I’m talking about the first of June, when the great salmon rivers of Norway open up for flyfishing. Where would I rather be as the calendar flips from May to the real summer month of June? Nowhere.
Which is why it is so exciting to have just booked flights to go out for the opening of the Gaula season with the Norwegian Flyfishers Club, putting in a half day’s work on the morning of Friday May 31 in central London, then nipping four stops down the Tube to Victoria and a half-hour train journey to Gatwick for an 8pm flight to Trondheim.
Arrival at Varnes airport is about an hour before the 2013 season starts and although I realise 3 days’ fishing is not the longest fishing trip, it will be superb to see my friends out there and the dream is to get down to my beat and start fishing at about 12.30am, Saturday June 1, or at least to hook up with the others and watch them fish for a bit and hopefully catch that elusive first bar or silver, before grabbing some sleep and starting early the next day.
The salmon run big and fresh on the Gaula, and at no time more so than at the start of June. I understand last year’s opener was a challenging one with very high and cold water (0 deg C temperatures and snow!) and I had actually meant to fish the Gaula opener in 2012, taking up a last minute chance to fish Varzuga instead, with mixed feelings and only on a happily fulfilled condition to myself I would make it this year instead. So this year it’s different, the NFC is under the new ownership-management team of Per Arneberg and Enrico Cristiani and having stood with them on the banks of the end of season bonfire on Langoy pool last August 31 and watched last season ebb away (pictured below), it is particulary special to know I’ll join them again for the start of this one.
I asked Daniel Goz if I might illustrate this blog post with stills from his and Anton Hamacher’s wonderful film, Gaula River of Silver and Gold. Long time readers of HSA will know that Daniel and Anton turned up with their cameras as I was playing a 12lb salmon in August 2011 in the NFC’s Home pool and the result was the stunning underwater footage shown in the still at the top of this post (you can just about see the brown watch strap of my Land Rover watch which received a 3 minute immersion in the waters of the Gaula as I held my fish to recover, an experience from which sadly it never really recovered but no matter the fish shown here did and kicked off suddenly from my hands to freedom, a moment captured in the movie).
It came as no surprise to hear from Daniel that both his and Anton’s careers are following a stellar trajectory and it is a pleasure to pass on this shortened version of the movie trailer link, just to remind you of some finely crafted moments from the film. And yes, that brown watch strap even made the cut for this trailer lol.
So there it is, I’m off out there at the end of May for my fifth consecutive year of visiting. Shout if you’d like to join me for the 3 day quickie, there is still time, spaces on the NFC rotation and an extremely good value Norwegian.com Gatwick flight to Trondheim at only a shade north of 100 quid return (which seems amazing), or alternatively would like to visit in August or July (rods are available during the week of July 14-21, and again from July 28 to the end of the season, August 31.