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Brown Trout Fishing Holidays Every Fly Anglers dream

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A True Freshwater Icon

The Brown Trout is an iconic, native trout species in the British Isles and holds a lifelong fascination for anglers, biologists and nature-lovers alike – even becoming the UK’s favourite fish species officially in 2016. It includes purely freshwater populations, although its anadromous form, known as the Sea Trout, migrate to the oceans for much of their life, only returning to freshwater to spawn.

The Brown Trout has been a famous quarry of European anglers for centuries. It was first mentioned in angling literature as “fish with speckled skins” by Roman author AElian, circa 200 AD. It’s probably fair to say that the humble Brown Trout epitomizes the very essence of freshwater fly fishing. Although the species can sometimes be overlooked, a big wild Brown Trout is a fish that all fly fisherman will have on their bucket list.

Native to much of Europe, even to North Africa, the Brown Trout has been widely introduced into suitable environments worldwide, including North and South America, Australasia and Asia. They can live to over 20 years and grow to over 40lb in some localities, although in many smaller rivers, a mature weight of 3lb or less is typical. Their diet consists of a whole host of aquatic insects, terrestrial insects, other fish, crustaceans, and worms.

Below are the top destinations in the world for Brown Trout Fishing.

Howenh Lodge Argentina

Exclusive to Sportquest Holidays, Howenh Lodge, based on the incredible Rio Grande, offers travelling rods the opportunity to wet a fly across over 30 kilometres of water. With just four to six rods per week, it provides some of the best Sea Trout fishing in the world, both in terms of the number of fish and excellent average size.

Bella Sofia Lodge Argentina

Bella Sofia Lodge is new for 2023, offering anglers single rooms and world-class Sea Trout fishing on the Rio Gallegos and the Rio Gallegos Chico Rivers. Based on only six rods per week, it offers guests more than 10 kilometres of water each to wet a fly, making it the most exclusive fishery in all of South America.

Futa Lodge Chile

Futa Lodge is absolutely the most romantic lodge in the world, which sleeps a maximum of six anglers. With its remoteness, stunning mountains and free rising, very obedient Brown and Rainbow Trout, this will feel like a dream. Fishing itself is some of the purest wild fly-fishing for Rainbows and Browns anywhere in the world.

Fly Fishing Combo Trip Iceland

This Sportquest Holidays exclusive offers travelling rods the chance to fish some of the most picturesque and productive freshwater fly fishing rivers in all of Iceland. Our beats, located in the northern part of the country, offer two days of quality fishing on each of the Laxá In Aðaldal, Reykjadalsa & Mýrarkvísl Rivers.

Vatnsdalsá River Fly Fishing Iceland

The Vatnsdalsá River is one of the most famous Salmon rivers in Iceland and is renowned for the size of fish it produces. Located in the country's North West, approximately three hours drive from Reykjavik, it flows for over forty kilometres and offers a vast array of quality pools and beats. It produces between 700 and 1,200 Salmon each season, with a healthy average size.

Estancia Glencross Argentina

Why fish one river when you can three? That's what Glencross is offering you the perfect opportunity for huge Brown Trout and Sea Trout fishing. Mainly single-handed fly fishing allowing you to get up and personal with all the fish. Combined with a real authentic estancia makes this Glencross Lodge Adventure the perfect fly anglers dream.

Laxá In Aðaldal Trout Fishing Iceland

The Laxá In Aðaldal, also known as the Big Laxá, is one of the most famous rivers in Iceland. An enchanting river that fishes consistently well throughout the season, it's renowned for being one of the best Trout rivers in Europe and even the world, producing significant numbers of Brownies, averaging 2lb to 3lb, with a good sprinkling of specimens to over 8lb.

Lónsá River Fly Fishing Iceland

The River Lónsá is situated in northeast Iceland amid the Langanes Peninsula and is a name renowned amongst the freshwater fly fishing community. The Lónsá is home to an abundant healthy population of Brown Trout and is also considered one of the very best rivers in Iceland to target and catch the beautiful, elusive Arctic Char.

Reykjadalsá River Fly Fishing Iceland

The Reykjadalsa river, in the northern part of Iceland, is a tributary of the lower section of the Big Laxá I Adaldal and is known as one of the countries best wild Trout and Char rivers. Renowned as a surface fishing and dry fly anglers paradise, it produces high volumes of fish, and it hasn’t been unusual for the river to produce over 3,000 Trout per year.

El Rincon Lodge Argentina

The thing that sets El Rincon Lodge apart from the rest is the versatility of water that it possesses. This versatility is one of the main reasons that the lodge can produce such consistent catches throughout its seasons. The lodge its self is very comfortable with six single rooms giving anglers the privacy they need for a good night’s sleep.

