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Flyfishing in the Boyne Valley. Salmon and trout fishing.

The Kells Blackwater


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THE KELLS BLACKWATER is the largest tributary of the River Boyne and it is fed by Lough Ramor in County Cavan. It flows in a south-easterly direction passing north of Kells, Co. Meath to its confluence with the Boyne at Navan. This river has all the usual fly hatches associated with a limestone river with sedges and olives being important. Presently the best of the brown trout angling on this river is on the waters controlled by Kells Angling Club. This includes the stretches from the Nine-Eyed Bridge at its source to Mabes Bridge, which is located just north of Kells. This river holds good stocks of wild brown trout up to two pounds and over and most of the stretches provide good angling. In 2004 the Blackwater produced a new record brown trout for the river which weighed in at over 9lbs 11ozs. In 2004 the Kells Blackwater produced several wild brown trout that weighed 3lbs to 5lbs. This river can fish well from March to September.


Location: Co. Cavan and Co. Meath. The main towns and villages in the area are Kells and Carnaross.

Season: Fishing takes place from March 1st to September 30th.

Fish Species: The Kells Blackwater is a wild brown trout fishery.

Methods: Fly-fishing, dry fly, wet fly, and nymph fishing are all successful.

Bye-law No. 824, 2007 prohibits the use of any fish hooks, other than single barbless hooks, and the use of worms as bait in angling for all species of fish in the Rivers Boyne (the main channel) and Kells Blackwater (downstream of the Nine Eyed Bridge).

Best Flies: Dry Flies: Grey Flag, Grey Duster, Hares Ear, Olive patterns including the Sherry Spinner.

Wet Flies: March Browns, Wickhams Fancy, Greenwells Glory, and Hares Ear

Nymphs: Assorted nymph patterns, including Goldheads, Hares Ear and Sawyers Nymph.

Angling Club: The Kells Angling Club which supports a policy of catch and release controls the fishing from The Nine Eyed Bridge to Mabes Bridge.

Fishing Tip: Evening time produces the best results but daytime fishing can also be productive if the angler uses the correct methods.

Entomoligical Information: The Kells Blackwater contains an abundance of fish food in the form of bugs, insects and flies. The most abundant and prolific of these include the following orders.

Order Ephemeroptera (upwing flies)Baetidae (olives)Ecdyonuridae Trichoptera (sedges)HydropychidaeLimnephilidae Diptera (flatwing flies)Chironomidae (midges) Amphipoda Gammaridae (freshwater shrimp) Coleoptera (beetles)Elminthidae (small brown beetle) Lympets (crustation)Ancylidae (tiny snail)


Permits: Permits for this river are available from:

Pat McLaughlin, 64 Magdelene Court, Kells, Co. Meath.
Tel: (Europe) 00 353 46 9241807, 00 353 86 1017415 (U.S.A.) 011 353 46 9241807 011 353 86 1017415. email:

Guide Services: Pat Mc Loughlin, 64 Magdelene Court, Kells, Co. Meath.
Tel: (Europe) 00 353 46 9241807, 00 353 86 1017415 (U.S.A.) 011 353 46 9241807 011 353 86 1017415. email:



The Headfort Arms Hotel, Kells, Co. Meath. Tel: (Europe) 00 353 46 9240063

(U.S.A.) 011 353 46 9240063 email:

The Newgrange Hotel, Bridge Street, Navan, Co. Meath.
Tel: (Europe) 00 353 46 9074100 (U.S.A.) 011 353 46 9074100 email:

Guest House:

Brogans Guesthouse, High Street, Trim, Co. Meath. Tel: (Europe) 00 353 46 9431237.

(U.S.A.) 011 353 46 9431237 email:

Bed and Breakfast:

Teach Cuailgne, Carlanstown, Kells, Co. Meath. Tel: (Europe) 00 353 46 9246621 Fax:00 353 46 9246046 email:

Crannmor B&B, Dunderry Road, Trim, Co. Meath.
Tel: (Europe) 00 353 46 9431635. (U.S.A) 011 353 46 9431635 email:

Highfield House B&B, Maudlins Road, Trim, Co. Meath.
Tel: (Europe) 00 353 46 9436386. (U.S.A) 011 353 46 9436386. email:

Self Catering:

Kiltale House and Cottage, Kiltale, Dunsany, Co. Meath.
Tel & Fax: (Europe) 00 353 46 9436679 (U.S.A.) 011 353 46 94 36679. email:

Beechwood Lodge, Holiday Homes, Trim, Co. Meath. Tel & Fax: (Europe) 00 353 46 94 36926 (U.S.A.) 011 353 46 94 36926. email:


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The Eastern Regional Fisheries Board presents this web site as a definitive guide to salmon, trout, coarse and sea fishing in Monaghan, Meath, Louth, Dublin, Wicklow and Wexford.

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