Kamchatka Steelhead Project Russia

Kamchatka is home to Asia’s only population of wild steelhead. Interestingly, they are listed in Russia’s Red Book, a listing similar to our Endangered Species Act, and technically cannot be targeted by sport or commercial fishermen. In order to better understand them the Kamchatka Steelhead Project was created in 1994. It is a collaboration between Russian and US scientists and a listed scientific project under the US-Russia Agreement on the Environment designed to study these fish using catch and release fly fishing as a non-lethal form of data collection. The Conservation Angler and Moscow State University are the co-directors of the Kamchatka Steelhead Project. There are three primary systems studied by the project, the Utholok, Kivachna and Snotlavaiam. These low-gradient systems are exceedingly remote and utterly unique in the steelhead world.  They are also home to a remarkable number heavily built, wild steelhead that respond enthusiastically to well-swung flies.  This is a true adventure travel destination and a great match for serious steelhead anglers who enjoy the challenges of these fish and one of the most remote environments in which they swim. Sponsorships for the Kamchatka Steelhead project are tax deductable.

Fishing Program:
Anglers are treated to ten days of serious steelhead fishing. The runs begin in September and continue through October. The fishing is done with the typical down and across swung tactics. The rivers are typically low gradient and fairly shallow. Each fish caught will be sampled by taking a few scales and small tissue sample for DNA purposes and the length girth and sex will be recorded before release back into the river. Sponsors will stay at camp for the entire 10 days assisting in the data collection. 

Accommodations and Meals:
The lodging consists of wooden framed canvas wall tents. The tents have wooden floors, wood burning stoves and cots with mattresses. Guests will need to bring their own sleeping bags. There are outhouses with a shower facility and an endless supply of hot water. The food is plentiful and while not gourmet, it tends to be tasty and good. Russian style soups are served first followed by dishes of fresh meat and locally grown vegetables. There is beer served with dinner and vodka is available for purchase. This is a rustic tent camp and while it is comfortable, the focus is more on the fantastic fishing and the scientific data being collected. 

Sample Itinerary:
Day 1:  Travel from home to New York, connect to overnight flight to Moscow
Day 2:  Arrive Moscow, connect to overnight flight to Kamchatka
Day 3:  Arrive Kamchatka, connect to village of Esso and overnight
Day 4:  Morning departure to camp, 1/2 day fishing
Days 5 - 14:  Full day fishing for science
Day 15:  Half day fishing, depart camp, travel to Petropavlovsk and overnight
Day 16:  Depart Kamchatka, arrive Moscow and overnight
Day 17:  Depart Moscow for home or points beyond

Rates and Details

2019 Rate: $9,995 per person for a 11 night / 8 day package

Included: Meet and greet in Kamchatka, all ground and air transportation while on the Kamchatka peninsula, Accommodations and meals at camp, guided fishing.

Not Included: Airfare to/from Kamchatka, Visa fees, fishing license, gratuities, all fishing tackle, personal liquor and personal gear including a sleeping bag, towel and medical evacuation insurance. 

Note: Anglers who miss their scheduled transfers to the lodge will be responsible for any incurred costs related to delays and special transfers.


Species: Steelhead

Season: September - October

Capacity: 6 anglers

MapPetropavlovsk