HUGE OWEL TROUT. Last Tuesday local anglers Johnny O’Malley of Mullingar and his pal Mick Clarke of Castletown Geoghagan were on Owel fly-fishing. The lads are seasoned anglers and were struggling on Owel that day Johnny told me. Late in the evening they ventured to Brabsons Point, as darkness fell and in quite shallow water Mick Clarke got stuck into a huge trout on the fly. Eventually Johnny landed their catch of the day and it was some fish. A huge brown trout weighing 12lbs 1oz that had a girth of 18inches and measured 29inches in length. This I surely one of the best trout in years to have been caught on Owel. The lads got some pictures that night and on Wednesday morning went down to the shores of Ennell beside his home place and took a few more pictures.

LENE CHAIRMAN PAIRS COMPETITION. It’s hard to believe on September 27th Lough Lene Angling Association hosted their first competition of the 2020 season. It will certainly go down as one of the strangest angling seasons in decades due to Covid-19. On the day, the Chairman’s Pairs competition took place with proceeds going to North Westmeath Hospice this year. The day started off with early morning frost and a huge fog in places. Thankfully it cleared quite fast and we were soon fishing in very bright calm conditions. Quite a number of trout were surface feeding and from the feedback from competitors, dry fly worked well. I fished with Pauric Martin and we boated just the one fish, and featured in the prizes. Top rods were Dominick Murphy and David Smith with a fish 2kg on the button, with Niall Kenny and Dermoid O’Donovan taking 2nd with 1.94kg. Gary Carlon of C.L.F. Transport sponsored first prize and was on hand to present the winners. Brian Conlon of Wild total Outdoors sponsored 2nd prize. After the competition the raffle took place, with all proceeds going to North Westmeath Hospice. This proved a huge success as tickets were on sale in recent weeks. The top prize in the raffle was a new Sheelin Boat sponsored by Sheelin Boats and Lene club member from Athboy Frank Fox won the boat. Chairman Tom Fagan thanked all who fished the competition and those who supported the raffle and sold tickets. Tom said the presentation of the cheque to North Westmeath Hospice will be in a few weeks as more donations have being promised.

PIKE FEVER KICKING IN. Pike anglers are starting to check out their local winter Hot Spots and some nice fish were caught in recent times. Mullingar angler Richie Ward, who we featured some weeks back with a nice rainbow, is starting to settle into some serious pike fishing. Richie is pictured with a cracking pair of Midland Monsters. Normally we have a few pike competitions across the Midlands during November / December but only time will tell if these events are fished due to Covid- 19 restrictions. All we can do is keep you posted on these events.

IFI NEED FEEDBACK. Dermot Broughan was in touch with Angling Focus and IFI are seeking feedback from angling and community groups in the Midland Fisheries Group permit area who may be eligible to apply for the fund. Applicants must have up to date Midland Fisheries group permit and grant projects only apply to angling groups or community groups in the permit catchment. The grant covers riverbank protection, spawning enhancement and in stream structures. If you are interested in checking this out, Dermot can be contacted on or during Tudenham Lodge office hours 044-93-48769 Mobile 087-2595286.

BLIZZARDS AND BREZZIE ON ENNELL. It is great to see homegrown talent coming back to their roots and pushing our local tourism beauty spots. Some weeks back I mentioned that I took Brendan McEvoy – The Blizzards manager – for a trip around Ennell as he was on a reckie for The Blizzards, looking for some locations suitable for a video for their latest single. We lashed out from Lilliput and straight away the wheels were put in motion to get the director and camera lads down to check it out as the location looked ideal. The following week I met the production team and recognized one of the lads as Terry McMahon –  not for his acting roll in Fair City – but his Dad George was from up the road from me here in Springfield. Some readers will remember that his late mother Brenda had a shoe shop near the Greville Arms called Loftes if memory serves me right. Anyway, last weekend we did the video shoot and it was an amazing few days with all involved. Pete Ganly of Lilliput and yours truly looked after the boats and the weather was workable on the lake.  I am looking forward to seeing the end product as the production team is very excited about the footage and the natural beauty of Ennell and its surrounding landscape.