Tuesday 3 November 2015

Fishing on the Icha river, a brief overview of its potential.


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Vasil Bykau

Fishing on the Icha river, a brief overview of its potential.

    The concepts of "beautiful" or "good" river quite subjective. Typically, we put in them different meanings, but there are common points such as untouched, beautiful landscape around, comfortable size of the river, convinient banks and of course - sufficient amount of fish. We can add up many various factors which makes the river better or worse, depending on the needs and personal preferences of angler. First of all, I would add here few things that are very valuable for fishing -comfortable and easy transportation and the lack of fishing pressure. Then we can talk about organization of the process of fishing, and the convenience of living and accommodation. I will abandon all sorts of sentiments and immediately move on to the things that seem to me more - less objective in assessing the river, as a place for fishing and recreation.
     I'll start with the river. The river is medium sized, available for fishing in the most parts. The river is very diverse, there are islands, shoals, holes, rocks and so on, all this creates big variety of interesting areas fir fishing. Water generally is crystal clear, the bottom is solid. The water level reacts to the rise of moderate rain, not critical for fishing. Of course, torrential rains which last for a couple of days could lead to a significant reduction in water clarity and cause a a big jum in water level. But such an extreme weather changes happens here pretty rare, and theoretically they can spoil a fishing trip anywhere in the world.
    The river is very curvy, creating a lot of areas suitable for both banks  fishing. Numerous islands, holes and curves allow us to fish the river virtually with any water level. You can always find a good place for the fish and for the angler. In general, 40 km of the river is allocated for fishing. Therefore, we have huge bit of the river, which is enough for a week or two of comfortable fishing for a big group of fishermen. Once again I want to draw your attention to the size and nature of its river bed, which makes it very convenient for fly-fishing.
    The character of the river explains its popularity among fly fisherman who visited the river. The river flows in to the Okhotsk seas, and has all kinds of Pacific salmon. Two of them are the most interesting for fishing: chinook and coho. Chinook -  the biggest fish and coho appears in the river in the very comfortable time for fishing in the season. But, in my opinion, the most interesting targets for fly fishing are the rainbow trouts and white-spotted chars. This fishing is more diverse and dynamic. Rainbow trout population here is quite decent. There are no giants, at least, I have not came across on a hook, but the average size of trout greater than 1.5 kg. Can be a good trophy fish weighing more than 2 kg. Given the extremely diverse channel of the river, trout and char fishing becomes a true pleasure. 
       I must add here that it is very important the correct organization of fishing. The use of boats with water jet engines makes it possible to separate participants to different areas. At the same time the pressure on the river is minimal. The second major part of each fishing trip - is the quality of living and eating. In my opinion the camp quite comfortable, clean and adapted to the needs of fishermen. Dryer, bath, WC, comfortable bedrooms, what else does a man need who spend the day on the river? Technically equipped kitchen, chef and comfortable warm dining room. For a one-two weeks stay here, the daily fishing fatigue does not accumulate. It explains the advantages of comfortable river and good accommodation conditions in the camp.
    At the end of this brief review, I would like to discuss the factor on which at some point we finally find ourselves on the bank of the river. This is the factor of transport, delivery to the river, this factor determines the price of the programs. Sometimes the price of various programs heavily dependent on the transportation aspects such as helicopters and so on. Here on Icha river we have a unique combination of aspects that in my opinion suits the needs of fishermen. As there are no roads along the river, we use boats to get to the camp, which makes it needless to use helicopters and saves us a fortune. At the same time, the leased land 40 km intended for fishing, virtually inaccessible to foreign fishermen or poachers. Moreover, we do not depend on the weather so much, which is very important in Kamchatka. 
     My personal impression of fishing and working here is that it is very pleasant to fish and rest here. I know that fishing is sometimes heavy and monotonous work, which can only be justified by some high purpose. So as its sometimes happens with Atlantic salmon fishing. The fish variety and population on the Icha river still so great that there is always an alternative that doesnt allow us to turn a great vacation in exhausting work.

Flies for rainbow trout and pacific salmon fishing

Due to the nature of rivers and fish species  Kamchatka fishing   has its own distinctive features. It forces us to change our usual fishing methods and tactics. This applies to the selection of places for fishing, suitable tackle and artificial flies. Perhaps the easiest topic to discuss - is the theme of baits, artificial flies to catch rainbow trout, brook trout and Pacific salmon. To begin, I want to express my gratitude to our old friend Ianus for the opportunity to showcase his collection of flies. Later we will return to discuss their characteristics and their use on the Icha river. 


More about fishing in Kamchatka, you can see here:


To catch the silver salmon, we have to present the fly as far as possible and close to the bottom. If you have started to cling to the bottom - it means that we catch correctly. Caught stone indicates the correct presentation of the fly in the water.

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