Sea fishing on the East coast

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NORTH COUNTY DUBLIN - BALBRIGGAN TO HOWTH

Balbriggan (1), Skerries (2), Loughshinny (3) and Rush (4) are all boat angling venues where small boats can be launched to fish around Lambay Island (3 miles to the south east) and over Rockabill grounds. The best method is anchoring over sand and mixed ground which will produce spurdog, ray, conger, dogfish, dab, codling, whiting and occasional tope. Drifting over the reefs will produce pollack, coalfish, wrasse and occasional ling. Balbriggan, Skerries and Loughshinny are also good shore angling locations. Float fishing at Balbriggan and Skerries can produce mullet and at Balbriggan from the pier over sand at high water there is fishing for mackerel (in season) and flatfish. Bait can be collected at Skerries (A) where west of the pier "king" ragworm and lugworm can be dug under the promenade at low tide.Balbriggan to Rush

Small boats can be launched at Balbriggan to fish the Cardy Rocks area and the grounds out to and around the Rockabill Lighthouse. Codling, dogfish, dab, spurdog, whiting, pollack and wrasse are the most common species. It should be noted that Balbriggan is a very busy commercial harbour and permission may be necessary to use the slipway. The harbour is also an excellent mullet fishing venue with fish up to 5lbs possible on float tackle.

Skerries is a popular small boat angling centre in summer with the Skerries Islands and Rockabill grounds easily reached. The species are similar to Balbriggan but a number of offshore wrecks have been receiving attention recently, and will surely turn up interesting results soon. The pier produces mackerel and specimen mullet for shore anglers, annually, while coalfish and codling turn up on night tides from the rocks to the east.

The slipways are tidal at both Loughshinny and Rush harbours, so if small boats have to be launched, then trips require careful planning to coincide with suitable tides. Fishing from these venues is concentrated mainly around Lambay Island, which lies some 3 miles to the south east of Rush harbour. Fishing at anchor over sand will produce spurdog, ray, conger, dogfish, dab, codling, whiting and occasional tope. Drifting over the reef and mixed ground will produce pollack, coalfish, wrasse and occasional ling. On the north beach Rush there is good fishing for bass following an easterly blow. At Balbriggan bait can be dug at low tide to the north of the harbour while at Skerries "king" ragworm and lugworm can be dug under the promenade at low tide.

Species: Mackerel, whiting, codling, pollack, dab, spurdog, mullet, tope and ray

Season: May/October.

Ground Type: Mainly sand with reef and rock around Islands.

Bait: Mackerel, ragworm and lugworm

Method: Legering is by far the best method while fishing for predatory species. Feather or Hoi Koi type paternosters are effective over rough ground.

Fishing Tip: Use Pennel Tackle when fishing with king ragworm around Rockabill. The main hook should be 6/0 with the “head hook” about 4/0 in size.

Rogerstown Estuary (5) Shore fishing here for bass and flatfish from sandbars on either side of the inlet at low water and in the main channel on a flooding tide. It is a popular bait collection area (B) and is best when the Estuary itself dries out to a deep channel at low tide, leaving mudflats on the inner reaches where lugworm is plentiful and sandeel can be collected from the outer banks at low water.Donabate Strand (6) A shore fishing location for codling, bass and flatfish.

Malahide Estuary (7) A shore angling venue is located below the railway viaduct. Here a large pool has formed where mullet, flounder and eels can be caught and occasionally bass and sea trout. Up at "The Green", on Strand Road, boats can be launched from the slipway. Boat fishing offshore is for cod, ray, whiting, tope, spurdog, pollack, mackerel, coalfish, dabs and plaice. The Corballis (C) area of Malahide is a prime bait gathering location and has extensive lugworm beds. Ragworm, mussel, clam and cockles can also be gathered locally.

The Velvet Strand (8) in Portmarnock runs for about 3 miles and is a shore angling venue. Around the Martello Tower occasional bass and flounder can be fished for from the rocks. Along the strand itself distance casting will also produce dogfish and occasional codling and whiting in Autumn. Three miles south at Baldoyle (9) bait can be collected at the creek (D) below the sea wall.

