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January 20, 2010

Emån - Fly fishing history, pure beauty and 20.4 kg

Emån - a place you never forget
When you arrive to the Emå fly fishing lodge, a classical old farmhouse, you are greeted by outstanding nature. While you are driving true a beautiful forrest, you easily spot several deers and pheasants, and between the trees you get a glimpse of the Em river to your left - a sight I never will forget - pure beauty.

The history behind this fly fishing lodge goes way back, back to times where danish and swedish Kings, English Lords and fly fishing profiles from all over the world, was a common sight at the banks of Emån. No wonder I might ad, because this place is one of its kind - everything is just completely right!!!.
Emån's reputation is mainly focused on some of the biggest sea trouts in the world, but huge salmons are not that rare - watch the video further down (from june - 09) - a 20.4 kgs salmon was caught on a fly in the Em river.

Lennart Westerlund with a world record Sea Trout from Emån - 15,26 kgs.

Em Herregård (the farmhouse), as it is called, has been on the hands of the Ulfsparre family for 9 generations, and the fishing started back in 1920 - witch is nearly 100 years ago, no wonder the atmosphere is so special, it's like stepping into a time capsule, a cultural treasure with no comparison anywhere.
The adventure began when Prince Gustav Adolf, who was the farther to the Swedish king at that time, invited two of his english friends, to join him at Em. They had such a good time fishing there. Afterwards the Prince recommended Gustav Ulfsparre, a 30 years old young man at that time, to create a small exclusive fishing lodge. Gustav listened to this advise and saw the potential immediately. After that, the rumors about this fantastic little place, were spread among the few. It was a time with great fishing, witch the old handwritten catch rapports still is a witness of.

Catch rapport from 1938.

Göran, the son of Gustav was so kind to show me around, and apparently they have so manny antique rods and reels stored, old hardy rods, and reels and a bunch of other fantastic stuff. But what I really liked to hold in my hands, were the old original handwritten catch rapports, such an important witness, of how things were back then. An other really beautiful thing Göran showed me was a fly box in mahogany, a gift from the Hardy brothers to Gustav. Of course filled with original old Hardy flies in it. I felt very privileged just being a part of all this for a short while - memories worth more than gold!

Present from The Hardy brothers

Picture of a young Mikael Frödin :O)

The old oak tree!! :O)

In the 1950 the industrial period was a reality, and like manny other rivers, Emån wasen't spared, environmental issues became a huge problem.
Gustav was a man with visions, and saw this problem coming long before anybody else. He began cleaning the river, and was probably one of the first persons to establish a real conservation program - a Biotopvärd, in swedish - with a future perspective, for this fantastic river. But he was up against governmental forces, and a hard struggle began, and even today they still fight for a free passage for the fish, so they can pass all of the 11 power stations, as I recall. Right now it is the Karlshammer power station they are trying to get a free passage around. To me that's a very strange scenario - it simply should have been done years ago. This is typical example of bureaucracy - stupidity at it's worst. On top of all this stupidity, are the fact, that a couple of modern windmills, easily could replace these old power stations, based on water.

Why don't they just do the right thing, and make it happen!!?? - strange world we live in.

The main entrance to Em fly fishing lodge.

Kent Häkansson - a day at the office!

Here is another great catch from Emån :O)

Today Em is run by a group of serious and very engaged people, with Göran Ulfspare as Chairman. And the Ulfsparre family have made long-term plans, for their fantastic worlk with the maintenance of a natural reproduction of a sea trouts population in Em River, and their motto is - “The sea trout fishing in Em River should contenue until the next ice age” - so Em River is in the best hands, and I feel very optimistic about the future perspective for Emån. 
Some years has gone by since I stayed at the Em fly fishing lodge, and I still dream myself back to Emån, back to the quiet beauty of nature, back to a historical fly fishing treasure, back to the bench under the old oak tree, back to Home pool, Stone pool and Mill pool.
And who knows maybe one day, I will sit and just enjoy the scenery, getting old on a bench at Old Mans Place!! :O)

Have a look at these related links:
For Emån and Pelle Klippinge
3) (Pelle Klippinges website)

All of my best wishes for all of you at Em, who make this place a reality
- keep up the fabulous good work :O)

.¸¸.·´¯`·.¸ )><((((º>

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