Like fish in Norway

• How to catch the fish in Norway

Each winter, Arctic cod performs his ritual of millions of fish travel a thousand kilometers from the waters of the Barents Sea to Lofoten to spawn in the warm waters, "fueled" by the Gulf Stream. For Borge Iversen Norwegian captain with an exceptionally distinctive appearance sailor and Viking winter - difficult, but the most interesting time. 2-3 times a day, he goes at night of the harbor fishing town Balshtad into the open sea to catch cod 12-15 hours.

To understand how people live in Lofoten, and how to catch almost 3 tons of cod with his own hands for one night - I went on a journey together with Borge

Like fish in Norway

Borge, like all Norwegian sailors, very open and welcoming sailor. He was already 40 years out at sea fishing. Winter - a serious work, cod fishing, and in summer - guided tours, individual fishing tours. His ship for 26 years, and most of his life Borge spent on it.

Like fish in Norway

The cold wind from the sea blows remnants of snow on the dock, and I tell Borge, we survived the storm last night in a fisherman's hut - rorbu. Borge such tales of swaying houses do not surprise: a storm in winter Lofoten frequent. But he decides to go to the open sea during the day and not at night. Why at night? Borge says, "so you need to have time to ship the fish in the morning to the warehouse guys in the warehouse working the day shift." Indeed, the Norwegians fishing season - from January to April, a total of 4 months of the year. It was at this time the cod come to Lofoten to spawn.

Like fish in Norway

In anticipation of the interesting adventure Borge we hit the road. Ship slowly sails away from the wet dock rocking on the waves of the weak harbor. Borge usual endless maneuvering between rocks and lighthouse, shore bristled Balshtada. In this case, one eye has time to watch the championship on biathlon on a small TV in the cockpit. Again, the Norwegians beat Russian in the final - Borge slightly jeering at me, promising Russian uphill battle with the Norwegians at the Olympics in Sochi. Meanwhile, Borge ship out of the harbor - and we immediately feel the nature of the storm sea. A ship as a sliver, throws the ridge crest with dark restless waves. While I was throwing from side to side, Borge, swaying in the captain's chair, calmly explains where we're going, showing his usual way. After 2 hours, we have to go out to sea, away from the islands, and start fishing.

Borge catches for cod in the traditional way, which has been at least 500 years. They call it "long lines" or longline fishing method.

Like fish in Norway

As we currently feel? Say bad - lie. We have half an hour to turn up the beginning of the path. The children, the poor members of our photo tour on my head, too, asked for me on the ship. First, in the bay, it was relatively quiet. Especially when we were in the bay. Out to sea - it became worse, but tolerable: we flew only from wall to wall without touching the ceiling ... more

But the night began. Then I put the camera to take a more important matter. Poor guys the whole trip in pain and suffering, green, lay here on these cots. They have not even been able to get them to see that this kind of traditional fishing.

No wonder Børge warned us at the beginning: backpacks aboard - a bad omen! Fulfilled. But late - backpacks were no longer needed.

Like fish in Norway

Exit the calm bay. Last time, you can stand for anything without holding.

Like fish in Norway

- You see these colorful line? - Borge shows on the monitor, nailed to the ground and fastened at the corners. - This is the "long lines" or bunk line. Simply put, Borge stretches a long fishing line (750 meters) with a large number of hooks with bait and then collect the catch, pulling the fishing line on the board with the help of special drums.

Now Borge much easier to swim, and it is operated by the ship and fishing alone. He just puts the ship on autopilot, synchronized with the computer navigation system. To me, he made an exception, taking on board. Says that sometimes you want to talk, to tell young interesting history ... Displays compass on yellowed from time to time: "it is - the heart of the ship, you can not go without it in the sea, any electronics can fail, and the compass will never let you down."

Like fish in Norway Like fish in Norway Like fish in Norway

Echoes of the night of the storm are felt: in the open sea waves 4-5 meters high. Borge jokingly supports me, clinging to some detail at hand, calling the process "flight" of the ship on the wave to wave "surfing". For the body, unaccustomed to the sea, important empty stomach and fresh air. And then, and another is already available, so after a while the flight from one to the other side of the captain's cabin come to life. Borge just slows down, and we start looking for the beginning of the "line" - it is marked with buom reflector.

It is already beginning to get dark, but a keen eye Borge quickly finds a red marker - check between the crests of the waves. Line ends are anchored and are at different depths. Depth buoys are controlled. Borge catches buoy - and begins to fetch a rope, to find the end of the fishing line. But then we will fail: the fishing line is detached from the rope. Apparently, the storm ruffled untrusted site. Or, he says a bad omen: I took on board a backpack with photographic equipment, and it is a bad sign for the sailors. By the way, a backpack made itself felt, flying from the floor almost to the ceiling of the cabin, while I have not tied to a table leg ...

Like fish in Norway

Borge is very much worried about the actions of the authorities, commenting on the desire of major oil companies to develop new offshore fields: "Fishing - the foundation of life of people in Lofoten, a part of their traditions and way of life. Lofoten is home to around 25,000 inhabitants, and almost every second citizen is somehow connected with the sea. More than 500 ships out in the winter to catch cod. I am sure that 99% of the fishermen on the Lofoten against the deployment of the new ocean drilling rigs on the shelves. More than 1, 7 billion tons of cod lives in the Barents Sea, and part comes to spawn in Lofoten. Any fault in the rig could lead to a global catastrophe. " Borge sure that the development of the shelf off Lofoten - just a matter of time. Norway - the richest country in the world thanks to the oil, and the oil needle will not let the country. Northern fields are gradually depleted, and Lofoten, the most promising area for Statoil, the Norwegian oil company, still remains intact.