To the south of Rush is the mouth of Rogerstown Estuary where there is shore fishing for bass and flatfish from sandbars on either side of the inlet at low water. The main channel is best fished on a flooding tide with sandeel, freelined or ledgered for bass and seatrout. The estuary is a popular bait collection area and is best at low tide when the mudflats and sandbanks are exposed. Ragworm, sandeel and lugworm can all be dug in the area. A charter boat is available from the quay beside the boat club.

To the south of Rogerstown Estuary is Donabate Strand. This beach is best fished on night tides, particularly in autumn for codling, bass and flatfish. Best areas on the beach are below the martello tower and opposite the lifeguard’s hut.

The picturesque town of Malahide is located on the R106 and on the southern side of a large estuary. Below the railway viaduct a large pool has formed, where mullet, flounder, eels, bass and sea-trout can be caught. On the southern side of the estuary is a sandbank, which can be fished right through the tide on neaps. On springs it is necessary to move back to the beach below Lambay Court. Bass and flounder are the main species present. From the slipway below Strand Road, boats can be launched approximately two hours each side of high water. Inshore boat fishing is for cod, ray, whiting, tope, spurdog, pollack, mackerel, coalfish, dabs and plaice. The Corballis area of the estuary is a prime bait gathering area and has extensive lugworm beds. Ragworm, mussel, clam and crab can all be gathered at this location.

At Portmarnock the Velvet Strand runs south for about 5km. Beach fishing from the strand will produce bass, flounder, dogfish, codling and whiting. The best fishing is found when a surf is running but distance casting is required in calm conditions.

There is some shore fishing on the southern side of Baldoyle Creek, which is located off the R106. Main species include bass and flounder and bait can be collected below the sea wall at Baldoyle church.

Species: Bass, flounder, spurdog, ray, conger, dogfish, dab, codling, whiting, tope, pollack, coalfish, mackerel and mullet.

Season: April/October

Ground Type: Mudflats and sandbanks at Rogerstown, Malahide and Baldoyle. Flat sandy beach at Donabate and Portmarnock.

Bait: lugworm, ragworm, mussels, clam, crab and cockles

Method: All standard sea fishing methods work, including legering freeling and spinning.

Fishing Tip: Maximise your chances of catching bass in surf conditions by wearing chest waders and holding the rod at all times.

HOWTH & SUTTON

Howth (10) and Sutton (13) have pier, rock and boat fishing available for anglers and the DART is the easiest way to get there. In Howth Harbour (10) at the East and West Pier; whiting, Pollack, coalfish and codling can be caught during summer and autumn. Small boats can be launched from the slipway for general ground fishing around Ireland's Eye and on the Kish Bank. Species to be expected are coalfish, pollack, whiting, dogfish, mackerel and flatfish. To the East of the harbour is Balscadden Rocks (11) where rock fishing takes place for mackerel (in season), plaice, dabs, dogfish, pouting, whiting and codling. There is a scenic cliff walk around Howth to The Baily (12) or access is via Thormanby Road (bus no. 31/31B). Care should be taken on these rocks as they may become slippery particularly in wet weather. Here you can cast from rocks into deep water for mackerel (in season), coalfish, plaice, dab, dogfish, wrasse and whiting.
On the Strand Road at Red Rock (13) in Sutton there is a dinghy club and there bottom fishing into the channel will produce bass and flatfish. The rocky ground east of the Martello Tower is excellent for gathering crab at low water, ragworm and mussel (E). This area can be reached by the 31A and 31B bus or via the cliff walk.

Howth village lies on the Eastern side of Howth Head and is the largest fishing port on the east coast. This is a major small boat angling center and the local club have a headquarters on the west pier. Small boats can be launched from the slipway for general ground fishing around Ireland's Eye and on the Kish Bank. Species to be expected are codling, coalfish, pollack, whiting, dogfish, spurdog, ray, mackerel and flatfish.

Both piers give access to deep water for the shore angler with mullet, dogfish, pollack, coalfish and codling all available.

