South West Scotland

Sharks, rays, pollack and sea bass on light tackle

South West Scotland

Sharks, rays, pollack and sea bass on light tackle


This location offers the best of both worlds.


Targeted skate fishing with an average of 4 to 5 skte per day or

General fishing with lots of rough shark, skates, rays, pollack etc.


A nice article about the captain and his fishing in Dutch angling magazine Zeehengelsport! And here some nice articles on Totalfishing. article 1, article 2, article 3, article 4, article 5 and article 6.


And here a nice article about our pilot trip!


The targeted skate fishing takes place in the northern part of Crinan in the spring and autumn and the general fishing takes place from May to October in Luce Bay and the Irish Sea from Portpatrick, Stranraer or Drummond.


Luce Bay is particularly rich in fish for general fishing. In case the wind blows just a little too enthusiastically you can go to the sheltered bay and in good weather it is only a short distance to fish directly on the Irish Sea. The tide difference here can be as much as 3 to 4 metres and that means current! And where there is current there are fish. And there are a lot of them here. Up to 50 species of fish are caught here.


Most sought of species that are fished are the shark species, rays and pollack. In addition, fly fishing for pollack has also risen sharply in recent years. On top of that, the beautiful and impressive nature of southwest Scotland and the warm-hearted people make the fishing trip a memorable one for sure!


So what are you waiting for? Go to the UK by boat or plane and drive to this location. ONM the left hand side of the road this is an adventure in itself. This spot has something for everyone, young or old, experienced or beginner. Everyone will find his or her desired fishery here.


You can catch a lot of different species here. More than 50 species have been caught here and the record of the boat in one day is no less than 27 different ones. From the beach or coast these are plaice, dab, sea bass, sole, mackerel, small sharks and flounder but also from the boat whiting, mackerel, pollack, cod, coalfish, ling, wrasse, bull huss, rays, tope, blue shark, catfish, spurdog, red and grey gurnard, conger and also skate. This ray is caught a lot here and reaches royal proportions. Targeted skate fishing for large specimens is mainly done in the spring and autumn from the more northerly Crinan.


Here the film of our pilot trip:



In the spring and autumn (April and November) these giants of the sea are targeted for one month. Fishing trips start from Crinan near Lochgilphead. It is a fascinating fishery where the numbers vary per day but the average is around 4 to 5 per day! In the spring of 2014 no less than 29 skate were caught that exceeded the magical limit of 200 lbs. The average weight during that period was an insane 185 lbs! For this fishery, 80 lbs of equipment is used, which is included when renting the boat.



For the regular fishing of shark, ray and pollack you can go from May to October with the right weather conditions. But one of the most important species that is targeted here is the rough shark. There have been weeks in which more than 150 rough sharks have been caught by boat. Early in the season they target specimens of around 10 to 15 kilos of rough shark in only 10 meters depth with light rods of 6 to 12 lbs. This is a truly spectacular fishery. But also with the float, there is targeted fishing for rough shark. In the summer months, the fishery is a little further from the coast to locate the larger specimens of around 15 to 20 kilos. The average number per day is then around 10 to 12 specimens per boat. In September and October the numbers get a bit lower but the size increases to 25 to 30 kilos. While fishing for rough shark, bull huss, smooth shark, spiny dogfish and also different species of stingray are regularly caught. This is a very welcome bycatch in which most catches are simply made with mackerel as bait.



Fishing for pollack takes place only a few meters from the cliffs, so you can fish here (almost) always sheltered and practically no days fall out. A typical day starts with catching mackerel in order to have enough bait on board. Then we switch to the shrimp paternoster to catch fresh sand eel. This is used as live bait for the pollak. The choice is now yours to go fishing for pollack with a float or by free-lining. An average day on the boat brings forth about 100 + pollack so it continues to work with average specimens between 2.5 and 5 kilos and peaks to 8 to 9 kilos. these fish give you a fantastic fight and are for nothing inferior to fellow pollack. The joy is further increased by using a bass rod that provides even more action. Saithe, conger and wrasse are also caught at the same locations. Of course the conger is fished with a heavier set up where at 20-30 lbs is advisable.



This fishery has developed strongly in recent years. Usually it is the pollack that reports on the offered streamers, but also saithe, mackerel, wrasse and even rough shark have been caught on the fly. The fishery is spectacular and offers many possibilities. The number of fish is around 30 to 40 per person, which certainly means that larger specimens cannot be kept. A 9-10 rod with a medium sinking line is recommended. For this specific fishery there is a maximum of 2 to 3 anglers on 1 boat.


Practically all fishing is based on catch & release!


