In this travel report you will find everything about fishing and Spearfishing in Norway, especially about halibut spearfishing. In May 2022 we set out to explore Norway with the Spearguns, during which time we kept a diary, and as an interested angler you can certainly get some information from the following articles.
If you are interested in spearfishing, I highly recommend our spot guide:
- 1 Equipment Recommendations Norway Spearfishing / Fishing
- 2 05/18/2022 – By car to Norway through Sweden
- 3 05/19/2022 – Fishing in Sweden – Road trip
- 4 05/20/2022 Sweden Arctic Circle – Moose car – Reindeer
- 5 05/21/2022 Nordskot Brygge Norway
- 6 05/22/2022 Spearfishing Norway – Water temperature Norway
- 7 05/23/2022 Deep Sea Fishing Norway – Ling and Tusk fishing
- 8 05/24/2022 Seafood Norway – scallops, mussels, crabs
- 9 05/25/2022 Polish guy fishing
- 10 05/26/2022 Spearfishing Halibut – Spearfishing Halibut
- 11 05/27/2022 Resshola Nordskot – Norge Cave Visit
- 12 05/28/2022 Pollock bait fish
- 13 05/29/2022 Batterie Dietl – Nordlandsmuseet
- 14 05/30/2022 Drift diving – Codfish hunting with a Speargun
- 15 05/31/2022 Spearfishing Estuary – Prices Norway
- 16 06/01/2022 Halibut fishing
- 17 06/02/2022 Border crossing – Fish export Norway
- 18 06/03/2022 Mosquitos Sweden – Mosquito plague
Equipment Recommendations Norway Spearfishing / Fishing
Floating Suit – Fishing in Norway
Here I would like to give a few equipment recommendations that made our life in Norway a lot easier and in retrospect turned out to be good buys:
A good flotation suit is the be-all and end-all when you are out on a boat, especially when the waves are rough, this is an absolute must. Even after a long spearfishing session it is very warm to slip into the suit:
Compressor cooler for the car – Freezer box
My MCF 40 Mobicool cool box has been with me for a long time now, it can freeze down to -10°C, runs optimally in the car and has a capacity of 38l (this corresponds to around 20kg of fine vacuum-rated fish). The best box for the best price. We had a long discussion and my box left vacation as the “winner”.
Allpax vacuum device – professional vacuum device
Never make the mistake and start driving to Norway with 20 Euro Aldi vacuum packers. The large amounts of liquid that stick to the fillet make safe vacuuming impossible. Andy brought his expensive Allpax power vacuum and lo and behold, we vacuumed like mad and the device didn’t even let us down. after 8s even the largest fillets were securely bagged. Of course, this also includes the correspondingly good vacuum bags (comparatively cheap).
Round braided fishing line Norway – Braided line
What I was looking for for a very long time was a good line. Andy was able to help me and recommended the following line, which I was very satisfied with in the end. With a thickness of 0.25mm, this line has a breaking load of almost 30kg. There are also color markings every 25m, which I found to be a pleasant frequency. With the cords with meter markings, you quickly lose track. The line hasn’t snapped once for me, two rods already. I think that speaks for itself.
05/18/2022 – By car to Norway through Sweden
The evening before departure, the WhatsApp messages just flew back and forth. We had planned to leave at 5:30am. Wladek would have preferred to have left the night before. But sleep was more important to me. My girlfriend was in bed with a cough, so sleeping was almost impossible. I woke up at 4:30 am and looked straight at the phone: “Wladek, where are you?”, “I’ll be there at 6:00 am”. I got up at 5:00 am and had a breakfast roll and coffee. Wladek was also impressed by the idea of getting a roll for breakfast and so he also got a nice salami roll for breakfast. When Wladek arrived punctually at 5:40 a.m. in front of our apartment, I was immediately shocked. Wladek’s car was filled to the brim, several harpoons, fishing rods and an indefinable number of bags lined the trunk of the Hyundai Santa Fees. Wladek, with a sad expression on his face, informed me that he had left his canoe at home due to lack of capacity, handed me an echo sounder and said: “put that in the apartment, we don’t need it”. He also handed me a carbon paddle. I had already put all my things in front of the window the night before and handed my luggage to Wladek on the street, where he immediately stowed them in the car. Nevertheless, it turned out to be a difficult puzzle to solve. Fortunately, we were able to stow all our luggage in the car after 20 minutes. No additional A4 sheet would have fit in. I hand Wladek his salami roll and we shared a coffee before we started. Just 600 m from home we filled up the car with German diesel for the last time. From there we went towards Denmark, we caught the first traffic jam shortly after Dortmund and had to sneak 20 minutes ahead of us. We catch the second traffic jam just before the Elbe tunnel, as I had already predicted to Wladek. After the Elbe tunnel, there would be no more traffic jams and Wladek could hardly believe my words, as he had never driven this route before. We enjoyed the huge loading cranes in the port of Hamburg. After crossing the Elbe tunnel, the traffic cleared up and we rolled towards Denmark on the fastest tires. During the trip we talked about any fishing topic we could think of. After paying our €80 entry fee to the Scandinavian countries at the Öresund and Storebelt bridges, we rolled into Sweden at 3:00 p.m. We set ourselves the goal of driving another 200-300 km into Sweden. We looked for a nice place to sleep using Google Maps. We set up our tent on a river island. Immediately we assembled the rods and made a few casts. Wladek gave up after three throws and took care of dinner, which he conjured up superbly. Meanwhile, I caught a perch measuring about 20 cm, which we later ate immediately. Wladek’s high protein dinner tasted great after a long day in the car. After dinner we tried again to put the car in order in Tetris style, which cost us another half hour. Then we crawled happily into the carp fishing tent that Wladek had brought with him.
