Opening Days on Classic River Bolstad, Norway

Again it was time to open up the season on the fantastic Bolstad river, that once had the biggest salmon in the world. We came in after serious thoughts and tests on the Corona situation. I have worked in Norway since 1984, and also since I already had the virus. Three hard weeks of serious illness, tested for it and now healthy I decided it was OK for me to go. Even though I was in good shape again I decided to do one more test. On Saturday the day before leaving my test was negative – no virus. I understand that many was envious about me being able to go, but I can assure you that if I wasn’t tested and cleared I wouldn’t gone even if I could have. We need to handle this with full responsibility to our fellow humans.

Bolstadelva was in full flood, warm weather and a tremendous snowpack in the mountains gave a 500 m3 flow. Big, cold and not easy to handle. Despite that the opening day gave me three good fish! The lottery gave me and artist Arild Blomfeldt the lowest beat where the fresh water hits the fjord. A tricky beat but also one of the most interesting. A big BIG Black Green Helmet on the biggest TTT was the trick. I fished it on an 850 grains deep water express. Not the gentlest tools but effective! Arild also took a couple of fish and we summed up a fantastic start.

The following days also gave a few nice fish and when we only had an hour left of the three days, Arild and me went to Rongahölen. This classic pool where so many 50-60 and even 70 lbs have been caught. The take came on a very short line, two small retrieves behind the Ronga-stone and I was on. This was a great fighter – the 9 kilo sea liced male took me all the way done in the tail. With more than 100 m out I thought I was going to do the same 800 m run I had to do a few years back… I managed to hold it and land it and sent Arild, who wanted to go upstream out to the same place. 10 casts later I was on and the same dramatic fight led up to another great fish landed. A truly nice ending on memorable days on what I think is one of the most exciting rivers I ever fished.

I think of this start as a bit more positive, of course not what the river should produce, but it look like more fish will come back to Bolstad this year, despite the bad impact from the fish farming industry. The narrow Bolstad fjord is full of open farms – we need to keep fighting to get this industry into closed containments!