess of 200lbs was photographed, tagged and released. Norman Dunlop of the Central Fisheries Board was also on board and he verified the weight estimate but also told the happy anglers that their catch was over 100 years old!!
Weather and Distance:
If the weather is poor there is excellent ground for all species in the shelter offered by the numerous islands; in all but the very worst weather we will get good reef fishing. Most of the time we will be fishing within 20 minutes of Clifden but might travel for up to 1 hr 30 mins depending on the conditions.