Short casts: Protecting taimen; spring gear; being a better teacher, and more

Photo courtesy of Tulga Tumenjargal

For any fly fisher who dreams of massive trout in wild places, Mongolia has likely snuck into the best of those visions. Giant taimen that can grow six feet long and patrol the rivers of this rural Asian nation are the stuff of legends, but, like any prized salmonid, they’re not immune to the dangers that come with loving them too much.

Thankfully, the taimen was designated a protected species in Mongolia in 2004, and anglers the world over are visiting in higher and higher numbers in order to cast flies that look like big gophers to these massive, predatory trout. It’s been a welcome development for both the taimen, and for the rural Mongolian economy (the average citizen in this country brings in less than $5,000 annually). And, for a pair of Mongolian brothers, protecting these fish has become their passion. As kids, they caught and taimen as fast as they could catch them. Today, they’re guiding anglers and working to educate their fellow citizens about the value of these fish to the country’s bottom line.

And, finally, your moment of fly-fishing Zen:

Photo courtesy of Tulga Tumenjargal

By Chris Hunt.