I flew up to Alta, met Anders and checked in for one night downtown. River looked good, dropped down from enormously 1100 m3/s to about 2,5 foot or approx. 160/m3. The first syndicated week was poor, 41 fish for 10 rods and everybody was hoping the fish was late. Or maybe that the big flood and coloured water in the river and fjord made them circle and wait to run. Speculation was going high as always.
Anders and I was on a router starting on the top, a bad one it turned out. The lower river was fishing OK and the top was almost empty. We started and fished Barilla and Vaehaeniva and then came to Steinfossen. Great memories from last year when Håkan and I got the 25 kilo right there in the tail. I managed a good 24 lbs right at that same place, and as always so good to get the first one! Then we fished a bit at Sautso. For a short while but I lost one fish at Vaeliniva. This pool is just an amazing place – there are always fish there, and big fish too.
Second and third day we fished many of the famous Sandia beats, without touching anything. To stay at Mikkeli, and for me the first time in the new Lodge was an amazing experience. After two nights we moved down below Bathakoski. There were a few fish around and I got one at Kista berget and Anders a very nice fish at Vinakorva. Strong as hell it took him way down before it surrendered. Last couple of fish took the new Lion Fly tied on TTT with loose bodies.
We checked in at Stengelsen camp for 3 more nights. Fishing at Åkergärdet been bloody good but beside that fishing was tough. I lost a great fish at Soprisniva after a tough battle, it come of right by the net and I was swearing like mad.. Haralds catch was best so far – he opened with a 18 kilo PB at Sarikoski and then at Haldorkulen broke it with a 19,3 kilo broad silvery beauty. Last fish on a 2/0 single classic Thunder & Lightning and a 13 foot cane rod. As classic as it could be – he was in the seventh heaven! Anders and I managed a few more fish, our best night was at Åkergärdet where we both got a few good fish around 10 kilo – again the Lion Fly performed with great perfection!
The fishing this week was a bit disappointing, but to fish this classic river that I've fished for more than 30 years now the classic way. The whole river moving down every night was to me a great adventure. I grew up with Harald Ekmans “Seven nights on the Alta” – a dream came true! Of course, this all-time low run of fish could have come another year, but the experience was just as great even if the catches were low.
Anders and I teamed up with Brynjar Olaussen and Björn Vidar Suhr. I have fished many years with Brynjars father, Paul Christian and it’s so good to see how tradition is kept and sons of great boatsmen become great boatsmen, just like it’s been ever since the fishing started many hundred years ago. There were many new faces and a great gang of devoted fisherman that fished this week. A great gathering of people who really care about saving this very special river. It was also nice to first time meet up with Jasper Pääkkönen, famous actor and fellow Patagonia ambassador.
And yes I of course I filmed our nights through the greatest river in the world – just follow our YouTube – it’s soon there…
Week two – better fishing! Even greater adventures soon to come – stay tuned!