River Drowes and Estuary Fishery Donegal – The River Drowes is a good spring and summer salmon fishery producing over 1,000 fish a year. Sea trout only run in small numbers but it holds good stocks of brown trout. The Drowse Estuary consists of the three pools downstream of the Bundrowes Bridge to the sea near Bundoran.
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The River Drowes is among the earliest opening salmon fisheries in Ireland and regularly produces Ireland’s first salmon of the season on opening day, January 1st. Indeed the opening days fising has turned into a very festive occasion with upwads on 250 anglers fishing, all trying to land the first salmon.
The river is about 8km in length, with 80 named pools, flowing from Lough Melvin at Lareen Bay and entering the Atlantic at Tullaghan, just outside Bundoran. As a rule the river maintains good water levels right through the season being fed by Lough Melvin. There is a good run of spring salmon from the 1st January untilApril/May with some summer and autumn fish. The main grilse run starts near the end of May peaking around June/July.
The Drowes has a variety of water which is suitable for all fishing methods, including several miles of good fly water and deeper slower moving pools suitable for spinning and bait fishing. The main sections are as follows:-
Lough Melvin to Four Masters Bridge
The upper section from the Lough to Four Masters Bridge has a lovely series of streams and pools and is usually reserved for anglers staying in the holiday bungalows at Lareen Estate. There is a fishery office and tackle shop on the estate from where fishing permits and licences are available and boats and engines may be hired.
Four Masters Bridge to Lennox’s Bridge
The middle section from Four Masters Bridge downstream to Lennox’s Bridge is generally fast flowing and fishes best in medium to low water.
Lennox’s Bridge to Tullaghan Bridge
The third section from Lennox’s Bridge downstream to the Tullaghan Bridge has streamy water and pools in the upper section with deeper slower water towards the bottom. The original Sea Pool is located at the bottom of this stretch and can be a very productive pool at high tide (spring tides particularly).
Popular flies include Lady Eithne, Silver Rat, Stoat’s Tail, Red Shrimp, Silver Doctor, Hairy Mary & Blue Charm. All legitimate angling methods are allowed.
Daily and weekly permits are available.These are available from 9 to 10am and 1 to 2pm from the Fishery Office, Lareen Park, Kinlough, Co. Leitrim. Tel: 00353 (0)71 9841055.
The Drowse Estuary consists of the three pools downstream of the Bundrowes Bridge in Tullaghan, Co. Leitrim, down to the sea. It gets a good run of spring salmon from the 1st January through to April/May with some summer and autumn salmon. The main grilse run starts around the end of May. This is a prolific little fishery since all salmon that run into the Drowes/Melvin system pass through this section.
The Drowse Estuary is controlled by a syndicate, which issues six permits per day, from 8am to 5pm and from 6pm to 10pm. These can be purchased from Fishery Office, Lareen Park, Kinlough, Co. Leitrim. Tel: 00353 (0)71 9841055.
The Salmon season is from 1st January to 30th September inclusive.
The Brown Trout season is from 15th February to 30th September inclusive.
Location Map for the River Drowes and the Drowes Estuary Fishery Donegal