Mile after mile of spectacular angling
JOIN THE ANGLING CELEBRATION
The Southwest encompasses so many outstanding fishing waters; this region is celebrated in the world of coarse angling. Come and discover what the buzz is about.
From Dungannon and South Tyrone, on the fringes of Lough Neagh, through the lakes of Enniskillen and the most westerly corners of Fermanagh, the Southwest is famous for its quality and quantity of roach, bream, perch, pike and eels.
Two vast lakes, Upper and Lower Lough Erne, dominate the Fermanagh lifestyle and landscape, which, of course, revolves around watery pursuits, in particular the pursuit of fish. Both are mixed coarse/wild brown trout fisheries. The entire Erne Catchment area is a favourite for cruising and angling visitors, renowned for outstanding facilities (including boat hire and marinas), superb fishing, accommodation, entertainment, and above all…accessibility.
You'll hear claims in the friendly local pubs that "Lough Erne is twenty feet deep: ten feet of water and ten feet of fish". Exaggerated, of course, but there's an element of truth. Proof is in the statistics. Two five-hour World Match Records and the Irish Record perch, a whopping 5lb 8oz (2kg+)! Specimen pike are also plentiful.
Enjoy the craic and camaraderie of big annual occasions such as the Classic Fishing Festival in May, and other events sponsored by local hotels, or fish in delightful solitude at Broadmeadow, Carrybridge, Cornagrade or any one of 33 well-maintained loughside stretches. For a relaxing riverside session, try the Ballinamallard near Enniskillen.
Competitive fishing is a growing trend. In South Tyrone, between Dungannon and Caledon, Enagh Lough is a coarse fishery developed by DCAL for matches. Although noted for specimen-size pike, good bream and tench may also be taken. Lough Creeve near Benburb is a much bigger and better known match venue. With fishing stands sheltered by native deciduous trees, this is a superb setting for a first-class day's sport. White Lough near Aughnacloy also has good stands and small rowing boats are permitted for fishing perch, pike and roach.
Ballysaggart Lough just south of Dungannon is productive at the deep end close to the sluice gates, with bream, eels, perch, pike, roach, rudd and some tench (also in other nearby lakes). However, for serious tench hunters, there's no better place than the weedy waters of Screeby Lough near Fivemiletown. This club water is Northern Ireland's outstanding tench fishery with specimens exceeding 61b (2.6kg). Local anglers take good rudd as well as bream and roach while their families enjoy a picnic at the nearby Round Lake recreational area.
For a few pounds a day, the lovely lake of Blessingbourne Estate near Fivemiletown has prime pike and perch for sporting anglers prepared to return all pike to the water.
Besides the superb coarse fishing on Upper Lough Erne, the hospitable angling centre of Lisnaskea has two other gems. The Colebrook River is justly popular for bankside bream, eel, perch, roach, rudd and the odd pike. Killyfole Reservoir has excellent perch and pike fishing from the shore.
Go west for more adventurous angling. Try the under-fished Macnean Loughs for mighty pike, eels, hybrids, perch and roach. Scolban Lough east of Belleek holds pike up to 20lb (9kg) and also offers an abundance of perch and roach. But hurry! These great waters won't remain a secret forever!