Coarse fishing in the Erne Catchment and Donegal

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Where to fish?

Assaroe Lake

Assaroe Lake is a 234 hectare artificial lake created by the Cathleen Falls and Cliff Hydro schemes and is located just east of Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal. The depth varies throughout the lake and there are extensive shallow areas. The deepest areas (over 12 metres) are to be found in the old river course. The shores are rocky in the main and all fishable with little weed growth. The lake is controlled by the ESB and shore angling is only allowed from the northern shore and around the Lakeside Centre on the southern shore. The E.S.B. has installed fishing stands on the back lough to facilitate angling. The northern shore is accessed via the Knader Road out of Ballyshannon. The Lakeside Centre is located just outside Ballyshannon to the left on the Belleek Road (R230). Boat angling is allowed although anglers should exercise caution since the lake can be dangerous to navigate in areas due to rocks and the remnants of tree stumps. Boat anglers are not allowed to fish close to the dams for safety reasons and may not pass the floating barriers.

Assaroe is home to large shoals of big bream, good hybrids, perch and roach to well over 2lb and contains some very big pike and the odd good trout. The lake is a very promising coarse fishery and to date has been very much overlooked. The lake is very lightly fished and the fish are certainly not hook shy. 100lb plus bags of bream are a distinct possibility especially with pre baiting. The roach fishing can also be very good with good bags of fish possible on the swim feeder or float fishing.


One of the following permits is required to fish Assaroe.


€50 Adult season,

€25 OAP season permit.


€20 adult week permit,

€10 OAP weekly permit.

Day Permit:

€5 adult day permit.

These are available from:

Boat Permit:

To launch a boat on the fishery you will require a seasonal boat permit at €60.(Only available at the ESB station)

Boat hire

Boats can be hired from


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