Estuary. This is a part of the river (or rather, the bay), flooded by sea water of the tide. Drozdovka estuary is quite deep and long (about 2 km). At low water it is a series of pools and stretches, starting from the "Sea" pool, above which sea water does not rise. During the high tide period, all this area is flooded with sea water, and it is noteworthy that in the middle phase of the tide here you can sometimes fish in rapids, running back to its usual flow. The "Sea" pool is very interesting because here you can catch almost all species of Drozdovka river fish, plus some marine species (small cod, flounder). Though rare, the latter are sometimes seduced by our flies. More popular for fishing is the lower part of the estuary, where sea trout is perfectly caught, as well as pink salmon and Arctic char. The exception in the list is Atlantic salmon, which passes this area without stopping, so that the latter was not caught here.
First part. In the lower reaches, the river is quite wide and deep, and the first salmon entering the river occupy places for two kilometers from the sea up to the Drozdov-Yavr lake. Just above the outflow from this lake our tented camp is settled. It has extremely successful location, as the "Home" pool (Drozdovka outflow from the lake), is one of the most productive fishing pools of the river till the middle of the season. Then there is a series of powerful and wide pools ("Wire," "Pike," "Hitch," "Rock," "Corner," "Azuro"); the first three are separated by long and deep reaches, the remaining ones by wide rapids. In these places, you can't do without a double-hander, especially in the first half of the season. All the pools listed above are located within 5 to 20 minutes walk from our camp. "Home" and "Corner" are the most productive pools, which work throughout the season (there are tables with benches here).
There are also places for fishing below these pools ("3D," "Big plate," "NoName," "Sea pool"), but here the river already becomes mountainous with large water drops and pools are more local. In most cases, these are not even pools, but small parking places for fish, which can also be productive, especially during the salmon run. However, at the beginning of the season, fishing here is limited due to high water. In addition to Atlantic salmon, pink salmon could be caught in this area from the end of June, and at the end of the season (the second half of August) the sea trout, which begins spawning migration along the river, is well caught. The entire area below the Camp is conventionally indicated as part one.
Lake Drozdov-Yavr. This is a small and shallow lake, more of a flat type, in some places surprising with its sandy beaches. Besides Atlantic salmon, the lake is inhibited with whitefish and pike, small trout could also be caught here.
The second (middle) section of the river is strikingly different from the lower (first) part. This site starts from Lake pool, which is usually called “Spawning place” among Russian-speaking fishermen. It takes 30 minutes to walk from the Camp to this pool. You will have to walk along the lake and the river and not the shore itself, but at some distance along the path on top. The water level drop in the area above the lake is quite large; the river valley narrows and the current here represents a series of rapids and pools, the bottom and banks of the river are rocky. There are no calm reaches here, except for Lake pool, which is a wide river spill about 100 meters long and about 40-50 meters wide. In recent years (2015-2017), this was one of the best places on the river, where fish over one meter were caught every year and more than once a season. During the period of high water, fish are caught virtually throughout the entire water area of the pool; during the low water period, fishing is complicated due to the attenuation of the current and fish is most often caught at the beginning of the pool. Nevertheless, the fish stays in this pool until autumn, and not just fish, but the largest individuals of the river, whose jumps could be observed throughout the season. By the way, the two-hander can be used here for almost the entire season.
A few tens of meters below the “Lake” pool, after a series of rapids, there’s a classic salmon pool – “Finn pool”. Here the river seems to flow into a narrower channel, forming a deep and often laminar flow for tens of meters. This pool is productive and deep throughout the season. There’s also a table with a bench.
Below is the series of rapids, where you can also find small parking “pockets” with salmon. The most interesting among them are several spots above “Upper Rock” pool. Then the Rock pool itself goes. It’s rather deep and difficult for fishing, with holes, large boulders, backwaters, classic outflow and so on. The pool is formed due to the rocky island in the middle of the river, which splits the river course into two arms. It’s a very picturesque place!
Next comes the cascade of thresholds with a sharp and very large drop in water. Below the river is relatively shallow and full of rapids up to the confluence with Lake Drozdov-Yavr. However, there are also many “pocket” places, which are mostly productive in the first half of the season: “Last Chance”, “Grilse”, a series of rapids with spots in the area of “Top of the Lake", etc. The section ends with the confluence of the Drozdovka into the "home" lake Drozdov-Yavr. The place where it flows into the lake is also of great interest. Though at first glance it is not so attractive, dotted with small islands and not deep at all. However, large fish like to "slow down" here before the next running up the river. It takes about 15-20 minute of comfortable walk to get from this place to the Camp.
