2021 Season Report - Erfalik Lodge, Greenland (Part One)
Trip Report
By Max Salzburg
August 26, 2021
Our friend Thomas from GetAway Tours and Erfalik Lodge sent us this Season Report from their 2021 season.
 
With so much COVID-related uncertainty, we had to keep Camp North and Napiarissat closed this season, and focus on the Erfalik-program. A long history of operating in Greenland eventually gave us the needed permission to open the Erfalik Lodge. Fortunately, travel within Europe also opened up enough to make it possible to host six groups at the lodge. 
 
The lodge is second to none when it comes to fly fishing in Greenland, and during the down time in 2020 our partners added an extra building. Couples – or friends – now have the possibility of sharing a spacious double room, instead of staying in our small (but comfortable) single rooms. 
I personally enjoy the tent life of Camp North and Napiarissat, but when I go to bed at the Erfalik Lodge, after another wonderful day – and in a real bed, that is – I don’t want to be anywhere else in the world.  
 
A typical day starts out with bacon, eggs, toast, fresh fruit and a steaming hot mug of tea or coffee. It ends with a hot shower, followed by fishing stories and a drink or two in the lounge area, until our chef is ready with a hearty meal. Maybe, he has been collecting mussels at low tide, or mushrooms in the valley? Maybe it’s char sashimi or gravlax for starters? The main course might be reindeer, musk ox or a couple of fat cod, caught in the fjord in front of the lodge earlier that day. To claim that we’re always “living off the land” would be pushing it. But having a great time and eating well? 100% true! 
 
Of course, all this comfort wouldn’t matter much if the fishing wasn’t great. It is. Even in a freak year, like the one we’ve just finished.

2021 Season Report - Part One

How great it feels to write these two words: Season. Report.

When our first group arrived at Erfalik Lodge on July 6, it was the first guests traveling with Getaway – to any destination – since March 2020. They had deserved a warm welcome. Instead, it was snowing as they arrived at the lodge! Not a lot, and not for long – but come on! In the fifteen years, we have been operating in Greenland, we have never seen snow in July before. Well, there’s a first for everything.

The southwestern part of Greenland hasn’t seen an equally late and cold summer since 2005, and while the lower temperatures of 6-12 degrees are much better for fishing (and hiking) than the warmer weather we often see in July, it affected the arrival of the sea run Arctic chars. We have opened many a season on Erfalik finding a river stacked up with fish, thinking to ourselves, “Why didn’t we start two or three weeks ago?”

The answer is, that we always try to play it safe. This year, that decision proved its worth. While the first group of the season caught a lot of nice, and very fresh chars, they had to work a bit harder, and with a more refined approach than what’s usually the case during opening week.

During the first week, many fresh fish entered the river. Others made their way further up, to their next holding spots, typically moving in small schools of 10-15 fish. As the first group was replaced by the second, we were sure the fishing was going to explode the following week.

That wasn’t exactly the case. Sure, the second week also had its great moments on the river, and in the lakes. Those who fished hard ended up with an impressive tally of fish. Probably none more so than our French friend Pascal, who – though in his late seventies – had no problem covering a lot of water and landing between 10 and 20 good fish every day of the week. Maybe his previous visit to Erfalik gave him an edge?

A couple of big fish, one way past the 80 cm mark, were spotted from a high bank as they cruised by. The chars rarely eat flies while on the move, and these were no exception.

The third week of the season saw a return to colder temperatures, and even a light snowfall during the night. The temperature of the river was only around 7 degrees, and maybe that’s what kept the chars from chasing foam flies on the surface. Instead, small streamers like the Five Hair Fly outfished everything else.

Magnus, our chef for the week, knows Erfalik as well as anyone and landed somewhere between 100 and 150 fish during the hours where he wasn’t cooking up great food, Still, in general catch numbers were lower than usual for Erfalik. Even so, the week was a perfect example of slightly difficult Greenland-weeks still being great weeks. Several guests from this week have already written us, to let us know what a great time they had, and that they are already thinking about a returning to Greenland. They will be most welcome.

Thomas Søbirk,
Getaway Fly Fishing

Click the button below to read part two.

Erfalik Lodge
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Max Salzburg

Europe, New Zealand,The Jungles

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