Fishing in Norway

The area that we have chosen for you is not a destination for inexperienced fishermen but we can assure you that is very tempting and challenging to be discovered.

Fjords

Norway is famous for its fjords, two of which, the Geirangerfjord and the Nærøyfjord, feature on the UNESCO World Heritage list. The Sognefjord, the longest of them all, and the Hardangerfjord, famed for its cherry and apple trees, are among the most visited. Read more about the Norwegian fjords.

Northern lights

The northern lights are a common natural phenomenon in Northern Norway, and are most commonly observed above the Arctic Circle between late autumn and early spring. Read more about the northern lights.

Weather

The weather in Norway is much milder than one would expect. Because of the Gulf Stream and warm air currents caused by the coriolis effect, temperatures along the coast of Norway are 5-8°C higher than at comparable latitudes elsewhere. Read more about season, weather and climate in Norway or check out the weather for your area.

Compared to deep sea and salmon fishing, much of Norway's freshwater fishing remains a well-kept secret. All over Norway there are places where, for just a few pounds (euros) you can explore endless lakes and streams and probably have them all to yourself.

Fishing season

The best times to fish vary from region to region and depend on both latitude and altitude, but as a rough guide fishing for most species starts in May. September, and even October, before the mountain lakes freeze over, can be spectacularly good.

Fish species

Grayling - Norwegian: Harr (Thymallus thymallus)

The Grayling is easy recognized by the big colorful fin on his back. The Grayling is a real freshwater fish and is very common in Norwegian rivers.

The Grayling mates in April and May and lays her eggs on the sandy or with small stones covered bottom of the river. The Grayling is very sensitive to polluted water and needs a large living area to survive. This fish is easy to catch on dry and wet fly and also on nymph. The fish will be active as soon as the ice has disappeared from the river and the water temperature is above c. 7 degrees Celsius. You are able to catch Grayling until ice covers the river.

Trout - Norwegian: Ørret (Salmo trutta)

Trout is a very popular fish among fly fishermen. The Trout in the Glomma and the surrounding lakes is recognized by the orange - brown - black spots on the sides of the fish. The Trout is a real hunter and will even eat its own kind if necessary. Trout up to c. 1.5 - 2 kilos are good to catch on dry flies. Bigger ones are easier to catch on big nymph or on streamers. Big Trout on a fly Rod is one of the sport’s highlights! The best time for Trout fishing is in the early Spring.

Common whitefish - Norwegian: Sik (Coregonus lavaretus)

The Common Whitefish is a common species in the Northern and Eastern parts of Norway. The fish lives in clear, slow-flowing water and in several lakes. The fish mates in the Autumn and Winter and can reach a size up to 60 cms. In big lakes the fish will mate in very deep water at about 50 meters deep. It is possible to catch the fish on dry fly but this technique is probably only for the more experienced fisherman.

Pike - Norwegian: Gjedde (Esox lucius)

Pike is not a species you would normally expect in the fast flowing waters that is found in the Glomma River. However, this fish is common in the easy parts and the ‘dead’ corners of the river. There where the water is very slow-moving and where the bottom is covered with grass. The Pike is a voracious hunter and the biggest threat to all the other species in the river and the lakes. For this reason the local fisherman do not like the Pike at all. Nevertheless this fish is an integral part of life in the Glomma River and can give a fly fisherman some spectacular fishing moments. Each year we see a number of large Pike, up to 12 kilos, caught in the Glomma or the surrounding lakes.

Perch - Norwegian: Abbor (Perca fluviatilis)

The Perch is a real hunter and most common in the lakes in the Koppang area. You will be able to find Perch in the southern parts of the Glomma where the water is not running is fast as in the Northern parts. Several lakes produce Perch up to 1.5 kilos. The Perch is easily recognizable by the distinctive vertical stripes on the body. The Perch mates during the early spring, as soon as the ice is disappeared from the river and the lakes. You can have lots of fun hunting the Perch with a popper or a streamer.

Arctic Char - Norwegian: Røye (Salvelinus alpinus)

Arctic Char is both a freshwater and saltwater fish in the Salmonidae family; it is native to Arctic, sub-arctic and alpine lakes and coastal waters. No other freshwater fish is found as far North as the Arctic Char. The Arctic Char is closely related to both Salmon and Trout and has many characteristics of both. Individual Char can weigh up to 9 kilos or more. The color of the fish can be greenish-brown to silver gray and they always carry a distinctive red belly. The flesh color of Char varies; it can range from a bright red to a pale pink. After the last ice-period the Arctic Char was the first species to colonize the Norwegian lakes.