Upper (third) section. The starting point of fishing is the first waterfall (Kauketsyavr-Padun), which can be reached in about an hour time. There are two ways to get there: just walk along the river or cut the distance by walking along the hills. In the first option, you will have to constantly go uphill through a rare birch forest, sometimes overcoming small swamps. The hardest part is the last climb before the waterfall. In the second option, you first have to sweat and climb a hundred meters to the hill, which will reward you with a more comfortable and easy passage further, as the walk will pass through bare and relatively flat, treeless tundra. This route is especially good during the emergence of mosquitoes and insects, as the latter are simply blown away in high-altitude spaces. In addition, you will enjoy the unique landscapes of the Drozdovka river valley, which open up when crossing the hills. We recommend using this path when moving to the upper far section between the waterfalls.
The Kauketsyavr-Padun waterfall consists of several steps, which salmon can easily overcome. The first fishing spot is the "bowl" just below the waterfall. The place is not easy. It is fished from a high cliff. You can’t approach the water. Catching and playing fish is very difficult, therefore not all anglers fish here. More often they simply enjoy watching the huge fish, which stay for rest here before overcoming this natural barrier.
If you still decide to fish here and a big fish bites, you will have an interesting run downstream, where the river flows at great speed through a narrow rocky “pipe” several tens of meters long, where the bottom is also strewn with large boulders. If this process is successful, you may be able to park your fish on the next Aquarium pool. If this happens, then you will most likely remember the landed fish for the rest of your life. According to statistics, this happens once out of three or four, or even less often.
The "Aquarium" pool is a wide flood of the river below the rocky "pipe" with a laminar flow, which is why here you can often observe salmon in its native environment right from the high bank. Hence the name of the pool. The fish here can stand right "underfoot", as well as at a distance that is difficult to penetrate even with a powerful double-hander. The pool is very deep. At the beginning of the season this place is undoubtedly ideal for trophy fishing, as the salmon settle here before passing through the waterfall. "Aquarium" pool is equipped with a table and a fire pit. There is a helipad nearby.
For many years, a pair of buzzards (Buteo buteo) nested near the waterfall. They made their nest on a separate “finger” rock on the other side of the river. The last time they brought out nestlings there in 2015. We hope that they will return to this place again soon.
This is followed by a rapidly “falling” down rapids, in which you can also find small “pockets” of salmon parking. After a few hundred meters, the river branches into numerous channels between small islands and ends with a sharp drop in water, which is in a way “supported” by a stone field across the entire river. Behind it there is the “Guide Hole” or “Guide Pool”. This is a small and very deep canyon. From its left side it is interesting to observe salmon in the river. In some seasons this place was especially productive.
A few hundred meters below, having passed another rapid section of the river, the long and very productive pool "Woodshed (Drovnik)" begins, which can be fished for half a day. The length of the pool is several hundred meters. At its beginning there is a small area equipped with a table and a bench. The pool itself is relatively shallow, but this does not seem to interfere with the fish, as it is caught here with enviable regularity. Throughout the pool there are both pits and rapids, many local shelters for fish (stones, holes, pits, "pockets", etc.), several good observation platforms "from above" and all this ends with a wide flood / above-threshold reach (where on the shore there is a firewood shed and a fire pit). The middle of the pool can only be passed on top, because here a steep rock blocks the way; but from it in sunny weather you can observe the salmon parking spots in the river.
Then there is a wide river drop with a turn and islets with birches, behind which there is a pool "Birch", very popular with anglers (also equipped with a table and a bench). The pool is a wide threshold turning into a rather deep hole in the middle of the river - a favorite parking place for large salmon in the river. At the bottom of the pit, as well as in the threshold, there are several quit large stones that provide a good shelter for fish.
Below there is a series of rapids, with the main current "hitting" under the opposite bank. Rapids end with small "plates" of calm water. The first two plates are of particular interest with regards to trophies. After the series of plates, the river turns left again, which moves the waterway to the center of the river. There are also good "pockets" for catching salmon. Below is the “Lake pool”, which belongs to the second section already.
