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Iceland: the other side of the coin

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There are still salmon being caught in Iceland but the drought is not helping There are still salmon being caught in Iceland but the drought is not helping

It is now well documented how the north Atlantic jetstream has disturbed the UK's summer weather to an even greater extent than usual but the situation for those who head to Iceland in search of its summer harvest of silver Atlantic salmon has presented the opposite to flash flooding in England's home counties. There, an extended drought has put the dampeners on sport and a recent report from fieldsports agent Roxtons shows catches around 30 per cent down on west and north coast rivers.


Roxtons report: "In an exact reversal of fortunes to our summer, Iceland has had an extended drought and the fishing in most of the rivers has been tougher than we have seen in the past three years.  The smaller West and North coast rivers have been most affected and their catches are around 30% below what we might expect at this time of the year. 

"The stand out performers have been Beat 1 on the Blanda River and the East and West Rangas.  It is no coincidence that all three of these rivers are glacially fed and as a result have stable water flows whatever the weather.  

"The West Ranga was the first river in Iceland to record 1,000 salmon for the season with the East following closely behind it. Both of these rivers are now landing around 80-90 fish per day which is shared between 20 rods on the West and 18 on the East. One feature of the season has been the noticeable number of much bigger fish and several fish in the high teens have been landed with one or two tipping the 20lbs mark – this is rare for Iceland and makes these rivers even more attractive. 

"While the smaller rivers may be slightly slower this year, they do offer an unparalleled opportunity to sight fish for salmon using 6 weight rods and skated flies – it is one of the most exciting ways to fish and the numbers of fish on the bank are definitely not the be all and end all of the day."

Meanwhile, Arni Baldursson has been reporting a bewildering array of Icelandic fishing from his native country. But while the fishing has been often spectacular (it should be, it's a short summer and a long, long winter that far north!) the use of phrases such as 'burning hot with temperatures to 22 Deg C' and 'Sunny days and water dropping now on Stora Laxa' shows the general trend.

That said, it's all relative and West Ranga has been producing 90 salmon a day to rods in the past two weeks and 'some nice salmon now running the Tungufljot' is the latest posted by Arni on Facebook.



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Atlantic Salmon, Icelandic fishing, Atlantic Salmon, Iceland

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