Bawnboy is the idyllic angling village where most of the evening fishing action revolves around the Keeper’s Arms – a popular pub that does inexpensive BB – attracting anglers from the local holiday homes and guesthouse for a pint and a chat.
Fishing and having a pint go hand-in-hand, especially for those lucky enough to get away for a few days with a bevy of mates. And of course Ireland is famous for genial landlords and warm welcome.
Pub-going is part of the fabric of Irish society and in the more rural areas is a tradition linked to farming and long days in the field. You could be in a village in the heart of Cavan enjoying a summer quencher on a bench outside the pub as midnight nears, and the landlord pops his head out of the door and whispers: “You’d better come on in – we’re closing now!”
The Keeper’s Arms – renowned for its warm welcome and modern ensuite bedrooms – is in the heart of the village and just five minute walk away (one the same lane) is the delightful self-catering “Village Cottage” that is comfortable for up to four anglers.
Brackley and Bunerky are the prime local loughs where a bite-a-cast is normal from roach and hybrids on pole, waggler or feeder. But there are loads of bream to be caught and while samples are always likely in a day-long session, like everywhere else, the truly big hauls usually go to those anglers who do some pre-baiting. My first choice for either a decent mixed bag or a good net of bream would be Brackley. This is picturesque lake has easy access, especially at Prospect Point reached off the Swanlinbar road, and a comfortable stony shoreline with room for 20 anglers or more.
The top method is feeder fishing at about 40metres or more, offering any combination of red maggots, worms, caster, corn and even a pellet. A really nice way to tackle this water on the first day without preparation is to use a straight lead on a link with a two metre tail to catch roach, skimmer and hybrids ‘on the drop’ over catapulted balls of crumb. You will know when the bream arrive.
If you are happy staying local, the other waters you must try include Bunerky Lake, Lakefield, Templeport and Bellaboy. How many good waters do you need? Well, those within a short drive are Killywilly, Tomkin Road, Long Lake, Derrycassan, the Woodford River and miles of the Shannon-Erne Waterway.