For live and premium content, sign up for our email newsletter and we'll send reports directly to your inbox
Occasional correspondent David Lambroughton, who fly fishes around the world as much as anyone we know, always with a camera at the ready to capture images for his famed annual fly fishing calendar (www.davidlambroughton.com), weighed in this month with a snapshot view of Slovenia. Weve reported quite extensively about Slovenia, of course. So if this report fires your imagination, be sure to take a look at the many other reports about Slovenia in our trip-planning database.
Lambroughton writes: I have to admit that although I had heard quite a lot about marble trout and seen photos of brilliantly colored rivers, Slovenia was never on my radar screen. But when I was getting my plans together for a fishing/photo shoot in Ireland this spring, I mentioned to my extremely well-traveled Irish friends that I was planning on fishing the chalkstreams in the United Kingdom because I have always liked that type of water. To this they responded, Well, then you have to fish the Unec and Krka in Slovenia. They are like the Test on steroids.
That really got my attention, so I googled trout fishing in Slovenia. I was amazed at what came up. I was also pleased to find out that Slovenia is just a two-hour flight from the United Kingdom. It has northern Italy as its neighbor to the west and Austria to the north. Its a gorgeous country to drive around. You often get the feeling there that you are fishing in Austria or Switzerland, but with a lot more water available. In fact, I quickly learned that there is way too much water to even see in a week, much less fish. After making some wrong turns and some right ones, I came away with a pretty clear opinion on how best to plan a trip to Slovenia.
First off, you need to fly to the capital, Ljubljana. If you are going there from London, Adria Airlines flies there three days a week from Luton Airport, which is about two hours north of London. National Express, a big U.K. bus company, has its main depot right at London Heathrow. It goes directly to Luton Airport multiple times a day for $15. There, you might want to overnight at the Hotel Ibis (nice room, $45), which is walking distance to the terminal, and catch a morning flight. All this is very easy.
When you land, you want to be met at the airport by Dr. Joze Ozvirk ([email protected]), who has a wonderful resume after running the Slovenia Hunting and Fishing Department for decades. Now retired, he guides and organizes fishing trips. He has also fished all over the world himself, so he knows the drill and can fine-tune your itinerary as regards choice of accommodations and rivers to fish. The latter will generally cost you somewhere between $50 and $120 a day to fish, by the way.
The fishing itself is pretty straightforward. Just be sure you dont forget to bring some #18 black-bodied dries for the selective grayling that we Westerners probably dont appreciate as much as we should. Grayling are a big deal to Europeans. Admittedly, as a North American, it is hard not to focus on the browns and a chance at some marble trout if you go to Slovenia. Some of the rivers also have very good populations of rainbows. My best weighed about eight pounds.
The best rivers in the country are the Soca, Unica, Idrijaca, Lepenjica, and the already mentioned chalkstreams, the Unec and Krka. Joze will know the best seasonal timing and hatches for all of them. In sum, if you pride yourself on being a well-traveled trout fisherman, you might want to add Slovenia to your list, especially if you are already in Europe. Its where Austrian
orderliness meets Mediterranean lifestyle. Your camera will love it.