Tjuonajokk 2012

Imagine that you see hundreds of giant graylings eating from the surface, as mayflies are hatching. You are in the middle of the wilderness far away from civilization, but you have nice cottage where to sleep. You can enjoy a nice breakfast in the morning, perfect dinner with appetizers, desserts and wine. All this and much more you can experience in Tjuonajokk.

I was flattered when I received the invitation from the Pohjolan Perhokalastaja magazine's editor, Juha Tissari, to go to Tjuonajokk in August 2012.
At the time I couldn't  even imagine how nice trip I was going to experience.
The wilderness, service and fishing totally blew me away!

Day one
Heading north

Our trip started when my friend Teemu Väänänen arrived and rang my home bell.
It was a Sunday morning at 6:10 am. I opened the door and Teemu's first words were that, 'only a few people open the door as naked' :D

After the 'smoothie' breakfast we loaded my BMW and started to drive towards north. Trip went really fast and soon we noticed that we were already in Jyväskylä. A quick stop in a gas station and so our journey continued..

My in-laws were waiting us in Oulu with their meals. We had over 500 km driving to Kiruna in front of us, so after the lunch, we vanished like a Gipsy's.

A few long hours of driving and we finally arrived to Kiruna, around 20:00 p.m.
We felt pretty tired, but also happy at the same time, it was really nice to be on a vacation without any hurry or stress.

After a good dinner we went to sleep. Our minds were already at the river and we were dreaming about big graylings and trout what we might get...

Day Two
30. 7. 2012
Tjuonajokk, here we come!

The world renowned Tjuonajokk fishing-camp is situated in Swedish Lapland. This truly is one of Europe's best grayling fishing spots!

Our dream was fulfilling, the first fishing day was in front of us :)
Tjuonajokk, here we come!

Tjuonajokk 2012

Teemu and his copter

Our helicopter left around 13:00, so we were in the last flight. Some of the "pushers" wanted to be the first ones at every place, but we knew that we had a whole week in front of us, so we didn't want to rush.

During the flight our pilot told about the fishing places which we saw in the air. He also showed how fast the copter really goes and he glided pretty near to ground. And suddenly he lift the copter high in the air, it was the fasted roller coaster what I have experienced, awesome!

Photo by Teemu Väänänen
Pekka Rötkönen & I


When we finally made to the camp, there was a lot of smiling faces waiting for us. The crew carried our stuff to our cottages and arranged a small tour around the camp, everything was really well organized. All of the camp's features are organized with respect for nature in mind!

We unloaded our bags and we left from our cottage towards the nearest river, excited as little boys!

Our first river where we fished..

..was extremely nice!

The first grayling of our trip!

It didn't take a long time for Teemu, to land the first grayling of the trip!
The sun was shining and the views were perfect, what else you could hope for?

We fished for about two hours and then we left back to our camp because it was dinner time. We eat a whole menu, appetizer, main course and the dessert, and I have to say that it was really good!

After the dinner the sauna was waiting for us, so we went there at once. We were planning the week, where to fish, will we take a hike to somewhere, when we should try to fish pike and so on..

The view from the sauna

When we were in sauna we realized, that this would be a great moment to go back to the river! So we put our latex gears on and headed to river. 

When we arrived to the place we noticed, that there were no other fishermen, so we knew that we could fish the best spots in the river. We fished from 11pm to 01pm and we landed about eighteen nice graylings as the biggest ones were around 49cm.
We had also a big trout (+60cm) chasing our flies, but we weren't able to hook it.

Our first day at the camp was really nice and we got to enjoy whole lot of fish action. It was great to get to relax in these mountain views, without phones and other distracting factors.. (reader may use his discernment on this) ;)

Day Three
31. 7. 2012
The Dream Island

We had a wakeup call at 8am and we were wasted! Yesterday's night fishing had taken its toll..

We crawled to brakfast to eat. After this we got more and more tired so we decided to go back to sleep. After two hours of good dreams, we woke up and noticed that it was raining like hell.

We went to restaurant to enjoy a few cups of coffee and we got a chance interview Mr. Ingemar, the owner of the place. It was really nice to hear the stories of Tjuonajokk camp and things what had happened during the thirty years.

One of the most memorable stories was when a group of friends arrived to Tjuonajokk. They had been fishing for many years in Tjuona, but that time one of the men said that he thinks this would be his last trip. Three days later he died.
The weather was so bad that copter didn't make it to the camp, so the stuff informed that they can move the body somewhere else for the night. The group of friends said, 'No! We have made trips always together and we also will do this trip together to the end!'
In my option a great story of true friendship or what?

When I was listened this and other stories, a grown man started to sensitive.
Slowly the evening started to apporoach and the weather was also getting much better. It was time to go sighing to the lake!

