Kola peninsula, Russia

The Kola peninsula in Russia have some of the best salmon and trout fisheries in the world. After a poor season back home last year me and Monrad decided to spend week 27 this year in Russia! Our goal was to catch big rising brown trouts on dry flies. We would probably get a decent number of fish above 2 kilo. We would probably get our chances at fish above 3 kilo and maybe also 4 kilo as well. If we did not fuck up we might even land some of them. A group of 6 fishermen accompanied by a cook would fish 2 different locations in one week. Our leader was Lars Kalek, an experienced Kola visitor from Sweden. The others were also Swedes and very good fly fishermen indeed. There was Mikael, a big stout flyfishing machine and friend of Lars Kalek. And then there was Jonas and Kim who live close to a river holding very big trout in Sweden. Their personal bests were well above 4 kilo but they were determined to catch even bigger fish on Kola. We flew from Oslo to Kirkenes in northern Norway and then took a bus across the border to Murmansk. Just across the border there is a big mining city called Nikel. The nature around it does not look good, all the trees are gone and the countryside is littered with graves. Working the mines takes its toll on both nature and humans. Murmansk has an ice-free harbor and a big Russian naval base is located there. After spending the night at hotel Meridian in Murmansk we were picked up in the bus again and headed towards the tundra were a helicopter was picked us up. After a brief stop at Rynda salmoncamp we arrived at our first upstream fishing location later that evening. We were to spend 3 days at the Litza river in a location called “Mystic”. Then the helicopter would pick us up again and move us “Dreampool” in the Kharlovka river were we to spend the rest of our week. Salmon fishermen pay big bucks to fish in the lower parts of these rivers. The salmon move upstream so if we were lucky we would have chances on them as well.

Preparations the day before departure. Backup rods in particular could become handy.
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Meeting up with the our group at the airport. From the left: Jonas, Monrad, Lars, Mikael, Kim and me.
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View from the hotel in Murmansk
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The tundra taxi
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Lars Kalek, our leader
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All geared up and on our way
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Touch down and bye-bye to the chopper
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