Amazing days were yet to come :)

After the enriching experience in Apuseni Natural Park, we head south to another gorgeous nature reserve: the Retezat Mountains National Park. It’s the oldest of its kind in Romania (since 1935) and internationally acknowledged in 1979, when it also got the title of Biosphere Reserve. After one year of not visiting the area, we’re happy to be here again, breathing clear, fresh air and making some plans while admiring the evil, threatening clouds above us.


We plan to visit River Ses later this summer and to fish now two other rivers: one that flows into the artificial lake Gura Apelor – the River Lapusnicu Mare – and one which flows out of it – the River Mare. But most important, we want to take part to the 8th edition of the “Muscarici Fly Casting Days” organized by the fly fishing club from Timisoara (Clubul Muscaricilor Timisoara) and to personally meet its president, Mr. Tudor Vreme, who’s also our partner in our renaturation project of the River Ses.


The participants and instructors are arriving one by one at the accommodation and I’m slowly realizing the importance of the days to come: Muscarici Fly Casting Days has developed into the biggest fly casting event of the year in Romania and it can become the biggest one in Eastern Europe as well. And one of the most exciting parts of it: Liviu and I will have two full days to get to meet some of the IFFF and EFFA fly casting genii and to learn from them casting techniques the ones that best suit us!!! Hehe, that’s just amazing, can’t wait! :)


From left to right: Tudor Vreme, Thomas Berggren MCI THCI IFFF (SE), Sasa Zec CI EFFA (SRB), Lasse Karlsson MCCI THCI IFFF, CBOG AAPGAI (DK), Paul Arden – Sexyloops founder (UK), Djordje Andjelkovic MCI THCI IFFF (SRB) and Paul Sas CI EFFA (RO).

As we only have 1 hour of fishing before the fly casting workshops and demos start, we rush to the car and head up to the Lake Gura Apelor and along the River Lapusnicul Mare. I’m over and over again amazed of how wild these rivers can be! Such beautiful, turquoise, clear waters! Icy colours.. that definitely make out of fishing a catchy thing..



I still haven’t learned the best casting techniques, so I don’t succeed in fooling any trout around here. And still at the confluence with the lake there are a bunch of small and curious ones following my fly :)


Back to our beautiful base camp, guesthouse Dumbravita, the demos start with Lasse, the fly casting “myth-buster”, from whom we get to see that practicing and training is the key, not the 1000 € fly fishing gear. By the way: he can indeed cast with two and three rods simultaneously!


We split into groups and I soon discover that I am more capable than before after a couple of tips and hints from Sasa, Djordje and Paul (Mr. Sexyloops). Liviu decides to learn more about the two-hand rod casting and I just want to learn and improve the basics.



Liviu leaves with the other group to the Lake Ostrov where the double-hand water ballet is performed by Tomas Berggren.


We both spend a few useful and very pleasant hours at the workshops, having fun as our techniques get better :) I get to learn so much from Paul in 2 hours that I cannot let the fly rod out of my hands. The sun is shining, weather is great, everybody smiles, fly lines are flying through the summer air on the picturesque mountain meadow with some haystacks in the middle, it’s too good to be real :)


The get together in the evening at the accommodation is very animated and the atmosphere is amazing! Just imagine a bunch of good buddies enjoying fly casting and sharing experiences, drinking the special edition of a local beer, the “Caster” Beer, brewed especially for the event on the small Beer factory “Fabrica de Bere”. Yes, fly casting and fly fishing is for all of us that special ;) The Ferdi Wines were also exquisite!


We manage to set down the plans for the summer and go deep into the renaturation projects that stays before us with Tudor Vreme and Titus Nicoara from the Muscarici Fly Fishing Club. We also get to chat a long time with Paul Arden and Thomass Berggren about fly fishing tourism, river protection and sustainable development, so we indulge ourselves with sharing information until 2 o’clock in the night.

More or less all the fly fishing clubs from Romania are present to the event through their members, so we also get to share information about other regions we ought visit and promote in the near future.

We are truly amazed on how nice can such a reunion be. All the people we met are passionate fly fisherman with a huge background of knowledge regarding the local rivers in different areas in Romania, so we decide to get together next year and organize an international conference with the title “Sustainable development of the mountain rivers and lakes in Romania: Past and Future” where we plan to invite worldwide known personalities in order to work out a plan for the near future.

On Saturday morning we get to meet the local forest guard and to convince him to join us in our common effort to restore and protect the River Ses and we make all the necessary arrangements in order to meet in July and go explore the river and see what needs to be done.

We deeply regret for not being able to stretch the time and stay for one more day but we need to get to Oradea where we arrive around 21:00 in the night. We repack our gear and after 4 hours of sleep we begin the 1100 km trip back to Ingolstadt where we get around 14:00 on Sunday.

We still have a lot to do over the next days, but we are both enthusiastic about having to stay in Ingolstadt only 2 Weeks. We are getting back to Romania on 15 of July for another 2 Weeks of hard exploration work, which we are so eager to embrace.

Follow us over the next weeks where you will get to know our summer adventures first-hand!

Welcome Home!

Smara & Liviu

P.S.: It was indeed a successful event, to which we attended with the greatest interest, where we’ve learned an infinitely better manipulation of our rods, where we’ve made ourselves some good friends and where we’ve exchanged some great ideas for future projects. For all these, our sincere gratitude to the organizers and instructors for their competency and their engagement in the Romanian fly fishing!

The detailed description of the event is here.

The pictures in this article are credited to Liviu and Smaranda Neagoe and to Tudor Vreme.

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