- The Dream Island -
Photo by Teemu Väänänen

Raw pickled whitefish

Joni & Teemu in Dream Island

The weather was getting sunny and it was really calm. It was awesome to see dozens of rising fish at the same time. We fished all evening with dry flies and we landed several graylings and whitefish.
In these clear waters it is as if you are fishing in an aquarium, so you can see the fish take. So the fishing was awesome!

We also found an island which was one of the nicest places that I have ever seen. In the island we gutted our fishes, ignited the campfire and prepared our foods. The island was so beautiful, that I gave a new name to it, 'dream island..

Joni fighting with bamboo..

..and I won!

Teemu fighting with a plastic rod..

In the evening Teemu landed this really
strong grayling!

We thought that in evening the 'hatch' would get better, but it turned out vice versa. The eating stopped almost completely, when the sun went down. The night was getting really cold, night so we started to drive back to our camp. Our highest wish was that the sauna would be warm when we reach the camp.

When we arrived we noticed that the sauna was still warm! It was perfect ending for our perfect fishing day.
I experienced awesome day with Teemu :)

Teemu in sunset

Day Four
1. 8. 2012
Pike fishing

Time was 8am and it was time for breakfast :)
This was the day when we went pike fishing to one of the lakes, with two nice guides, Robert and Victor. Trip to the lake was pretty long. First we drove by boat and after that we walked about three kilometers.

When we arrived, I really realized that we truly were in the middle of the wilderness far away from civilization. The silence and views were unforgettable.

Joni and outboard motor
Photo by Teemu Väänänen

The pike lake

Teemu, Victor and Robert

The lake is known for its BIG pikes!
Average size for pike is around 70 centimeter and the biggest ones have been over 120 centimeter long.

I highly recommend everyone to try pike fishing when you are staying in Tjuona, it's awesome! Pikes are exceptionally strong because of cold and oxygen rich water. Do not be surprised when your fly line goes on backing! Our guides, Robert and Victor, compared the pike fishing in mountains to salmon fishing.

The morning was really windy and we realized that the fishing and casting would be pretty difficult. The guides had a hard job to keep the boat in place and I had hard job on casting my fly where I wanted.

During the morning we were unable to hook any pikes, so we decided to drive to shore to shore and prepare our lunch. For hiring a guide in Tjuonajokk it includes lunch in the wilderness. As you can see in the picture, the food was SUBERB! :)

Photo by Teemu Väänänen

The top guides are also top chefs!

A good smell from the food spread to the lake and also the pikes started to eat! We hooked several pikes and I also had really big one on. The big pike take is just incredible you cant't ever get tired of it.

Joni and 74 centimeter pike from the lake

Photo by Teemu Väänänen
Robert and a pike

We stopped fishing pretty early and we didn't get any bigger ones..
I will return to this lake next year, that's for sure!

In the evening we went to the camp restaurant to eat, drink and just to enjoy each other's company.
Our mind was already in the next day. The perfect river was waiting for us!

Day Five
2. 8. 2012
The beautiful trout

Teemu in high dynamic range picture

Weather was glorious when our guide Robert arrived and drove us to the river.
The sun was shining and the nature was smiling.

When we arrived we put up a campfire, boiled some coffee and admired the views. We didn't have any hurry to go fishing we just enjoyed the silence and the atmosphere, it was therapeutic.

No stress, no rush, just the nature and silence :)

The day was really nice and especially it was nice to have graylings eating so much.
I decided to set my camera stand in the middle of the river and I took a few pictures for us.

During the day we cooked some food and had a break from fishing. After that I decided to try if there would be any trout eating. I took my streamer rod and tied a heavy perch streamer on. In the middle of the river was a deep point and I casted my streamer there.

It didn't take long to get a fish on. Right away I felt that it wasn't a grayling, it was much stronger and didn't want to surrender. My six class rod was bent around and I started to shout Teemu to help. A few minutes later we landed a really beautiful trout. WHAT A MOMENT!

The mountain trout

What a moment!

The rainbow was shining over the river

Teemu releasing trout

During the evening Robert arrived to fish with us. I was so happy of my trout that I didn't fish so much after the fish. The eating stopped completely when the sun went down. We still tried to hook a grayling which, we would have eaten in the campfire, but without success.
We sit the night around the around the campfire, telling stories and hearing Robert. It was a great night!

Robert and Joni enjoying a good rum
Photo by Teemu Väänänen

Day Six
3. 8. 2012
Dry fly fishing at the lake

During the breakfast I heard that we would get own cottage for the rest of our stay. Four stinking men in the small cottage had been quite a memorable experience, so we were pretty happy of the news.

Once again we were dreaming about big graylings, but this time we made "Harrlistan" for it:

After some good dreams we started to walk to the shore.
When we arrived to the lake we saw hundreds of fish eating from the surface, so we decided to focus on dry-fly fishing from the boat. Teemu was the captain of our boat and we headed towards hot spots.

