Lake Thingvallavatn is a name that is quickly becoming famous around the fishing world as a mecca for wild brown trout fishing.
I had to go to the Ion Hotel the other day for a meeting and the day before I was called and asked if I would like to fish the hotel beats as no one was fishing that day. I jumped at the chance. I am not going to go into too much detail as this has already been covered very well on Tarquin’s blog which can be seen here.
I arrived at the river beat with only an hour or so to tackle up and fish so I hastily set up a rod. I had picked a 9ft 5 weight, in the rush I did not think to much and put a 6 lb breaking strain leader on. This turned out to be a bit of an error!
I had had a quick brief on the phone about what to expect and where the fish should be. It was clear they were where they should have been as they were pretty visible with a lot of head and tailing and rises. I selected a size 8 pheasant tail to fish with a strike indicator.
The plan was very simple; the fish like to lie in the warm water from the river as it feeds into the lake. This increases their metabolism and helps with the digestion of the char they feed on. You cast the nymph into the stream and let it dead drift down. After a few casts the indicator vanished and I lifted my rod. Whatever was on the end took off like Usain Bolt out of the starting blocks and, well, that was the end of that leader.
I re-equipped myself with a 10lb leader and a smaller nymph and was ready to go. The clock was ticking and I was determined to get my first Thingvallavatn trout. Within a couple of casts I had the line moving over the water where the most movement had been. It did not take long to get another take. This fish did not hang around either; it took off in the direction of the middle of the lake. The line was gone shortly after and the backing was disappearing at rather an alarming rate. With, quite literally, a couple of turns of backing left I managed to get the fish vaguely under control. The next 20 minutes went in a blur as I battled with this fish until in the end I managed to haul him onto the beach. He was approximately 10lbs and was a truly beautiful fish. As he swam off back into the lake I had a raging storm in front of me and clear blue skies behind me; Iceland at its best.
At 10lbs this would have normally been considered a great fish but here where these monsters have grown up to 36lbs it can only be considered average. This place really is the stuff of legends.
For further information on fishing on Lake Thingvallavatn please contact Richard Scrope on 0845 299 6212 Ext 3 or Via E-Mail