05/19/2022 – Fishing in Sweden – Road trip
I woke up at 5:55 sharp, knowing that Wladek had set his alarm for 6:00 am, so I watched with amusement as he was awakened from his sleep. We both slept relatively well in the tent. After a short breakfast with lots of coffee and little food, we headed north. After about 300 km we stopped again to refill our coffee tank. Impressed by the lakes of the Swedish nature, we stopped about every 75 km to put the rods in the water. After about 3-5 casts we caught a perch or two each time. We reached Lake Vättern, which turned out to be a huge natural water reservoir. We looked for a special spot where the shore dropped down to 90 m water depth. When we left the autobahn, without thinking, Wladek automatically drove back onto the autobahn ramp and this supposedly good spot was history. Going back would have meant a 45km detour. We drove all day long. When we reached another fishing spot under a bridge, a strange smell greeted us, it reminded me of old kale. We were fishing for 15 minutes when Wladek pointed out the source of the smell. On the slope of the bridge was a moose about two and a half meters long, which had apparently fallen down the slope. The elk was bloated, if someone had touched it with a stick it would surely have burst like a ripe tomato. This is exactly how we had imagined our first moose encounter. Wladek caught another nice perch and on we went. We stopped at another point and after Wladek had conjured up another 45cm pike under a pier we continued. About 20 km later, Wladek suddenly widened his eyes and yelled “Man look at the mirror”, I asked excitedly: “Have you seen a moose?” and looked in the mirror. In the rearview mirror of the car you could see the huge sleeping bag that Wladek had brought with him, hanging only by a lace which was wedged in the door. I had taken this out 20 km earlier to get to the freezer and put it on the roof of the car and probably forgot it there too. Luck is with the stupid. 750 km before our destination we reached a beautiful lake and set up our tent, we chatted until late at night. A campfire made the idyll perfect. Amazingly, the sun did not sink below the horizon until 12:30 a.m., but only so little that it always remained bright enough to see several kilometers away. We crawled back into the carp tent and fell into a comfortable sleep.
05/20/2022 Sweden Arctic Circle – Moose car – Reindeer
Wlady had deigned to wake up at 7:00 am, usually he would wake me up at 6:00 am. The sun rose at 3:00 a.m., the brightness penetrated our eyes and made for a somewhat restless sleep. The night had been cold, fortunately I had gotten the thicker of the two sleeping bags. Wladek tried to persuade me that he can have his own sleeping bag at night. I insisted. We crawled out of the tent and saw the mirror-smooth Swedish lake, which had calmed down completely overnight. A coffee later and a portion of Instant Bolognese cups richer, we were back in the car. The weather was brilliant, 16 degrees and bright sunshine. The further north we came, the more Siberian the landscape became. Birch trees lined the path and lakes and swamps lined up like strings of pearls. As we drove past a classic Swedish house (painted red), a small herd of reindeer suddenly appeared next to us. The animals, half a man’s height, grazed comfortably in the sun. We were as excited as the kids, hadn’t we expected to experience such a beautiful wilderness. One immediately felt transported into the Christmas stories. We drove on and at the sight of the Ice Age pools, Wladek and I got excited again and stopped again at a forest path. Here we also saw the first snow that had survived the arctic winter. The sun was shining in the sky and everyone was in a great mood. We took off our shoes and rolled up our pants to reach the swamp pond. We sank 25 cm into the muddy peat soil. The whole thing didn’t seem completely harmless, if you should sink in a peat pool here in the middle of the arctic tundra, it would probably take a long time to be found. But there were two of us. However, 20 casts later we had to realize that there seemed to be no fish there. We waded back and dedicated ourselves to the remaining 800 km of driving. After briefly enjoying a burned-out Volvo in the woods, we turned onto a long mud track through the woods. Already from 400 m you could see something big on the road and indeed there were two big mooses on the road. A mother with a calf, huge animals. With loud “Mooooose” shouts, we were able to delete this experience from our bucket list. Encountering a moose at night, at high speed, is not very funny, as many Swedes have already told me. About 70 km later we reached the Arctic Circle on Route 95 through Sweden. A sign welcomed us and a small shop unfortunately didn’t offer the expected Arctic Circle sticker. Wladek prepared delicious scrambled eggs for us right on the Arctic Circle and I drank a delicious Schöffehofer beer. On the same evening we realize what it should mean to cross the Arctic Circle. After the short breather, we swing back into our packed Hyundai Santa Fee. Shortly before the border with Norway we reached several small villages. The special feature was that probably