Winsnes Fly Fishing Lodge was founded in 1882 when the first English ‘Salmon Lords’ spent a summer fishing on the Gaula river while staying at a local and freshly constructed farmhouse. The new house was called ‘Storstuu (‘Big House’) and one hundred years later, the tradition of salmon fishing summers is flourishing under the ownership of the 18th recorded generation of the Winsnes Family and the influence of English fisherman and broadcaster, Matt Hayes.
The lodge remains steadfastly faithful to the old days (visually not much has changed), and the river continues to produce strings of large salmon despite the negative factors threatening worldwide fish stocks.
In short, Gaula remains one of the world’s great Atlantic salmon rivers and it continues to enjoy a good run of big fish. Almost every season, salmon of over fifty pounds are caught on Gaula and whilst thirty and forty pounders are not common, any visitor knows that the next take could be from the fish of a lifetime.
Our guests usually fish for one week although we occasionally sell odd days or half-weeks when space permits. Visitors will enjoy the rustic charm of a rural Norwegian lodge while sharing over 4km of some of the best double bank fly fishing in Norway on an unregulated river that remains unassisted by hatcheries. The water is divided into 7 beats that are shared by eight guest rods and all pools are rested on a daily basis. The lodge offers dedicated guiding and tuition for those whom feel that they can benefit from it.
Perhaps our greatest pleasure lies in the large number of people that have visited us and literally learned to fish for salmon, caught their first twenty or thirty pounder or in some cases, their first ever salmon.
Today, the same appeal that drew the salmon Lords over a century ago remains the driving force: catches ebb and flow (that’s salmon fishing!) but those seemingly endless evenings spent sitting next to the river and enjoying a dram by the fire are just as special…