Orkla 2022

 I have been visiting Svinsjøen section on Orkla since 2017, fishing there for atlantic salmon. It is long (3 km) and variable part of the river, in verdant nature and with relaxing fishing atmosphere. During six years, I have spent there almost 40 days - this June I added three more. 

My first stop on all trips up north from Oslo is Bolleland in Espa.  Six-pack of bollers is essential. 

Along the road Fv607 next to Storsjøen stands this 16 m high den store stenen (The big stone). It is supposed to be the 3rd largest free standing stone in Norway...
As usual, I am spending a night near Kvikne on the left bank of upper Orkla.
In these parts of Orkla there are no salmon, just very nice trout

and sheep.
Early in the morning I am driving the remaining 100 km. I go straight to the river and after 4 hours I got a nice small male salmon (63 cm, 2,5 kg) in Handbaggan. 

It is great fish to take with and it goes into the freezer. It also means that I cannot fish more that day because of local fishing rules. I like it because i can relax.
Emilio came for a short visit and it was nice to see him after two years. He got a big salmon (almost 9 kg) a couple of weeks ago here, when the conditions were amazing. Now it is really hot (almost 30), but the water level is OK and the water is cold (10,5). Several fishermen are complaining that there are no fish in the river...hmmm, it is time to check that. Second day I walked all the way up to Melan. Older man from Lorenskog hooked a big fish there yesterday, but it escaped. I was there alone, casting and not thinking at all. Suddenly a kick and a big salmon (around 80 cm) on the hook, far away, on the opposite side of the river. It was riding up and down, fighting, getting tired, I had it near the land in a small bay, but there was no net nearby and i was not able to take it out of water. Suddenly, my spinner hooked out, the fish was free, a few lazy moves in front of me and went away. I was happy, because it was obviously a female a lot over the size limit and i would have to let her go anyway. Later I found out, that one hook on my triple hook broke when landing a fish. 

Third day, after fishing ca 6 hours, I was walking back to camp and decided to do a few desperate casts in Sagholen. My back was in pain, so just a few casts. Suddenly, a kick and a big salmon again...crazy. It was very well hooked (too well) and it took only a few minutes to land it. As it looked like a male and was bleeding, I killed it and carried it to the camp. Hard work. 
In the camp, both Karl-Heinz and Tobi thought that the salmon might not be wild one, but escaped one from a farm. Damaged fins indicated that. However, Johny, the main local authority, inspected the fish and his verdict was - wild fish. 90 cm long, 6 kg heavy. And gender? Unfortunately it was female. As the size limit 65 cm for wild female salmon was introduced this season on Orkla*, I was not allowed to keep it and it was delivered to a canteen in a local retirement home.     
*it is possible to keep one male over 80 cm during the season; all female over 65 cm must be released (if killed they must be delivered to local community), max 4 fish in total can be killed by one person during the season; salmon from farms must be killed (so they are not mixing their DNA with wild fish) and can be kept.  

Midnight in the camp...nights are very short in June. 

Resume - during three days of intensive salmon fishing I got 3 salmon on the hook and landed two of them. That is more than enough. But most importantly, as every summer, I met KarlHeinz and Margret on their regular 7 weeks trip across Sweden and Norway. It is a pity I had to kill that big female and I have a bad feeling about it. If I do salmon fishing ever again, I must be more careful