At Balscadden, east of the harbour, there is rock fishing in summer for mackerel, plaice, dabs, dogfish and small codling.

The rocky area adjacent to the Bailey Lighthouse can be accessed on foot from the cliff path or via Thormanby Road. Care should be taken on these rocks as they become slippery in wet weather. Here you can cast into deep water for mackerel, coalfish, codling, plaice, dab, dogfish, wrasse and whiting.
Below Strand Road at Red Rock there is bottom fishing into the channel for bass and flatfish. The rocky ground east of the Martello Tower is excellent for gathering crab, while ragworm and mussel can be collected on the banks.

Species: Whiting, pollack, coalfish, codling, dogfish, mackerel, plaice, dabs, ray and wrasse.

Season: May/October

Ground Type: Mainly rock onto sand.

Bait: Crab, lugworm, ragworm, mussel, squid and fish baits.

Method: Single hook rigs are best adapted to the rocky terrain.

Fishing Tip: Use a coloured “muppet” to terminate one hook leger rigs when fishing for ray. This produces good results in conjunction with fish and squid baits.

DUBLIN BAY - DOLLYMOUNT STRAND TO DUN LAOGHAIRE

Dollymount Strand (14) Beach fishing here takes place for bass, flatfish, and occasional codling. The evening tides in Autumn are most productive and the access point is opposite St. Anne's Park.
North Bull Wall (15) Pier fishing from the bridge and the lighthouse where small pollack, codling, whiting and bass can be sought. The best season for catching these is in the Autumn.
South Bull Wall (16) Poolbeg Lighthouse is a popular area for catching mackerel in season, conger and small pollack. Mullet and bass can also be taken in the hot water outlet of the power station.
Sandymount Strand (17) Shore fishing for bass and flounder which can be caught at the rear of the landfill site, Cockle Lake and Blackrock Baths. The Strand is best fished from half flood to high water. This area is popular for gathering bait where lugworm can be dug below the promenade at Sandymount and cockle can be collected towards low tide line (F).

Beach fishing on Dollymount Strand is for bass, flatfish and codling. The hotspot is at the Eastern end of the beach where the channel runs into Sutton Creek. The evening tides in autumn are most productive and the access point is via the causeway off the Howth road R105.
Fishing from the bridge and around the lighthouse on the North Bull Wall produces pollack, coalfish, rockling, codling, whiting and bass. The best fishing is to be found in autumn and winter.
The southern shore of the River Liffey is bounded by the South Bull Wall, which is terminated at the seaward end by the Poolbeg Lighthouse. This is a popular area for catching mackerel, conger and pollack. Mullet and bass can also be taken in the hot water outlet downstream of the power station. There are a number of slipways in the Liffey Estuary, which facilitate the launching of small boats for fishing on Dublin Bay. Species to be expected are flounder, dab, codling, whiting, coalfish, bass, dogfish and ray.
The broad expanse of Sandymount Strand is best fished from half flood to high water. Bass and flounder are the most common species while shore fishing particuarly at the rear of the landfill site, Cockle Lake and behind Blackrock Baths.

Lugworm can be dug below the promenade at Sandymount and Cockle Lake while white ragworm is available at Seapoint.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour is a popular boat and shore-angling center, which is located off the N31. Both the West and East Piers in Dun Laoghaire Harbour are popular shore fishing venues for mackerel, whiting, pouting, codling and pollack. Fishing into the harbour produces dab, plaice and conger in summer while float fishing from inner coal quays yields mullet.

Boats can be launched at the slipway for fishing in Scotsmans Bay and around Dalkey Island. Charter boats operate from the harbour specialising in general ground, wreck and reef fishing. Large spurdog and tope turn up regularly in boat catches.

Species: Bass, codling, pollack, whiting, mackerel, mullet, flatfish, spurdog and tope.

Season: May/October

Ground Type: Mainly sand.

Bait: Lugworm, ragworm, crab, squid and mackerel.

Method: Leger rigs work best from both boat and shore.

Fishing Tip: Use a two up and one down combination drift rig to cover all available species.

