The Røssåga meanders through large parts of our district, and the river still offers excellent trout and salmon fishing. When English lords discovered our great river and started coming here every summer to fish in the middle of the 19th century, it was not uncommon for them to land a 25-kg salmon! Today’s lucky angler can still make the occasional big catch, but most of the salmon caught now are between five and 15 kg, while the trout are usually 2–10 kg.
The Røssagå is especially ideal for fly fishing and fishing with rod and lure. Its tributary, the Leirelva, is also an excellent trout and salmon river. To fish in these rivers, you must pay a fishing fee, buy the local fishing card, and be able to present proof that your fishing gear has been disinfected.
Only fly and lure fishing are allowed. A few landowners do allow using worms as bait, but then only with a so-called circle hook. Fishing with any other kind of bait is strictly prohibited in any part of the river where salmon migrate. In order to minimise injuries to fish that must be released, the use of a circle hook is encouraged. Double hooks where the barbs are bent are also acceptable.
Every salmon over 65 cm in length, as well as all uninjured female salmon regardless of size, must be released. Tip: Measure 65 cm on your fishing rod and mark it with tape, then you can easily ascertain the length of your catch!
It is, however, not always possible to release fish. If you see that the fish is injured and is unlikely to survive, then you must kill it. You must then immediately text and notify the landowner, and deliver the fish to them. If the owner is not present, the fish can be placed in the freezer at Korgen Camping. You also must, of course, register this catch in the prescribed way. However, injured salmon that are killed and handed over according to these instructions do not count towards your daily quota.
For the 2023 season, there are stricter rules from the Norwegian Environment Agency, which has set a total quota for the watercourse of 20 slaughtered salmon. As a result, our rules have been changed to the following:
- Seasonal quota: 2 killed male salmon under 65 cm (Korgen Camping includes trout in this quota.)
- Daily quota: 1 killed male salmon under 65 cm (Korgen Camping includes trout in this quota.)
- Killed fish over 65 cm that are injured, as described above, and handed over to the landowner do not count towards your personal quota. However, if you have injured and killed 2 fish in one day, then you must stop fishing until the next day that fishing is permitted.
- When fish are released, you may continue fishing. But if you have released 3 injured fish in one day, then you must stop fishing until the next day that fishing is permitted.
We advise everyone to show moderation when it comes to catching this year, so that as many as possible can take part in fishing for salmon throughout the season.
Sale of fishing licenses
You can purchase your fishing license online at www.elveguiden.no. Korgen Camping owns a section of the river in which there is a fly-fishing zone, and where a maximum of six people are allowed to fish at any time. For further information and prices, please visit elveguiden.no and korgen-camping.no.
The local fishermen’s association, Røssåga Fiskeforening, administers its own sections of the river, which are reserved for members who reside in the municipality.
Fish wardens: supervision and control
The local fish wardens will be able to advise and assist you with catch and release. Please contact them if any questions or need help. Here are the phone numbers of our wardens: Snorre: 909 95 945, Gry: 951 21 151, Jonas: 974 01 773, Ståle: 940 11 592, Frode: 908 34 535, Hamza: 948 43 221. (When dialling from a foreign phone, add country code +47.)
All catches MUST be registered, including both released fish and fish killed, as well as instances of zero catch. The catch report form can be found at Elveguiden.no and this report MUST be handed in by everyone when they finish fishing, even if you have zero catch. Protocols for recording your catch are available in the zones that are managed by the fishing association.
Neglecting to file a catch report may lead to you being banned from fishing in the Røssåga and Leirelva rivers the next season. It is the landowner who has the overall responsibility for making sure that catch reports are filed as required, and a lack of reporting may result in that property owner being punished and/or their losing all fishing rights in their section of the river.
Gyrodactylus and disinfection
In 2003 and 2004, Røssåga was treated with rotenone to eliminate a very damaging salmonid parasite commonly called the salmon fluke, Gyrodactylus salaris. The river is now once again healthy, and we are doing our utmost to prevent the return of this problematic parasite.
All fishing gear must therefore be disinfected before being used in the river! A disinfection station can be found near the reception of Korgen Camping. Please carefully follow the guidelines posted. If you have any questions, contact the staff. After you have disinfected all your fishing gear, you will receive a Disinfection Certificate as documentation. You must present this proof upon request.
Fish-scale and otolith samples
It is very important that shellfish and otolith samples be taken from all killed salmon. These tests are vital and provide invaluable information for the continuing research on the salmon in our river, and for deciding the measures that will contribute towards a sustainable river today and in the future.
NB! Many people are finding it difficult to take otolith samples. An acceptable alternative is therefore for you to cut off the fish head, place it in a bag, and deliver it to Huset Kafé & Motel or Korgen Camping. Our experts can then take the needed otolith samples. Note: Fish-scale samples are to be placed in a separate envelope and must always accompany the fish head!
PS: Regardless of whether you deliver your catch report online or on paper, it is very important that it indicate whether the salmon has been marked. This is done by cutting or removing the adipose fin, which is the dorsal fin just in front of the tail-fin.
Whenever possible, envelopes for shell samples and otoliths are handed out upon purchase of a fishing license. Envelopes are available through the Røssåga Fiskeforening, in the lean-to at Korgen Camping’s fly-fishing zone, and at the campsite’s car wash.