It has taken considerable time and effort to finally bring forward a comfortable full-service lodge in the remote wilderness of Greenland. Now, with the opening of Erfalik Lodge, guests can enjoy Greenland’s most productive Arctic char fishing without having to rough it. Here guests will enjoy single-occupancy rooms, 24-hour power, hot showers, and tasty three-course meals. More stable and consistent fishing is hard to come by and few if any have left this remarkable system disappointed.
Europe, New Zealand,The Jungles
- The incredible wilderness of Greenland.
- The first full-service lodge in Greenland.
- Fish for aggressive wild Arctic char in a pristine environment.
- Enjoy lightly guided fishing with a DIY feel.
- Experience a truly international lodge where guests will interact with people from all over the world.
Where is the lodge?
The lodge is located approximately 80 kilometers south of Sisimiut, in southwestern Greenland. It overlooks the fjord and the river mouth of the Erfalik River.
How do I get there?
To get to Sisimiut (JHS) you will need to fly to Copenhagen, Denmark where most U.S. travelers overnight in a hotel. The next day you fly to Sisimiut via Kangerlussuaq, Greenland. It is a 4.5-hour flight from Copenhagen to Kangerlussuaq, and then a 30-minute flight to Sisimiut. Guests arrive in the early afternoon, settle in at Hotel Sisimiut and spend the rest of the afternoon and evening sightseeing or relaxing. The next day guests will transfer 2.5 hours by boat to the lodge.
Do I need a Visa?
No, US passport holders only need a valid passport to visit Denmark and Greenland.
When should I go?
The peak season is July and August. Arctic char begin their migration up the rivers in late June. In late August and early September, they become more interested in spawning and we leave them alone.
Where do they fish?
On the Erfalik River, sometimes in inlets and outlets of the lakes, and occasionally in the fjord for cod or fresh chars heading towards the river mouth.
Where do we stay?
In a brand-new lodge, built in 2019, overlooking the fjord and the river mouth. The sleeping cabins are small (with bunk beds) but all guests can have a single room. There is plenty of room for your gear as well. The lodge has a big, comfortable dining area, big couches and a large porch, all with a spectacular view of the fjord.
Who is best suited to this destination?
Anyone who is in reasonable shape with some fly fishing experience and a bit of self-sufficiency on the water. Though some days are always better than others, the fishing is rarely hard and there is no need to have a guide watch over your shoulder all day long. Once you have had an introduction to the fishery most anglers are fine fishing with one or two other guests, and sometimes ask assistance from one of the guides if they want an introduction to a new area. If you prefer being guided at all times, do not tie your own knots or release your own fish this is not the trip for you.
The fishing is all walk-and-wade, so to get the full benefit of the possibilities, anglers should be reasonably fit and enjoy hiking. The terrain is easy, but you should be prepared to cover a total four to eight miles most days. If you need a break during your week, you can fish the river mouth on an incoming tide or get one of the guides to drop you off on the other side of the lake and fish the inlet and outlet.
What is a typical day like?
It’s an easy going and flexible schedule as there is light enough to fish 20 to 24-hours a day, depending on the season. Most days, guests get up around 7:00 when breakfast is served. After breakfast, you will make your own sandwiches for lunch, get in your fishing clothes and head for the river around 8:30. The guides will ferry you across the first lake, and unless you choose to fish the inlet or outlet of the small stream between the two lakes, it’s a 20-minute hike to the upper river. The next five to seven miles are yours to explore over the week. Head back for dinner somewhere between 6 and 7 PM, unless you choose to fish a little longer. Most guests will also go up once or twice during the week for some evening, or even night fishing. And then sleep in the next day.
What are the meals like?
While it’s not fine dining as such, meals are tasty and made with the “Swedish chef’s” dedication. Our Swedish chefs aren’t quite as entertaining as the one you might remember from the Muppet Show but they work much bigger venues for most of the year, love fly fishing and enjoy a week or two in Greenland is part of their summer break. Most nights, they will prepare a nice three course meal, though variations on the dessert theme are fairly limited. Most of our guests are impressed with what they come up with, especially considering the remoteness of the location. Breakfasts will consist of eggs, bacon, bread, and cereals. For lunch, we put out bread and toppings so you can make a couple of sandwiches to keep you going throughout the day.
