Haffjarðará

The Haffjarðará is situated on the south shore of the Snæafells peninsula, just over 30 km north-west of Borgarnes. The river has its source in the lake Oddastaðavatn, which sits amidst the low spine of mountains that run along the middle of the peninsula. It takes a fairly direct course south for 13 km from the lake to the sea, and most of this journey is through lava fields and outcrops that provide a rather dramatic backdrop to the fishing.

 

The river usually has a good stock of fish from the opening weeks in June, and receives its main run in July, when catches can be prodigious. Good fishing continues through August and it is only in September, after the main run is long over, that the pace begins to quieten down slightly. Overall the river produces good fishing throughout its season. Typically for this part of the country Haffjarðará is predominantly a grilse river, and the received wisdom was that the first half of the season will produce fresh run fish into the mid-teens of pounds. Things are changing and recent seasons have seen many more MSW salmon caught there, which is likely to be the result of the policy of releasing large fish for several years.

 

This river has been a fly-only fishery since the early 20th Century. In the past the river was heavily netted and the stock of fish almost wiped out. When Thor Jensen (of Hotel Borg fame) took over the river he banned all fishing for the first decade, and when angling resumed it was for fly fishing only and has remained that way to this day. The river has also been at the forefront of catch-and-release in Iceland. This management style has proved a great success because the latest five-year average catch is 1,686 salmon. The river’s catch and stock of fish has been very stable for many years and is achieved solely through natural spawning.

 

There is fishing for six rods and the water is divided into three beats, which rotate daily. Each beat takes two rods, and each pair of rods have the service of a guide with a 4-wheel drive vehicle.

 

Anglers stay at the Haffjarðará lodge, which is set adjacent to the river and looks out over the pools just upstream of the road bridge. The building has a long history and offers all the comforts required by tired and happy fishers at the end of the day.

 

Contact:

Óttar Ignvarsson. Mob: +354-8921519  Fax: +354-588 7610

 

Catch statistics for

Date Salmon Trout Rods
Jun. 20756
Jun. 271536
Jul. 43206
Jul. 114876
Jul. 187226
Jul. 259486
Aug. 110756
Aug. 812046
Aug. 1512876
Aug. 2213536
Aug. 2914356
Sep. 515026
Sep. 1215456

Total catch per year

Year Salmon Trout
20181545
20171167
20161305
20151660
2014821
20132158
20121146
20111526
20101978
20091622156
20082010156
20071065
20061049
20041133
20031007
2002943
2001532
2000672
1999793
1998752
1997560
1996602
1995735
1994672
1993617
1992818
1991711
1990599
1989661
1988875
1987521
19861131
1985562
1984549
1982562
1981465
1980494
1979701
1978950
1977624
1976595
1975559
1974613