The waters around The Royal an Lochan are alive at this time of year and offer a large range of fish species for anglers. For most, a short walk to Tighnabruaich Pier will serve up a bucket full of Mackerel. Using some light gear and a multi hook rig is always the most fun as the Mackerel average about 1lb and fight hard.
For others, the harder fighting, Pollack are the target of choice. Pollack are a great sport fish as they fight hard and can easily grow to around 15lb, to target the biggest Pollack you will need a boat and knowledge of the reef areas in the deep water. However, shore fishing will often deliver you a 5 – 8 pounder (and believe me, if you hook one of these on light gear you will know about it). Fishing in and around sea walls and weed you will undoubtedly be rewarded. Fishing from deeper seawalls and at a lower depth may even serve up a cod (winter months are always more productive for cod).
There are a huge range of fish to target in Loch Fyne and the Kyles of Bute but the harder fighting Mackerel and Pollack are the most fun and you don’t have to wander far to find them.
Fishing at Portavadie
I recently went for a day’s fishing at Portavadie Marina (from the break-water at the head of the marina). My day started out well, as I tried a multi hook feather rig with a 4oz weight and my second cast pulled up two fine Pollack both weighing around 2lb. These both hit as I was on the final turn of a slow retrieve. I soon pulled up five more of similar size and in roughly the same area of my retrieve so I decided to change my rig to a larger hook size (size 5/0) triple hook and teamed it with a 45g silver metal fish casting lure, this would (hopefully) keep the smaller Pollack away and attracted the larger ones. After around an hour and a half and two cups of tea from my flask I finally got a big strike and a hard fight, whatever was on my line started heading straight to the bank of weed that I had been avoiding all day. I eventually managed to tire the fish and once it came out of the water I could see that it was a, healthy, 4lb Pollack that liked to fight!
The afternoon went on with a few smaller Pollack, Mackerel and even a small dogfish. As always, once my flask was empty it was time to pack up the gear and head home.
Rod: Shimano Tribal 9ft
Reel: Shimano Beastmaster 7000XSA
Line: Zebco Trophy Surf 15lb (0.40mm)
Rig: Fladen Deep Sea Multi rig, Dexter Wedge 45g, Silver Fish casting lure.