FISHING IN OBAN AND LORN
There is no closed season for rod fishing in the sea in Scotland, and nor do you need a license or permit. However, you should be aware that in some areas of the country you could be prosecuted for taking salmon and sea trout and it is worth checking before trying your luck when fishing around any salmon river system or sea loch.
There are a few places you can fish from the shore, but a much better catch can be had from a boat, several of which we have available for hire. In the summer you are very likely to catch mackerel and pollock, but you may also catch ling, coley, cod, dogfish, gurnard, thornback ray, flatfish, and even the occasional crab! And whilst you are out there, keep an eye open for otter, seals and dolphins.
The brown trout fishing season in Scotland is generally from March 15 to September 30 with a few variations. If you are planning to fish at either end of the season, you can check this when buying your permit. The local season for salmon and sea trout is February 11 to 15 October with a couple of weeks’ extension to this on the Isle of Mull. Again, you can check this when buying your permit.
FISHING AT ARDMADDY
Ardmaddy offers free loch fishing on two lochs to our holiday tenants and this should be booked on a day to day basis. Fly fishing only is permitted, and we do ask that fish are returned to the water once you have one or two for the pot. If you wish to use the boat on Loch Smiddy, oars, rowlocks and lifejackets can be collected before use. Sea trout do come up to the mouths of the two burns in the bay with the tide, but these are best caught with a spinner.
This loch (marked as Lochan nan Ceardach on the map) is situated in the hills behind Caddleton Farmhouse to the south of the Castle and is reached by taking the hill road from Ardmaddy Lodge – over the iron bridge – up a steepish hill and take a left after about 400m on a gentle rise just before a gate on the road. Follow this route to the top of the hill from which you will have a stupendous view of the islands and just over the summit you will find the Loch. Alternatively, take the track behind Caddleton -through the gate in the wall – following the burn you will come to a "crossroads" at a little bridge – cross over the main track and again following the burn keep to the grassy track following round to the left when you reach the top of the hill until you come to the loch. Fish along the shore adjacent to the track or take the boat (entirely at your own risk) into the centre and try your luck on massive rainbow trout! There is no season as such at Loch Smiddy, and you are welcome to fish throughout the year.
Loch Seil lies to the east of the B844 Oban road, about one mile from where you join the public road from Ardmaddy. Park your car at the entrance to the track on your right at the Ardmaddy end of the Loch. Fish from the forestry bank along the loch side for brown trout, or the occasional sea trout. Our land finishes half way along this bank but we have permission from the forest owner to fish from his land.
Please note: There is currently a lot of felling and replanting work being carried out in the forest, and access may be difficult for 2018. There are a number of tracks being developed for walkers, but at the time of writing (February 2018) access to the banks is very difficult.
OBAN AND LORN ANGLING CLUB
The Oban and Lorn Angling Club manages a number of lochs in the area – permits and further information can be obtained from the following:
David Graham Cycle and Tackle Shop, 11/15 Combie Street, Oban 01631 562069 – sells fishing tackle.
The Anglers Corner, 4 Craigarad Road, Oban, PA34 5NP, 01631 566374 – a great shop for anything related to fishing and shooting. They can also advise on lots more fishing opportunities than are listed here.
Awe Service Station, Bridge of Awe, Taynuilt, PA35 1HT 01866 822612
Graham’s Stores, Main Street, Taynuilt PA35 1JE 01866 822248 – a fantastic little village shop and well worth a look around!
Ledaig Service Station, Benderloch
Cuilfail Hotel, Kilmelford, PA34 4XA 01852 200274
The Barn, Cologin, Lerags Glen, OBAN
CHARGES FOR TROUT FISHING 2018
Bank permits £10.00 per day , £20 for three days, £45 per week. Boats can be hired to those taking out weekly permits. Life jackets are mandatory and is the responsibility of the hiring party to provide. NOTE: Maximum of three persons per boat.
Full & Associate membership is £75 per year & £55 per year for concessions. Juniors are free up to age of 16.
OTHER FISHING IS AVAILABLE AT THE FOLLOWING PLACES
Loch Awe is one of the largest lochs in Scotland at 26 miles long, up to one mile wide in places and with a depth of up to 300ft. It is easily accessible from the public roads which run around its perimeter. Boats can be hired at various places and there is also plenty of scope for launching your own boat. The loch is famous for its huge ferox trout, but it also has plenty of regular brown trout, a few escapee rainbow trout, arctic char, perch, and pike. The loch has a protection order in force and fishing is by permit only, available from various outlets around the loch, and from tackle shops in Oban. There are wardens who may well ask to see your permit.
Loch Avich is closer than, and not as busy as Loch Awe, and is covered by the Loch Awe permit. This loch is just above the village of Kilmelford.
Inverawe is a fly fishing centre with four lochs to suit all standards, and tuition is available. It has a café, a smoke house, and a shop. Permits for the River Awe can be bought here. In the main season it is wise to phone ahead to book. There are several lovely walks to be had from here, too.
Ederline Estate has Loch Ederline and lots of smaller hill lochs. It also has salmon fishing on the River Add by prior arrangement. For further information and to book, please contact Ederline Estates 01949 850372
Fly fishing tuition is available at Inverawe Fisheries at Taynuilt – http://www.inverawe-fisheries.co.uk/
FISHING TRIPS FOR SKATE AND OTHER SEA FISH
Blue Fin Charters operates from Dunstaffnage Marina just north of Oban. 0777 605 3658
Laura Dawn, Oban - Ronnie Campbell, 01631 750213 or 07721 640024
Argyll Sea Tours - Jack and Linda MacGregor, Oban, 07900 605245 or 07879 650589
WHAT WILL YOU CATCH?
Most species in the area can be caught from both shore and boat. There are some excellent shore marks such as Dunollie Point on the Ganavan Road just past Oban. The most common fish caught from the shore are mackerel, pollack, spurdog, thornback ray, dogfish, cod, coalfish and a variety of flatties. All will be hooked on rag and lugworm as well as mackerel strips, mussel and peeler crab. However, boat fishing offers a much bigger variety, including wrasse, ling, conger, whiting, haddock and skate. Some of these species are seldom caught from the shore. Wreck and reef fishing is most popular and large catches are common.