Friday 26 June 2015

When Lunch Becomes Important

I’m not quite sure what happened yesterday – the river just seemed to be very quiet. The weather was fine, we had quite a strong south wind all morning which made the lower beats at Middle Camp tricky to fish but apart from that it was wonderful Kola day. A blue sky and quite bright with puffy clouds; the margins of the Varzuga are now turning bright green as the water level drops and the river is beginning to look at its best.

Archie R taking a relaxed approach
The team here at Middle Camp fished hard for nine salmon, two of which were really chunky cock salmon of between 12lbs and 14lbs landed by Lars B and James F. Undaunted Freddie, Ollie, Archie and Lars set off after dinner, once the sun had dropped down, to try Bear and Generator and they finished about one thirty last night. At breakfast this morning they reported only the odd pull from a lethargic salmon or two. Not one of our greatest days at Middle Camp.

Hugh S
Kitza too did not hit the jackpot and managed to put 11 salmon in the fishing records. Ahead of Middle for the day, which I would expect at this time of the season, but the numbers of fresh salmon coming in this year seem to be well down. On Kitza the last poor run was in 2009 and this week may echo that.

Archie, Ollie and Freddie setting off after dinner - note Archie's hat which we call the Ascot Hat
Pana had a tough day as well with only 4 landed by the afternoon – they were going out after dinner once the bright sun was off the river and I’ll hear this evening how they got on.

When the fishing gets tougher Donna knows she has to pull out every stop on the cooking front – it is always excellent I know, but there are times to go the extra mile or two. We loaded the boat full of food and drinks and she produced a delicious poached fresh salmon on the bank for us with salad and all the trimmings.

Donna setting up lunch on the river bank
Today is another Kola day – a high sky, quiet bright again but with enough cloud about to feel confident in the fishing, we have a stiff wind from the SW which might be troublesome on some beats – but not a mosquito in sight! I’m not sure that the numbers of salmon landed will pick up enormously – but here is hoping for a few more than yesterday. The water temperature is up to 16⁰C and the level has dropped a good deal this week. I suspect we will make the change to mostly floating lines next week.
Tomorrow we go to Murmansk and back to reality outside this wonderful wilderness. I look forward to updating you on Sunday.

Christopher Robinson