The taimen (Hucho taimen), also known as Siberian taimen and Siberian salmon, is a species of fish in the salmon family (family Salmonidae) of order Salmoniformes.
Taimen are perhaps the world's most incredible fly fishing experience. Every taimen you encounter - whether you miss it or land it - is sure to create a lasting memory.
Taimen are a pre-historic mega-fish, and the largest member of the salmonid family. Taimen will migrate great distances each year to access spawning, feeding, and winter habitats. Mongolian taimen do not run out to the ocean or even large lakes, preferring to spend their entire life cycle in the relatively small rivers where they were spawned.
In Mongolia, taimen can live for nearly fifty years and reach over sixty inches (1.5 meter) in length. Although we often catch several giant taimen every season, most Mongolian taimen caught on the fly are generally between 30 - 40 inches (.75 - 1 meter).
Taimen are giant predators, renowned for a ferocious appetite and explosive strike. Their main diet is "small" fish and they do take well-presented streamers. However, taimen often feed on the surface, searching out small mammals and even ducklings. This means
taimen aggressively take skated or gurgling surface flies, too. Taimen will absolutely explode on the fly, sometimes coming completely out of the water on the strike. On witnessing this impressive smash and grab many anglers pull too soon and miss the hook up. The trick is to keep stripping until you feel the weight of the fish, then set the hook. If you miss the first strike, slam that fly right back on the water. That big, angry fish will usually come back around and absolutely hammer your fly.
These taimen will often go airborne. Like a big tarpon, they will tail walk along the river's surface. In skinny water, they will rocket across the river for greater depths. The four-foot long predator on the end of your line will charge around the pool, bore deep and shake its head violently like a very, very big brown trout.
Mongolia is a world-class trout-fishing destination, too. Fly-fishing for giant taimen is the big draw. However, the same pristine and productive water that holds monster taimen also produces phenomenal numbers of lenok
Lenok are an ancient and beautiful Siberian trout. They have golden bodies, bright red bands and black spots. Throughout the fishing season, these native trout feed aggressively on the surface. They wait along banks and beneath willows to slurp the abundant grasshopper, mayfly and stonefly hatches. A large Siberian trout will happily destroy a mouse pattern skated across a shallow run or behind a rock. They will smash bead-heads dropped beneath riffles. Fly-fishing for these native trout is as good or better than any trout fishery in the American West.
These rivers hold astounding numbers of grayling. Grayling are a main food source for taimen. In fact, taimen will often come from nowhere and attack the grayling on the end of your line. While wading, we often watch dozens of grayling casually sipping small hatches within a few feet of us. These fish are wonderful fun on a light rod, and amazingly they will even nail small mouse patterns!
The "Classic Canyon Adventure" is designed for those of us who like a bit more comfort with their expedition. We pass day after day floating down a glorious mountain stream casting to hungry grayling, large trout and massive taimen. In the evening, we stay at a string of lovely and very comfortable ger camps. This trip is a great mix of remote location, incredible fishing, world-class guides, unique culture, and outstanding wilderness accommodation.
This is a full-on expedition and one of the world's most unique angling experiences. This trip emphasizes wade/walking. Anglers must be able to hike or ride horses several miles into the backcountry, and must be accustomed to wilderness conditions. Guests must be able to wade-walk along a river with a rocky bottom and strong current. Anglers should be proficient with a two-handed rod (spey or switch) or have a solid double haul to adequately cover the water.
The classic Mongolia River Outfitters journey… six days of fishing in a beautiful landscape, fascinating culture, professional staff, exceptional camps, and world-class fishing. A small group of anglers explore nearly eighty miles of pristine river. Floating through the world's first Taimen Sanctuary, cast for taimen, lenok and trout on a fresh stretch of river every day. Stay in a well-appointed ger camp every evening.
Seven days floating through a very beautiful and remote stretch of the world's first Taimen Sanctuary. Cast for taimen, lenok and trout on a fresh stretch of river every day. These trips are designed for those of us who don't mind just a bit of "roughing it" in order to pass day after day floating down a glorious stream casting to large trout and salmon. The Lower River is remote, making vehicle access nearly impossible along much of the stretch. On Lower River trips, guests are...
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