It began at 9 oíclock with the firing of a canon by Moerrums fishery manager Stefan Persson. The river had been in flood up to three week previous, but the good weather enabled the flow to fall to 73 cubic meters per second.
It took only 10 minutes before the first fish was landed, a sea trout from pool sixteen. Sea trout from 4-7 kilos were taken out of the river all day up to the finishing time of 5 pm. There are a number of guest fishermen and women invited to partake in the fishing, the local mayor, and other local Swedish celebrities. On the first day there are approximately 200 people fishing the 7 kilometres of water.
All the fishermen/women go to their selected place in the pool/s that they are allocated to early, so that they are ready to fish when the canon sounds, a time honoured tradition of the fishing association in Moerrum. Standing on the bank of pool 1 on opening day, watching them going out to the two famous islands, Whisky Island and Cognac Island, is like watching athletes preparing themselves for the starters gun at the Olympics. This is part of the charm and character of fishing on opening day on the Moerrum.
On opening day most of the pools are fished by spinning, with the exception of pools 1, 10/12, 19 and 31/32 where you can flyfish. These change throughout the season, allowing you to both flyfish and use spinners on many of the pools. Fishing cards on opening day are based on a lottery system. You apply for a place and are then put into a draw for the chance to fish on the first day. Approximately 148 names will be drawn from all over Europe. On some years there have been up to 2000 names put into the lottery, many of them from Denmark, Germany and as far away as Austria.
Fishing cards are collected from the fishing office located beside pool 1 and any cards that are not collected are sold off to other fishermen/women who want to fish on the opening day. The local fishing office is open daily throughout the season and you can get any advice and information that you need there, about fishing on the Moerrum River.
The river Moerrum is set in southern Sweden, 50 kilometres from Kristianstad and it is divided into pools. Pool 1 is in front of the aquarium and the Laxens Hus, in the centre of Moerrum, down to pool 16 on the south side, and from 17-32 on the north side. The pools stretch for 7 kilometres with many beautiful pools and rapids.
The pools vary considerably, with fast flowing waters and deep pools, but the fish are plentiful. The Moerrum is reputed to carry the largest sized salmon and seatrout in the world. There is an aquarium beside the fishing office, which was opened on May 1st 1992, where you can see these fish. A salmon of 36kilos is displayed which is one of the biggest caught in the world. The aquarium also boasts one of the largest seatrout in the world, which is also on display. There are many old photos and stories displayed, along with old fishing tackle and rods. There is also a display on the local wildlife to be found in the area.
Fishing the Moerrum dates back many years. It is originally of royal ownership and records go back as far back as 1231 on the land register. Fishing techniques have changed but the fish size and quality are still almost the same. Spears were the first fishing tools used, until the invention of nets, tubs and salmon seines. These were used on the Moerrum up to the 1960ís. The hoop net is still used today, though only for catching salmon for breeding purposes.
Moerrum attracts many thousands of visitors yearly, and the number is increasing on an annual basis. Many of the visitors are foreigners, with a high percentage of them coming from over 20 different countries.
A season begins on the 1st April and runs up to and including the 30th September. Fishing is divided into three timeframes, Spring, Summer, and Autumn fishing.
The Springtime fishing mainly consists of seatrout. The new seatrout heading upstream can be there in plenty, along with seatrout from last year who have not yet returned to the sea. Seatrout migrate out to sea but stay close to shore for the first couple of years.
The Summer time fishing, from mid May to mid June, consists mainly of salmon. These can vary in weight, but the average being 10 kilos. There have also been far bigger salmon caught on this river, up to 20 kilos.
The Autumn fishing is dominated by the migrating seatrout. Seatrout of up to 15 kilos are not uncommon at this time of the year.
In October, after the fishing season ends, the spawning season starts. This lasts approximately one month. Moerrum has itís own local fishing hatchery located beside pool 1, on the opposite bank from the fishing office. The main focus is on the natural development of salmon and seatrout in the river. The releasing of new roe upstream started in Moerrum in 1937 and continues today. This helps greatly, as fish are unable to swim to their natural spawning areas due to the building of electrical plants further up the river, blocking the fish from reaching their natural spawning areas.
Access to any pool on the Moerrum is very well marked and instructions for the type of fishing allowed, fly, spinning, or both in some pools, at a given time of the season is clearly stated. There are also signs indicating where a pool starts and ends. Copies of the rules are available at the fishing office and should be read through very carefully by anyone fishing on the Moerrum for the first time. Advice can also be obtained from the office about accommodation locally. As prices vary from one place to another it would be advisable to ask around, as the local people are extremely helpful in this way. One place I would highly recommend is:
Anna Martha Johansson,
Phone: 46 454 51279
This is a very delightful place and is only a 10-minute walk from pool 1 and the centre of Moerrum town. There are also many camping sites along the river for caravans and tents. This is a good way to travel because you can also get in some excellent coastal fishing around the South Swedish coasts. You can sail from England into Esberg, Denmark and drive over to Sweden directly. You can check out the local Danish and Swedish fishing links for local info. Language is not a barrier either, as most Swedes and Danes speak very good English.
Any of the local tackle shops stock all the required flies, spinners and other angling equipment and are more than happy to give everyone advice on the best bait and pools to fish. One of the best places is:
FiskeShopen - All Fly Moerrum,
Phone: 46 454 50703
You can contact the owner Lars Therkildsen in English, Danish, Swedish and German.
Fishing is a big business in Moerrum, netting approximately 60 million Swedish Krones per annum and is Moerrums third largest industry. If you are interested in coming to Moerrum there are flights from Stansted to Kristianstad by Ryan Air and a car could be hired also to travel around this beautiful area. You can check the Ryan Air web page at: www.ryanair.com for further information on this.
You will not be disappointed if you chose to fish the Moerrum River, itís a river that will challenge the very best of fishers. It is a must for all serious minded anglers. Well worth a trip.
For local information and information on the fishing you can access it at: www.morrum.com. All details of pricing, copies of the rules, maps, bookings and other information can be found here.
Georgina Lomasney & Laurits Flowbinner