The section above first waterfall. Traditionally, this section, up to the upper Drozdovsky waterfall, impassable for salmon (12 meters water drop), belongs to the third section. Not all anglers have enough health to visit it. That’s why it is often given up to everyone who wants, and even more often no one fish here at all. That, of course, makes this part of the river even more attractive for those who like to look for salmon in untouched and wild places.
Earlier sources mention that salmon is a rare guest in this area and that only the largest individuals overcome the first waterfall. However, in recent years, salmon regularly runs up to the second waterfall, including grilse (tinda), though the latter is less common here. It has also been observed (assumed) that during the hot seasons, when the water in the river is very warm, the salmon goes to the cold depths of Lake Kauketsyavr, that leads to its significant reduction in the river (based on visual observation and fishing results). When the water begins to cool, a large concentration of salmon is observed precisely in the upper section of the river, especially at the confluence and source of the river on Lake Kauketsyavr. This suggests that the fish come here from the lake.
The river between the waterfalls is much smaller than its lower course, but very beautiful and picturesque, mostly easily passable for most of the site. Above the first waterfall river flows through a narrow rocky canyon and is actually squeezed in natural granite embankments of different heights. The best places are "Big Rock pool" and a long outflow from the lake Kauketsyavr. "Big Rock" pool is one of the deepest and narrowest places on the river with a laminar flow at the outlet. It is fished from high cliffs, as it is not possible to approach the river. Very beautiful and rather difficult place to fish.
The outflow from the lake is a deep rocky "pipe" of several hundred meters long, the bottom of which is strewn with clastic rocks. Here fish can stay anywhere, so you have to fish over particularly every inch of the entire pool. This pipe can be fished from both banks of the lake. The deep section ends with a rocky island that branches the river into two channels. In front of the island itself there is a large hole - "Island" pool.
Further movement along the river takes place along the right bank. The best places here are: the confluence of the river into the lake - "Inflow" pool and "Trout" pool, which is more often called "Deep" pool. The latter, although rich in trout, has also enough salmon here. Many consider this place one of the most beautiful on the river. The pool begins with one of the deepest holes in the river, which is formed by narrowly located rocks on both banks. Further, the water acquires a laminar flow, which lasts for several tens of meters, maintaining a considerable depth. The fish here are often clearly visible, which makes fishing exciting and interesting, especially when using surface lures.
Above is the "Snake" or shorter "S" pool. Here the river makes a double turn in the shape of the Latin letter "S", which begins with a small and narrow waterfall. The place of fishing is a deep rock under the right bank in a waterfall hole.
Moving further along the river or bypassing it will require very large physical efforts. It is less than a kilometer to get from here to the second waterfall, but to overcome it you will need about an hour of climbing over rocks along a narrow canyon. In terms of fishing, there is only one small but good place - "Powerline" pool. Here the river is crossed by a high-voltage power line. However, getting here is not easy: it’s very difficult to walk along the river, and if on top, you will have to go down to the fishing spot in the canyon, and then climb back. So you will spend half an hour on this, for sure, or even more.
The crown of the upper section of Drozdovka is one of the highest waterfalls of the Kola Peninsula. It is highly recommended to visit this place to explore the real beauty of the wild nature. The water falls three steps from a height of 12 meters, forming an insurmountable barrier for salmon. A fascinating sight! In addition, from the height of the location of the waterfall the entire valley of Drozdovka up to the Kauketsyavr Padun Falls is visible.
Fords (medium and low water only), the most popular fords are highlighted:
Section 1. 1) Below Azuro pool; 2) below Corner pool (right before Azuro pool); 3) rapids above Corner pool; 4) outflow from Rock pool; 5) Home pool; 6) just opposite the observation deck of the Camp.
Section 2. 1) Top of the Lake – inflow into the lake near the island; 2) above Last Chance pool; 3) outflow from Lake pool, as well as iflow.
Section 3. 1) outflow and inflw into the Birch pool, 2) end of Aquarium pool.
3+ section (between waterfalls). 1) several hundred meters above first waterfall to the rocky shallow under the right bank; 2) below Big rock pool; 3) above the hole of Island pool; 4) outflow from the Kauketsyavr lake (the ford is very winding, you have to find the path). Above this the river is fordable on all pools.