Gilford angling club, kernan lough


                         Established 1953

                                        2014 CALENDAR 

We have included a calendar for all our members. This contains all the competitions, dates, times for 2014, so if you lose or misplace your card you can check here. Click on a competition date for more info. For those of you who don't usually enter, give it a go. This year we are introducing new competitions and re-vamping the old ones. Competitions are a great way of meeting other members and the craic and banter is always good, so check out the calender and come along. (If at 1st the calendar doesn't load up click on another page then click back again and it should appear).



As you can see we have now got our own website (when searching always use Google as your search engine) which means members can keep up-to date with all the fishing news and competitions etc. You will notice that the website is a little 'tongue-in-cheek' so we hope you have a sense of humour. The site will feature all competition news, results, fixtures and photos as well as fishing tips and reports on  hatches. 

The site is not designed as a forum for members to air their views, its primary objective is to promote the club, and provide information on competitions, events, etc.

The website is new to the club and over the next few months we will be upgrading on a regular basis to get the format right and ensure that it is a site that delivers information to it's members on what the fishing is like on the lough and the river. The website is mainly for competition use and we are currently looking at the competitions section and looking to improve on it's present format which has remained largely unchanged over the years. So all suggestions regarding new competitions and formats are most welcome as are any new sponsors


Reports from the lough for early July are that there are good evening rises taking place. Fish are coming up on the last hour and taking dries and small nymphs. Stevie McSherry caught a lovely 2 and a half pounder fishing his tying of a green shipmans. There are quite a few sedges coming onto the lake and trout are coming up for these so green peters etc. will get you results.
During the day the fish seem to be deep especially in the sunshine, when cloud does appear fish are coming up and taking any fly life on the water, so be prepared to switch lines at short notice.
If you are in a boat and fish are moving, try going on the drift and fish a team of wets with short casts, this will definitely get you results and with sedges about, now is the time to give it a go.

It's great to see a few 4 and 5 pounders being caught (and being put back) but I can't understand how an angler can kill a 5lb fish. Lets face it, it has taken 3 or 4 years to grow to this stage and by putting it back you are giving someone else the pleasure and thrill of catching a great fish. There are one or 2 anglers out there that will kill these fish, one angler recently caught a fish of over 5lb, dispatched it and said "That'll do the pan" what size of a feckin pan has he??  He was a pensioner and that fish would feed him and the wife for a week!! Do the decent thing, take a photo and put it back! We'll even put it on the site.

On Wed 2nd With a stiff south westerly wind and plenty of cloud, conditions were near perfect for Jim Malloy who took to his boat and had a good days fishing, one his fish was a lovely Rainbow of over 5lb. Jim was fishing a team of buzzers and this fish gave him a really good fight before eventually netting it. The fish was in prime condition and fully tailed. Jim as usual returned the fish and it's out there somewhere for someone else to catch. Well done Jim!! 
Craig Pearson fished the lake on the same day using wet flies on a floater with a 16ft cast. With the wind behind him Craig fished close to the shoreline knowing there would be fish hunting amongst the shallows, his plan worked well and was rewarded with 14 fish most of these fell to a dabbler on the top dropper, he missed a load of fish which were just tapping at the flies and he lost at least a dozen which weren't hooked properly he reckons the size 10 dabbler was just to big and would 
have  preferred using a size 12 which he reckons would have hooked more fish (he's now tying a few of these up). The water is in good condition at present and the top of the lake is fairly clear with very little algae present. With rain forecast over the next few days this will help improve oxygen levels and will keep the fish on the move so get out there and get fishing cause these conditions won't last long!! 