every inhabitant had a snowmobile in the garden. Everywhere huge mountains of snow appeared in the front yard. Large moose busts lined the road. Lothar later correctly named this town “Moosetown”. The further north we went, the thicker the snow cover became. We drove towards the Norwegian border and several large mountain ranges stretched out in front of us. All the peaks were covered in white, the lakes that we saw to the right and left of the road were still completely frozen, and this was at the end of May. Before we reached the Norwegian border, we tried to pay the additional tax for our too many beers via the Kvoten app. That failed miserably. We would have had to pay an additional €50 in Norwegian kroner via the Kvoten app and when we reached the border (Tollsted Junkerdal border crossing) we went over the red line, this meant we Extra goods had to declare. Although there was a large customs house at the border crossing, everything seemed pretty deserted. We went into the house and a nice Norwegian customs officer welcomed us. She asked us if we had already paid via the app, but we replied that it wasn’t possible for us, but she didn’t believe a word we said. Even the Wi-Fi that she offered us did not solve the app problem. When we showed the app and she looked questionably at the red, German-language error message, her face changed and she said friendly: “Is that all?” “You can pass, you don’t have to pay anything extra.” Apparently, the amount of alcohol was too small for the conditions she is used to there. By hypothetical 50 € richer we finally reached Norway. We were happy again, as this was the fourth beautiful experience of the day. We drove downhill and downhill through the snowy landscape. It was only 20 minutes to the next fjord and when we got there, every spot seemed too shallow for Wlady to cast his rod. However, when I convinced him that you could catch fish anywhere here, we stopped at a kind of free campsite. The rods were unpacked quickly and indeed, after the second cast I caught a 53 cm coalfish. In the hours that followed I was able to arrest several small cod. These “babies” christened by Wlady should not end up in our cooking pot. Meanwhile he sat in the carp tent and prepared his surf rod. Then he fried us the charcoal in the tent while we looked at the fjord in the rain. At 12:00 am we crawled into bed, soaked from head to toe in the light drizzle. It was still daylight when we slowly fell asleep. At 3:30 a.m. a short ringing of the surf rod woke Wlady and me from our sleep, in the bright daylight a medium-sized cod had probably caught. However, the line broke while retrieving, so we could only guess at the fish and its size. Maybe it was a mermaid too?
05/21/2022 Nordskot Brygge Norway
At 04:00 we were woken up by another call. Andy called us, he had landed in the car in front of us. The guys had been drinking Red Bull all night and had driven 22 hours. It’s definitely healthy. We lay in the carp tent and didn’t take any notice of it all. At 7:00 a.m. the alarm clock rang again. As always, Wladek got up first and packed things from A to B. I grabbed the rod again and threw some nice casts in the morning sun.
Admittedly rightly so, Wladek asked if I would like to help dismantle the tent at some point. But I preferred to try to catch some cod again. Somebody had to do it. But this failed.
We jumped back into the car and started the remaining 200 km drive. Wladek enjoyed the remaining kilometers as if he hadn’t ridden before. Andy called us 100 km from the finish and reported up to 45 halibut catches which had been caught by our predecessors. He said that he “just wanted to make us horny”. And this succeeded. We reached Nordskot Brygge at around 12:00. A trolley awaited our huge mountains of fishing equipment. When we looked at the luggage in the beautiful apartment on the water, Lothar and Andy were already waiting at the table and the entire apartment was covered with fishing equipment. The entire table was littered with shads, pirks and monolines. I was happy about this sight. After we had received a briefing and several driving lessons for getting in and out of the boat, we went out to sea after a short preparation. Divine weather awaited us, 15 degrees Celsius and sunshine, while the surrounding peaks were covered with snow. This caused sweat under the floating suits. First we drove across the gulf. After about an unsuccessful hour and a half, we reached a depression in the seabed about 100 m deep and lowered the pirks. Bite followed bite. Lothar caught a few fish on his self-made pirk, which made us all very happy. About 20 cod, each 1.5-3 kg later we had enough and drove to our beautiful facility. The spot was immediately dubbed the “Cod Hole”. Plug in! We filleted the cod right on the water and vacuumed them in one of the professional vacuum machines that Andy had brought with him. The machine, which came from the catering needs, did a great job. Then we cooked fresh cod with spicy savoy cabbage and freshly cut pineapple. A good port wine rounded off the brilliant meal. The midnight sun sank into the sea behind the Lofoten at 0:30 and we gradually crawled into bed after this long and successful day.
