After reading the Norway Fishing Report being sent to me from this camp in Norway, I couldn’t wait to get over there and try for some of these huge hard fighting Halibut. I had 8 guys to look after this trip and having a couple of regulars with me it was set to be a great trip as I do not get to see these guys often.
With every one met at the airport it was time to board the plane and fly to what is starting to feel like a second home for me. This trip is slightly longer than my others as it is one of the most Northerly parts of Norway you can get to and the journey to the camp is split over 2 days due to the flights not connecting. So first flight was to Oslo then we overnight in a airport hotel then first thing the next morning we depart Oslo for Alta airport, so really we are only in the hotel for around 12hours and some information can be found in my other Norway Fishing Report on this hotel.
Norway Fishing Report Day 2
Once at Alta airport it is a 3hour coach journey to this little bit of paradise at the very tip of Norway, an Island called Havoysund
This camp is one of the best I visit each year and is so professionally run. There are Norwegian guides on head 24hrs a day to give you free advice on weather, fishing locations and methods. You are met off the coach by the head guide and shown to your cabins. Once you have settled in your cabin there is a briefing in the restaurant where you will be given safety tips whilst at sea, emergency procedures, how to handle the catch and release of big Halibut and then you will be shown to your boat. After your briefing you are free to either take your boat out or what most people do is relax after your journey, get a good nights sleep ready for your fishing the next day, which is what my guys decided to do except a couple who couldn’t resist having a dabble off the pier where the boats are moored. I went down for a little look and all I could hear was what sounded like little children laughing!! It was actually a couple from my group having a ball catching 4 and 5lb coalfish on very light rods, it looked such fun I just had to have a go. After a couple of hours of tiddler bashing off the pier it was time to get our heads down ready for the day ahead
We woke at around 5:30am to bright sunshine and no wind; you couldn’t of asked for better conditions. So with every one up it was time to take advantage of the free continental buffet breakfast and lots of coffee. Once our bellies were full it was time to hit the water
With every one on the boats and a plan hatched it was time to go and hunt some big Cod and Coalfish. After about a 30min steam we were in open water fishing over a very productive shallow area, 50mtrs surrounded by 150mtrs, perfect for Cod and Coalfish. First put down and every one was bent into the hard battling Coalfish, if you have never caught these fish then let me tell you that they are one of the best fighting fish in Norway, a bit like a Tuna.
Once everyone had burnt themselves out on 20 – 30lb Coalfish and the same sized Cod I made a decision to go Halibut hunting as the tides were coming up to peak time for them to feed. So with a mark in mind off we set, it was only a little trip of around 15minutes to an area I had done well from the previous year. After a quick tackle change from Pirks to 30cm Shads it was time to hook us a Halibut.
If you have never been Halibut fishing, then let me explain briefly what its like. I personally find fishing rubber shads to be one of the best ways to catch these fish, I know there are other ways and I have tried them all, but I always come back to my faithful rubber shads. The Halibut is a very delicate feeder sometimes and can nibble a shad 3 or 4 times before it decides it needs to eat it and when they decide they are going to eat it then all I can say is hold on! They will make many dives to try and reach the bottom and even after you think you are winning the battle it will dive again. Once the fish is ready it will float on the surface ready for to tail the fish safely to the side of the boat. It may sound and look like people catch lots of Halibut
but believe me it can be soul destroying sometimes as it may take a few hours between fish with out so much as a bite, but once you hook one you will soon forget about the hours spent fishing for them.
