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Kola river - why its worth a trip to this legendary river and test your limits. Big fish in Russia

Updated: Jul 19, 2021

Over the last couple of years, many anglers interest in fishing on the Kola river, which is located near the city of Murmansk. River Kola and Kitsa got their reputation for big salmon. There are benefits to be found in a relatively convenient location of the rivers, near the airport. This greatly simplifies the journey to the river and back. There are also disadvantages. These include extremely high fishing pressure, which is associated with close proximity to the big city. You can also note the extremely irregular runs of salmon and unpredictable fishing results. But the chance to catch a very large salmon is surely worth a try.

Situation changed

In the wake of new salmon fishing season, it will be useful to discuss the new rules for fishing on the Kola River. As you know, the Kola river is under the control of the state organization Murmansk Ryb Vody (fish waters), which has allocated 3 parts on the Kola and Kitsa rivers for sport fishing. The lower and middle sections, located in the lower part of the river, not far from the confluence with the sea, are called Molochny and Shongui. These 2 parts are open to all anglers, spinning and fly fishing are allowed here, C&R and C & Kill licenses can be purchased. Therefore, the 1st and 2nd parts are in demand among the local population. The number of fishermen here is practically unlimited, since the licenses are in the public domain.

Atlantic salmon fishing in the Kola-3 section and the Kitsa River is organized differently. In 2019, in order to preserve the population of Atlantic salmon of the Kola River due to the 2015-2018 fish disease in the Kola rivers and its tributary, the Kitsa River, salmon fishing is carried out only on the basis of the "catch and release" principle and only by fly fishing. Based on the ongoing monitoring and recommendations of scientific organizations, the fishing load was determined and the maximum number of fishermen per day was established at the Kola-3 part and at each of its pools. Fishing for salmon is carried out on a "catch and release" principle and is conducted on 12-hour fishing licenses. Days and hours are indicated to allow salmon to reach their spawning grounds, and fishing is suspended during these hours. Licenses are issued upon preliminary requests from legal entities, taking into account on how many licenses sold already. That is, the number of licenses is limited by the number of pools and the established number of anglers in each of them. At the same time, security for compliance with the new rules for fishing salmon in the Kola-3 section and on the Kitsa River has been strengthened.

The total length of the Kola - 3 part is 36 km. It is divided into 7 pools. I will try to give a brief summary of each pool.

Zone 1 – РУЗ (Net)

Zone 1 is 2 km long. Limited to 2 anglers only on the pool at a time. An interesting part of this stretch is a counting net in the lagoon between the two main rapids upstream and downstream. The advantage of the pool is that quite a few fish stop between the rapids to rest.

Zone 2 - Monika

This stretch is 4.5km long and has a unique pool called Monika. This pool is very comfortable for fishing, anglers can position themselves on the island and cover the whole pool. One of the most productive pools on the river Kola. Limited to 4 rods at a time

Zone 3 – Loparskaya

This zone is 3.6km long and limited to 4 rods at a time. Considered as one of the best stretches of the river featuring many famous holding pool of Kola river.

Zone 4 - Home pool

This stretch is limited to 4 rods. Famous junction pool and aquarium found here on the junction with Kitsa river. You can fish the junction from both banks using boat to cross the river.

Zone 5 - Bear pool

Nice tiny part of 2km long and limited to 2 rods. Some great turns and corners to fish

Zone 6 – Murda

2km of calm waters for 2 rods at a time. Few nice pools around

Zone 7 – Taybola Rapids

2.3km stretch for 4 rods limited. Fast moving water, stones and rapids. Biggest fish are here already in early June. When water level goes down in mid to end June majority of fish move up here from the lower zones.

Zone 8 – Lower Kitsa river

Lower Kitsa stretch of 2.5km and limited to 2 rods at a time. Kitsa river is main tributary of Kola river confluence with which creates a famous pool Junction. Fish enter Kitsa in June and early July. Big Kola salmon which stood in the lower Kola pools slowly making its way through the Kitsa rapids and spread along the river to the zone 9 - upper Kitsa. If you hook a big Kola salmon in Kitsa rapids you are guaranteed to have a fight of a lifetime :)

Zone 9 - Upper Kitsa

This stretch is relatively new for our organization. Its 12km long and limited to 4 rods. This place is difficult to access because the practically no roads. Places of interest for fishing start 5 km above the road bridge on the road to Murmansk. Delivery to the pools is planned by boats with jet engines, the journey time will be aprox 15 minutes. This zone has great prospects, it is more convenient for fishing in high water than pools on the Kola River. There are many places where salmon stop for a long time, this is an area where fish await spawning.

Few word about new rules and changes

Thus, the area allocated for salmon fly fishing has increased significantly. The number of anglers has been reduced, relatively large pools are available only to 2-4 anglers at a time. The pressure on the salmon population has been reduced vastly. The duration of licenses has been changed from 24 hours to 12. A license is issued to the angler for 12 hours and only for 1 zone. The rotation of anglers in each of the pools can be made twice a day.

Therefore, we are required to prepare in advance and carefully plan the trip. First of all we need to reserve and pay the licenses. Second, the correct rotation of anglers with changing pools is necessary. We will take into account the wishes of the anglers, but not all pools may be free each day. We hope that the rotation twice a day will give everyone the opportunity to visit the best pools. Mutual understanding between us and the anglers is important here, and of course, among the anglers themselves in the group.

We hope that the Kitsa River will prove to be a very interesting addition to the Kola River. In any case, anglers will be able to choose the most convenient and suitable option for themselves, with a combination of the Kola-3 pools and the Kitsa river.

Karavella hotel

We have established a new accommodation for our anglers. In recent years, we have received a number of comments about the quality of accommodation and food at Wet Kitsa lodge. In 2020, we signed an agreement for the accommodation of our guests at the Karavella Hotel, located right at the junction of the Kola and Kitsa rivers. Double and single rooms with all shower and WC, professional kitchen and restaurant. We hope that the level of accommodation and food at the hotel will satisfy our guests.

Why Kola river if there are many other rivers on Kola Peninsula?

Here is another interesting option for fishing on the Kola Peninsula in Russia. The only airport here - is the airport of Murmansk . Almost every angler who comes here from Europe or America is forced to spend a day or two or even three days to wait for helicopter or other transport to get to the river. Many anglers believe that it makes no sense to spend these days in the hotel, if you can spend that time fishing. Some fishermen think that 6 days fishing on other rivers are not enough for a long travel and they can happily spend few day on Kola and Kitsa. So we want to offer you the option , which includes one, two or three full fishing days . The organization of this option does not differ from the standard version. You will be met at the airport, taken to the hotel , settled . Will be taken in the morning on the river. Guide will work with you , at your disposal - car and boat . You will be provided with food and other services, which are inherent in the standard program of 7 \ 6 days. Price is determined by the number of fishing days and the number of nights at the hotel. I hope for many anglers this option looks interesting.

For many years the river gives us opportunity to catch a very large Atlantic salmon. We must realize that, contrary to foolish advertising is not easy to catch a big Kola salmon. You'll need all your skills and the help of the guide.