05/22/2022 Spearfishing Norway – Water temperature Norway
Today was the first morning we slept in. The alarm clock rang at 8:00 a.m. but everyone felt reasonably rested. After a short but good breakfast, we became ambitious to jump into the water with the Spearguns for the first time. After everyone had checked and prepared their equipment down to the last detail, we slipped into the 6.5° Celsius cold water for the first time. We swam about 2 km from our facility and searched the bottom. Although there were some medium-sized cod, there was no great success. Impressive were the large sea squirts that stuck to the bottom and contracted at a little touch. After an hour we gathered on the shore and decided to turn around as our hands got cold and our calves started cramping. Wladek caught a medium-sized cod and was the winner of Norway’s first spearfishing campaign. When we came back we all got under the shower first and our feet started to burn like needles. After a short breather, we immediately staggered back onto the boat. On a tip from some other anglers we went into a shallow area and tried our luck at halibut with no luck. The butts should be in water depths between 3-30m water depth. In May these fish come under land to breed in shallow water. As we went from spot to spot I let my line and a 30 cm soft shad tow behind the boat (or as Wladek later called it: “slip”). Surprisingly, at a slow speed of five knots, a nice, large coalfish bit. After a few measuring attempts, we agreed on an approximate length of 78.5 cm and a weight of 3.5 kg. After the great success failed to materialize, however, we drove to the spot where we had caught a lot of cod yesterday. However, the next rod accident happened there. As I was pilking up from 120m, another nice saithe bit the rod. In my rush to gawk at the fish I didn’t pay close attention to the line and pulled it into the tip ring of the rod. The top ring broke off. Andy’s long face (his rod belonged to him) spoke volumes. Wladek caught another nice lump but decided to let them free again. Unfortunately, the fish was so damaged by the pressure equalization that it was brought up from a depth of 80 m that it could not sink again. And so we took him with us. After another successful day of fishing we drove back to our facility and filleted in the fish. In the evening the self-caught fish was fried in delicious ginger oil. At 12:40 a.m. we fell into bed tired and agreed on a time to get up at the tide.
05/23/2022 Deep Sea Fishing Norway – Ling and Tusk fishing
Wladek’s alarm clock rang at 06:05 sharp. I encouraged him to wake up Andy and Lothar from their sleep. What Wladek dutifully put into practice immediately. Andy was not at all amused by the loudly shouted morning roll call, in broken German, and greeted us with curses. After a short coffee we swung ourselves directly onto the boat to outsmart the early halibut this time. We dragged several kilometers over the supposed halibut area but the big bite didn’t happen. At 12:00 we returned to our homestead for a late breakfast. After opening the first beer at 13:00 we decided not to go spearfishing that day. Unfortunately, alcohol and freediving don’t get along very well. After some discussion about the fuel tank and its filling level, we decided to go out to the offshore islands. When we had reached a depth of 150 m, we started our first attempts at fishing. Here it went quickly in quick succession and a lump followed the next ling. These fish live at depths of over 100m and anything that dangles in front of their face is considered food. Working up a fish from 150m depth turned out to be a muscle straining task. After a lot of fishing, our arms burned. We then drove on to try out the Wladeks inline rod. He lowered this lithium ion battery assisted rod to a depth of 380m. This corresponded to the height of the World Trade Center. In the great depth, however, no fish bite. Now we drove to the higher places in front of the island and suddenly a huge school of fish appeared in the echo sounder. A large fish symbol lay on top of the next, that’s what a huge school of fish looks like, we thought. We lowered the rods and immediately the first cod pounded on Wlady’s fishing rod. The hotspot turned out to be a plateau about 40 m wide, and we drifted across the plateau many times. We caught one good cod after the other. The absolute highlight was a so-called Tang cod. These kelp cod live in the kelp plants and algae and take on a similar coloration. The fish’s skin is a deep red orange. I was lucky enough to catch two of these beautiful fish. After the fish box was again filled to the bursting point, we drove back to our apartment at 8:00 p.m. and spent a pleasant evening after another filleting action with spaghetti and excessive conversations.
