from 08/07 The
Fly Fishing Shop Insider)
Journey to the Forbidden Land (Part-1)
A three part series about Kamchatka wilderness adventure -
by Mark Bachmann
In 1993 I was invited to assemble a group of fly fishermen to visit the Kamchatka Peninsula in Russian Siberia. At 140,000 square miles in area, Kamchatka is the size of the state of California, but largely an uninhabited sub-arctic wilderness. For 100 years it had been the most strategic eastern Russian military stronghold and been closed to outsiders. We would be some of the first Americans allowed to enter this very sensitive area.
|As it turned out, we were on the first foreign aircraft to land at some of the towns we visited enroute to our destination. After growing up with years of cold war paranoia, we were a little apprehensive about how the Russians would treat us. They treated us with great hospitality and in some of the towns where we landed for refueling, we were greeted by dozens of school age children offering tokens of friendship. To Top|
We land in Provedinia.
frozen coast, Siberia
|Kamchatka offers the last true wilderness adventures for wild steelhead & rainbow trout. It is here where rainbow trout (steelhead) were first identified, and is why they have a Russian scientific name, Oncorhynchus Mykiss. In Kamchatka they are called Mykissia (pronounced Mick'-keesya). The natural range of the rainbow trout is the Pacific Rim from Kamchatka to Southern California. In most of their range the rainbow has suffered from hatchery|
|manipulation, habitat destruction and over harvest. I have fished for and studied rainbows most of my life, and Kamchatka offered an exceptional opportunity to study this specie in the raw. Our group of 13 anglers assembled in Anchorage, Alaska, May 4. The next morning we boarded a 19 passenger Beach Craft turbo-prop and flew to Nome where we picked up a Russian navigator. We crossed the Bering Sea and our port of entry was the tiny arctic town of Provideniya. After going through Russian Customs, we||
hop-scotched down the 900 mile long coast line and
finally landed in Petropavlovsk, the largest city in Kamchatka.
From there we flew by Russian MI-8 helicopter back north to our
camp; Cedar Lodge on the Zhuponova River. What a ride. The flight was spectacular as is all of the
landscape of Kamchatka. We
flew over and were constantly surrounded by smoking volcanoes. Kamchatka is some of the most volcanic real estate on the
|It has around 200 volcanoes, of which 65 are still active. We landed at Cedar Lodge in the afternoon and one of the guys put together his spey rod and caught a seven pounder almost before the rotor blades quit turning. It was a fitting introduction to a river which proved to be one of the worlds finest.||
organization "To understand and protect the wild steelhead, salmon
and trout and their ecosystems along the Pacific Rim."
The Zhuponova River concession is exclusive to The Wild Salmon Center.
|If you would like to read a detailed Deschutes River Fishing Report, click here.|
INFORMATION on Local
offers the highest quality & most sophisticated fly tying
from 08/07 The Fly Fishing Shop Insider)
Why We Love the Mount Hood Lakes (Through the lens of your mind)
A Lake Fly Fishing Guide lets you on the inside. To Top
sky is just beginning to take on a hint of the days color and the
surface of the water seems as if it could be made of black obsidian.
Almost. The "V" shaped ripple behind your pontoon boat brings
you back to the reality that it is a liquid world here and the
movement of the fish you've spotted cruising the surface quickens your
pulse. There are no riffles here to mask a poor presentation and no
swift current that forces your quarry to take the fly NOW or wait for
another opportunity. There will be no chance of casting above your
target in the hopes of mending the line and getting the fly into the
correct drift and depth as it slides by a prime feeding station. Not
today. And not in this particular piece of "God's Green
Earth". You make that last back cast, pause, and begin to
pull forward, recognizing the familiar feel of your rod as it
begins to load and you accelerate the tip towards your target. Anyone
who has handled a fly rod for any length of time would know this feels
like a good cast. Unlike on a river, the power-caster is often at a
disadvantage here. At this particular moment, that loop in the fly line
needs the energy to unroll- only that- and no more. Your fly cannot land
on the surface, it needs to settle like an airborne seed. Is it a good
cast? You are beyond watching this mini-event unfold, you are living it.
There are few surprises here. No hoped for...but sudden pull on your
line. You watch through the lens of your mind, seeing the line and the
fly and the wake of a cruising rainbow as if you were an unseen
photographer on the shore...finger on the shutter, all motion
waiting... This is not a surprise, you set this scene into motion
yourself. And somehow, through some unknown capacity inside yourself,
you know. You see that bulge of water touch your fly, and it hasn't
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