This group of guys was the all-star team of European Salmon angling. I was the younger brother trying to nudge my way into the pack. It seemed as if my luck was not going to have it as I seemed to be always behind the guy getting the fish.
On the last day of my last pass, I finally had a fish take my fly. My Hardy Perfect that I was so proud of and the guys who have made fun of this whole trip start screaming like a banshee. I back up onto the bank and start palming the fish I have done many times at home. The key difference being, this is as fresh as it gets Norwegian spring salmon in heavy water. After a few runs to the backing, my reel handle smashes my hand and the center pin of my Hardy Perfect snaps clean off.
Well that’s it I think it’s over, as my spool rolls by my feet. Tommy looks at me and says “don’t move,” as I look over my shoulder and see Lars running to the truck.
Lars returns with his reel with just a shooting line on it and we proceed to connect my shooting line to his, then I drop the frame of my reel off my rod like a used cartridge and we snap on a sealed drag reel.
I can only imagine this looked like some sort of clown circus act, which embodied a true team effort. We ended up getting the fish in the net, and under 17 min it swam off perfectly and undisturbed.
I can honestly say I will not be trying to look like some salmon-angling hipster on my next trip. When guys of this caliber tell you something, listen. This wasn’t the biggest fish but the story will never be forgotten. I can’t say thank you enough to Lars and Tommy for helping me with this fish. Their experience and expertise got the job done.”