05/24/2022 Seafood Norway – scallops, mussels, crabs
This morning Wladek allows us to sleep in. When I woke up he was actually not lying next to me for the first time. When I got up, the coffee was already on the table and a gentle knock woke Andy and Lothar from their deep, dark sleep that morning. We had decided to go spearfishing again this morning and prepared ourselves with a light breakfast of muesli. After everyone had thrown themselves into wetsuit shells, we got on the boat and drove to the next offshore bay. After dropping the anchor and pulling up several times we finally found a good anchor point with no boat to bottom contact. Wladek and Andy jumped into the water first and then pulled away. A short time later, Lothar had to put some effort into putting my fins on because they were so tight on my feet. This was almost on my last nerve because it drove my pulse so high that the freediving that followed was impaired. After the fins were finally put on, I jumped into the water and did a few laps through the bay, a few cod showed up here, but they were very shy. I came across a large mussel bank and a small scallop caught my eye. Between the huge mussels, which were up to 7 cm in size, there were scallops everywhere at second glance. I collected some of them, I had been looking forward to these shells for many years. Then I was even able to pull a crab out of a stone. Back on board we pulled up the anchor again and drove into the next offshore bay. Again Andy and Wladek were the first to enter the water and a short time later Wladek actually sighted the first halibut. Unfortunately, he tore himself away from the shot and escaped. For a short time Wladek even sighted a second halibut which swam away in the deep water. Woken up by this experience, we hardly got cold in the water. The hunting fever warmed us and drove us on. I caught another crab and went back to the facility. We had already eaten some of the scallops raw on the boat, as they tasted fresh and wonderfully sweet. After the brown crabs were cooked and vacuumed and a few more scallops found their way into the freezer, we went out on the water again for another round of fishing. We drift past the hotspots many times with good wind. Some big fish showed up on the echo sounder and we suspected several halibut among them. However, there were no bites at all. After 3 hours of unsuccessful fishing, we drove back to the facility. The other anglers had hardly caught anything that evening either. Sometimes it’s bewitched. After a long supper we fell into bed again at 1:00 am. While the midnight sun shone through the window, just above Lofoten.
05/25/2022 Polish guy fishing
Today was time to wake up at around 08:45. I wake up, Wladek, at around 05:41 to the exact and then I realised after I fell asleep later on I’ve learned that Chris actually made a video of me snoring like hell. After a couple of hours of preparation we decide that we’re not going to fish today on high tide, which is on 04:50. Unfortunately like usually I have to wait for all of them a long time. They go to shop I decide to stay and get some bites for us for later on because they are useless, they cannot catch any fish. I will try to spend more time fishing. Later on they decided that we’re going to go for another trip almost giving up but probably because they felt sorry for me they do decide to go after a couple more hours. We came back home with one proper fish and the Dorschhunter like always catch some Dorsch, more like Baby. It’s 1 o’clock in the morning I’ll prefer to go fishing day when I go to sleep like always straight away from the boat the beer is ready to be drinked.
05/26/2022 Spearfishing Halibut – Spearfishing Halibut
Today we got up a little later than usual. We had set ourselves the goal of going out with the Spearguns again today. After everyone had changed again, we drove to the small offshore islands with access to the open sea. We anchored the boat at a depth of 10 m. Wladek jumped into the water to check the anchor. Then we handed him his speargun in the water. He swam a few meters and already he was screaming “Halibut”. I immediately put on my flippers and jumped into the water to help him. After a 120m extreme swim, I caught up with him and saw that his line was hanging in the deep green water. Suddenly he pulled the arrow up the rope and we were horrified to find that the fish had come loose. I dived down and saw a real monster of fish at a depth of 16-18 m. I was startled at the size as Andy had predicted. My heart rate was too high to dive that deep. So I surfaced and gave Wladek my Speargun so he could Shoot the fish again. When he reappeared, the fish had escaped. The first halibut had escaped us. Wladek had actually spotted the fish 12m from the surface. The rhombic shape had given the fish away. We then dived through the fjord and searched the bottom. About 20 minutes later, Wladek yelled Halibut again. He was about 150 m away from me again. Again I swam to him as fast as I could to help him. When I got to the I saw the taut line leading down. A good sign. I calmed my pulse for 30 seconds and Wladek gave me time to do so. We had all prepared for this moment for a long time. I took a deep breath and dove along the line. My teak Speargun on the side. There he was, a huge halibut with an arrow stuck just behind his head. At a depth of 14 m I shot my arrow at him. I was relieved to see his spear shoot through him and get stuck. Short of air, I dropped the Speargun immediately and surfaced. The reel came loose and gave the fish enough Dyneema line. With a loud roar of “Fish on” we called Andy and Lothar over. The fish pulled Wladek and I on our lines another 30-40 m through the water. Luckily Andy had manned the boat in between and carefully drove towards us. Wladek dove down and swam the fish to the surface with insane force. A fish of gigantic proportions appeared. We got him on the boat immediately and the flygaff that Lothar had welded was used. First we pushed this through the chin of the fish. Then we pulled another line through the gills and one around the tail. Only now much the tension from us. The fish had landed, we couldn’t believe it. Wladek cut the fish’s main artery in the area of the gill cover And a huge cloud of blood spilled into the water. On the boat we pulled the fish over the ship’s side with a loud roar of joy and with combined forces. This required three strong men. With an exuberant feeling we drove back to our port. Exactly to catch such a fish, the four of us had prepared ourselves for 3 years due to Corona. Every single situation had been gone through, every single piece of equipment had been improved and checked in depth. We went jogging and diving to get in shape. All this was rewarded by this fish. When John, the owner of the facility, came to the pier he showed emotions that are unusual for a Norwegian. He was incredibly happy for us about the huge catch. We laid the board across the pier and pulled the fish onto it. It took us a while to realize that we had actually caught a halibut that size. I serve the boys the victory cigar which I bought especially in Cologne. There was also an ice cold beer. The first beer, however, went completely to Neptune in thanks for the fish. Half an hour later, after half the village had looked at the fish, we started filleting the animal. When trying to measure the fish, the scales broke. After the fillet had been neatly cut off and the head separated from the rest of the body, we measured the fish and came up with 107.15 kg and a total length of 198 cm. 25kg head, 20kg bones and 50kg fillet. We vacuum packed the fillets and each received around 10-15 kg. When we cut open the fish’s stomach, a 4 kg lumpfish appeared, which it had probably eaten shortly before. Dinner was halibut cheeks (these weighed 1kg) and breaded halibut fillet. Then we went to the sauna to celebrate the victory. At 12:00 p.m. everyone fell into bed happy and content after an unforgettable day. We thanked the fish for giving up its life for us.
