As I could seen with Lukas during a recent fishing trip, the DanicaDudes guys are real fans. Sharing knowledge and values is really important to them. So here they are in interview.
Greg: Hello, who is hiding behind DanicaDudes?
Lukas: We are a group of fly-fishing fanatics, who like to share their passion for the fishing itself and the conservation of our precious nature. And we think, as fisherman, we have a big interest and many possibilities to help our surroundings to be a better place.
I always find it interesting to know your personal journey, can you make a small presentation of each of you?
It started with the two brothers, Kristof and Lukas, and their longtime friend Lukas (alias Church, because there are two of us), at a day fly-fishing the river Isar near Munich. Kristof is the older of the brothers and started fly-fishing with an old rod from our dad and quickly got keen on it. I joined after a few years, and we engaged ourselves in our local fishing club supporting the youth group. Church joined afterwards while studying with Kristof. And every one of us has their preferred style of fishing, and also the targeted species.
So, what are these techniques and fish for each of you?
Church is the pike maniac in our group. Whenever we cross water which looks like pike-water, we must take a quick break to see if we see any possibilities to fish there. And he ties the best pike tube flies which I’ve ever seen.
Kristof is a casting specialist, so loves to fish two-handed with a scandi head and small streamers. But he’s also a dry fly purist, so every fishing method with light flies is his cup of tea. But he fishes also for the Danube Salmon, which is kind of odd, but he searches for the one special fish within several weeks.
I’m kind of the lazy guy, who likes to swing wet flies with a long belly line and a longer rod for trout. But I like to experience every fishing method possible i guess, and when I’m out fishing, I’m happy.
How was born DanicaDudes and what was your initial goal?
While fishing as a group of three, we thought about how the fishing will be like in 30 or some years. We also thought how we want to be it then. And with some background in (river) ecology, we also talked about ways to secure the fishing we have right now for our future.
So, we created a group and the DanicaDudes Blog, to share our fishing experience all around the globe and our ideas on how to restore the ecosystems we have right in front of us.
So, we just wanted to create a platform with open minded fishermen like us, to share our ideas and create a community, in which we could chat and discuss topics and such.
And we wanted to keep our joy in fishing, and with creating this group, we were more in touch with each other, to create further fishing trips together.
You are Bavarian, what is the fishing potential of this region (everyone knows the Trauns but I think there is not only that)?
In Bavaria, there are a hell lot of rivers and streams to fish in. Most of them are in private hand and not accessible for everyone. Most fishermen think of crystal clear mountain streams as THE Bavarian fly-fishing experience. But it has a lot more to offer than just the alpine region. Yea it’s pretty cool to fish there, but whatever species you want to catch in freshwater, there is more than one possibility to do so.
Some well-known rivers, like the Traun, are great and easy to fish, also because of a good amount of stocked fish in these rivers. That’s the way you keep some clients who expect that kind of fishery.
But we are always in search of the sweet spots some fishermen known, which are hard to find. For us, it’s not all about catching fish after fish, while reaching for the trophy sizes. For us, it’s the goal to spent a great time out on the water in search of the odd feeding fish, which is more or less in his natural surroundings and at best spawned in that water.
For us, Bavaria is not just about trout and grayling fishing. There is so much more to offer!
We have spent a lot of time fishing for our local home water trout, but we always find joy in other fishing methods and styles.
You say that Bavaria is not just grayling or trout. What are the other species? And among these, the most interesting to fish or unavoidable?
While mostly fishing in rivers, I’ll just go through the river fishery. Besides Pike, we don’t search too much in lakes, except for the lake trout in the alpine lakes, but we just got into that yet.
The river holds a large variety of species, but the king of the river is the Danube salmon.
Followed by wild and stocked trout (rainbows and brownies) and the queen of the river, the grayling. But the fishing doesn’t stop there yet. Yes, the fishery for trout is the most common, with the grayling being protected in many rivers to improve the population of them, because they hardly got extinct.
But the specialty is fishing for barbel, which are seriously hard to catch on nymphs. And it’s also a delicate fishery. When you got enough of nymphing for them, try for chubs on top water flies (dries or even poppers). They are fierce fight machines, and often not on the list of the classic fly fisher.
There are pikes and perch to fish with streamers, and the odd trout which will be found while fishing for them. The trout grow really big here, so we won’t be scared of a bigger streamer.
When the rivers get bigger and not that alpine, you can search for asps with floating lines and poppers or streamers.
And a specialty is the fishery for whitefish in the mayfly season with dries.
So, with all the species available in the surrounding waters, it’s hard to choose what you want to focus for a day out on the water!
Some are harder to catch, others easier. But by all means, the fishery for trout is not at all what we can offer!
At “le Mouching”, We knew you after a little pike fishing video in river. Then you did a little series “A Day with a dude”. We feel a little “Hooké”, they are an inspiration for you?
