The 2018 season in Ireland commenced with heavy snowfall on the 1st march and although the eyes were freezing to the line wild trout were still eager to come to weighted nymphs on my local streams.  March as a result of the extreme conditions was relatively quiet from a guiding perspective but I used the free time to maximum effect by optimising my own time with the rod.  As the weather warmed up we were to start and see fly hatches increase and hawthorne and black gnat fishing was good on some waters while a little disappointing on others.  Salmon and seatrout angling was patchy as a result of the heat but if prepared to fish unsociable hours success could still be guaranteed.
From a competitive point I made the Ulster Rivers team 2018 and narrowly missed qualifying for the 2019 Irish Rivers Team in a very strong field of anglers.  I did however represent The Irish Rivers Team in 2018 on the River Ure in England gaining my 13th International cap.  We narrowly missed out on Gold running up Silver medalists while I was individually 3rd in the comp and also won the trophy for largest fish.  I fished the Melvin Open again this year and was happy to finish 4th.  So all in all not a bad year on the competition front.

From a guiding perspective I had a very satisfying and enjoyable season helping my clients from all arts and parts to enjoy their days on the water.  From first timers to seasoned avid anglers we never failed to enjoy our day and land a few fish along the way. Low water compounded our angling with the extremely hot summer but again if you were prepared to be flexible in your approach trout and salmon could still be encountered.

Now its back to the vice and roll on 2019