On Thursday the 3rd Davy McKitterick headed out at 11am on a warm and cloudy day with a nice south westerly breeze. Fishing traditional wets Davy was amongst the fish on almost every drift and by 3pm had caught over 30 fish. Green Peters were doing most of the damage these varied in colour from a dark olive green to a lime green. For the evening rise boat men were disappointed as the fish moved in close to the shoreline and the bank men came good. Andy Mitchell became so frustrated he begged his mate John to drop him off on the shore so he could get amongst the fish. 'Snowy' fishing the Gilford side of the lake had a great evenings sport catching at least 10 fish, one of these was a 4 pounder which he returned to the lake. Snowy fished a floater and a hares ear which he stripped back just below the surface, his mate Terry also done well using the same tactics.
On the Banbridge side of the lake other anglers were also having great success with plenty of fish being caught by the bank men.
Stevie McSherry had a great evenings sport catching a load of fish mostly on the Green Peter and his 'Special' green shipmans. Pete Doran arrived at the lake a little later than usual and was miffed that someone had taken his 'Usual Spot' and moaned to everyone that passed by, and because of this he said he will be putting in a complaint!!............ "Ah get a grip man and get to the lake a little earlier - yer big girls blouse". Andy came off the lake as the light faded and said in future he would be going back to the Corbet lough to fish with his 'Mates'.......... I didn't know he had any!!
Anyway it was a great nites craic and the banter was good, and nice to see plenty of anglers out enjoying the fishing. 

Saturday 5th There were a few boats out and a few bank men out early today, conditions were good and a few fish were moving however they weren't so easy caught, these fish are now starting to become a bit wary. Craig Pearson caught a few using the old Dabbler, one of these was a fish over 3lb which he caught during a heavy downpour, the fish was duly put back. The fish then went down and deep and that was that, all boats slowly returned and by 2.30 only a couple of bank men remained.

Sunday 6th There was a wee competition held today at 2pm, conditions were good and there was a good turnout. All boats headed for the top of the lough where it was reported the fish were feeding. Bill (Minky) Johnston got amongst the fish straight away and others were also catching. After an hour Bill headed down the lough to try his luck, an hour later he was back having no joy.
By the end of the day he was complaining that his arm was sore (I'm not surprised he must have caught at least 30!!) Bill fished deep and fast all day and gave the fish a real hammering. Others by this time were struggling all the usual flies were being used, hares ear, sedges, buzzers, etc. but the minkies were doing the damage. 
At the end of the comp' Bill came 1st - Stevie McSherry 2nd - and Paul Harrison 3rd.

Thursday 10th Conditions were good today a nice breeze and plenty of cloud. There were a few boats out and some bank anglers. Davy McKitterick and his mate were out and between them caught over a dozen fish, they were fishing mostly Buzzers on inters. Craig Pearson was also fishing an inter and fished hard all afternoon for his 4 fish the last of these was a beautiful golden brown at about 4 and a half pounds!! This fish would have been stocked a few years ago and would now be classed as a wild fish. The fish went straight into deep water and for a minute or two refused to move and was just a dead weight, it eventually came came up took a couple of runs and was then landed - and of course 'Put back'. Craig caught this on his tying of a Silver Dabbler this has worked well for him over over the last few outings.

Sunday 13th With plenty of cloud and a good breeze there were plenty of boats out today. Whilst Davy McKitterick and Paul Harrison struggled, Craig Pearson was doing o.k with his silver dabbler - one of his fish was a fine 2 and a half pounder, but things soon changed with Davy and Paul changing to a 'Washing line' and fishing buzzers they were instantly into the fish and the fishing remained steady for them for the rest of the day. Craig didn't change and he stopped catching. In fact the last fish Craig got came out of the water and landed in his boat!! Much to the amusement of Davy and Paul who couldn't stop laughing, Donald quipped it's the only way he can get fish!!
Donald McClearn fished dries at the start of the day getting some good fish then having watched Davy and Paul change, he did the same and caught a few on the Buzzers.
'Minky' Johnston came out in the afternoon and fished the Gilford side in his boat, he was catching but refused to pass on any info.
So were not sure what he was getting them on.

Thurs 17th Fishing seems to have slowed a little, there are plenty of fish rising at nite but not so easily caught. Today was a little on the bright side so there were very few out fishing. Rain is forecast over the next few days so hopefully it will move the fish.
The lough has greened up a little especially around the jetty area, the top of the lough is a little better.

Tues 22nd Anglers are struggling as the hot weather takes its toll and the fish go deep. A late rise took place but most of the fish were out of reach as the rise took place out in the open water. Boatmen are also struggling it could be the weekend before the heatwave comes to an end ..............Ah well!!..... time to sort out the BBQ and get the garden sorted.