Mýrarkvísl Lodge Fly Fishing Iceland

The Mýrarkvísl Lodge is situated on the banks of the delightful Mýrarkvísl river, the lowest tributary of the Laxá I Aðaldal on the northern coast of Iceland, around 400 kilometres from Reykjavik. It offers a wide range of diverse waterways for anglers to wet a fly and is famed for its numerous quality Trout and Salmon beats, pools and even a lake.

Namsentunet River Namsen Norway

Namsentunet Lodge, one of Norway’s most exclusive Atlantic Salmon and Sea Trout fishing retreats, is nestled on the banks of the famous river Namsen, affectionately known as the ‘Queen of Rivers’. The Namsen is famed for its huge Salmon, and each year, good numbers of 40-45lb fish get landed by travelling rods.

West Ranga Lodge Iceland

The West Ranga Lodge provides the most prolific Atlantic Salmon fly fishing in the whole of Iceland. This river system which is spring-fed ensure that it very rarely is out of condition. Combine this with first-class accommodation, guiding & operation and you have the perfect Atlantic Salmon fly fishing destination in Iceland.

Lake Thingvallavatn Iceland

This is the perfect fishing trip for a novice or experienced angler looking for a short fully guided holiday with the chance of catching an exceptionally large Trout. Fishing on some stunning private beats, you will have your guide on hand to answer any questions and hopefully land and photograph some magnificent fish.

Battle Hill Lodge Iceland

Battle Hill Lodge is nestled on the banks of the Fossárlar River and is famed for the incredible Sea Trout fishing it offers, renowned as being some of the best found anywhere in the world. A historic, picturesque location of striking beauty, it gives travelling rods an incomparable fly fishing experience of a lifetime.

Hosted Bella Sofia Lodge Argentina

Our hosted Sea Trout trips to Bella Sofia offer travelling rods the chance to experience some of the finest fishing in all of Patagonia, Argentina. The fishing is split across two rivers, the mighty Rio Gallegos, one of the most famous Sea Trout rivers in the world and the Rio Gallegos Chico, a smaller tributary. Catering to just six rods per week, the lodge is booked exclusively for Sportquest customers.

Exclusive Weeks Las Buitreras Lodge Argentina

If you are a single angler or just looking to travel in a group with like-minded people who all enjoy the art of fly fishing for big wild Sea Trout well this trip is designed just for you. Teaming up with our partners at Solid Adventures we have some exclusive weeks on offer for our very own Sea Trout fishing weeks.

Kau Tapen Lodge Argentina

Kau Tapen is located in the heart of the Rio Grande. This is the original fishing lodge and the standard of elegance by which other lodges are measured. Kau Tapen holds 5 world records for Sea Trout up to 35LB and, for the last 25 years, has provided the best mix of experienced international guides and knowledgeable local river guides.

Villa Maria Lodge Argentina

Since 1994 Villa Maria has offered small groups of just six anglers exciting fishing on some of the most productive pools in the lower river. Big fly fishing rods, heavy sink tips and big pools are the norm. Villa Maria is a double-handed fly fisherman’s dream; enjoying the first crack of the whip at newly arrived Sea Trout as they pass through.

Las Buitreras Lodge Argentina

Las Buitreras Lodge on the Rio Gallegos in Argentina offers an unparalleled Sea Trout fishing program. Catch statistics for size and numbers on the Rio Gallegos and the Rio Grande are similar, however, many anglers remain loyal to the Rio Gallegos River for it’s a dream to fish with its low gradient, technical characteristics, exclusivity, outstanding guides and the vast number of pools you get to fish each day always providing well-rested water.

Atlantic Salmon Fishing Russia

The Belousiha River is one of the most famous Salmon rivers in Russia and one which is well known and regarded amongst adventurous travelling freshwater fly fishing anglers. Located in the extreme northwest of Russia on the Kola Peninsula, one of the largest Peninsula's in Europe, it's a relatively small but exquisite looking river set amidst spectacular and changing scenery.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Brown Trout Species Spotlight

Name: Brown Trout
Also Known as: Brownies
Scientific Name: Salmo Trutta

Brown Trout Characteristics

Brown Trout are a species of fish in the Salmonid family and the most widely distributed species of the genus SalmonThey exhibit a distinct and variable physical appearance that reflects their diverse habitats and subspecies. Their bodies are typically elongated and streamlined, facilitating efficient movement through various water conditions. Their colouration ranges from olive green to dark brown on the dorsal side, transitioning to a lighter, often golden hue on the flanks and culminating in a white or yellowish underbelly. This natural camouflage gets enhanced by scattered dark spots, sometimes surrounded by lighter halos and, in some cases, reddish or orange spots along the lateral line.

Brown Trout can live for up to twenty years, but as with Atlantic Salmon, a high proportion of males die after spawning, and probably fewer than 20% of female fish recover from the vigors of the reproductive cycle. A typical female produces about nine hundred eggs per lb of body weight.