05/27/2022 Resshola Nordskot – Norge Cave Visit
After yesterday we started quite relaxed. After a quick breakfast we went out to sea again for a fishing tour. Lothar stay at home and cleaned the house down to the last pore. This was truly necessary. After we had fished for 5 hours with little success and had caught less good cod during that time, we returned to the house. In the afternoon we decided to do a hiking tour to nearby Resshola. A large cave located in the surrounding mountains of Nordskot. Although we didn’t find the entrance directly, after some searching we saw a deep and dark cave entrance. Luckily we had brought our flashlights with us and so the inspection was not a problem. After an approximately 10 m high cave entrance, there is an approximately 40 m high, descending cave which reached 400 m into the mountain. In the depths of the cave it was pitch black. After we left the cave, we were greeted by the spring-like smells of Norwegian nature. Already on the way to the cave the path was knee-deep lined with moss. The moss played around the beautiful Norwegian rocks. After we had eaten another good portion of halibut in the evening we fell asleep at 1:00 am as usual.
05/28/2022 Pollock bait fish
Today everything went back to normal, getting up, having breakfast and then we threw on our neoprene clothes. We drove to the offshore islands where we had caught the halibut. There we dived two big spots, but the big success didn’t come. With a couple of huge mussels and a brown crab in our luggage, we drove back to our fishing cave. After Wladek briefly freaked out because we weren’t fishing enough (in his opinion) we did another loop to our so-called cod hole. There we jigged for a bet and Lothar caught a triplet pollock. Meanwhile we had raised the really big baits. A 40 cm Pollock was hanging from a Giant Jighead. A few more cautious bites, Wladek pulled up a completely shredded Pollock. Apparently a loach had enjoyed himself. We still caught a few lumps and I increased my cod record to 71 cm. In the evening there were mussels and crab with spaghetti. A polar sunrise at 01:30 in the deepest red rounded off the evening.
05/29/2022 Batterie Dietl – Nordlandsmuseet
Today we decided for the first time to go on a trip to the surrounding area. After breakfast we drove to the “Batterie Dietl” in the Nordlandsmuseet, 40 km away. The Nazi regime had built this battery of guns in World War II with the help of forced laborers to secure the fjord up to the Lofoten Islands. The submarine seaport Narvik should be protected with the guns. The remains of three huge turrets were found in the freely accessible area. 20-meter rotary carriages housed the 40cm guns with an incredible range of 52 kilometers. In the deserted area you could climb into the bunkers, but you had to be careful with the meter-deep holes that led into deep shafts. Everywhere it smelled of sheep dung, apparently the animals find shelter here in storms and rough weather. After 9 days of fishing it felt good to relax in the sun. I lay down on the rocks in the barren landscape and fell asleep straight away.
The afternoon’s fishing trip yielded a new species, a nice pollock bit on a fast-moving shad. The giant seagulls were always impressive at sea. As soon as you threw a 35cm baitfish into the water they would appear out of nowhere and fight for the fish. The largest gull would always wolf down the largest fish in one gulp, roar at the younger gulls with outstretched wings, and then soar heavily into the air.
In the evening we fried the last bits of halibut that we hadn’t frozen. Stored in salt water they stay fresh for a long time.