Roach - Norwegian: Mort (Rutilus rutilus)

The Roach is a common species in the Norwegian waters and can be found in freshwater lakes and slow flowing rivers. The maximum size of this fish is apprx. 35 cm. Catching Roach over 1 kilo is very rare – but can occasionally happen! The fish is easy recognizable by the red fins and red eyes. Under the right circumstances this fish can reach 25 years in age. The fish mates in the spring when the water reaches a temperature of about 10 – 12 degrees C. You can catch this fish with dry flies and nymphs.

Fishing areas

Some of the better known areas include the Hemsedal Valley, where the Hemsila River and its tributaries are considered some of the best waterways for trout. Also highly regarded are the upper reaches of the Glomma, Atna, Folla and Tunna located in central Norway, wonderful rivers for trout and grayling.

These areas are 250 km far from Oslo and offer a fruitful experience for fly fishermen.

Fishing licenses

Freshwater fishing requires a combination of local and national licenses, depending on the species sought. In some locations you may also need to buy a license from the holder of the fishing rights.

Licenses for freshwater fishing in rivers, lakes and streams are issued by local authorities. They are limited to a specific area and specific period of time and are generally inexpensive. They can be purchased in sports shops, convenience stores and many campsites. Angling guides can often arrange or issue these licenses too.

Restrictions and quotas

Salmon anglers should be aware of local restrictions which impose a quota on the number of fish an angler can kill. There has been a sea change in attitudes to salmon in recent years. “Catch and release” is becoming increasingly widely practised. In some areas, once an angler kills a fish his fishing is over for the day. Please note that there is a total ban on eel fishing in Norway, which applies to sport anglers and commercial fishermen alike.

Right of access

Whilst in Norway you share a general right of public access and enjoy access to a vast amount of countryside – mountains, forests, seashore, lakes and rivers, regardless of who owns the land. This is a cherished part of Norwegian national culture, but with it comes responsibility. Generally you can go anywhere you like on foot over uncultivated land, but please be considerate of others, take your litter with you and respect the environment. Read more about the right of access.

Personal safety

It is always advisable to check the weather forecast, as conditions in Norway can change quickly. A layered clothing system as used by walkers and mountaineers with a lightweight waterproof shell on the outside will keep you comfortable in all conditions.

Tell someone where you are going and roughly when you expect to return, especially if you are planning to hike to a remote mountain lake or some other wilderness.

Lifejackets are a must on many rivers. The larger salmon rivers are extremely powerful and you will need one if you are wading or fishing from a boat. Felt soled wading boots will offer the best grip in most river fishing situations, but they must be disinfected to avoid the spread of disease. Many anglers find that a wading staff offers useful extra stability in fast water too.

If you rent a cabin near a lake you will often find that a boat is supplied as part of the holiday package. There are also boats available for hire to fishermen on many lakes and occasionally you will find a boat made available free of charge in some quite out of the way place. Obviously, the later don’t come with one-to-one boat handling instruction and safety equipment. In these situations the angler must be responsible for his own safety.

Again, the use of a lifejacket is recommended. Choose modern designs made specifically for anglers that are small, lightweight, comfortable to wear and don’t obstruct casting movement. They require a modest investment but could avoid a disaster. The automatically inflating ones operated by a small CO2 cylinder are affected by restrictions on some airlines, so please check carriage arrangements before you travel.

Other items that you might consider are protective eyewear for fly-fishing (polarised lens will help you spot more fish too), a small first aid kit and insect repellent as mosquitoes can be a problem in certain places in high summer.

Accommodation

We are proposing to you an area that has a lot of unexplored potential, Hedmark County. The fishermen are coming for fly fishing mainly but spinning is still a successful method to catch a large diversity of fishes. The main river Glomma and its tributary Folla, Atna and Tunna situated in the north part of the county are between the most productive when we spoken of trout and grayling. You may choose any from the five locations that we have in mind for you. Starting from each of it you can reach the desire river or lake on an area of 40 km.
Lets us show to you a few photos.


Holiday house in Tolga
Starting from 250 euro/person/week
Accomodation for up to 6 Persons
3 Bedrooms
Self catering
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Holiday house in Strommen
Starting from 250 euro/person/week
Accomodation for up to 8 Persons
4 Bedrooms
Self catering
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Holiday house on Savalen Lake
Starting from 250 euro/person/week
Accomodation for up to 8 Persons
4 Bedrooms
Self catering
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Holiday house in Atna
Starting from 250 euro/person/week
Accomodation for up to 4 Persons
2 Bedrooms
Self catering
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Rent a cottage/cabin upon request
Starting from 250 euro/person/week
The accommodation in cottages is experienced by the most people who have as main purpose fishing and on the second place comes comfort.
Self catering
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