My brother Kristof is the „project coordinator” when it comes to film making. We started with shorties about our home waters, followed by films of our fishing holidays. We try to capture the surroundings and the atmosphere, while the fish itself is not our focus. Yea, of course the follow Hooké and gain ideas by their great work, but guys like Rolf Nylinder draw our fullest attention! The hardest part is, to fill the clip with the fly-fishing spirit we all have while fishing and enjoying our time outdoors.
You are also committed to the preservation of the environment and especially the rivers. You took part in the European rivers summit, made a film on the management of the rivers … first of all, how did this first summit go? For the film “Fluss.Mensch.Zukunft”, we see underwater images. It seems to me, Kristof, that you worked with Daniel Goez. It was for this project or nothing to do?
The movie „Fluss.Mensch.Zukunft“ is the biggest project for now, which was realized by Kristof and Church in partnership with their university. It has gained a lot of applause and they dove throughout Europe to present their film at private and public events. The film gets people to think about their current situation of their rivers, as well as the manner, in which the water is handled. Talking about stocked fish, the movie shows that there is a better fish population when you don’t stock at all but use the money designated for the stocked fish for improving the habitat of the insects and the fish itself. Daniel Goez is a great friend, and of course, we learn a lot from each other regarding filmmaking and underwater captures. But there are already various projects and films featuring Daniel Goez, but he’s a good friend and also a great filmmaker/photographer! We also got fascinated of his first big fly-fishing movie called „Tapam“(but there is already an interview with him 😉
You travel a lot, recently you went to Denmark, but you also went to Italy, Norway … What is your favorite destination? Why? A little anecdote?
Kristof and I explored a lot of destinations and countries, because we were fortunate enough to have parents who love to travel and don’t mind a flared (or two) in their luggage.
But as DanicaDudes, our first big fishing holiday was the first Norway trip. We have spent 6 weeks living in a tent, with our fly rods staying rigged for the whole time, and a car to reach various spots. We had a great time there, which none of us will ever forget, and we have experienced a lot of different fishing techniques and styles.
Furthermore, we travelled to Slovenia, Switzerland, Italy, Denmark, and many more. We mostly stayed in Europe, but with flyfishing friends all over the world, some of us spread out to fish in the US or remote areas in Europe like the High Tatras in Slovakia.
With a second big holiday in Norway, we could not get enough of the fly-fishing in Norway, and even if we haven’t seen the whole country but just a small part of it, we can only guess the potential this country has to offer. But if you ask the DanicaDudes, which country they want to go to for fishing together, it’ll be Norway.
In August 2016, we have spent our midnights fishing for rising brown trout on small spent flies, after fishing for pike the afternoon (while getting sunburnt). The next day, it rained so hard that we had to search for a sauna to warm up, but got to fish the night eventually to catch the odd brownie without seeing more than the small rings on the water surface. If you would have messed up with you 3 casts that night and had to tie on a new fly, there would not be a reason to do so, because you couldn’t see a thing!
We know DanicaDudes through your videos but you don’t do just that! Have you recently started creating a fly shop?
DanicaDudes is still a blog about the joy of fly-fishing and our responsibility for our ecosystem.
Kristof (who offers flycasting courses) and I created an online fly shop called „Isarfliegen“.
With our knowledge of the different fishing methods all around the world for trout, grayling, pike, salmon, Snook and what not, we can offer a huge knowledge. With that, we want to help fellow fly fisher with our recommendation, on which flies to choose at which occasions or rivers.
The goal is not to make the highest profit per year, we both follow jobs/studies ourselves, but we want to help with what we know. If there are any questions, we offer our consultation for every topic we know of! And yes, we well fishing flies (also barbless), and many useful accessories like the Monomaster to help our planet a bit every day we are out on the water. We got the opportunity to be a distributor of flies, which are produced in Kenia in modern Europe working standards, and we stand behind every one of our products and can choose freely which products we want to offer. With our Made in Bavaria section, we create flies on Ahrex Hooks, which work extremely well for us, but aren’t available as standard pattern at fly dealers. This is only possible if you fish regularly and live for the fishing itself.
What is your next projects?
For the moment, it’s hard to say. We moved out to work in the industry and do the studies, so we try to see each other of the group as often as possible.
But there are plans in the making for the following yea regarding fishing trips in the home waters of every one of us, where they are living right now.
It’s like „A Day with a Dude“, but just a second version with their new surroundings.
I’m situated in France near the French and Swiss Alps, and Kristof and Church got the opportunity to study in Austria, with a great choice of fly-fishing terrain in the area!
So, everyone starts to go their own way without missing out on quality fishing time!
A last word?
Fishing brings people together, who are open minded, and so it’s easy to connect with them.
We as DanicaDudes hope to create more groups like us, and to spread the joy we are feeling while being at our beloved rivers. The rivers, streams and lakes change every day, and when you get there, you still feel like home. And every fly fisher feels like at home when he swings the flyrod in search of a fish.
And that’s a feeling you don’t get easily, so we must retain our fishing as it is right now and enhance it with our actions.
Thanks for your time
Big thanks to you and all the best, and tight lines as usual!
See you soon.