Hit hard by the Corona Pandemic
Fewer foreign tourists means a drop in income for Koppang Camping. Founders Edward Scholten is uncomfortable about the upcoming summer.
Written by Lars Reitan.
What happens when foreign anglers are not allowed to come Norway?
As with many businesses this is catastrophic for the bottom line.
-This spring we had a very high amount of cancellations. Roughly 50% of our customers come from abroad, and they are not allowed to come to Norway at the time being. Obviously this makes for a stressful financial situation right now, says Edward Scholten owner of Koppang Camping.
This summer the camping was to be the basecamp for the European championships in flyfishing, and for the world championship in womens fly fishing. This is now postponed until next year.
– Since we won’t be seeing any foreign anglers this season it is frightening. However, we do hope the borders will open up again soon.
Frustration over closed borders.
According to the Norwegian Authorities, foreigners must assume that the borders will be closed until August 20th. There may be temporary exceptions for selected European countries.
-This will be decided by July 10th at the latest, but we hope of course that it happens before that. The only thing we can do is wait and see, says Scholten.
Edward, who also works as a fishing guide, explains that he has sees anglers from all around the world each year.
– Here we see people form the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Italy, USA, Argentina, and New Zealand. This costs us hugely, but this is obviously tragic for our guests who want to experience their time in Norway, and we are very frustrated over the situation.
If the borders do end up opening again we will be ready for it.
-We only have 20 cabins and 60 camping spots, so we will be able to handle things just fine.
Mayflies are beginning to hatch
Scholten believes however that this can mean more Norwegian guests visiting throughout the summer.
-This season we are expecting to see many more people traveling within the country with mobile homes. At the same time I hope that more Norwegian anglers give us a visit, rent a cabin, and experience the Glomma.
Koppang camping is open until October 1st.
How is the fishing on the Glomma now?
-I was out fishing while the waterlevels were still low last week. With the nice weather I caught a grayling on the second cast with a cdc dry fly. I ended up catching 15 in just a few hours.
This isn’t the time of year for big fish, but Scholten has seen other positive signs.
-The snowmelt has lead to the river rising a couple of meters, which is completely normal this time of year. What is positive however is that the mayflies have already began to hatch. Maybe the water levels will stabilize after a couple of weeks. I constantly follow the waterlevels as listed on nve.no. As soon as the water starts clearing up I can promise the fishing will be good!