Tenkara fishing in Sweden.

by Stefan Arvidsson, SE

It is very quiet about Tenkara in Sweden. There was an article in a fishing magazine a couple of years ago, but since then it's been pretty quiet. Not completely silent. Occasionally, Tenkara is mentioned somewhere. So in Sweden, Tenkara is no big deal. The very few vendors of Tenkara rods that actually exists do so in quiet, and compete with foreign Internet shops for the customers. Why, one could ask oneself. Maybe the Swedes are accustomed to fish in other ways, and after other types of fish? But still, almost every fly fisherman I have encountered have actually tried Tenkara, or at least want to know a little more. Not everyone wants to try the rod, but they seem to show at least some polite interest. Another reason could be that fishing in smaller streams isn’t particularly widespread. Fly fisherman in Sweden fish for salmon or sea trout in the larger rivers and rainbow trout in put&take waters, especially in the southern parts of Sweden.

Southern Sweden here means everything south of the imaginary line just north of Stockholm, the capital of Sweden. It’s because that large areas of the Southern Sweden has been industrialized so that the wild trout hasn’t survived in many waters. The same can be said about the grayling, it exists, but only sparsely south of the Dala River (Dalälven). Now, I have far from been fishing throughout Sweden, so part of my saying might be coloured by prejudice. But at least in my area, they sell no fishing licenses for the streams. In the second closest area it is only sold fishing permits for streams that are, or have been, catch&release waters. I know it's a lot better in the northern parts, where one can actually target fishing for wild brown trout and grayling.

Do you want to go fishing in Sweden? Then you're in luck. Sweden is a very beautiful country with a lot of natural scenery. and we have the “Allemansrätten” which means that anyone is allowed to walk in our woods, and put up tents for a shorter stay, as long as you don’t ruin things, or interfere with anyone else’s stuff. In the 5 great lakes of Sweden, and along the coast line, it is free to fish. And in some cities, it is free to fish in the streams that traverse them. Often they set out rainbow trout or other salmonids there as well. Of course there are also a lot of other types of fish that can be caught in Swedish waters using Tenkara, including both Pike and Perch. And they can be found almost everywhere, in every water.

If you cannot find an area with free fishing, a fishing license must be purchased. You can apply to fish in both local streams and lakes. They are often sold at gas stations, camping sites and tourist bureaus near the water itself. In principle, all water that is of interest for a Tenkara fisherman requires a fishing license. Some waters are also private, which means that the landowner does not grant the water for fishing, or the water is hired by a local fishing club. One must also not go fishing in Nature Reserve areas, but they should be signposted. For some areas, you can buy a fishing license over the Internet, for instance on the site “ifiske” (https://www.ifiske.se/ ). The fishing license is then delivered as a SMS or an email. 

If you go by this kind of sign (IMAGE) so it means it is sold fishing licenses nearby. If you are able to, and know in advance where to go, I recommend that you perform a search on the Internet and see if you can find information about what type of fish is in the water you intend to visit. As previously mentioned, many rivers have been dammed why the trout can no longer get through.

Skitfiske på er (sort of a “break a leg” statement for fishing)