How would you describe the general vibe and atmosphere?
Very relaxed and down-to-earth. The fishing is usually very productive so there is not any real stress to catch what you came for. And while some of the char here get large, it’s not a fishery for trophy hunters, meaning our guests tend to have modest egos and fish for pleasure. We tend to have a wide mix of nationalities which creates a great international atmosphere.
Is there an on-site manager, owner or point person at the lodge?
Yes, there is a camp manager on-site.
Is there internet and cell service?
At the moment there is no internet service. Cell phone reception is getting better, and now there are a couple of spots around camp where you can find reception.
How do they fish?
It’s typically either swinging streamers, skating foam flies or sometimes nymphing. While some methods are more productive than others, we encourage methods that are the most fun to fish. Nothing beats catching the chars on foam flies skated across the surface – but the fish aren’t always in the mood for that. Other times, you can sight fish them with smaller streamers. And when you really need a pull, swinging a weighted streamer or fishing a nymph can usually get it done.
How many fish will I catch?
Enough. While we have certainly seen our weeks of “silly numbers”, we are not at all into encouraging our anglers to hammer the water and land as many char as humanly possible. Even if there are probably tens of thousands of char running the Erfalik River, it is still a precious natural resource, and every fish landed – and released – equates to pressure. On good days, you can easily catch 15 or 20 char using fun methods.
What are the guides like?
They are young, helpful and English speaking – but not professional fly fishing guides (yet). Most of them are interns from one of the Scandinavian academies that combine high school with an education in outdoors, guiding etc.
Will we see other anglers?
No. The Erfalik River is under concession and it is not allowed for other anglers to visit.
Is there wade fishing?
Yes, this is walk-and-wade program, but guests rarely wade more than knee deep. We fish in breathable waders because it’s nice to be able to cross the river to reach all the spots but it’s super easy wading, and there is no need for a wading stick or special soles.
How far is it to the fishing grounds?
From two minutes to two hours. Most of the time, a five-minute walk followed by a fifteen-minute boat ride and another twenty minutes of hiking.
Does the lodge provide equipment?
No, you must bring your own.
Does the lodge provide flies?
Yes, we can provide flies but to be sure we have in stock what you need, we would need to make arrangements in advance.
What is your favorite rod(s) for the trip?
A nine foot, 6wt preferably with a fighting butt, is our go-to rod. A five weight with some backbone will do as well. Bring two rods, in case of breakage.
What is the ideal setup?
Rod: 9' 6-weight Sage X w/ fighting butt (691-4)
Reel: Sage SPECTRUM LT 5/6
Line 1: RIO Products InTouch Grand WF6F
Line 2: RIO Products Coastal QuickShooter WF6I
Leader: RIO Products Powerflex Plus Tapered Leader 9ft / 0X
Add'l Leaders: RIO Products Freshwater VersiLeader 10 ft/ various densities
Tippet: RIO Products Fluoroflex Plus Tippet 16lb and 0X - 2X
What are the top flies?
Foam skating flies and basic streamers.
Are there other activities?
Other than a bit of sightseeing in Sisimiut – no. Sometimes, we can find pretty good fly fishing for cod in the fjord. They are fun to catch and fantastic to eat!
What is the cost?
€3620 plus €1080 for round-trip air charter per person for a 9 night/ 6.5-day package.
Are there hidden expenses?
A modest tip of €100-200 for the week would be appreciated. Alcohol and soft drinks are not included. Fishing licenses and concession fees are not included in your package. For 2020, they are €250 per person.
Do I need trip insurance?
You need medical evacuation coverage that will cover the costs of getting you out of camp (typically by boat, helicopter in emergencies) and back home safely.
Does this trip combine well with other trips?
You may consider spending a couple of days in Copenhagen.
Are there special skills required?
What are the physical demands?
You should at be able to hike four-five miles on a daily basis.
Dangers and annoyances?
There are probably no other dangers than falling over rocks. Some guests ask us about polar bears. They live on the ice, and to the best of our knowledge there has never even been a single sighting of a bear south of Sisimiut during the summer months.
There can be a lot of mosquitoes and especially small flies if the wind is down. We find that a Buff and some repellent takes care of it most of the time, but always carry a mosquito net to pull over our caps, should they become a real nuisance.
None, but guests have the responsibility to disclose any health issues to the lodge.