Maurice lands a big canal catch near Naas

Naas angler Maurice McGarr (25) landed a mammoth pike from the murky depths of the Grand Canal outside the town two weeks ago.

Naas angler Maurice McGarr (25) landed a mammoth pike from the murky depths of the Grand Canal outside the town two weeks ago.

Maurice, originally from Lacken View, who lives with partner Dawn Burke and their children at River View, New Row, was trying to land the enormous 18lbs 4 ozs pike for some three weeks.

“But I couldn’t get it to take the bait so I bought a “Surface Topper” in Fleming’s shop (New Row). It’s a six inches long lure which flashes on the surface and appears like a fish that’s dying or injured.”

But that was only the start of the battle and it took him 45 minutes to land the fish near Tandy’s Bridge.

“I used to fish a lot, but for various reasons I stopped before taking it up again in the summer. I said I’d buy a cheap fishing rod and start up again for a bit of fun.”

He added: “It’s the biggest I ever caught by a long way and the first big one since I landed one in Lough Lene in County Westmeath which weighed 8 lbs.”

Maurice released the pike back into canal. “I wouldn’t kill a fish; I catch and release.”

He added: “I haven’t heard of anybody catching a pike over 12lb.”

- Paul O’Meara