Kamchatka, July 2003
This was probably our biggest adventure in fly fishing thus far. We went all the way to Russia to catch fish - crazy huh? We flew to Anchorage, overnighted there, and then on Magadan Airlines, we flew to Petropovlosk on the Kamchatka peninsula. This is part of Siberia, but it wasn't cold. From Petro, we flew in an ancient, noisy, Russian military helicopter to our first wilderness camp, stopping at Esso on the way. It was an exciting trip - flying below the tops of some of the hills and volcanoes.
From our first camp, we hiked each day to a different part of the Sedanka river to fish for wild rainbows. The Russians were great. One of them, Anton, was fluent in English and very affable. We had borscht just about every day.
On our third day we floated and fished our way down river to a second camp. Our guides went with us. The second camp was also first class - flush toilets and hot showers! From there we hiked out each day to a different spot. The rainbow fishing was excellent and we also caught a few sockeye salmon - quite a thrill on a 6-weight fly rod.
At the end of the first week, the choppers came back and flew us to a new camp on the Kalgauch river. On the way we were dropped off at a river that nobody (i.e. no white man) had ever fished. It was like a commando operation.
At the Kalgauch, we went out each day in jet boats to a different spot. Here the rainbows were just awesome. Many of them 20" and larger. Probably the most fish we have ever caught - and the biggest! Fishing with big hairy mice was a blast.
Just look at these pictures. I'm getting tired of typing...