Loch Awe in Argyll is one of the UK’s prime wild fishing sites. The 24 mile freshwater loch is surrounded by a considerable catchment area for the many feeder rivers flowing from the surrounding mountains. This gives it a rich nutrient inflow and highly oxygenated water which results in the high quality water that fish thrive in. The many bays of the loch also vary in habitat type, offering a wide range of ecosystems that enable a wide variety of fish to prosper.
The loch is particularly famous for its sublime supply of wild brown trout, and the rod-caught record for the UK has been broken 4 times in the last decade here. There are however a wide array of fish, making the loch perfect for both novices and serious anglers alike.
The Brown Trout season runs from the 15th of March through to the 6th of October and it is recommended that fly fishing is used, as it is regarded as the best form of fishing to catch the trout. This isn’t to say that worm or maggot lines won’t work either, but they are advised to be ledgered. The loch also has a breeding colony of rainbow trout after some escapees made it out of two fish farms on the loch. It has been asked that any anglers catching Rainbow Trout kill them all; as it is presumed they compete with the brown trout for food, and thus negatively impact on the native ecosystem.
Loch Awe, which is, by the way, the longest freshwater loch in Scotland, also has Char, Perch and Pike mixed into its waters. The season for fishing the Perch and Char is also between the 15th of March and the 6th of October whilst the Pike is available to catch all year round.
There are some very large pike there; the largest caught being 35.5lbs. The pike can provide some excellent winter sport, and the reedy beds around the bays provide a perfect habitat. The most popular method of fishing is by dead bait, using mackerel, herring, sardine or eel set on a wire trace and using two or three treble hooks. No live bait.
All fishing on the loch is covered by a Protection Order granted in 1992 which is enforced by the Loch Awe Improvement Association (LAIA). The purpose of the order is to encourage and protect legal and responsible fishing; thus improving fish stocks. The LAIA has also recently announced that it will organize the funding for brown trout hatchery as well as a scheme to improve the reed beds on one of the spawning rivers.
Alongside its famous fishing attributes, Loch Awe has many claims to fame. Kilchurn castle is one of the most photographed sites in all of Scotland and the transatlantic cable (the first to cross the Atlantic) runs through Kilchrenan village on its northern shore.
Fishing permits are available at several outlets throughout Central Scotland. Local outlets are Loch Awe Stores in Loachawe, Loch Awe Boats at Ardbrecknish, Awe Service Station at Bridge of Awe and the Tight Line at Lochawe. Permits cost £6.00 per day, £12.00 for three days, £20.00 per week, £60.00 for the season, (half price for juveniles and concessions). There will be no charge for children under 12 who are accompanied by a permit-holding adult.
Whilst you visit Loch Awe you should consider staying in a Scottish log cabin or at our Scottish holiday lodges. Log cabins Scotland have proved to be a popular retreat from you fishing holiday, offering a warm and cosy home from home.
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