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The Soca river (in slovene Soča; in italian Isonzo; in german Sontig) is an alpine river and is considered to be one of the most beautiful rivers in Europe. This consideration is supported by the fact that is also called “emerald beauty” (because of its color) and because of it´s astonishing surroundings, formed by Julian Alps. It is situated in the western part of Slovenia, the lower part of it flows also in Italy where it enters in the Adriatic sea. It´s total length is 137 kilometers.

From the history is known as the theater of fights between Italy and Austro-Hungarian Monarchy in the First World War between 1915-1917 (also known as the Isonzo Front by historians). This battle is till now considered to be the biggest mountain battlefield of all times.

Nowadays is also known as one of the best fishing rivers in Slovenia and in Europe. Many slovenian, italian, french, english, eastern country…, fisherman´s come to enjoy the nature outside and inside the water. The most claimed fish is the native marble trout (Salmo marmoratus) or. “trota marmorata” in italian. In slovenian language is called “Soška postrv” which means “trout from Soca”. This river is ideal for it´s habitat, because is large with deep pools. It also has medium and fast rapids which are ideal for another native species – the adriatic grayling (Thymallus thymallus). The main difference between this grayling and Danube grayling is in it´s absence of black spots in the front part of the body and it´s greyish coloration.

Other species that lives in Soca river are: brown trout, hybrids (marble trout x brown trout), rainbow trout and chub.

This river can be divided in 3 parts which represent 3 different associations that manage it. On the most part of the river only fly fishing technique is allowed, with an exception on the lower part, where also spinning is allowed.

The upper part.

The middle part.

The biggest marble trout caught in Soca river (120cm, 22,5 kilograms)!

(Source: Angling club of Tolmin)

This one was caught in july on dry-fly.

This one was caught on nymph in september.

Peter

 

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Now is time to talk about the lower part of Vipava river.

The main difference between the upper part is that here the river is wider , slower and deeper. For this reasons the main fish population consists of cyprinid species. Here you can find chub, common barbel, common nase, pike, carp, tench, eel and  wels catfish. The Vipava river is known for it´s large population of common nase, but in particular for it´s huge wels catfish. This fish was introduced in the past sixties and displaced some indigenous species such as wild carp, eel, tench and chub. Because of it´s lenght and weight attracts more and more fishermen.  The Vipava river has a record of 220 centimeters and 76 kilograms. I can tell that some fishermen had bigger exemplars but they were powerless (broken rods, reels, hooks). The best technique is spinning with very heavy gear and big lures.

Not only wels catfish, but also fishing for carp is considered to be very attractive, because this carp is considered to be one of the most powerful fish in this region. A lot of fishermen told that here a fight with a 10 kilogram carp is like a carp of at least 15 kilograms in other rivers or lakes. If I add a fact that this part of the river is overgrown with a lot of underwater vegetation you can imagine the satisfaction of a catch. They are still fished in “old school” way (with corn, cornmeal and bread) with very good results.

Because of it´s underwater vegetation you can also catch beautiful pikes, especially in autumn.

The common nase is active during the whole year, with a peak in autumn.

This carp was fished with an 0,18 leader.

This wels catfish was caught this october (205 centimeters, 50 kilograms).

(Source: Goran Keber, member of Angling society Rence)

Peter

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