05/30/2022 Drift diving – Codfish hunting with a Speargun
Bright sunshine awaited us when we got up today. We had already signed up for another round of Spearfishing the night before. We took the boat to an offshore spot where we had already seen many fish on the echo sounder and were also very successful with the fishing rod. A strong current awaited us at the spot. I decided to jump in the water anyway. The current tore me away immediately. Swimming against the current turned out to be very difficult, as I was only a few meters away from the boat and it proved impossible to reach it again easily. However, numerous cod were already lurking on the ground. I tried to take a shot or two in the current but couldn’t. Reloading the Speargun made you move 30-50 m away from the boat again. After 20 minutes of extreme swimming, I got back to the boat. The alternation between high tide and low tide resulted in a hefty coefficient that should always be considered when spearfishing. We went to another spot where the current wasn’t that strong. Cod were lurking everywhere on the bottom and I shot my first two fish with the Speargun. A goal I had set myself for several years. From this further spot we drove to the offshore islands and looked for the spot where we had already seen several halibuts. Also today we saw another 70 cm halibut on the ground. Since the minimum size in Norway was 80 cm, we let him go. Pushed by Lothar, he paddled away, startled. Then we drove back to the current spot again. In the meantime the tide had reached its maximum height. The current had completely stopped pulling. Andy, Wladek and I jumped in and Andy and I caught several good cod. It was wonderful to see so many good and big fish on the bottom. After Andy pulled one cod after the next out of the water, he rightly said “I just can’t help it”, we all had the hunting instinct. We went to Norway for that. After we had enjoyed a brilliant morning in the dazzling sunshine, I packed my hiking gear and hiked up one of the mountains in front of us. There I enjoyed a quiet and relaxing afternoon in the North Polar sun. Not a sound disturbed my rest as I browsed through the book I had brought with me. The Book Free. Air. Hell. by the Norwegian Are Kalvø made fun of the outdoor madness. There is no such thing as wrong weather, just wrong clothing. From the mountain you had a view which is difficult to describe. All offshore islands up to the Lofoten could be seen. All this on the edge of the birch groves that blossomed in the Norwegian spring. After everyone had returned to the apartment in the evening, Lothar prepared one of his delicious pizzas for us. Even if this sounds strange, the pizza topped with halibut, pear and crème fraîche tasted excellent. Lothar was just a real Italian. After admiring the midnight sun one more time, we gradually went to bed.
05/31/2022 Spearfishing Estuary – Prices Norway
Today we started the day a little more comfortably. Wladek didn’t like this at all. For him, a fishing holiday should consist of a maximum of 4-7% sleep. In the late morning we drove to a river estuary in a fjord. There we hoped to find salmon or sea trout. But we didn’t find them. Nevertheless, there were several kilograms of cockles in the water. These clam-like shells are stuck in the sand and you can only recognize them by two small breathing openings that glisten out of the ground. After Andy showed me how to find these I got a clam frenzy. After a very short time, about 2 kg of mussels were collected. Furthermore, there were mussels everywhere on the rocks in the crystal-clear water, just like in a picture book. After 2 hours collecting mussels without seeing a single fish (Wladek had caught a flounder after all), we drove to the supermarket. There we bought a couple of cans of coke, ten cans of beer and two sandwiches for a reasonable €45. When we got home, Wladek and I debated for a long time whether we should go back into the water. Unfortunately, Andy Wladek threw a spanner in the works. The sun seemed to do him too well. Much to Wladek’s displeasure. While Wladek stayed at home like a sour mussel and wanted to pressure John to teach him how to boat, Lothar, Andy and I wandered through the mud flats to find some razor clams. But this also failed. The technique that we knew from the Internet to sprinkle the mussel holes with salt led nowhere. Not a single mussel pushed out of the mud. Nevertheless, the hike through the life-filled mudflats was impressive. Wading barefoot in the mud flats and looking for shells reminded us all of our childhood days. For dinner there was cod cooked sous vide in a vacuum bag. Man, we hadn’t eaten fish for a long time.
06/01/2022 Halibut fishing
“Wake up late. Just stared into the light. Think about what could happen today. Listened to the others making plans, shit idea, sounds too cold! – I’m doing a Mimi. Brainstorming – somehow I ended up going fishing, awesome! From there highlight chases highlight including bloodbath until late into the night with gluttony, now whiskey in your face – plump! Good night!”
After getting up late, we packed our stuff for spearfishing again. We went to three different spots and fished some cod and crabs. We were only out for good fish and crabs and let the little ones go their own way. After a quick lunch we went out for another round of fishing. We drove up to the present islands and towed there for a good while. Suddenly there was a strong blow on Wladek’s rod. We were sure that a halibut had bitten. The sheer power of the fish bent the rod in a semicircle. He had bitten on a hauled 30cm coalfish baitfish. After Wladek had worked it up from around 20 m depth, a 95 cm halibut showed up. If our freezer was already so full, we give these fish life. After a kiss on the fish’s nose, he landed back in the water with a loud smack. Now we had also caught a reasonable halibut with a rod and the holiday was perfect. At 10:00 p.m. we slowly made our way towards the fishing facility. On the way we wanted to stop again at our spot from day one, the legendary “Dorschloch”. The sonar showed a school of fish like I had never seen before. Between 20 m and 130 m water depth fish was stacked on top of fish. Probably all pollock. Wladek fishes just above the bottom with a Pollock as bait and again there was a strong stroke. The brake squealed and after 10 minutes Wladek brought a 5kg and 1m ling to the surface. A mad and powerful fish, this one should fill the last few inches of Wladek’s cooler. Meanwhile, Lothar and I tried speedpilking for pollack and fish actually bit on fish. A heavy pirk was let sink, every 30-40m with a small stop, this is where the first bites came. Then, as it were, the pirk was cranked up again at maximum speed with breaks in spinning. The bites pounded in like a gunshot. Everyone on the boat got into a veritable fishing frenzy again. Andy also brought torpedo pollock after torpedo pollock to the surface. We only took the best and give the rest of the fish their freedom again. When the fish fell headfirst into the water, you could see their aquadynamics, shooting like an arrow into the surface. After the fishing orgy only ended at 12:30 a.m., we prepare a real feast at home. There were flounder, cod and pollock fillet with 4 kg of cockles and two medium-sized brown crabs. Fresh lemons rounded off this protein meal. At 3:30 a.m., happy and satisfied and quite drunk, we climbed into the brightly lit bed.
