Fly Fishing on the Falkland Islands
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Falkland Islands Fly.Fishing

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If you look at the world map, the Falkland Islands are just a small spot next to the South American continent.
However, these isles are 12,173 km² in size.

For comparison only:
In Germany the federal state of Schleswig-Holstein is 15,799 km² and Northern Ireland 14,130 km².

The Falkland Islands have 2,900 inhabitants.
2 million 897,000 are living in Schleswig-Holstein and 1 million 882,000 in Northern Ireland.

Of the 2,900 inhabitants of the Falkland Islands, around 2,000 live in Stanley and only a third outside the city. So 900 residents on an area of about 12,000 km²

That is a clear message!
It is not the first time I am very grateful that as a fly fisher I got the opportunity to make the acquaintance with areas like the Camp, which on the list of touristic "must-sees“ ranks far, far below penguins or marine mammals. Tourists rarely make a detour to the Camp (the phrase "Camp“ refers to everything outside Stanley and does not only translates to the landscape – "en el campo" = Spanish for "on the countryside“ – of but also to life in the country itself). This makes the Camp a suitable place for people who seek solitude, avoid mass tourism or are just plainly interested in ALL facets the Falkland Islands have to offer.
At least since the daily announcement on the radio about the risk of sunburn for sheep and cattle like this: "Risk moderate to shortly shorn sheep" I knew that I had lost my heart to the camp.
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The camp is all about the sheep. Between 500 000 to 700 000 sheep (the number naturally varies) are estimated to be kept on the Falkland Islands.
Compared to the number of the Camp’s inhabitants, one totally understands the jeer of Eddie, the traveler from the Faroe Islands, when he thought of his friends at home who take pride owning a flock of 150 sheep.
A little later however, we had to muse contemplatively over a comment our guide made, pointing to a small group of sheep: "They are the dog food“.

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Before the Falklands War up to the 1980s, life in the widely scattered farms on the Camp was not much different from that of the Gauchos in the 19th century.
There were no roads or energy supplies. One lived completely independently with turf as an energy source and traveled on horseback.
Sheep breeding was a reasonable source of income whereas the profits came from overseas exports.
Life was authentic and affectionate.
Many people nostalgically think back to those "good old days“ when a flask with 60% rum and 40% port wine was passed around the campfire as a symbol of communality without many words.
With the price drop of sheep wool and sheep meat, rural exodus began.
Since the 1980s the administration of the Falkland Islands has made great efforts to prevent this.
On the one hand, considerable money came from Great Britain after the Falklands War, since the strategic importance of the Falkland Islands had become clear again. On the other hand, with the sale of fishing licenses to Asian jiggers the administration of the Falkland Islands earned plenty of money for the expansion of an infrastructure on the Camp.

And although there are still no paved roads outside of Stanley and along the connection to Mount Pleasant, all farms and stations can be reached via gravel roads. Today the farms mostly run on a combination of solar and wind power, have internet access and cell phone reception, travel with land rovers and the average farmer monitors his herds with quads and mopeds.
One dare say: They are the gauchos of the 21st century.
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To give you a small impression of the area: Although the Falkland Islands Camp is absolutely treeless, it never seems monotonous and one cannot stop marveling at the gently rolling hills and slopes in all imaginable shades of green, sometimes disrupted by the STONE RUNS, which lie like „stone rivers“ on their slopes.
The flora is beautiful in its purity, with whole fields of berries and wild flowers. Geese and birds of prey rise everywhere and the clean waters glitter in their middle. A visual experience that isn't likely to be forgotten soon!
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There is one chapter in the country’s history that cannot be left out entirely. Over 100 aircrafts and helicopters were shot down during the Falklands War.
Many of these crash sites and remains of the technical armed forces can be found at the Camp. Fortunately, not all pilots died in these machines.


Picture: The Argentinian Mirage pilot and his grandchild recently visited the scene of that crash on West Falkland.

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Broschure of the Falkland Islands Tourist Board
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With the kind support of:

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