DUN LAOGHAIRE

Dun Laoghaire (18) is a popular boat and shore angling location. The best way to get here is via the DART or from bus routs 45A, 45B, 46A, 59, 75, 111. All fishing venues are within 5 - 10 minutes walk of bus and DART station. Both the West and East Piers in Dun Laoghaire Harbour are popular for pier fishing for mackerel (in season), whiting, pouting, codling and pollack (night fishing in autumn). You can fish into the harbour for dab, plaice and conger in summer and float fishing from inner coal quays for mullet. Boats can be launched at the slipway for fishing around Scotsmans Bay and Dalkey Island. Two fully equipped charter boats operate from the harbour specialising in general ground, wreck and reef fishing off the Kish and Burford Banks. For further details please contact; Charles Robinson Sea Angling Charters, Tel: 0404 68751/088 508398 and Dun Laoghaire Boat Charter, Tel: 282 3426/088 502066.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour is a popular boat and shore-angling center, which is located off the N31. Both the West and East Piers in Dun Laoghaire Harbour are popular shore fishing venues for mackerel, whiting, pouting, codling and pollack. Fishing into the harbour produces dab, plaice and conger in summer while float fishing from inner coal quays yields mullet.

Boats can be launched at the slipway for fishing in Scotsmans Bay and around Dalkey Island. Charter boats operate from the harbour specialising in general ground, wreck and reef fishing. Large spurdog and tope turn up regularly in boat catches.

Species: Bass, codling, pollack, whiting, mackerel, mullet, flatfish, spurdog and tope.

Season: May/October

Ground Type: Mainly sand.

Bait: Lugworm, ragworm, crab, squid and mackerel.

Method: Leger rigs work best from both boat and shore.

Fishing Tip: Use a two up and one down combination drift rig to cover all available species.

SOUTH COUNTY DUBLIN TO GREYSTONES, CO. WICKLOW

At Bullock (19) and Coliemore Harbour (20) small boats can be launched from mid water through high tide for general ground fishing around Dalkey Island. Species available include mackerel (in season), dogfish, plaice, dabs, codling and whiting. Pier fishing for codling, small pollack and conger is available at Coliemore Harbour. At both venues inshore self drive boats are available for hire. For further details please contact: Tel: 280 6517 and 280 0915 (Bullock Harbour), 283 4298 (Coliemore Harbour).

Killiney Beach (21) A shore fishing venue for plaice, bass, codling, dogfish, coalfish and pollack. Bray (22) is another popular boat and shore fishing location. In Bray Harbour (22) pier fishing for codling, pollack, dogfish and occasional conger takes place. Beach fishing is also popular below the promenade for bass, plaice, dab, gurnard, coalfish, dogfish, ray and occasional tope. Rock fishing is for codling, small conger, wrasse, pollack and coalfish. Self-drive or skippered small boats are based in the harbour and can be hired from Esplanade Hotel, Tel: 286 2056.
North Beach at Greystones (24) is renowned for its shore fishing for coalfish, codling, dogfish, dab, plaice and occasional turbot, sole and conger. At Greystones Harbour (25) there is pier fishing for codling, small pollack and occasional bass. Rock fishing onto sand for codling, coalfish, whiting and plaice. Small boats can be launched from the harbour for general bottom fishing for plaice, codling, whiting, ray, tope, dogfish, dab, gurnard and mackerel (in season).

Bullock Harbour to Greystones

South east of Dun Laoghaire, small boats can be launched at Dalkey and Colliemore. Both harbours are tidal but launches and recoveries can be made safely two hours either side of high water. Species available include mackerel, dogfish, plaice, dabs, codling and whiting. At both venues inshore self-drive boats are available for hire. Fishing from the sea wall at Colliemore provides sport with coalfish, codling, pollack and conger.

Shore fishing from the beach at Killiney can be excellent at times for plaice, bass, codling, dogfish, coalfish and pollack. Long casts are not generally required because the majority of fish feed along the shoreline at the base of the shingle slope.

