everything you need to know, all on one site...


Charter Boats      Tackle Shops

Ghilllies    Car Hire    B&Bs

Guesthouses      Hotels

Self Catering     Property Sales

Caravan & Camping Parks

Good Pubs & Restaurants

Sligo Mayo - Killala Bay Mayo - Belmullet Shore Index

Last but not least of the three sections,we have moved around Achill & Clew Bay, to Belmullet and finally around to Killala Bay. This section of coast is the closest the continental shelf comes to the mainland around Ireland, and as a direct consequence of this many deep water species are often encountered on charter boats in this area - it holds the hake and john dory records, apart from which the tope fishing is excellent and what with all those salmon running up the river Moy...!  A red spot indicates a known shore mark with recent reports available, whilst a yellow spot indicates a known or suspected mark but with no recent reports... where a pioneering spirit is needed!


Killala Bay is one of the prime fishing locations in Ireland, with a vast variety of fishing and species available.  The deep waters off the continental shelf are quite close to the coast, leading to unusual catches such as john dory and even hake!  The River Moy is the best salmon fishery in Ireland and several small rivers - known for their sea-trout - also empty into the Bay. Excellent deep water rock marks and beach fishing marks abound.  We have uncovered two superb new marks, one west of Ballycastle (a tough hike but worth it) and another at Pollacheeny Harbour which is strictly speaking in Co. Sligo and now listed on this map!

12 - Balderg Harbour Okay, this one is off the map to the west, on the R314 out of Ballina, past Killala, past Ballycastle, past the Ceide Fields, and in fact past Balderg village.  Turn north (right) at the sign for the "prehistoric farm" and keep going straight down a fairly tight country road.  Parking around the working harbour is quite limited.   It is only exposed to the north or east so it’s a nice sheltered mark in poor weather.  This is a middle-to-high shore mark if you are fishing off the pier. This pier is not lit. Species & Techniques:  You are fishing on shingle and sand, casting as much towards the beach as you would out to sea; there is a small stream emptying onto the rocks.  This area produces flounders, the odd dab, and turbot in the colder months.  The latter are small but you can occasionally get lucky.  A fish nudging two kilos was taken on belly mackerel strip in October 2003.  Coalfish are a nuisance in winter, especially after sunset.  There are no codling here, perhaps the ground is too clean although there are snags and nasty tackle eating reefs further out.  In summer wrasse will pluck at float fished ragworm and crabs, with small pollack and mackerel falling to spinning.  Strap congers wander on the bottom but tend to lose out to the dogfish.  Bull huss are best sought after dark.  Move out onto the rocks on either side in clam weather.  On the western shore –the ground is easier to cover, standard rough ground fishing for pollack and wrasse is possible.  Distance casting past 80 metres finds clean patches but the occasional fatal reef.  The current is very strong and holding bottom is a big problem outside slack water.  This said, it is very deep in places but so far it has only yielded pollack.  I think a big bait legered over low water could tempt any number of species.  Ling are taken from boats very close to shore along this north Mayo coast.  A long flowing trace, say a pulley rig with a big bait, might tempt something toothy…

1 - Ballycastle Bay   This sheltered bay, down the road from the town of Ballycastle offers good to excellent low water fishing. The first two hours of the incoming tide is best, and night fishing is reputedly better still.  There are effectively three marks, on the rocks to the east of the bay, on the beach itself with the river's outfall the best spot for flatfish, and finally another river outflow on a shingle beach near the Stella Maris Hotel, which is flounder and coalfish central.  You can combine this low water mark with the other marks for a full day's busy angling.  Species & Techniques: Most Flatfish and Dogfish are available off the beach, however Coalfish and Codling are also available for distance casters, particularly at low water.  You can fish all of the three main marks,moving from east to west as the tide floods in, with the most comfortable on a summer's day being the pier however you will need to be nimble to get onto the pier arm, and watch the incoming waves!

2 - Lacken Pier   The trouble is the split access, for although the pier and strand look side-by-side on a map, it is a long drive from the beach, accessed from the Kilcummin side, to Lacken Pier, accessed from the Ballycastle side!  Species & Techniques: Spinning from this pier will produce Pollack, Coalfish and Mackerel in season.  Given the foul ground it is best to float fish for the available Wrasse.  The odd Conger can be taken around the pier itself, and it is rumoured that there is a massive beast resident in/around the harbour itself.  Distance casting can produce pollack and coalfish - they often follow the small boats in, and recently we saw excellent mullet there, quite late in the year but they did not find our fresh lugworm attractive.  October 2003.

11- Lacken Strand The strand is only approached by road from Kilcummin, and a lovely beach it is too, backed by high sand dunes.  You can fish off the flat layered rocks on the east, (watch for large waves) directly below the road and scramble a long way out along towards to the huge cliffs at the point (beware: it is a very exposed mark), or fish the first little cove (very sheltered but it fills completely at high tide).  The main beach is often thronged with holiday makers, especially at weekends so it is not easy to fish it during the summer, except after sunset. Species & Techniques: Conger, Bull Huss, and Dogfish are available over the weedy rocky ground along the East but it is snaggy.  Float fishing will produce good Wrasse.  Flounder are taken all along the mark, but close in either to the shore or the rocks.  The main beach, especially towards the river offers only Flounder, with the possibility of a Bass.  People seeking the Bass should try the rocky spine and eastern shore, particularly with plugs but lug or ragworm will work also.  Turbot and Ray have been recorded.

