“I heartily recommend Salmon Junkies and both the Varzuga and Umba Rivers. Conditions were not ideal because the Kola Spring of 2013 was the hottest and driest on record. Nonetheless, Steff and his staff treated me to the fishing trip of a lifetime. At age 68, it was my first experience of Atlantic Salmon flyfishing. Frontiers’ promotion of the Ponoi River had tempted me to splurge a small fortune on one week and ten salmon per day in the 5-10 pound range but none larger. Salmon Junkies delivered and delighted with two weeks on splendid rivers for considerably less, twenty five salmon landed and FOUR twenty pounders!
The Russian staff at the Upper Camp were friendly and diligent. The Swedish guides gave me comfort and confidence in wading, casting and landing. The unusually warm weather brought out the black flies and no-see-ums but mercifully no problem in the cabins and on the river.
The transfer by helicopter back to Kirovsk and the four hour drive to the Umba Lodge went smoothly and on time. The Umba Lodge exceeded expectations on all counts. The Umba River blew them away. Orla was the perfect host and ran a superb fishing program. The lodge staff were very good and very friendly. Our Russian guide was outstanding. The banya sauna was a welcome bonus. Fed by Lake Poncha the Umba water levels and temperatures were closer to normal. The Krivetz section immediately below Lake Poncha is a beautiful and exciting series of pools and rapids which yielded four twenty pounders for me and three for my partner Peter Kremsner. We wore our custom embroidered twenty pounder club caps with pride.