06/02/2022 Border crossing – Fish export Norway
After the nightly binge, we got up relatively late. When I entered the pier Andy was already cleaning his gear. We all sat down for a moment and decided to leave on the same day. In the meantime we had filled all the coolers to the point of vomiting. We didn’t want to hurt fish just for the sake of fishing. The weather was good, blinding sunshine seemed ideal for an afternoon descent. After this was decided, everyone rinsed off their equipment. Especially the spearfishing equipment and the fishing equipment had to be cleaned well from the salt water. After we had covered the two halibut scratches on the boat and cleaned the boat completely, we littered the rest of the pier with our collected rubbish. We sat down one last time and ate the leftovers from the fridge. There was bread and cola with liverwurst and cucumber. After the cars were loaded, the apartment cleaned and the formalities settled with the owner, we swung to the cars. With our fish export permit in hand, we got behind the wheel. Fortunately, the load in the trunk had been significantly reduced. Everything found a place easier than on the outward journey. Shortly before the Norwegian border we waited for the fish fillets to be measured. However, this did not happen. There was no one to be seen at the border crossing. Wladek and I stopped about 5 km after the border and then peed briefly in the Swedish nature. At that moment Andy overtook us with his car, honking his horn, he had intelligently waited in front of us at the border to see if we would be checked, actually that was our plan. At a T-junction, the path between our two cars got lost. We turned right and Andy left, resulting in a different driving distance of 300km apart. Any attempts to drive us back together failed. On the way we saw numerous other moose and reindeer, once we even saw both together. At 01:30 we looked for a cabin in the Swedish nature with the help of the Park4Night app and stopped for a sleep break. After we got out we noticed one or the other mosquito, but these were probably only the vanguard of the army. In no time at all we were surrounded by hundreds of mosquitoes. Even Nobite did not prevent this. Luckily Wladek had brought a mosquito net with him and we crouched down in the sleeping bag on the bench of the hut and threw the little mosquito net over our heads. A constant whirring, humming and air movement over the mosquito net, which was covered all over with mosquitoes, made us hardly close an eye at night. We tried not to let a square centimeter of the mesh touch our skin. When I woke up in the middle of the night I saw about 30-40 mosquitoes sitting on the mosquito net over my mouth. The fear of moving in his sleep and accidentally touching the net kept the adrenaline pumping. After one or two hours of restless sleep, we were woken up by an excavator that was moving tree trunks around. Barely recovered we got back in the car the next morning.
06/03/2022 Mosquitos Sweden – Mosquito plague
At 7:00 in the morning we couldn’t take it anymore. We got up and gradually the mosquitoes disappeared in the beginning of the day. As always, Wladek prepared an excellent breakfast for us. Andy and Lothar lay down in a bus stop with their sleeping bags and also had a great night. Due to personal matters we decided that day to drive the remaining 2000 km to Germany. This was a monster task but we felt up to it. At 2:00 p.m. we stopped at McDonald’s for the first time, here in the middle of Sweden. We take turns driving to save some sleep for the night. Shortly before Malmö we had dinner at 00:00. The KFC meal should sweeten our night. We had already picked out this KFC 400 km before and eyed the minute hand of the navigation app, which was painfully slowly reducing, from minute to minute. After crossing the Öresund Bridge we entered Denmark at 12:45 am, Wladek got tired and I took over the driving. Exactly 60 km from the German border I couldn’t go any further. In a construction site, my eyes almost fell asleep from the exertion and they burned. The lights blinded at night which we hadn’t experienced for two weeks. All lights turned into streaks. Wladek took the wheel and bravely drove another 200 km. At 5:00 a.m. we were both exhausted and couldn’t drive any further, having already been on the road for 35 hours and having slept a total of 2 hours. We stopped at a rest stop and immediately we both fell into a hard sleep in the car seats. I woke up after 1 hour, but it had already gotten light. After 2-3 laps around the parking lot and a hastily sipped Red Bull I felt ready to drive the remaining 470km. In the end, these all flew by. After the German Autobahn was reached, the driving speed doubled. Around 10:00 a.m. we drove into Cologne, 2800 km in exactly 40 hours was quite an achievement. After the things were unloaded at my place and we said goodbye, I arrived home again. So we had reached our goal and caught a primeval giant flatfish in Norway. This will certainly not be the last time we visit the Nordic countries.