3 - The Flags above Kilcummin Harbour   When you get to Kilcummin you can try spinning at high water off the pier, but the key mark is above (north) at the Cliffs.  These are known locally as "the Flags" and they are signposted!  No excuses.  At low water you can fish over foul ground from the base of the cliffs but once the water begins to flood in, you are best to climb up and fish from the green fields above!  Most people fish off the eastern side (near the pier), where the "flags" are located.  Species & Techniques: Pollack, Coalfish, Wrasse and the odd but large Conger are the typical fish, with Mackerel to feathers in season.  Codling are taken by distance casters in the autumn.  This mark on the flood would make an ideal match with Ballycastle Strand on low water.  A minor bad road directly north of the pier brings you to the site of the French landings.  There is a small car park... and a sheer cliff 100 feet (30 m) high or more.  We tried fishing it but you land on flat shelves in surprisingly shallow water (Admiralty Chart is due an update) inhabited by hordes of crabs.  'Tis a windy spot!

4 - Scurmore   Spinning here produces Sea-trout and bottom fishing for Flounder with lugworm also takes the odd larger Sea-trout.   Species & Techniques: Around Killala Bay all of the smaller estuaries and that of the giant River Moy itself holds lots of Flounder and some Plaice - the typical bait is lugworm.  This will also take Sea-trout and Mullet, but a tradition in the area is to float fish a single sandeel on a long trace for Sea-Trout or a large Bass. All the rivers in North Western Mayo have runs of Sea-trout and Salmon, and the Sea-Trout are known to take the odd lugworm in several of these estuaries. A game fishing licence is required for Sea-Trout.

5 - From Castleconor up to opposite Bartragh Island   Spinning here in the estuary itself produces Sea-trout and bottom fishing for Flounder with lugworm also takes the odd Mullet and Sea-trout.   Species & Techniques: This is one of the key locations where you can watch the locals fly fishing as well as float fishing a sandeel on a long flowing trace... I have also seen small joey mackerel used as a bait for the large Bass resident in the estuary, although I have never seen one landed.  It is a known Bass fishing technique all around Ballina.

6 - Inniscrone Strand   This beach is reputedly six miles long and very popular with holiday makers.  The village itself is famous for its links golf course and is a popular destination for golfers and families. Fishing from the beach or the pier in daylight requires patience.  Species & Techniques: The beach mark will produce Dab and Flounder near the small river outflow, Ray in calm conditions with the odd Bass in bigger surfs, and shoals of Dogfish as you near the harbour.  Fishing at night is best, give you will avoid the kids inquiring of your success!

7 - Inniscrone Pier   This pier in daylight requires patience and a keen eye on the tackle box, although it is not as thronged as the beach on fine days and/or at weekends.  Species & Techniques: The pier regularly produces Conger and Dogfish at low tide, most Flatfish including the odd Plaice on the flood, whilst spinning will take Pollack and Mackerel at high water. One or two fine Rays have also been reported in recent years. The pier will also offer Codling, Coalfish and Whiting in the autumn and winter, especially at night on a flooding tide.

10 - Pollacheeny Harbour This is a new mark, pioneered on a 2002 winter's morning. It is hard to find however a good Ordinance Survey and the Admiralty Chart # 2715 will show you why it is so worth a visit!  There is a massive and deep depression in the seabed located slightly south of the rocks and dis-used harbour.  Species & Techniques: You have to walk out over the rocks south as the tide recedes and directly west of the point a short cast lands you into the deeper parts of the "hole" - a productive spot!  As the tides floods in, care has to be taken and you have to retreat with each successive cast getting longer and the retrieve being made over longer stretches of broken and foul ground.  Lead lifts will work well. We were broken twice by very large fish which we now believe may have been Common Skate.  We took too many Flounder for words and an old man watching us said it was a known Bass mark on the ebb tide.  The last fish was a Codling.

8 - Easky Pier   Easky is a reknowned surfer's haunt but the pier is also a good fishing mark.  Species & Techniques: The pier will produces strap Conger and Dogfish at low tide, most types of Flatfish on the flood, whilst spinning will take Pollack and Mackerel at high water, particularly in the summer. Wrasse are usually caught float fishing worm baits.  Doubtless, there are also Flatfish available casting towards the strand.

9 - East of Easky   This pier is not a bad spot but the resort town is favoured by surfers all year and as such it is difficult to find a place to fish safely.  Heading east, stop the car as the road bends sharply inland and walk uphill of the field keeping to a track on the seaward side and you will come to shallow cliffs.  They offer excellent fishing over mixed ground at distance and extremely foul ground close in, but its sheltered from the usual south west winds so it is a good spot.Species & Techniques: We have only fished it on the flood in the autumn of 2002, and whilst spinning will doubtless take Pollack, Coalfish and Mackerel in the summer, we caught wrasse are on legered worm baits, lots of 'schoolie' Coalfish, two small Codling, and a Bull Huss of about 7 lbs (3 kgs).  The highpoint was a pair of Pollack, both of which just fell below the 8 lbs (3.3 kg) shore specimen mark.


As with most of Mayo, you will likely find yourselves with any of these marks utterly deserted!