The captain

When we arrived to our destination we noticed that fish's had gone extremely crazy for the Mountain Burnet insect (Zygaena exulans). It hatched in an amazing amount and floated all over the lake.
More information for the insect you can read here: Zygaena exulans

The fly choice was easy, Klinkhammer with a red spot!
Fishing with bamboo in these clear waters is really addictive. It is as if you are fishing in an aquarium, you can see the fish take and almost with cast we hooked a nice grayling. It was dry-fly fishing at best it can get!

Teemu also tied a Klinkhammer to his line and almost right away Teemu hooked a straight flush, 48cm, 49cm and 50cm graylings, unbelievable!

The dry-fly fishing on Tjuonajokk was the best what I have ever experienced. These great moments I will remember through the cold and long winter.

In the evening we parked our boat to the dream island, lit our camp fire, ate, drank and enjoyed the magnificent views.

The world of flyfishing through Joni's eyes

Teemu "light my fire" Väänänen

Photo by Teemu Väänänen

While we were eating our friend Jarno shouted from the boat that he had a really strong fish on. When he finally landed it, we noticed that it was a big and beautiful trout. I had chance to take a few photos of it.

Jarno and 57 centimeter trout

Day started to turn to evening and to night. We started driving back to our camp. The day had been really nice and going to the sauna was the best end for the day. Here are few pictures more of our evening -->

The golden grayling

Hot chicks!

All good days come to the end..

Day Seven
4. 8. 2012
Fox day 

Day started with great weather! No clouds and the water was still, as the thermometer pointed +20c. We drove to a place that is familiar for many from the Kaitum DVD. In the movie Gunnar Westrin and Palle Andersson fish in this waters and caught many nice fish.

Our seventh day started with great weather!

This place was unbelievably beautiful. High from the mountains the crystal clear water falls down to the lake, bringing food to the fish. During the evenings you have a good chance to hook big trouts, as they come to feed to this place.

What do you think of these views?

Familiar place from the Kaitum DVD

Teemus nice grayling

During the day we saw and experienced all sort of things! I even got a chance to photo a fox from near. After posing for a moment the fox found a big pike file and ran away.

The fox

With Teemu we fished around the lake and we got to experience again some unforgettably nice dry fly fishing, especially Teemu. Our evening got the perfect ending as Teemu landed a really nice trout with a dry fly! Lets say it this way; I have never seen such a wide smile on Teemu's face!

Fifty-nine centimeters of magnificent lake trout posed by Teemu " the fox " Väänänen.

Teemu landing the trout. The fly was small Klinkhammer.

Fifty-nine centimeters of magnificent lake trout!

Teemu " the fox " Väänänen had a wide smile
for rest of the evening...

The Last Day
5. 8. 2012
Pike fishing

The last day had come.
Week at the camp had slipped through really quickly. We were just one big smile at the breakfast, we couldn't have wished for better. We had experienced a dream fishing trip!

At the river and especially at the lake we fished more than enough, so the last day we wanted to spend pike fly fishing with our guide Robert.

We drove to a bay, that Robert ranked as a really good pike place. Last week from this spot some people had caught an over 120cm long pike, so our expectations to get to see the place were high.

Pike weren't on the mood to hit and they just bite the fly little and followed it. It took a while till I was able to land the first pike. It was over 90 centimeter long and really strong!

Joni casting in Tjuonajokk
Photo by Teemu Väänänen

Joni and over ninety centimeter pike

After I caught two pikes I stayed stayed satisfied at the bank watching Teemu and Robert waded to the hot spots to lure some pike. In no time Teemu was fighting with a big pike.

For the end of the day Robert caught the biggest one, over meter long monster! In these moments our fishing in Tjuonajokk ended.

Robert fighting with a monster!

Swedish way to land the fish
Photo by Teemu Väänänen

Teemu was fighting with a big pike

Teemu and his pike

In these moments our fishing in Tjuonajokk ended.

Now that I look at these photos and recall the moments at Tjuonajokk, I start to realize how great trip we got to experience with Teemu. The weather was good and everything at the camp worked great. The week was stunning!

Its great that still these days we get to enjoy wild nature, drink water straight from the river and fish in magnificent views. Fishing in Tjuonajokk exceeded all my expectations in many ways. I was expecting for good grayling fishing, but I got to experience top grayling, trout, white fish and pike fishing!


I'm really pleased to recommend everyone Tjuonajokk, if you are eager to experience some world class fishing in the wild nature in the middle of the mountains.

Thank you Ingemars that you have made Tjuonajokk the place it these days is. Everything work well and the staff is concentrating, that the customers gets what they have paid for, just great :)

Own home calls..

Bye bye Tjuonajokk!

Now the story is finally finished. I hope that you like my pictures and the story. If you are interested to go to the place or you have some questions, please take contact.

- J. Inkinen -