Remembering Travel - Fly Fishing for Taimen in Mongolia

April 19, 2020

Remembering Travel - Fly Fishing for Taimen in Mongolia

Remembering Travel

At a time when everyone is being asked to stay at home, travel seems like a far-off dream.  But we are hopeful that in the not-too-distant future, we we be able to get out and enjoy the outdoors once again.

While we wait out this COVID-19 pandemic, we wanted to look back at years past to remember what we have to look forward to in the future.  That's why we decided to turn to our brand ambassador Chris Nischan for a blog contribution. 

Chris frequently books fishing and hunting trips to Mongolia, Brazil, Alaska, Tennessee, and the American West.  He was kind enough to share his fly fishing trip in Mongolia.

A Trip to Mongolia

from Chris Nischan

Mongolia has a population of just over 3 million people, yet is ranked in the top 20 countries in terms of land mass. Since half of the population lives in the capital city of Ulaanbaatar, most of the land is sparsely inhabited.

Most of the country is truly “big sky” territory.

As a matter of fact, where we fish looks very similar to the American west; more specifically the state of Montana. The landscape features immense mountains, huge valleys, vast grasslands, and many rivers.

Mongolia Eg River Landscape

Mongolian nomadic herder

Herds of horses, sheep, and cattle are tended by nomadic herders much as the American West was over 100 years ago. The locals live in tents called Gers, which were predecessors to the now popular Yurts.

Many of these herders live as their ancestors once did. They move their families as needed for grazing the animals. The only difference is now many have modern transportation, battery powered electricity and some even have satellite dishes to connect them to the world.

Mongolian Gers

We are on the Eg and Ur rivers to catch the world’s largest trout.

These fish, known as taimen, grow over 60 inches and may live as long as 70 years. The rivers they inhabit are fast flowing and very cold.  Wading for the most part was very difficult at times, so we also fished from large jon boats.

Fly Fishing Eg River Mongolia

Taimen will eat almost anything they can get in their mouths.

They have been known to eat mice, ducks, and of course fish. Our flies were made to resemble wounded prey skated across the top of the water.

Taimen fly

Taimen are ferocious when they strike.

They can be cautious so it was not unusual to have them follow the fly quite a distance before launching the attack. The strikes were spectacular! I remember one fish following my fly for approximately 30 feet before launching itself in the air to come down on the fly from above. This is what makes fishing for taimen so special.

My largest taimen was 48 inches long.

The guides considered a trophy fish to be 50 inches. These are not all that common. I caught and released 40-50 taimen in the 2 weeks that I was there. I look forward to the day that I can return to Mongolia to try and catch a true trophy.

Trophy taimen Mongolia

Mongolia Fly Fishing Taimen
Mongolia Fly Fishing Trout

fly fishing for lenok trout

In addition to fly fishing for the world's largest trout, Mongolia offers the opportunity to catch the world's oldest trout - the Lenok trout.

About Chris:

Chris Nischan has been guiding hunting and fishing trips since 1984. In 2018 he was named Outdoorsman of the Year by Legends of the Outdoors, and is a winner of Field and Stream's Total Outdoorsman Challenge.

Chris has booked travel trips all over the world, frequenting Brazil, Mongolia, and Alaska. You'll usually see him wearing our Ultimate Hybrid when he's on his fishing trips.

You can follow his Instagram

If you'd like your own hybrid, you can use promo code CHRIS for 20% OFF your first order (excluding sale items).

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