Friday 15 May 2015

Settling In

We had a domestic day here at Varzuga and are settling into our camp routine. We have had a really busy and constructive 24 hours setting up both the Middle and Lower camps. Terry and Donna went back up to Middle Camp with two boats loaded with supplies; here at Lower Camp Glenn, Bill and Ollie Maxwell (the Kitza camp manger) got on with giving our boats and engines a really good service. We had towed Skylark back down here on Wednesday, the big boat from Middle who after many years of loyal service had an engine issue late last season, and she now has been given a well deserved re-fit and is ready to go back up this afternoon.

Unloading supplies at Lower Camp - note ice free bank at Larder Pool opposite
Tiffy and Maryke got on with sorting out the advance order of food supplies which arrived in the village by truck yesterday. It is now all ready to go out to the camps today and finally the main lodge sitting and dining rooms can be tidied up ready to greet our first guests tomorrow.

Our helicopter arrived last night and in an hour or so I will return with it to Murmansk – inevitably the girls have given me a shopping list - and so has Glenn – so I guess I face another happy afternoon in Murmansk chasing down the last pots of curry paste (and fresh herbs!) for Donna and Maryke and some more spark plugs and spanners for Glenn.

Terry and the team at Middle Camp
The river too is settling in – good news – I suspect that the big spring flood is just starting to drop off. Bill reckons the river is down a centimetre or two this morning and it is looking much clearer. It will be pretty high when we start fishing on Saturday evening, but within a day or so it should now drop back to a much more manageable height. The salmon will be here, Terry is very enthusiastic about the prospects at Middle, a high river but little or no ice left and yesterday evening Generator looked really inviting.

Maryke and Tiffy sorting supplies - the dining room will be clear by tomorrow!
At Lower we will have fewer options until the river drops a foot or so, but there is more than enough room for our 10 rods – I’m pretty confident that by Sunday morning we will have a much more benign and accommodating river.

I fly to Murmansk shortly and the next blog will be on Sunday morning and I look forward to updating you then.

Christopher Robinson