In the spring, the water is normally cold and high. The fish is not really swimming around, but will rather stay still in depressions on the bottom. When the temperature rises, the fish become more active and when it is over 10 degrees C. in the water, most often some time into May, the last kelts and most of the sea trouts will leave the river. Left in Ätran are now big, shiny salmon and this is an exciting time. The bites may be far apart, but if it bites and everything goes according to plan, you will be rewarded with a silver shiny salmon in top condition.
Ätran in spring time
The salmon start their run up Ätran already in Mars, before the fishing season begins. During the spring, the largest share of salmon that have spent more than a year at sea will arrive. The newly arrived salmon are big and fat and have not yet changed into their spawning array. They are characterised by its shiny silver scales and are locally known as “glossy salmon”. In the spring, the kelts will also swim back out to sea again after the autumn salmon run, which is why you may even get a kelt hooked. If you catch a kelt, you must immediately release it back into the the water. It is not a very good food fish and if it is released it may contribute to the stock by spawning once again. During the month of April, there are also a good stock of sea trout in the river, both post-spawned and glossy ones.
Learn to identify what you got hooked.
Tips for spring fishing
In the spring time, when the water is still cold, it is better to fish deep and slowly. At really high water it might be hard to get the bait down deep enough towards the bottom. Try to catch fish in slightly calmer and deeper spots, but do not forget to fish in the current as well, which is where the glossy salmon likes to hide out. Later in the spring, the water temperature will rise and you can fish closer to the surface. At this time of year, the glossy salmon will bite right after the bait break the water surface. Fishing tends to be best midday, if your looking to catch a spawning salmon. Fishing at dusk may also increase your chances of success, since that is when the sea trout usually is extra active.
For fly fishing, heavy sinking lines are normally used with big flies and slightly longer two-handed rods, 13-15 feet in the 9-10 classes. Cast the fly near the bottom and fish slowly. Big flies in strong colors, like orange or yellow, are usually good choices. Black works all year round. When May comes, and the water tempretaure rises, you can fish shallower. Switch to an intermidate or a floating/sinking line and use slightly smaller flies. The big colorful flies may still work, but now is the time to try, for example, brown flies.
For spin fishing, you can basically follow the same basic principles as for fly fishing. Colorfol heavy lures with weights of about 30 grams to get the bait down to the bottom of the river. When the water temperature rises, use slightly lighter weights and try to bring the bait back in a little faster.