Opportunistic feeders, Brown Trout generally feed on a diet of invertebrates, including insect larvae, pupae, and nymphs, to mention just a few. However, as with many other fish species, their diet can change with age and habitat, and they will broaden their horizons, feasting on other fish, frogs, mice, birds, and insects flying near the water’s surface.

Where To Catch Brown Trout?

Brown Trout are native to most of Europe, Western Asia, and parts of North Africa. They have been widely and successfully introduced to other suitable regions worldwide, including North and South America, Australasia, Asia, and South and East Africa. Many would consider them one of the world’s most invasive species outside their native range, as they can quickly and easily establish self-sustaining, wild populations.

Fact: One of the first introductions of Brown Trout was in Australia in 1864 when 300 of 1500 Brown Trout eggs from the River Itchen survived a four-month voyage from Falmouth, Cornwall, to Melbourne on the sailing ship NorfolkBy 1866, numbers of young fish were found surviving in a Plenty River hatchery in Tasmania.

In their native range, they are abundant in the cold, clear rivers and lakes of countries like Scotland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, where they are revered for both sport and tradition. In North America, they have thrived in the cool, oxygen-rich waters of the Rocky Mountains, the Great Lakes, and parts of the Appalachian Mountains, offering some fantastic year-round angling opportunities.

In the southern hemisphere, New Zealand’s South Island is another hotspot, celebrated for its crystal-clear rivers and large wild fish, drawing anglers from across the globe seeking the challenge of sight-fishing in its pristine environments. While in South America and the area of Patagonia, spanning Argentina and Chile, the remote and scenic rivers harbour trophy-sized Browns, providing a unique fishing experience amidst breathtaking landscapes.

If you’re looking to travel to fish for Brown Trout, we have a whole host of tours across the globe, with something to suit the needs of all anglers and travellers, whether you’re looking for a short-haul trip to Europe or a long-haul trip to South America, we offer it all.

Our Top European Brown Trout Fishing Destinations:
Laxá In Aðaldal Trout Fishing Iceland
Reykjadalsa River Fly Fishing Iceland
River Lónsá Fly Fishing Iceland

Our Top Worldwide Brown Trout Fishing Destinations:
Futa Lodge Chile
Estancia Glencross Argentina
Bella Sofia Lodge Argentina (Rio Gallegos Chico)

How To Catch Brown Trout?

Catching Brown Trout demands a blend of skill, patience, and understanding of their behaviour and habitat. They are a popular species among fly anglers due to the many different methods they can be caught on, with everything, such as nymphs, streamers, and dry flies, all working on particular days. It’s probably fair to say that the humble ‘Brownie’ epitomises the essence of fly fishing, and although the species can sometimes be overlooked, a big wild Brown Trout is a fish that all fly anglers will have high up on their bucket list.

Tackle-wise, rods between 6ft and 9ft in length with a rating of between #4-weight and #8-weight usually are sufficient, matched with a suitable reel and loaded with the fly line of your choice. Lines range from full floating, midge tip, neutral density (very slow sinking), Intermediate (1 ½” – 2″ per second), and various other complete sinking lines from 3 – 8 inches per second (IPS), allowing you to cover all depths of a fishery from the surface to the bottom. Tippets and leaders should match the size of the fish you are fishing for, and in many cases, should be as long as possible – offering a better presentation and a stealthier approach.

For newcomers to the sport, fly selection can be daunting as there are so many available. We’d recommend looking at some of the pre-selected packs of flies for specific uses, from River Dries to Stillwater lures. These helpful packs are a great place to start, and before you know it, you will fill a box and undoubtedly have some favourite patterns that you have faith in.

Tip: The most important thing to consider when fishing for Trout is the time of day. Fly fishing in the early morning or late evening can be particularly effective, as the fish feed more aggressively during these times.

How Big Do Brown Trout Grow?

The size of Brown Trout can vary significantly based on its environment, with factors such as water temperature, food availability, and genetic background resulting in a wide range of possible sizes for this adaptable and widely distributed fish.

In small streams and rivers, Brown Trout may reach modest sizes of 12 to 16 inches in length and typically weigh 1lb to 3lb. However, they can achieve much greater sizes in larger rivers, lakes, and reservoirs where food is more abundant and conditions are optimal. It’s common for individuals in these environments to surpass 20 inches in length and weigh over 5lb. Exceptionally, in prime conditions and with ample forage, Brown Trout can grow to be true giants, with specimens exceeding 30 inches in length and weighing more than 20lb, especially in parts of New Zealand, Europe, and North America.

Fact: The IGFA all-tackle record for Brown Trout currently stands at a whopping 44lb 5oz landed from the Ohau Canal in New Zealand.

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