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My friend Orla Bertram-Nielsen recently did a short article on my Danish fishing ventures in a Danish angling website. If you can read it, the link to the article is:


Well, it took several weeks of learning but either the Baltic sea trout are feeling sorry for me or I am starting to get a hang of it. Today I took advantage of the unusually warm weather once again and spent two hours at the harbour. Ten minutes before I had to end my trip, I felt that tug once again! This was not a silver fish like the one I caught two days ago, but a coloured fish that is still recovering from the late fall spawning. It was a rather large fish. What’s more interesting is how extended the lower jaw is compared to the top jaw. The lower jaw hook also seems worn out or broken. Judging by its size, Stig believes this was the same fish that he caught last week. He also believes that the lower hook in fact broke off because the fish he caught had a lower jaw that is so hooked that it was touching the nostrils. My thanks to Magic for taking the following photographs for me.

Last night we cooked up two pieces of the silver sea trout from Saturday. The taste was slightly different to pacific salmon, but it was very delicious. I seasoned the fillets with salt, pepper and lemon. They are baked at 200C with onion and butter for 20 minutes. These were served with pan fried potato and carrots.

2nd annual Trophy Hunter Steelhead Derby

The Trophy Hunter Steelhead Derby took place on the Chilliwack River yesterday (January 20th). 70 anglers participated, 6 hatchery steelhead were weighed in, and more importantly $1,400 was raised for the Sportfishing Defence Alliance. The weight of the winning fish was 13lb 5oz. Congratulations to Rick for organizing the event and everyone else who supported it.

Yesterday while fishing briefly down at the local harbour just before dusk, we saw at least 15 risers in front of us with no takers. Frustrated, I was lured back to the water once again this afternoon. The overnight wind storm has changed the water condition completely. Wind has brought a large volume of water into the narrow channel between the two islands around Copenhagen, causing a sudden surge of strong current. Water visibility was also reduced to about two feet, making fishing even more challenging than what it already has been. The tidal difference in the Baltic Sea is only around 0.5m. Amazingly, current in fjords and narrows are primarily caused by the wind.

As I walked from the bus stop to the harbour, Stig raced by me on his bicycle, he was quite energetic as usual. My fishing companions Lars and Alan were also there. This is a typical hangout for many anglers, who enjoy either doing a bit of fishing, practicing casting after work or simply socializing with friends. Having a viable fishery in this urbanized region benefits the community tremendously. Young anglers can access it with their bikes after school and improve their skills and knowledge on fishing under adult anglers guidance. The facility is set up so older anglers can access it without jeopardizing their own safety. Fish species commonly caught include sea trout, garfish, mackerel, cod and herring. Such productivity did not exist once when the harbour was void of life due to pollution, but cleanups done in recent years have finally drawn both fish and anglers back.

The work of course does not end here. While conversing with the locals the other day, Stig and Ryan informed me that the group has proposed to the City for a permanent floating dock and club house where it can be used as both a fishing platform and a casting pool by everyone. Urban projects such as this are truly inspiring, which make me wonder if the same can be done in the Tidal Fraser River where public access for fishing is becoming more limited due to the surge of development in Metro Vancouver.

Seeing how milky the water was, I decided to make some casts anyway. I made my way to the other side of the channel where Stig has had success last week, so I could cast into this pocket of slower water. Perhaps, just perhaps, a large sea trout would be avoiding the fast main channel and resting here. I detected a light bump on the first retrieve but came up empty when I set the hook. It was possibly a patch of seaweed. The rest of the guys continue socializing back at the usual spot on the other side of the channel. I spent the next twenty minutes or so casting and retrieving with some optimism.

Finally I felt another light tug. I yanked the rod back reluctantly, thinking that it was yet another clump of weed. It was definitely not a clump of weed, because the weight on the other end had sped away into the current! My brain immediately turned off from sleep to fighting mode. I pointed the rod back to keep it from entering the fast flow. The 9ft long light spinning rod was bent to the cork, indicating that it was a rather large fish. Thinking that it was yet another coloured sea trout that we have been catching, I was in shock when this massive silver body made its first of three leaps in front of me. By this point, the hands were already shaking from both the cold and excitement. I began screaming as loud as possible at the gang across from me, hoping someone would come over to lend a hand. Of course, being such a light talker, no one heard a word. Finally one person spotted the second leap, Ryan and Alan started running over. Stig was also on his way from the other side of the bridge after hearing the commotion. I held on carefully and kept the line tight as the fish surfaced and approached shoreline. Once Stig arrived, he proceeded to reach down to the rocks and found a good landing spot. With one firm grab, my first solid silver sea trout was beached. At last, after hours of trips across Denmark and Sweden, I managed to catch what I have been seeking for just ten minutes bus ride from our apartment.

