FD: How many countries have you visited for fly fishing?
Hard to count but it seems that not less than 25 countries with many returns to my favorite spots and different areas of gigantic countries like Russia for example. Probably I spent few years of my life with flyfishing rod in one hand and passport in second;) It wouldn’t be possible if not my companions from Angling globetrotters’ Club BAYAN-GOL. Thanks to them those were and still are best moments of my life.
FD: Could you pick 5 top destinations?
First destination is for sure Mongolia - because it was my first faraway destination I went to (in 2003) and I can surely write that it was my reborn there and it totally changed my life priorities. Since then I’ve been there 7 times and it was always true adventure with many days horse riding, fantastic taimen fishing and those huge salmonids aren’t like a regular fish - those are animals on the top of food chain and they know it very well.
Second destination is Chile - kingdom of brown trout, which is my favorite fish and in my opinion beside Kola Peninsula there isn’t any other place that fly-fisherman can catch so many fine trouts per day like there. The further south the better.
Third destination is Kamchatka, from which I was lucky to return for the fourth time 2 weeks ago. It is special place with rivers very often without any other access than with helicopter. Untouched populations of pacific salmons, white-spotted chars and above all very strong rainbow trouts. Beside that, rafting trip in the land of bears is always something exciting.
Also every angler should experience mystery of pacific salmons run.
Fourth destination is Nepal with it’s most picturesque rafting trips for golden mahseers. White water rafting, very strong barbels, friendly people and scenery is something wonderful.
Fifth destination I could recommend is Bolivia with it’s crystal clear rivers fulfilled with great fighters - golden dorados. Living in the jungle with native tribe of Tsimane Indians. Very tough, difficult and totally beautiful mountain forest - one of last destinations for strong adventurers.
There are plenty of other wonderful places really worth to be seen. It’s pity that life is so short and full of other issues that keeps anglers like me away from all those great places.
FD: In your opinion, what is the best gamefish out there?
For me top of freshwater strongest gamefish are dorados and peacock basses. There is also arapaima but for me it’s more animal then fish. Everyone who looked into it’s eye after long fight and hear it’s tired breath knows what I mean. Saltwater most explosive opponent is GT or sailfish - beside marlin (which in my opinion is impossible to be regular fished on fly) there isn’t more powerful fish in our planet's oceans.
FD: How is the fishing in your home waters?
I don’t have heart and time for wasting it on my home waters in Poland. Sometimes I’m taking there my 11 years old son, but their condition is less than poor. Probably I travel also because of that. Before my first true fishing trip to Mongolia I could be 30 times gone fishing per month (wonderful stag time;) ) mainly for brown trout and grayling. My flyfishing skills were much better then. Now I became more impatient and spoiled by all those fantastic fish and places.
FD: If you had to pick just one, which fly would you take to every fly-fishing destination in the world?
Hard to choose one pattern. Probably it would be black streamer similar to Wooly Bugger with white rubber legs. But it works mainly on trout…
FD: What is your favorite gear setup?
Every fish species, it’s size and character of water, generates different gear setup.
I love my LTS Across #8 with Loop Evotec and one of Rio's floating or sinking lines.
Also Loomis NRS #6 again with Loop Evotec and again one of Rio’s lines. My hands are never becoming tired with those two setups.
FD: Any advice for other travelling fly fishermen?
Even while travelling far and remote destinations internet recon is a must! If You don’t have time try to hire local guide. If You have time but don’t have money try to put yourself on deep water and go on your own. Don’t be afraid and above all don’t hesitate with packing your stuff, buy airway ticket and… go, go go!
FD: What's next for you? Any special destination you are still hoping to visit soon?
In December I’m going to Uganda for giant Nile Perch fishing. January for many years is month I open new season for trout and could’t imagine better place for that then Chilean Patagonia. March on Andamans and later on… who knows? Maybe finally I would reach my dreamed Taymyr Peninsula in Russia. I know that great sea run chars are waiting for me there.