Monday 24 June 2013

All Change

As expected, yesterday was the very opposite of good salmon fishing weather. A high, bright sun, very warm and a water temperature that climbed slowly to peak at 20⁰C in the late afternoon. Most of the fish were caught first thing in the morning, after that they put their heads down and only the odd one made a mistake until the evening.

Fortess Pool yesterday
James W had a great day landing his first ever salmon, then in the evening he and Tom G saw a bear cross the river a couple of hundred yards below them. Tom and his father Malcolm led the board with two and three salmon respectively from the top of Yovas; Tom, who has fished for the English Youth Team casts beautifully and was unlucky to lose a further three salmon that appeared well hooked and were on for some time. Andy and Gerry G had quite a few takes and touches but nothing stuck on, they went out very early the morning and are now asleep so I’m not sure how they got on.

Norman with a good salmon from Generator
We ended with 18 salmon for the day, not a vintage Middle Varzuga score, but more than respectable for the first day and given the adverse conditions. This hot weather seems to be set in for most of the week so yesterday evening we decided to adopt a night fishing regime that will maximise our chances. We will start fishing at 22:00 this evening and fish through until 06:00, the air temperature will be at its coolest, the sun low and we also benefit from the ‘change of light’.

Chris C landing a salmon early this morning
Here, just short of the Arctic Circle at mid-summer, the sun dips towards the horizon around 22:00 The change of light is noticeable to those who have fished some years for salmon in the North, between 02:00 and 04:00 it starts its climb back over the top of the fir trees and again the light changes. These are great times to be fishing and so often the most productive as any keen Scandinavian fisher will agree.

The whole camp routine has to change, from the hours we run the generator, the daily kitchen bread making, meal times and even the laundry and housekeeping times. All our guests are most grateful to the wonderful Russian team here who have quickly altered a well-established routine to fit in with the new fishing times.

Party Pool at 2a.m. last night
With today to catch up on sleep quite a few rods fished last night although were quite weary from a long day on the river. It’s now 10:30 and a brunch is due shortly, but so far no one has stirred so I do not have any results from last night other than I know that both Chris C and Malcolm had caught salmon. It is already blistering hot by mid morning, and very bright so our decision seems well justified.

I look forward to letting you know tomorrow how we get on fishing through tonight.

Christopher Robinson