Martin Joergensen's annual trip to the Danish island Bornholm is coming up. This year without GFF partner Steve Schweitzer by his side. Steve here tells the story of the 2002 trip, where they both indulged in fish, good food and friendship for a week.
Allow me to put some words around the pictures you see on this page... in no particular order. You can match the stories to the pictures, no problem...
We had a wonderful time fishing the majority of every day from 10:00am until dark, taking several coffee and cake breaks along the way. Each nite was capped by one of us (Martin on several occasions) fixing dinner, of which fixing dinner for 7 hungry fishermen was no small feat. Martin is a wonderful cook, so we never went to bed on an empty stomach. Back by popular demand from the Bornholm 2000 trip, I fixed my BBQ chicken, pan fried garlic potato slices, and home-made garlic bread. I had to make do with sub-standard store-bought BBQ sauce; the group has yet to experience Grandma Schweitzer's home-made BBQ sauce that is actually smoked like a salmon for a few days... unbelievably the best ever on the planet. Maybe next trip. PS - ask Martin to fix his curry meatballs... like candy they are.
Bornholm is not a complete visit unless a trip to the Baltic Sea Glass factory is made. I have now bought over 6,000 kroners of glass from this place... all hand made and all works of art in themselves. Plus, the glass becomes a very special memento of the trip that I can see every day gracing my house.
You see many pictures of us laying around on the beaches and banks taking naps... let me explain. Yes. we did :) It's a grueling life to get up, eat breakfast, drink kaffe, put on yer waders, bundle up for the cold day ahead, stretch and prep yer shooting line, tie on a fly and cast all day... multiply this by 7 days straight. We earned our naps!
...and... there is a coincidentally large amount of photos of me with alcohol, food, beer, food, gin, beer, etc... this is purely coincidence.
Martin seems to have a knack of taking too many pictures of non-fishing environs. I'll have to have a word with him on this...
By the way... a small word on my Cabela's DryPlus waders... they were brand new for this trip... chest highs. I had to repair them every day for leaks and the material delaminated in 2 days. My waist highs do not have this problem, but I am very dissapointed with my chest-highs. I had high hopes for these waders based upon the invigorating thread on COFFER (Colerado's Flyfisher mailing list) a few months back.
A word on the gear used...
We used slow-sink shooting heads of about 8-10 meters with 30 meters of shooting line (That's 25-30' heads on 100' shooting lines). This enabled us to cast great distances and fight the ever prevalant wind. A no-wind cast with a fresh arm could yield distances of 100 feet or more in a conservative estimation. A neat thing to cast that far. Tippet choices were widely varied as some used a 2 or three piece mono leader, others a braided leader and myself, of course, a special design searun brown leader for turning over a heavy fly in wind (not found in LeaderCalc!). I was happy with the design, but will try to redeploy with 4 segments instead of 7-9 as the formula stands now. The seatrout don't care otherwise!
Standard flies used were the Grey Frede, Omoe Brush, grey shrimpy looking things with mono eyes (my favorite), Joergen's Devil (seen in the pix), etc. The fly didn't seem to matter much as if you found fish, they struck on any good presentation.
Unlike the trip made in 2000, I got more than 1 fish. I caught 4 this time, paltry to Martin's 10-12 or so. But I had all nice fish, 1.5-4 kilos (3-8 lbs.), 25+ inches with my largest being a male searun brown, kyped jaw, yellow as a butter tin and a whopping measured 79 centimeters... that's 31 inches! A beauty that took nearly 20 minutes to land. If only I had my digital camera...
This trip had a few more fatalaties than normal: broken rod, dunked digital camera, broken polarized lenses, dunked cell phone, etc...but no one seemed to mind as over 35 fish were caught between 7 of us...and that, according to Martin, has been the best trip he has ever made on the island.
We stayed in a lovely little cottage only 4 years old that had all the amenities you could ever want, including a steam room and fireplace and satellite TV. By no means did we go uncomfortable!
Our days consisted of going to the leeward side of the island to find casting solstice from the wind. The island isn't that large as in 20 minutes you could be E to W shores. It would take 30 minutes or so to be N to S as the island is a bit longer than it is wide. The architectural design on the island is facinating...mixing church structures built back in the late 12th century to modern day Scandinavian design. See my pix from 2000
The towns are small, quaint and the people very friendly. I could easily live on Bornholm year-round.
We are making plans for the Super7 to continue this "fishing around the world" campaign in August of 2004 in Denver to fish the Rockies. For many, it will be their first time to the states, and what a better place to be but none-other-than the Rockies for a first time visit! The Super7 were a fine bunch of folks to fish with, many laffs had, jokes made, danish phrases learned (non-repeatable here) and comraderie built. Now it is my turn to host such an event stateside...I only hope it can compare to the fun and fond memories a trip to Bornholm has instilled in me.
If nothing else, this trip to Bornholm with the other 6 guys proves one thing... if it wasn't for modern technology (email: Martin and I contacting each other in '93 or so) to join us together, I probably would have never met Martin, Ken, Henning, Joergen, etc...
The world of e-flyfishing is a wonderful world of friends, not a bad egg in the bunch and always a smile and open door to the bretheren. So, as I sit in my hotel room in London, a 1/2 a world apart from my home in Colorado, USA, I anxiously read my mail each day to catch up on the latest fly fishing news from home... just like I was there.
Well, time to get ready for work...