First, we wanted to change our own perception of fishing. The one we annoyingly had of a dude posing with a big pike on a boat on his Tinder profile – to a more zen one by the lake a late summer night with your best female friends.
Maybe googling "fishing" was doomed from the start, showing us a 100% male dominated gallery at sea. Then we remembered, we stumbled upon Therese Lundin a while ago – the adventurer and nature guide who makes fly fishing trips for women, and decided to reach out to her to broaden our perspectives.
Hi Therese, from your lovely Instagram feed we know you’re a passionate angler and outdoor lover! Is there something most people don’t know about you?
Thank you for the kind words! I think many people believe that the outdoor life, fly fishing and hunting is something that is just a hobby for me. But I would rather call it a lifestyle. Everything I do in my life is somehow permeated by the love of being outdoors. It's vital for me, and makes me feel good in both mind, body and soul.
Something that perhaps not many people know is that I also spend a lot of time actually refining what I take with me home from nature. It can be anything from making dandelion caper, red clover jam, dried berries or pickled chanterelles to char sashimi, dried elk meat or cured capercaillie. I love to collect everything during the snow free seasons, so that I can also enjoy them during the long and dark wintertimes up north. There is just so much things that are edible out in nature, that we often forget to appreciate. Which is kind of sad in a way, because a big part of our history falls into oblivion.
Another thing that I have been a little secret about, and never advertised very big, is that in my company Flicksländan Fishing I make fly fishing trips and courses just for women. I think it's important for several different reasons, but partly because of the way many women are treated in the sport fishing community. We need to be more women who stick together so that it becomes easier to find new fishing friends. I think that everyone, regardless of gender, should be able to be out and enjoy fishing. It's a place where everyone should be and feel welcome.
Photo: Sanne Brännström
How did you get into fishing?
I have fished in different ways all my life, but it was my grandmother who made me love and really appreciate the moments out in nature. We used to go out fishing in the lake below her house and I remember how I loved to sit in the boat with a fishing rod in my hand for hours totally focused and just stare at the red and white float which bounced on the surface. Grandma has always been my biggest source of inspiration. Unfortunately she is not with us today, but I have her to thank for the love of nature and fishing.
Why do you think fishing is the ultimate nature experience?
I usually say that there is some kind of fishing for everyone. Whether you are looking for excitement, adrenaline, peace and quiet, beautiful views or to discover new places. You can fish in so many different ways, with different techniques and after different species.
For me, it's mostly about gathering energy and feeling grounded. But it's also an opportunity to grow, because it's is always something new to learn. One can focus on learning new knots, reading waters, study insects or get better at throwing. You can tie flies, learn about sustainable fishing or explore new waters. It's hard to get bored.
But best of all is the community that fishing brings. That you can meet across so many boundaries – age, gender, cultures and backgrounds – and unite in a common interest. It's so beautiful.
Photo: Sanne Brännström
Do you have any tips & advice to outdoor and fishing newbies who doesn’t really know where to start?
I've been there myself and I know that it's not always easy to know where to start. Many people think that fly fishing is very difficult. And it can be. But you can also make it simple. It all depends on what goals you have. If you are looking to try it out just for having fun, all you really need is a rod, a fly and a nice fishing buddy. But ok, it's always good to know a few things first, so here is my advice:
- Don't be afraid to try. Everyone has been a beginner at some point.
- Don't make it too advanced. You don't have to be best to be part of the fishing community.
- Need help? Get help! Find a local guide or network or Facebook group with other girls or guys interested in fishing and dare to ask. People are generally very helpful. Or contact me. I'm always happy to help!
- Dig where you stand, it does not have to be more complicated than pitching the tent on your own backyard and try it out.
- You do not need the best and most expensive equipment to be able to be outdoors. If you just want to make dinner outside and not hike two weeks at Kungsleden, it's fine. You are as much of an outdoor person anyway.
Is there one epic fishing/nature moment you’ve experienced and want to share with us?
When my Finnish Spitz Luna was a little puppy, I lived in a cottage in the middle of the woods for a couple of months, all by myself. I had no electricity and no running water. But instead I had forest in all directions, a wood fired sauna and a small lake where I gathered my water right outside the cottage. In the lake there were perhaps the smallest trout I have ever seen, but I loved the feeling of freedom in being able to just take my fly fishing rod and go down and cast a few casts whenever I wanted to. It's a memory of a lifetime and l can't wait until I have the opportunity to do something similar again.
What are you dreaming about?
I love to long for and visualize adventure! Right now I long to buy a camper van and travel around and fish with my fiancé and our two dogs, to buy a cozy cottage somewhere in the woods of Västerbotten, to hike far and fish char in pristine waters, to go on our honeymoon to Iceland (we're getting married this summer!) I long for late spring when the picking of plants begins, for the autumn and bird hunting with my Finnish spitz Luna, for winter and top hunting in the primeval forest and grouse hunting among steep high mountains. Of course, it's not certain that exactly everything will happen, but it doesn't matter that much. I love that tickling feeling in my stomach when I allow myself to dream big and that's all that counts.
How do you like your Minna Minimalist Wool Fleece Jacket?
I have to say that I'm in love with it! I like that it is thick, warm and spacious. It fits perfectly with all my adventures – as a warming extra layer to take with you in the backpack on the grouse hunt in the mountains, under the waders on future fishing trips when you are standing in an ice cold mountain stream or at home when you cuddle up in the sofa and read some Karin Boye poems. It definitely has a given place among my outdoor gear nowadays.
Thank you for sharing your tips Therese! Make sure to check out her FB-page if you too are curious about trying fishing and want a cool chic to connect with. And oh, if you're hungry for more inspiring stories, head over to our Wild Women blog!