Thursday 12 June 2014

Sun and Salmon

Another really bright day yesterday, we had some puffy clouds in the afternoon for a few hours to give us the odd bit of duller light, but overall our guests fished under a harsh, glaring sun. Not ideal for fishing, but after Monday morning’s return to almost winter conditions no-one was too fussed.

Today has dawned very bright too – not a cloud to be seen – sunscreen was slapped on after breakfast and, the team undaunted by the conditions were in the boats and out of camp before nine (great to have such a keen group here).

Doug U in action below Clarke's
To date the myriad of small streams and springs that feed the Varzuga from the tundra bogs and taiga forests in this huge watershed have kept the river water temperature pretty stable. Slowly they are reducing their flow and their influence as summer approaches. Yesterday we started to notice the change, the water level dropped 3" and under the sun the water temperature rose during the day from 11⁰C to 16⁰C by close of play. Changing conditions; and that probably accounted for our slightly reduced catch.

Arriving at Snake Pit for lunch
All things are relative on Varzuga and the team were delighted with their score of 104 salmon here at Middle Camp. After a tough day for some reason on Tuesday Rodolphe C landed 16, doing notably well in Birthday which continues to fish well, better than Party Pool at the moment. Gregoire de S had an excellent morning but then lost five in the afternoon – not content with a blank session he asked for a late dinner and fished around the Island, landing three grilse to earn Donna’s delicious Tai Prawn Curry.

Olivier and Donna at lunch
Pana continues to excel and the eight rods landed 141 salmon for the day, the largest, at 15lbs, taken by Charlie T on the float trip. Kitza too is proving remarkably consistent even under these bright skys and they put a further 68 in the book yesterday, their largest also weighed 15lbs and fell to Arthur Jardine.

Sun and salmon
On any other river we would be praying for some cloud cover, however we have a huge head of salmon here and although the fishing might be tougher than it was at the beginning of the week it is still more than excellent. Raphael C put it well at dinner last night, "What a privilege to be able to enjoy both sun and salmon".

Christopher Robinson