Iceland – fantastic flyfishing on the island of fire and ice
Vulcanic activity led to the creation of Iceland 20 million years ago. Those vulcanoes are still active – we all experienced that in 2010 when Eyjafjallajökull erupted and almost shut down the whole air traffic in Europe. On the 100.000 square metres of the island approx. 300.000 very hospitable inhabitants are living; more than one third of them is living in the capital Reykjavík. Iceland is the second largest island in Europe.
The landscape is characterised by vulcanoes, glaciers, geysirs and hot springs as well as a lot of water in the form of waterfalls, lakes and rivers.
Due to the omnipresent wind the weather changes rapidly. From sunshine it can change to storm and sometimes heavy rain within half an hour. Every Iceland-traveler and particularly flyfisherman should adapt himself to these circumstances. These contrasts and the resulting light can result in breath-taking pictures, which will please flyfishing photographers.
Due to the vulcanic activity the energy supply of Iceland is completely renewable. ¾ of it is hydropower, the rest is generated through thermal energy.
Without any doubt Iceland is one of the world’s top-destinations for flyfishing. The island is famous for it’s salmon fishing, which is the main motivation for flyfishermen travelling to Iceland. Particularly salmon novices will have success quickly in Iceland; the fish might be bigger in other countries, but it’s quite common to catch several fish a day.
The other migrating species is the sea-run brown trout or sea-trout. These fish run several rivers in Iceland, often in impressive sizes and numbers. Sea-trout up to ten kilograms are caught each year.
Another fishing highlight are the brown trout of the island. They are living in almost any lake and river. Due to the immense food sources of mainly midges and sticklebacks, these fish are growing to giants. Brownies of several kilograms are not an unusual sight in Iceland, even fish of more than 10 kilograms are caught. In 2011 two fish were caught in an Icelandic lake weighing 11,5 and 12 kilograms – on the fly…
Last but not least is the Arctic Char. These beautiful fish are either living in lakes and rivers as resident fish, or sea-run like salmon and seatrout. With the incoming tide huge amounts of arctic char are running the rivers and take the fly violently.
The variety of Iceland’s offer is unique and offers possibilities for each demand, preferences and budget. Many flyfishermen come back to Iceland after their first trip.
One remark to prices: due to the individual creation of the trips, you won’t find much information on prices here. Generally, we always try to get the maximum fishing out of your budget. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you would like to fish in Iceland (I can only recommend it :))
For more information regarding the waters and the different species you can catch in Iceland, please follow these links:
- Sea-Run Brown Trout
- Brown Trout & Arctic Char in rivers
- Ice-age brownies in the Icelandic Highlands
Traveling to and in Iceland
Iceland can be reached from each bigger city in Europe. The fluight time varies between two and three and a half hours. Iceland’s international airport is located in Keflavík, which is half an hour drive from Reykjavík.
Having arrived in Iceland, you can either rent a car and drive to the waters by yourself . The velocity limit is 90km/h. If you want to drive into the central highlands (F-streets!), you need a four wheel drive vehicle. In case you are fishing the north and north east of Iceland, you can also take a domestic flight to Akureyri or Husavík. If you booked a trip with a guide, he’ll pick you up at the airport(s) and drive with you to the waters.
Accomodation & food
Accomodations are available for every budget. More exclusive rivers have a lodge close to the river and you can choose to either cook by yourself or book a fullboard food service. The food prices are not as high anymore as they used to be. Local specialities like fresh lamb or seafood often are much cheaper than in Europe.
Before arrival in Iceland you have to desinfect your gear, i.e. rods, reels, lines, flies, waders in case you have used them in other lakes or rivers. There are two possibilities: either you do it directly at the customs office in Keflavík airport (might result in waiting times and higher costs) or you go to your local veterinarian who then desinfects your tackle. Every flyfisherman traveling to Iceland has to consider this law – Icelanders try to protect their extraordinary fish stocks. Every client of pukka destinations receives detailed information how to disinfect the gear and gets a template of the certificate of desinfection.