Monday, October 22, 2007

Fly Fishing in Israel

Israel is a small country, the size of the state of New Jersey, but has great variety in its climate. The south is scorching desert. Tel Aviv is a warm costal town, surrounded by fertile valleys. The area surrounding Jerusalem, the Judean Hills, is filled with some of the most desolate and beautiful spots of solitude and peace found anywhere. And in the north of Israel stands Mt. Hermon, Israel’s only mountain, a snow-capped peak in the winter. Flowing down from this mountain, there are spring-fed streams that empty into the Jordan River. Not too long ago, a number of trout farms opened, making use of the cold water creeks. Some of the trout escaped, and live in those streams.

Many of the cold-water streams are situated in designated nature reserves, where fishing is prohibited. Those who chose to ignore this law are subject to fines, and rangers patrol the stream to stop anyone from fishing.

According to a friend in Israel, unfortunately some people chose to fish illegally on the streams in the nature preserves. Since there are no regulations, they use any method they like, including spear guns, and keeping every fish they catch, no matter how small. These tactics are clearly not good for the fish or the natural sites.

While the small rivers may be off-limits, Israel does offer a taste of fly fishing for those so inclined. Here is the report from my friend in Israel: “Kibbutz Dafna has a trout farm and they opened one of their pools to pay fishing. They stock it with half to one kilo rainbow and charge slightly less per kilo for caught fish than you would pay at their store. I have taken orders from friends and fished there, catching 4 or 5 fish in less than one hour. It is like fishing in a barrel! It is not easy to fly fish the pond, so I have used spinners, but it is possible to use a fly rod, especially if you are there when no one else is. So I guess you can say there is fly fishing for rainbows in Israel! The price for caught fish is about $4.5 per pound (40 IS per kilo), so the average fish cost about $5.” This fly fishing friend of mine in Israel also runs a terrific guesthouse near the Sea of Galilee. For more information: Click Here.

Here are some pictures from the year I lived in Israel in the late 90s:


Anonymous said...

To some of us, fly fishing means only freshwater species such as trout, but others enjoy using the long rod for salt water species. I wonder if there is any credible info on the saltwater scene in the holy land.

Anonymous said...

I myself do not salt water fish, but I always see fisherman along the cost of Israel. They are usually usuing salt water spinning gear or fixed long fiberglass poles.

Anonymous said...

I came to this link when searching for fly fishing in Israel. I left my gear back in Australia when I moved to Israel for 6 years. I ended up spear fishing instead in Tel Aviv and Herzliyah. Lots of big mullet, trevally, and something appearing to be large cod around 20 pounds sitting near the marina rockwalls and out in deeper water a decent cast out from the walls.
I would suggest a 5wt sinking line with a grey over white or brown over white for the cod and a 2-3wt for use along the walls with a floating line and small shrimp or bread fly. The mullet and trevelly sit right in at the wall.......hard to believe but clear as day underwater.
I will be back in Israel in another 2 years, but wouldn't mind getting a group together for all of us who cannot do without.
For anyone who doesn't mind a bit of travel, I have a mate with a holiday home in Cyprus. He flies down a couple times a year from England and fishes alot there. Airfares aren't too bad.

Contact me if any interest:


Anonymous said...

I am not a fly fisherman in Israel, but I must say that I found good fishing at athe Ashkelon Marina. One can fish from the built up shore of the marina or from the breakwater or from the sea shore itself. In season one is able to catch dennis and mullet using worms or dough.
I know for a fact that some avid fishermen have caught some fish using spinners, but this was in a different location.
The fishing is not steady, there are days when no matter what type of bait you use nothing bites, and there are days that you just can't do nothing wrong.

Anonymous said...

Hi dear all...

I and my fellow already start saltwater fly fishing in this season at Israel.We got some nice days on water and i got my first saltwater fish on TelAviv beach.Also we are fly fishing a lot in fresh water streams at north.
Here some photos :
P.S.For me fishing is - full catch&release.
P.S.P.S.I will glad to join some experience saltwater fly fisherman.
P.S.P.S.P.S email -

Anonymous said...

Sorry to revive a dead topic, but
have you looked into the Kinneret and the Snir river? the Kinneret definitly has fish and the Snir has some kind of minnow, cold water, a few riffles, undercut and shady banks, a deep pool above the launch site for tubes, and a generally trouty atmosphere. I did see a few fish rise in the pool above the rafting launch site, and even if not trout I imagine the fish would be an adeqate substitute in a pinch.

Anonymous said...

i think you can get some fish in acre(akko) if you want the saltwater. Theres a nice place right on the curve area of the breaker . Alot of pole and line fishing there should be nice