- Shiva Adhikari
Nepal offer-Sport fishing, like hunting, is little advertised and therefore little known in Nepal. However, for the angling enthusiast, Nepal’s lakes and rivers can prove good fishing grounds.
There are approximately 118 varieties of fresh-water fish in these Himalayan waters, ranging from the much sought after Mahseer to the mountain stream trout-like varieties.
The best season to go sport fishing on white waters is before and after the monsoon from February till April and October and November. During these times the fishes go upstream to spawn and they consume less food. But locals catch a lot of fish during monsoon as well for their livelihood.
Where to fish in Nepal?
Some of the popular fishing trips are done in Karnali, Babai valley in the Bardiya National Park. Chitwan also hosts several places like the confluence of Seti and Trishuli on the Tribhuvan Highway and also in the confluence of Kaligandaki and Trishuli river.
Anglers can try their luck in the clear waters of Pokhara’s lakes as well. While Phewa Tal offers some good sport, there is considerable activity and is not the ideal place for a quiet day’s fishing. Begnas Tal and Rupa Tal are a better bet. Get out there on any of several local buses that start playing early morning or bike your way there.
You can hire a boat and go out to some of the good spots in the lake. Fishing rods and tackle are available on hire in Pokhara at around Rs 300-400 a day. If you hire a boat for the day, you can ask the boatman to get you a rod and tackle or you can hire one from one of many agencies.
The bait is usually made of bread that is soaked in water and mashed into a thick paste (your boatman will do this for you). The lake boasts of several fish varieties, the largest of which is Carp, which can weigh several kilos.
Golden Mahseer fish
Ideally, you could bring along a telescopic rod that can fit in a backpack and some artificial bait. Worms are hard to get in the winter months when they burrow deep to avoid the cold.
Fishing is also fun in many of the mountain streams. There are varieties of trout-like fish or even rainbow trouts and common trouts that can provide good sport.
Recently, the Fishery Department has released 4000 fingerlings in the Modi river, near Pokhara. There are agencies in the Kathmandu that organize fishing trips to streams around Kathmandu valley.
Dolalghat, east of the valley on the Kodari Highway, is easily accessible from the city-you can encounter Nepali holidaymakers and the locals on the lookout for the local variety of Asla and Katla, the former a kind of trout and the later a carp.
You could bring some flies along and try your luck. Some of the dams across Nepal’s many rivers too have a good stock of fish. There are three ways you can fish:
- You walk in the fishing spot every day in the morning-fish whole day and come back in the evening and stay at the lodge.
- You can walk in and camp and fish for several nights.
- Raft down the river from the place called Chepang (most recommended)-the beginning of the Babai Valley -National park with 3 nights camping and ending at the East-West Highway (Babai bridge).
(This feature compiled by Shiva Adhikari is taken from Nepal Association of Rafting Agents (NARA Souvenir 2019)
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