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Global Fly Fisher, Fishing in Denmark - March 6th 1997
The sea trout season has started...
...and then again hasn't. The Bonanza from last year hasn't really repeated, and the fishing in the well known fjord areas is not as excellent as some Danish fishing media want us to think.
This particular kind of spring fishing takes place almost each spring in the deepest parts of the fjords where the sea trout have been tucking away during the coldest part of the winter.
There are two kinds of trout: post spawn trout and non spawning trout. The post spawning fish are called 'nedfaldsfisk' in Danish: fish that have 'fallen down' the streams after spawning. These fish are generally in a bad shape, thin, worn and not very good looking. Each and every fish ought to be released again, but unfortunately there are lots of big fish in this group - up to 10 kilos (20 lb) - and some fishers are tempted to bring home such a fish. The non spawning fish - 'overspringere' in Danish - are fish that skipped spawning this autumn/winter. Most of them are smaller fish - 1-2 kilos (2-4 lb) - but in excellent condition.

Deep holding
All of these fish will be holding in the deeper parts of the fjords where the water is warmer and the slinity is low. They are waiting for the ice to dissapear (if there is any) and the temperatures to rise. They are very passive: the water temperature is low and so is metabolism and there isn't much food in the warer anyway. They are not completely immobile, though. When the sun shines and temperatures rise in the shallow water you can catch them on deep fished slowly retrieved flies.
When spring comes these fish are very hungry. This can be used to the fishers advantage, because the fish will stay for a week or two after the ice has broken, and if you know where to find them you can catch a lot - a lot!

Not for me
This of course atrract a lot of fishers. People who aren't imaginative enough to find their own fishing locations will find these fjords. People who only fish a couple of times a year. People who don't really know how to fish, but still want to fill the freezer.
I rarely take part in this fishing: it's not the greatest kind of sportsmanship you can find and the places with lots of fish are so heavily fished that it's almost rediculous.
But still every year the word travels: 'They are hauling up fish in XXX!' and everybody leaves their easy chair and goes fishing. This year it seems, they will be dissapointed. They probably won't fill the freezer and a heavy wind will also make it less comfortable than most people prefer.

Other places
I prefer to go elsewhere. last saturday - March 1st - I went to the Northern part of Seeland (see the map) and fished with a friend on a truly beautiful day. We didn't catch anything - or even see a fish - but we had an excellent time.
For the people who don't know where to go I would recommend to stay away from the fjords and try coasts with off shore winds (preferably from the southern corners) on calm, sunny days.


A Schweitzer/Joergensen Publication
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