MONGOLIAN TAIMEN CAMP
To most of us Mongolia is one of those places locked into a time warp being that for years it was a mysterious place located in the backwaters of Siberia and ruled by the iron fist of the Soviet Communists. That in a nutshell is about all most of us in the western hemisphere knew of Mongolia aside from what we read in history books about Genghis Kahn and of course the occasional visit to a Mongolian Barbeque restaurant.
Mongolia, which is about the size of Alaska, is located in northern Asia with Russia on one side and China on the other. Being surrounded by the Iron Curtin has kept Mongolia out of the Western spotlight for the last 70 years. With the dissolution of the Soviet Union in the late 1980s Mongolia became a sovereign country and began a transition from a Communist welfare state to a free market economy.
Today they are making every effort to welcome the rest of the world to come and enjoy the unique culture and beautiful natural wonders of their country. They have discovered that they have, among others, a valuable commodity that can bring hard dollars to the country. That commodity is fishing for the behemoth Taimen trout . . . the largest trout on earth.
Taimen are monster trout and are the largest members of the salmonid family. They can live for fifty years and some reach 60 inches in length. Fish in the 30 inch range are commonly caught. All fishing is with barbless hooks and strictly catch and release.
The Taimen are what bring most fishermen to Mongolia, and the chance to catch a trout that can sometimes go as large as 60 inches, on a dry fly is one of those bucket list experiences that every fly fisherman dreams of. That is why we at Kiene's Fly Fishing Travel feature Mongolian Taimen Camps for our clients who want one of the most unique fishing experiences in the world.
At a Glance
Target Fish: Taimen, Lenok
Seasons: June through September
Lodge Capacity: 6
Nearest Airport: Ulaabaatar, Mongolia
Electricity: 110 & 220 volts
Documents needed: Passport (no visa required)
Taimen will eat almost anything that can promise substantial protein. No animal is safe floating within the feeding lie of a Taimen, and many squirrels, otters, mice and ducks have spent the last moments of their lives being inhaled by the huge jaws of a Taimen that will strike at almost any perceived life form floating over their heads.
Taimen are always looking up, so you will spend much of your time at Mongolian Taimen Camps scating dry flies and holding on to your rod for dear life while listening to the scream of your drag.
All Jet boats equipped with life vests, first aid kit, cooler, will transport you to your fishing location. Two fishermen are assigned per boat. The rivers that you will fish are usually easy to wade and are quite clear. All fishing is catch and release and barbless hooks are required by law. Also present in the rivers are the exotic Lenok, which are an Asian trout related to the Brown Trout and are considered the oldest trout species in the world.
The guides who speak fluent english are very friendly who approach their jobs in a most professional way. They are there to make your experience as pleasurable as possible, and will work as hard as possible to get you into fish.
Best Fly Fishing Seasons
June through September
The Mongolian Taimen Camps are spread out over long stretches of river and are accessed by jet boats. The two camps are located in one of the most isolated areas of the world, consequently the fishery hasn’t been affected by pressure from fishermen. Of the two camps, Eg Ur is located at the confluence of the Eg and Ur rivers, the other is located on the lower Eg river. There is over 100 miles of water between them and much is only rarely fished.
Anglers stay in traditional gers, which are large (18 ft diameter) tents with plenty of headroom, wrapped around a collapsible wooden frame. Each have two single beds, a wood stove and a table and chairs plus plenty of room for storage. The camps also have a dining tent, and a bathhouse that includes hot showers. The accommodations are rugged but deluxe, considering the remoteness of the camps. The fully trained staff goes out if its way to make sure guests are comfortable in such an isolated environment.
Hot and cold water
English speaking guides
Non fishing activities such as horseback riding, visiting local cultural sites, nature watching
Each day an experienced Mongolian chef prepares meals that vary from traditional Mongolian dishes to American dishes. The types of food may include grilled lamb, beef, chicken and fish and vegetables on the side. You will be provided a box lunch of venison, barbequed steak or pork to eat at on the water. All water is filtered.