Tenkara fishing in Trysil, Norway.

by Oleg Stryapunin, CZ

Tenkara angler Oleg Stryapunin
I had some nice fishing days at Trysil, Norway this year when I visited there to participate in the 1st European Tenkara Convention. Trysil is 160 km from the Gardermoen airport and can be reached by car. Trysil area is placed in the middle part of Scandinavia near the Swedish boarder.
tenkara anglers cabin in Trysil Hyttegrend

Licensing in Norway.

Fortunately, you do not need a state rod license to fish there. You must have local permission only. I bought a weeklong license at the Trysil Hyttegrend reception for 325 NOK (~50 EUR). It covers the Tryselva River and tributaries around Trysil. To fish the nearby Rena River you need a separate permission.

Lodging in Trysil.

Norway is definitely an expensive country in which to live. I found a 2 bed cabin for 60 EUR daily at the Trysel Hyttegrend hotel and camp for me and my junior. It is located between Storvegen and the Trysil center on the beautiful Tryselva bank and is the good place to reach the fishing places in Trysil surroundings by car. 

The flies.

The typical local flies that I’ve seen in the boxes of Norwegian anglers are dries with red tags. Chris Hendriks normally fishes with two dry flies in the team–a high-floating elkhair caddis and a sunken palmer with red tag. Chris also uses CZ rigs with pair of heavy orange-headed nymphs in large deep pools for grayling.

Catch with tenkara at Elta river
I remained steadfast to the traditional tenkara technique, fished with the simplest soft hackle Amano kebaries and Kebari Killers. I also switched to heavy goldhead nymphs in the deepest pools, with success.

Were to fish.

Fortunately for us tenkara anglers, Norwegian fly fishermen focus on the large, main stem of the Tryselva River. As a result, the smaller tributaries are absolutely not pressured! I normally had about 60 trout takes in 3 hour fishing periods there.

At the hotel reception you get the fisherman’s map along with the permission. With this map and the GPS in your car, you can find all the rivers well. The local fishing rules and limits are also printed in English on the map page.

Despite the fact that you are certainly an expert angler and do not need a guide, I recommend that you hire Chris Hendriks for a day. He will show you the best places to fish, taking into account the season and the water level.

Tryselva River.

The Tryselva is popular with Norwegian fly fisherman. The main targets are the grayling that come into the runs to feed. I did not fish there much, focusing instead on typical tenkara rivers. I did, however, watch one angler catch five nice grayling standing in one place on the run near the main stream in a half hour.

Perfect tenkara waters: Elta river
Elta River.

The Elta pours into the Tryselva on the right side; it is accessible by car in many places. In the section before it enters the Tryselva Valley, the river cuts through the high bank hills. It has a high gradient; the current is strong and flows around limestone rocks. Casting to even the small, deeper spots results in many trout takes. Most of the fish are less than 12’, but in deeper and wider spots you can find larger ones.

In the short section passing through the Tryselva valley below the bridge, you will find some large pools and good-sized grayling there.

When you move 5-6 km upstream, the gradient is lower. The stones are smaller and it is much easier to wade there. The density of fish in the runs is lower; instead you can find teams of good sized WBT in the pools. I’ve got up to 4 excellent takes in the best ones.

Perfect tenkara waters: Flena river
Flena River.

The Flena is the Tryselva’s left tributary. It is easily reachable by car: the road follows alongside the river for about 12 km.

In the section before the confluence with the Tryselva, the river also cuts through the high bank hills. It also has a very high gradient so the water current is very strong; it flows around large granite boulders. Making precise casts behind them results in trout takes. Most of fish are less than 12’.

At the lower part, near confluence to Tryselva, I found several nice pools. I searched for grayling there, but found only the kindergarteners with a large number of trout minnows that attacked my fly actively.

The upper part of the Flena runs through small lakes, promising larger fish. Unfortunately I did not have enough time to investigate it properly.

Tenkara guide Chris Hendriks with nice grayling at Ljora river

Ljora River.

The Ljora is definitely larger than Elta and Flena. Small trout and grayling mix together in the same runs; the density of fish population is lower and it is harder to localize it. The most interesting places are deep pools, where you can find larger grayling. CZ nymphs work well there. Also I had success with heavier weighted killer bugs.

In general, the rivers surrounding Trysil are great places for tenkara fishing and hope to visit them again next season.


 Local permission
 Local rules
Local rules Trysil area
 Area fishing map
Area fishing map

Oleg Stryapunin: New TryTenkara rods Y13