We have several locations where you can stay here. These are based on the desired fishery.
Skate fishing
Crinan Hotel:
This hotel is located directly at the harbour and has a magnificent view. This is also the harbor where you can go fishing. It is a beautiful hotel which has 20 rooms of a high and comfortable level. All rooms overlook the canal or the sea. There is also a restaurant where delicious seafood is served.
The Killmory Guesthouse:
Killmory Guest House is a beautiful & traditional house located on the banks of Lochgilp in the town of Lochgilphead. Dating back to 1816, this is one of the oldest houses in Lochgilphead. Killmory Guest House has 6 comfortable double bedrooms. Most rooms have beautiful views of the gardens and the loc'h. All rooms have Freesat TV, and the TV has a built-in DVD player. Internet access via wifi is available free of charge.
The Argyll Inn:
The Argyll Inn offers a combination of single, double and family rooms suitable for any type of guest. Rooms are clean and comfortable, are en-suite and feature a TV and coffee/tea facilities. Included is the Scottish breakfast but a rima dinner is also served in the hotel's own Snug Restaurant.
General Fishing
For general fishing we have the following possibilities around Drummond and Portpatrick :
Clashwannon Caravan Park:
This location is really ideal. The light is directly on the beach and a short distance from the different trailer ramps where the boats depart from. There are three different types of mobile homes for rent here: standard, luxury and superior. The mobile homes are suitable for 4 to 6 people. The location also has a cozy and good restaurant and pub where it is good to stay in the evening. This is also where the local fishermen come who generously share their knowledge and experience with you in order to achieve optimal fishing.
Culnacraig is a spacious bungalow with three bedrooms, sleeping six. The master bedroom has an en-suite bathroom with shower. A family bathroom with bath and over bath shower serves the other two bedrooms. Bedroom two has twin beds and Bedroom three is set up as a single room, but with pull out bed, so can be set up as a twin on request. The cottage is close to the beach and the well stocked village store and Post Office is right next door and you have the Queen’s Inn and Mariner’s cafe across the road serving food.
If you want something different here are plenty of alternative accommodation options that we like to tailor to your personal wishes.


There are three Smartliner Pilothouse boats with 115 HP Tohatsu engines. The boats are allowed for a maximum of 6 anglers but are best suited for up to 4 anglers. The boats are equipped with GPS and fishfinder and meet all legal requirements and have a high wheelhouse and a spacious aft deck. These boats are steered by a captain and are therefore not self navigating. The boats can be launched from trailers at four different locations. This depends on the prevailing wind and tidal conditions. But this creates a lot of flexibility, which hardly prevents lost fishing days.


In order to get here well fattened up, it is advisable to take the following with you


  • 20-30 lbs boat rod with reel with lever drag and 15 kilo dyneema line
  • 12-20 lbs boat angel/heavy jerkbait with reel and 10 kilo dyneema line
  • beach rods with 10 kilo dyneema line
  • spinning rods 50 - 100 grams and reel with 10 kilos of dyneema
  • spinning rods 20-60 grams and reel with 8 kilos of dyneema


Furthermore, of course, there are floats, bottom lines, small pilkers, flatfish, mackerel and shrimp paternosters. Different sizes single hooks. Steel bottom line of 100 lbs + for the rough shark, boots to get in the boat with dry feet, running booms.

The season runs from April to November. The weather in this region is varied. It goes without saying that in the summer period you have a good chance of good weather, but during the entire period it is advisable to bring rainwear and many different "layers" of clothing so you can, if necessary, take something off. You might also be fishing in your t-shirt, it is and remains Scotland after all!
The months of April and November are the designated periods for targeted fishing and from May to October all other species are fished.
The easiest route is to take the ferry from IJmuiden to Newcastle by night boat. The boat departs at 17.00 hours and moors in England at 09.00 hours. So you arrive relaxed and you only have to drive 4 hours and you are already there. It can be that relaxed. That same afternoon you are already drilling your first fish from the beach or rock. The other option is to fly in to Glasgow and take the rental car from there.
One day boatrental is € 475,- per day including fuel and the captain who drives the boat. To stay, the options described above are available that cost between 50 and 95 euros per night per person. The average price for a week stay, with 3 persons in a luxury mobile home with 5 days fishing with your own boat and a ferry crossing with normal car and sleeping cabin, is € 1.295,- per person!
If you prefer to stay in a Bed & Breakfast the guide price is € 1.445,- per person. Additional costs are own care and fuel for the car. If you are interested in this fascinating and varied fishery in a really impressive nature, please contact us and ask for availability.

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