The boys wanted me to keep my fine catch. There are many large spawning trout to produce the next generation after all, so the odd harvest is well appreciated. At first I was not so sure, because hauling this beast during the bus ride on the way home would not make me so popular. I was then convinced when Alan was kind enough to offer me a car ride back. The cameras came out to capture the moment. Ryan informed me that they only connect with a fish in this size several times each year. We estimated it to be between 8 and 10lb.

This fish exhibited all the classic physical features found on a sea trout – The longer lower jaw, the extended jaw to the back of its eyes, the square tail and of course black spots on its gill plates and silvery body.

While cleaning the fish, I opened up its stomach and found three partially digested sculpins in the four inch range, two sticklebacks, two shrimps and two sandworms that were still wiggling. Sea trout are such greedy predators, it’s no wonder that the hook is often swallowed when they are caught.

The big silver finally showed itself with only one more week of my stay left in Denmark. Persistence, or obsession, has once again been rewarded. Maybe there will be one more for me next week? I better not ask for more…

No more crabby nights

Fisheries and Oceans Canada has issued a night closure for crabbing in Area 28 (Burrard Inlet, Port Moody Arm and Indian Arm). Crab poaching has always been a problem in the saltwaters around Vancouver due to the popularity of this fishery. There are three common violations:

  • Keeping undersized crabs
  • Taking more crabs than you are allowed
  • Keeping female crabs

By having night closures, it should make enforcement much easier since traps and fishermen are harder to spot in the dark. When you witness a violation, you should always call the ORR (observe, record, report) line at 1-800-465-4336. Remember, poaching is stealing from you because the resource belongs to every person in Canada.

A short bus ride to hungry trout

The weather was quite reasonable today in Copenhagen. Surprisingly, it has not gone sub-zero for many days as I had anticipated, which is a relief. Today’s wind was light with occasional sun peeks so I decided to take a ride down to the local harbour and make a few casts. Busses and trains are incredibly convenient in Copenhagen. People are forced to rely on them since cars are expensive (180% sale tax). The bus beside our apartment goes by once every ten minutes. Once I get on, I would be at the harbour in less than ten minutes, so it is in fact faster than driving as you have to consider the amount of time used to seek for a parking spot.

The locals have been taunting me with some emails about fish that were caught in the harbour last week. One of the regular hardcores, Stig, was into some of his biggest sea trout in his lifetime. The biggest one landed, was measured at 88cm long. That’s 35 inches! The estimated weight for this fish is 24lb.

Armed with some heavy flashy lures that I had just purchased, I too was hoping to connect with beasts similar in size. Stig was already hunting for more fish when I arrived. Ryan arrived soon after to practice his spey casts. It wasn’t long before Stig whistled from a fair distance away. We looked up. He waved his hand frantically while walking backward with a rather bent rod. A good size male sea trout he had on. Most of these fish are now starting to transform back to their ocean phase, losing the spawning colours.

I was able to hook one fish around the same size later on, but landing it was not to be today. The hook popped off near shore just as Ryan pulled out the camera for some action shots. Perhaps tomorrow, the weather looks fairly tolerable once again. Big hungry trout are only a short bus trip away, not many places can offer that.

Well, we ventured out to the fishing ground for the first time since we arrived in Denmark a few days ago. The weather was surprisingly mild, sunny and CALM. Persistent wind can really drive you crazy on this island nation at times. Today, we could cast in all directions without worrying about being blown around. The glassy water surface was also relaxing to look at. We visited a river where we have fished regularly. It produces sea trout, northern pike, european perch and a few other coarse fish species. Today, the target species are the three predatory fish mentioned above. Fishing can be good in the winter. The temperature is low, fish are not as mobile, so only big food items would tempt a strike.

Cost of fishing this river is much higher than what would cost to fish in BC. Beside the CAD$30 annual license, a day card that costs CAD$15 is also required.

Anyway, perhaps it was the nice weather, the fishing was not exactly spectacular. The first few hours were unproductive. Once the river was shaded in the afternoon, I managed to hook a small northern pike, which managed to wiggle itself into the weeds. I was able to pull it out, but the hook popped off when I carelessly horsed it to shore in the end.

We also explored a new section of the river, where I missed a few more good takes. Just when we were about to call it a day, I somehow foul-hooked a poor bream, which gave me some of its snot-like slime before I sent it back to the drink.

Beach fishing for sea trout tomorrow. Perhaps we will have better luck there.

Today’s announcement

Thomas at TNT Marine is looking to see what kind of interest there is in a jet boat association for the Fraser Valley and southwestern BC. As number of jet boaters grows significantly each year, there seems to be guidance needed for newcomers and people who have been boating for years.

Jet boating is becoming more and more popular each year, we have noticed that a lot of people are not only using their boats for fishing but for a little bit of everything. He will be having an open house at TNT MARINE on January 19th 2008 at 3:00pm.

This will be a trial to see how many people are interested in forming an association. You can email Thomas at if you are going to attend, or just show up.