Fishing in the Oban Area
Saltwater and freshwater fishing in the Oban area is exceptional. Both experienced and novice anglers can choose from relaxing lochside fishing to an exhilarating wreck fishing charter trip which many anglers take to catch the fish of their dreams.
Sea Fishing in the Oban Area
The waters off Oban in the Firth of Lorne area are noted for large and specimen fish and has yielded many Scottish records. The Scottish record hake was caught in Loch Etive, while the waters around Mull have seen record angler fish, streaked gurnard, spurdog, wrasse, and, most notably, skate. In 1997 a new European record skate was caught in the sound of Mull and firmly cemented Oban as the skate fishing capital of Europe.
Charter boats operate out of Oban and are well-equipped, providing tackle and a wealth of knowledge of local marks. Deep sea wreck and reef fishing almost guarantees good catches of species such as pollack, wrasse, cod, conger eel, dogfish, tope, thornback rays, cod, ling and gurnard. Croabh Haven Watersports offers sea fishing boat trips (pre-bookable summer months only).
Sea anglers can fish for free in any of the surrounding sea lochs and can pick from some good shore angling marks near Oban Caravan and Camping Park just south of Oban Bay in the Sound of Kerrera. Line fishing from the rocks in front of the hotel provides plentiful mackerel.
Fly Fishing in the Oban Area
Oban & Lorn Angling Club offer a “Hill Lochs” permit which gives anglers the chance to catch wild brownies in over 20 moorland lochs including Loch Nell, Lochan Dubh, Loch na Gleann Bheathraich, Black Lochs, Loch Lonan, Loch Sonachan, Loch Seil, Loch Scammadale and Sior Loch. Some are off the beaten track, but most are easily accessible. Be sure to pick up a copy of the Club’s “Guide to the Lochs” before you set out. Weekly tickets and day tickets are priced £24 and £6 respectively and are available at Oban fishing tackle shops. Permits can also be obtained from Kilmelford Village Shop for fishing on Loch Oude (10 mins drive away) or from Scammadale Farm for fishing on Loch Scammadale (20 mins drive away). Weekly ticket holders can hire boats on some lochs.
Fishing at Loch Awe
Loch Awe lies a short driving distance from the Loch Melfort Hotel. It is one of the largest freshwater lochs in Scotland and provides great sport for rainbow trout, wild brown trout and ferox trout, salmon, sea trout, arctic char, pike and perch anglers.
While most fish will fit nicely into your frying pan, some are monsters! The British record Wild Brown Trout has been broken four times at Loch Awe and currently stands at 31lbs. Spinning is permitted for trout and pike. Loch Awe Improvement Association has Coarse and Pike Permits and Trout Permits and 1 day permits priced £6 can be obtained from local outlets and Oban fishing tackle shops.
Rainbow Trout Fisheries near Oban
If it’s rainbow trout you want there are two fisheries both of which are well stocked and “fly only”. Inverawe Fisheries near Loch Awe has a variety of facilities, including 4 lochs for anglers of different skills and tackle and tuition are also available. The picturesque MacKays Loch lies nearer Loch Melfort Hotel and is just 10 minutes drive from Oban and offers both bank and boat fishing. Permits are available at Angler’s Corner, Craigard Road, Oban.
Oban Fishing Tackle Shops
There are two fishing tackle shops in Oban: David Graham Cycle & Tackle Shop on Combie Street and Angler’s Corner on Craigard Road both of which sell fishing permits and have good selections of sea and fly fishing tackle and clothing.
Duncan Pepper from Fishinguide Scotland is based in Inveraray but is able to travel to Loch Melfort Hotel to pick you and take you wherever you wish to go. With over 30 years’ fishing experience and having worked both in tackle sales, casting instruction and as a guide, he has a comprehensive knowledge of how best to catch the freshwater and saltwater fish of Scotland.