News of an angler the other week who was spinning and caught a smallish trout of about a pound and was just about to land it when a pike came up and took it!!! Has anyone else had an experience like this? If so let us know. Maybe it is time for a Pike competition on the lough just to thin them out a little. There has also been reports of trout being caught with large bite marks, earlier in the season we would have put this down to cormorants but this time of the year there are none about so it seems like it could be pike doing the damage.  

Weed cutting got under-way around the boat jetty, the point, and the island which should help the bank angler, we hope to continue this over the next few weeks and it should encourage fish to keep on the move in these areas.

Other flies that are doing damage are the 'Booby' in various colours, some fisheries ban these lures/flies because of damage they can do when fished on a slow retrieve or fished static, as the fish tend to swallow them which means the 'fly' is lodged well down the fish's throat. When using Boobies de-barb the hooks which will help achieve a quick release. If your fly is lodged well down the fishes throat please 'dispatch' the fish rather than try to retrieve your fly as the damage done means the fish will not recover when put back. Green/black lures fished deep are also accounting for plenty of fish as are Olive green lures and nymphs when the Daphne is about. Blobs and Minkies are becoming popular and can be fished on floaters inters and sunk lines and can prove to be killers when there are no hatches about. The evening rises are happening but the fish are not easily caught, shipmans and  CDCs are the main flies that are doing the business.  There are a few damsels appearing so fish should be coming up for these, so stick on a big hopper and fish these when there is a wave or a good ripple.

A few fish are being caught with old line and flies attached to them so please ensure your knots and line are 100% , just test your line and knots before fishing. You are all reminded that some of the fish are at the 5lb mark so your line should be at least 6lb or above. Go to for details of various knots

Boatmen are reminded to ensure their boats are 100% and their boats are numbered on both sides with at least 6" lettering. Oars and row-locks should be checked, and life-jackets worn at all times. Please ensure when parking your car and trailer they are parked in such a way as to ensure others can park ok, it can become congested on competition days so please park up tight. 


Pete Doran reports that salmon have got stuck in the pools around Portadown due to the lack of rain and the Bann is very low at present. The longer these fish lie in the pools the worst they will become. A couple of days of heavy rain will move these on and create a fresh run of salmon. There are reports of the odd Dolaghan knocking about but the rain again will help introduce more of these. July, August and early September are the main months for the Salmon run so there is still plenty of time.

Last year our neighbours at Banbridge Angling Club also reported a lack of Salmon being caught during the summer months, although Geoff Hylands did well towards the end of last season and even caught 3 in one day!!

Pete Doran will be giving reports on the river this season so any info you have pass onto him or email us yourself if you want to contribute. You are reminded that the email facility is for passing on info not for complaints.



Season, 1st March - 31st October: Methods, Fly, Spinning. (Worm October) Boats, maximum of 10. All boats on the lough, must be registered, 6 inch numbers displayed on both sides of boats and life jackets must be wornBag Limit 3 fish. Once the 3rd fish has been dispatched rod to be dismantled

                                                                                     VISITORS (Fly only)

Visitors are welcome to fish and Day tickets are available at £12 per day. You are not allowed to use the spinning method on the Kernan lake unless you are a registered member of Gilford Angling Club so it's fly fishing only. Day tickets are available from the Spar 40 Mill St Gilford Tel  02838831087 the shop is in the centre of the town and is open 7 days a week.

BOATS & INFO Only members are permitted to use boats which are all registered with the club. The lough is stocked with both Brown and Rainbow up to 5lb. Kernan Lough is approx. 28 hectares in size and at its deepest point about 18 feet. There are fishing stands' around the lough but most of these are not suitable for wading, fall off areas are quite sharp and deep. The right hand side of the lough (from the car park) is the shallowest and wading is possible at some of the stands. Catch and release is permitted and visitors are advised to use barbless hooks. Bag limit - 3 fish.

RIVER BANN. Gilford Angling Club controls the fishing from Gilford down to the bridge in Laurencetown please ensure you gain permission before crossing lands to reach the river and close all gates.

  MEMBERSHIP (Gilford-angling-club)

If you are interested in joining please contact the Club Secretary (Geoff Kane) on 07990666213
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