NEWS

Lorenzo takes 'Old Billy' out to sea !

Sliabh Liag fishery took a big hammering

Connie Duffy

Reporter:

Connie Duffy

Email:

connie.duffy@donegaldemocrat.ie

Lorenzo takes 'Old Billy' out to sea !

Some of the debris at the Salmon Leap that Storm Lorenzo left behindp

The Glen River Fishery near Carrick in south-west Donegal took a big hammering on Friday morning as heavy rains raised the water levels to record heights. Thankfully, nobody got hurt or wet as it happened around 4am.

The fishery includes the Glen River, Owenwee (Yellow) River, Crow (Crove) River and Owenteskiny rivers and the loughs Agh, Auva, Unshagh, Unna, Divna, Lougheraherk and Lough Nalughraman.

It is an excellent salmon and sea trout spate system, which has some lovely, pools and high quality fly water.

Noel Carr, honorary secrerary of Slieve League Anglers Association who control the area, said Hurricane Lorenzo hit them last Thursday night and early Friday morning just before dawn.

"It was the most water ever to come down the Glen river in such a short few hours. It washed away ‘Old Billy’ away for good. It's the massive tree trunk that was stuck at the Salmon Leap. It's now away out to sea.

"It washed away a good bit of Sean Burke’s big stone wall and most of our newly painted wooden stiles. Thankfully, the season is over as we would have to close the fishery on health and safety grounds," said Noel.

A dry stone ditch and wire fence flattened by floods from Glen river at Carrick

The biggest hit to the fishery was the damage to their footbridge at the Salmon Leap where the railings were ripped apart like a scrapyard.

"The river walk is closed until further notice because access across the river at that point is impossible. The rebuilding of the fishery will take years as the biggest damage is to the wild salmon habitat as the massive amounts of spawning gravel washed into the bay (used to be green) will take a long time to be replaced.

"Overall, the river boundaries are washed away in many places and it will take years to clear up the debris left in its wake.

"The good news is that apart from property, nobody was hurt in the storm. It is the clearest indication yet of the impact of a changing climate as floods exceeded anything previously experienced on this river.

Teelin bay is now full of gravel from river. This is a big loss to fishery habitat

"One good example is where the river burst its banks at the footbridge to join the river back on course at the Salmon Leap again. This was proof that a huge river cane down the road for a short while, probably at around 4am. Thankfully, no car was passing at that time or they would have been washed into Teelin Bay," he added.

He added Cumann Iascairi Shliabh a’ Liag would like to thank all the members for their help in clearing up the debris and to Donegal County Council workers for helping to close the bridge with their health and safety equipment.