Mojo has gone

Mojo has gone

Mika Lappalainen | Friday, 28 July 2023

Sunday, driving from Tornio, Finland to Kraddsele, Sweden, 430 km. Late start, party on Saturday was great and included some beer. I'm driving, rain and bad driving weather all the long, except last 20 km when some sunshine. Weather has been rainy some days up on the mountains and water level has risen a lot. Forecast promises less rain during the week.

Monday starts clouds and some small rain showers. We head to fish, water level is higher than ever before when have been fishing there. Rain stops just before we start fishing. I get good strike on nymph and short hold and loose. We want go more upstream but we see that good stretch has all ready six fisherman, and down from us is two more. Way too many people on strech now and I start to feel uncomfortable when my hands are so tighted. Satu feels same and we go find new stretch.


Totally new for both of us, fast water and not best possible for grayling, but there are some nice spots there and there. I caught few small trout. We move to other stretch, there is nobody and we see some rises. This could work, Satu fish the neck and I go downstream to fish hole which  I know from previous trip. I catch few small graylings, we fish with dries.

Not really successful fishing day, we return to camp hear that everyone struggles now. Maybe one or two decent size fish, not many. I cook reindeer burgers for us and our friends, after dinner distance casting shootout, and some other casting games. Few beer has been destroyed.


Tuesday morning we start just after 9am, we decide to fish flyfishing stretch again where we started Monday. We were right it is empty, everone is sleeping longer. We have the whole stretch which is over 1 km just for us. From neck I got few rises on dry but thise are small ones, Satu fishes from middle, there is really good spot for big grayling. From neck I go downstream to fish nice hole. I got two graylings and another one okay. Maybe this start to work. Then nothing, I go to see how Satu is doing, we have 15 minutes left from license. Satu tells that she had huge grayling rising for dryfly and just underneath it turned back, wrong fly. I made few casts but nothing. I sat down and have a picnic. License is out and other people are starting to come.

We go to get license for different area and move to fish "mountain river" which holds nice trouts. I see beautiful spot but it is totally dead, so we check something from downstream. Cold wind and there is totally no action, hatching or anything around. I go to Satu that this is it, we go back to camp. On the way back we see that spot which was totally dead has some rises, most of them seems to be small ones, but there are at least two bigger ones also. Satu fishes few casts but she is tired so she goes on car. I stay and fish, I got few small trouts and one 35 cm, not big but something. I start feel that I have lost my mojo, NO, I feel that I have lost my mojo.


I know that fishing is difficult at the moment but I just can't figured out where and how to catch. It doesn't make any easier that everyone seems to have some problem. Back to camping and cooking dinner for friends, then accuracy shootout. Few beer is destroyed again somehow.


Wednesday, last fishing day. I wake up with thought in my head that I don't have mojo anymore. I wonder if it is beause new cap. Guiding was great with that one but fishing for me is not. I do have old cap with me, maybe I should use that one. Anyway it is slow start, not rushing because I don't really have any idea where to go. We end up to fish with our friends new stretch for all of us. Absolutely beautiful water, there have got and see some nice graylings on that area. I got small hit and thats all before lunch break. Sun is starting to shine and it has not been raining for two days so water level is going down. Everything goes in right direction, our friends has got some small graylings and there is one bigger one rising now and then just where have picnic.

I leave that spot to our friends, they have been fishing it earlier and I go fish start of that water, where fast current is slowing down. Looks really good and has deep hole and some bigger rocks. I got one small trout and I move on, I see that all the other ones over there are also small trouts. Our license is over and fishes are getting more active where our friends are fishing. I make one cast, so I could explain to Susanne how to use left hand for hooking fish. When showing and explaining, I got good rise, I just pulled fly away so it is miss.


We go with Satu to meet our friend and have coffee in his guidecenter. we are told that he will be there in 30 min, after 45 min he is not there so I want to go for fishing. Satu wants to have a sleep and I go fishing by myself. I drop Satu to camping and want to buy license from there. Ingrid who ryns the place is not there, she had to go to village. So I wait another 30 min to get license. I didn't buy license from village because I wanted to see where people are fishing so I know which license to buy. I really think that mojo is gone and river doesn't want to give any fish, maybe I should sell gears.

I go again flyfishing stretch, if there is too many cars, I have plan B. Only one car at parking lot, I stay. I go to river and I see fisherman, okay it is his car so nobody else here. I will cross the river and going to fish otherside, which is not fished a lot. Only few know where to cross or you need to have boat.

I go upstream so I can fish few spots and then I will cross even it is still little bit high water for easy and safe crossing. What the fuck.. there four fisherman on island where I wanted to go. I don't know where they have come, but I see clothes hanging and drying out so they have been swimming over. Fuckers.

We are having dinner at 7 pm with friends, they are cooking this time, Satu told them that I won't be back unless I got what I want, she is not expecting me to be there soon. I don't want to go walk back cat and have plan B. So I stay on that stretch. I'm getting stressed, even weather is absolutely great, sunshine, water has dropped and it is closer to optimise.


I fish spot where Satu had look. I got some hits from small ones. I decide to move to hole where I got two okay graylings day before. I have line out and start to reel in fast when I got good take, my dries, klinkhammers are under water, short hold and gone..... Vittu....  No mojo, I can't even hook fish anymore.

I go to hole, I fish with dries. Nothing it looks totally dead, it is 6pm, yep I won't go for dinner. I won't go back until I get something decent. Every minute conditions ate getting better and better, and still river is totally dead. I change flies, white klink will stay, another one I'm changing. I have line starting from klink's hook. I have tried different colour klink, small may fly which I have seen.... then I decide to go with ismo's pupa variation, ladybug colour.

Still nothing, but I see small rise little bit down, kind of end of hole where seems to be big rock also. It could be also big fish which just got something under surface. Similar one pretty much same time little bit upper from that.

I'm really fishing whole spot, covering all the lines, so fish will take if there is one. I go slowly down and getting closer to place where rise was. I'm sure that it was that spot, klink goes over few times, nothing. I get little bit longer line and new cast. I see turnover under klink, this is not happening.... ladybug has sinked, I can see it maybe 10 cm under surface. Ladybug vanish, I see fin turning at surface heavy weight on line. 

Yes, fish on. This is nice, big one, it is so calm, just steady pull. I reel in and it is coming easy. Hmmm... something is wrong, then I see fish first time...... This good size, I don't want loose this one, I need to get it up. Of I do trip is saved. Short fight and landing..... this is good fish. I measured against rod, take photos and some videos. Fast and gently. I release fish, hat off. Thank river, I found my mojo.

I measure mark from rod, 52 cm grayling. That's it, I can join others. I fish one spot on the way down, sit down by the river and had a beer. 

I return to camp, Satu has just woken up. I found my mojo, I will have shower and join dinner after that. Dinner is cooked by open fire, they had bought few arctic char for dinner, nice last evening. I still know my shit. We have DH shootout, I do pretty well, longest 42 meters, not bad. I haven't hold DH rod for 5 yrs and never really casted overhead. I do have my mojo still.

My plan is go back in September for autumn grayling. Let's see if I can sort that out.

Have a nice weekend and go fishing.

Mika the Legend

Ps. Thank you Stefan, A-K, Janne, Susanne, Gunnar and Piffen. It was great time with you. Thanks also Ingrid from Emil's fiskecamp, she has a amazing place. See you soon.