Bray, which is located off the M11 is a popular boat and shore fishing center. There is an excellent slipway in Bray Harbour for launching small boats and fishing is for a wide range of species. Pier fishing in the Harbour is for codling, pollack, dogfish and conger. Beach fishing is also popular below the promenade for bass, plaice, dab, gurnard, coalfish, dogfish, ray and tope. Rock fishing around Bray Head is for codling, small conger, wrasse, pollack and coalfish.

The North Beach, Greystones is a popular match fishing venue, which produces coalfish, codling, dogfish, dab, plaice, sole and conger. Small boats can be launched from Greystones Harbour for general bottom fishing for plaice, codling, whiting, ray, tope, dogfish, dab, gurnard and mackerel. Tournament boat fishing is extremely popular here with a number of events staged annually. Shore fishing from the pier yields codling, pollack and bass whilst the rocks to the east and south of the village afford fishing onto sand for codling, coalfish, whiting and plaice.

The South Beach, Greystones produces codling, pollack , dab, plaice and dogfish. Hotspots are opposite the outflow pipe on the “Hungry Acre” and around the stream at Ballygannon. There is easy access across the railway line at Kilcoole where codling, coalfish, dogfish, dab, whiting and plaice turn up in catches regularly.

The five-fathom line is less than a mile offshore at Newcastle. Some of the best winter fishing for cod and dab is to be found there just north of the access road. The beach at Killoughter produces the widest range of species from the shore in Co. Wicklow. Specimen homelyn ray, smoothound, spurdog, thornback ray and bullhuss have all been recorded recently, while the more “normal fishing” for dogfish, codling and flatfish has been above average. Generally night tides are best.

The North Beach, Wicklow fishes best at night in autumn with the hotspots located around the local landmark known as the “monkey pole”.

Species: Bass, plaice, dab, gurnard, coalfish, conger, dogfish, plaice, codling, whiting, mackerel, ray, bullhuss, smoothound, spurdog and tope.

Season: April/December.

Ground Type: sand, shingle and rock.

Bait: Crab, lugworm, ragworm and sandeel.

Method: All standard methods will produce fish at these venues.

Fishing Tip: Drift fishing with a “Rauto” spoon on a three foot leger baited with ragworm and tipped with squid or mackerel is a very effective way of catching big plaice at Greystones.

Charter Boat Services

A number of licensed charter boats operate in and around the Greater Dublin area

Tides

Tide tables for Dublin Port can be obtained from Dublin Port and Docks Board, Head Office, Port Centre, Alexandra Road, Dublin 1. Tel: 855 0888/874 8771. They can also be obtained from daily newspapers or from a local tackle dealer.

How To Get There

Most angling locations can be reached by DART, suburban railway line or bus. The DART train runs from Howth to Bray and most angling locations along the DART line are accessible. Angling locations at Howth, Sutton, Sandymount Strand, Dun Laoghaire, Bullock and Coliemore Harbours (Dalkey DART station), Killiney Beach, and Bray are all within 5 - 10 minutes walk of the DART station. Dollymount Strand and North Bull Wall are most accessible via bus routs 30 and 32X and South Bull Wall via bus route no. 1. These three routes all depart from the city centre. Bullock and Coliemore Harbours can also be reached by bus route no. 8 from the city centre. Check with the bus driver for the right stop to get off at.
Outside the Howth/Bray DART railway line most of the other angling venues can be reached by suburban rail or bus. Greystones in the south can be reached by suburban rail or by bus routes no. 84 and 85 from the city centre. In North County Dublin angling venues in Balbriggan, Skerries, Rush and Loughshinny and bus route no. 33B to Donabate. Malahide and Portmarnock are served well by bus routes - 230, 32A, 42, 102 to Malahide and 32, 32X, 32A to Portmarnock and Baldoyle village. The Corballis (C) bait gathering location is most accessible via 102 bus. All bus routes leave from the city centre.

For further information on bus and train timetables please contact: Dublin Bus and Irish Rail (see services for details).

Sea Angling Clubs

http://www.brayseaanglers.com


Dublin sea angling map