Back to the fishing: This spot is perfect for Halibut and it didn’t take long before one of the guys was doing battle with what looked like a good Halibut. With every one else reeled in it was time to get things ready for this huge oversized Dab……. 15minutes later we were looking down at a lovely Halibut of around 35kg, well done Stuart. With the fish tagged and released it was time to look for another spot. We didn’t do very well at our second spot so every body decided they had had enough and was time to go in for a well-deserved hot meal and a few beers
Today every body had decided to target Halibut all day long, I think it was seeing Stuart land his that had sparked every ones enthusiasm to get their own. So with breakfast done and a quick chat with our Norwegian guide it was time to fish for Halibut. I personally love Halibut fishing as it is a real achievement once you hook and land one. With the new area found it was time to set the boat up for our first drift and again we didn’t have to wait long before Stuart, again was in to the first Halibut of the day. This one looked a lot smaller and once it had hit the surface it was clear that it was much smaller it was still a great start even at this size. We only measured this one and it was 85cm so back she went to her watery hole
The tide then changed for the worse and wasn’t best conditions for Halibut so I had a quick look on the plotter and decided to move the boat to a completely different area with a little more tide movement. When we arrived there were a couple of other boats already fishing so we kept out of their way and fished the same area. It was after around about 2hours and the tides looked peak for a bite and then Stuart said to me he thought he felt a little nibble, then another then nothing for around 3 – 4mins then all of a sudden his rod bent nearly double and a huge shout went out that he was in to another. This time it looked to be a serious fish so after telling every one to reel in we were ready for any situation. Stuart was becoming a bit of an expert at landing these fish now so with every thing in hand it was just a fingers crossed moment that it stayed on the hooks. With the fish nearly beat and so was the angler up popped this huge Halibut and it even made me stand back and think to my self am I going to actually land this, well here goes! We use a small lip gaff and once this was in place the fish went absolutely mad and it took everything I had to hold on to it. The idea is to keep its head out of the water so it hasn’t got any power to try and dive back down. Once it had stopped thrashing around I looked up to see a few boats had surrounded us and were filming the action. I asked if the Norwegian guide would jump on our boat and help for photos and for him to tag the great fish so it could swim free. Once we had measured it 156cm and recorded its details we gently slipped her back which I always love seeing then out of no where Stuart grabbed hold of me for a huge hug and hand shakes. With all the boats dispersing back to their fishing marks I decided to do one last drift over the same ground and to my amazement with in 2 minutes of fishing we had another big Halibut on the line….. boy this holiday was going well already. This one looked to me a little smaller and once the fight was over we managed to lift this one aboard and she was 110cm another cracking fish.
Norway Fishing Report Day 5
What can I say apart from Bad Weather Day!!!!!! As you may be able to tell we didn’t get to go out this day as a bad wind storm had hit us and was due to be here all day so we just spent the day walking around the stunning surroundings and fishing from the shore and around the marina, catching small dabs and Plaice
Norway Fishing Report Day 6
Started off a bit rough after yesterdays wind, so we decided to do a little Cod bashing. With a new cod mark plotted we were off. Once there every one was pirking hard and getting great rewards with Cod to 30lb and a few good Coalfish. At around 3pm the tides were again good for Halibut so off we went in hunt of a bigger Halibut. So armed with our favourite shads we hunted about for a bite or two and wasn’t long before a shout came over the radio of people hooking up Halibut and as one shout finished Matthew on my boat was hooked in to one. During this fight Matthews braid unfortunately got snagged in his reel and it was looking like either the braid was going to break or he was going in, luckily the fish turned at the last minute and started to swim towards him. Now with a few meters of line on the spool we all breathed a little easier. Fight over and we had another great Halibut on board this one went 110cm and was released.
This day turned out to be the Norwegian guides day as they managed 4 Halibut up to 136cm we unfortunately didn’t connect with anything on this day
With Halibut being the main target of this trip every body was in the agreement to go for them again today. We decided to go a bit further a field toady to some very good grounds that produce not so many Halibut but the ones you some times catch are normally very big. With the steam over and the grounds found every body was full of beans and very active. Once the tide had hit its peak for Halibut I was feeling very positive and wasn’t long before some one had said they felt a nibble, so with great care the Halibut was teased in to taking the shad and the fight was on. It was Stuart again who had managed to hook this fish. Unfortunately it wasn’t the monster we were expecting but still a nice Halibut.
With fish released it was time to try again. With what felt like hours had gone by I asked my crew if they minded if I had a go for a Halibut and as there wasn’t much for me to do I picked my rod up armed it with my favourite shad and I was fishing. Boy this felt good, as I had sat there all week watching guys catch fish of their dreams and now it was my turn. After only 10minutes I had hooked my Halibut only a small one but still a Halibut. After I had released it I took the guys to a new area hoping for a last chance at one of the big girls myself. Once every body had started fishing I too dropped down for one last go and was praying a real big one would just swallow my shad, but instead I caught another baby one but that’s fishing.
After speaking to the other guys we all decided to call it a day so we could get the boats back to clean them down and refuel them ready to depart the following day. After all the fuel bills were paid and bar bills settled it was time to chill with a few drinks and reflect on the weeks fishing
I think you will see from the many pictures, all 8 guys had a fantastic time and a couple of them have already booked to go back next year. If you would like to join them, please call me on 01603 407596 as we only have a few places left
Hope you enjoyed my report and look forward to may be guiding you one day to the land of the big fish
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