Some analysts estimate the oil fields in the 1, 3 billion barrels. Norway ranks third in the world in terms of oil exports. A small population of Norway has made her a very rich country. Oil domestically consumed in very small quantities, and in the oil industry are not allowed international companies. And the government competently supervises the country's resources: oil really belongs to the people of Norway. By the way, between Norway and Russia dispute on the ownership of the coastal shelf of the Barents Sea is constantly maintained. In any case, life Lofoten change much in the coming desyateletiya if the oil industry will reach the archipelago.

We swam to the other end tier line, too, caught the anchor rope - and here, luckily, the line was in place. Borge planted at the end of a big drum driven by a motor ship, and began pulling the line, putting the ship on a quiet move, pointing to the autopilot end of the line. So about 2 hours we drifted and caught cod. Here it is - the first fish! Arctic cod in Norwegian sounds like "Skrei", which literally means "traveler". Every 3-5 meters on the line of hooks with bait.

Borge stands at the edge of the swaying of the ship waves, and deft movement gaff (a stick with a hook on the end) pulls the fish overboard as soon as the hook close to the drum. Given that the Borg is now in its sixth decade, agility old sailor I was just amazed: just one hand on the second Borg throws a fish weighing up to 25 pounds in a container. And then the moment: a big fish breaks off the hook, the tail flopping loudly about the wave. Borge gives back up (all the levers at hand) intercepts a stick-spear and promptly return the fugitive on board. All this happens so quickly that you have not time to see how the fish ended up in the container. After all monofilament line is wound into a large container, Borge kills fish, impaling her with a knife at the gills, and then shifts it into a container of water.

Like fish in Norway

The respite - a cup of coffee with chocolate cookies - and back to work. Now you need to stretch a new line of fresh bait. As a bait Borge uses shrimp or herring pieces. Line unwound pretty quickly - there is no need to drift. Night had covered the sea. Now there is heavy downpour, the element does not subside. Borge is no stranger: in winter conditions are worse: snow storm, icing on the ship ...

Like fish in Norway

I fell asleep in the cabin Borge a couple of hours to the sound of rain and the vehicle's engine. I woke up on the third line - Borge, with the same cheerful smile offers me a cup of coffee. We're a little off course: it turned out, in the course of their flight by the cabin I was a little knocked electronics, and had a little tricky to reconfigure devices. Borge slightly tensed without navigation electronics in such a storm, and a wall of rain is very difficult to get out to the home land among the sharp rocks Lofoten. But nothing, trimmed all devices, the reliability they have high. Look out for the last marker, scanning the sea of ​​powerful flashlight. 3-4 laps around the surrounding points on the map - and we see the reflection of the reflector buoy.

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Another 2 hours - and the third line is completed: Borge returned to the bridge, and we again have time to talk.

- Today, the catch - 500 fishes, it is about 1, 5 tons of fish, - says Borge. -This is a good result. I have a quota for seasonal catch of fish: allowed to catch about 100 tonnes of cod per season. The government regulates and places for fishing, and quotas: Borge is obliged to fill in a logbook.

But why Borge uses the traditional method of fishing, trawl catches, do not use the network? The captain himself answers: "I love my job, I love the sea and traditions of our land. When you live in harmony with mother earth, the sea, the work is fun. "

Like fish in Norway Like fish in Norway

Two hours pass road home for conversation and maritime history - and only at 4 am we stand on solid ground. Honestly, that night, I was completely exhausted, can not be said about the Borg. On his face - not the slightest trace of fatigue, but the same good-natured smile and thoughtful swinging with expressive peal "Ja, Ja, Ja ..." at the beginning of each sentence. Borg invited me to see the next day, what to do with the fish.

In a coma bags were filled up our bodies in the car and after a while turned out to be a miracle in rorbu.

Like fish in Norway

The next day, hard to tear yourself away from the bed on a cloudy day, I went back to look at the fish. Far not had to go: in every small village of the archipelago are whole rows of poles, which is suspended or the body of the fish, or fish heads. Borg ships fish in the warehouse - and then it is treated: cut off the head, liver, eggs, language.

Like fish in Norway

The fish are divided into several varieties: fresh, for drying and curing. Basically, fish vyalyat. What you see in the photographs - a special, characteristic only for Lofoten method of drying fish: it is hanging in the open air from January to May. Fish not previously treated: simply connect the tail - and hung on poles.

Temperature in Lofoten optimal for curing the one hand, it is rarely drops below zero, however does not break the ice fish tissue, and on the other - not too high to flies and insects are not spoiled cod. In this case, the gulls can not break the associated fish on top, sitting on poles. A strong sea wind quickly dries fishes ligaments, reducing its weight by 5 times. So it turns out "concentrated" cod, which is very easy to transport, while it does not lose its nutritional properties and is stored for a long time. To get a little fresh fish - simply add water as soup, mashed potatoes! We talked with the local lads who are working on their farm. Traditional Norwegian Kjell ( "hjell" - poles for drying) hang not only the fish's body, but their head. It turns out that the head is also in great demand - they are exported to Africa and make there are soups.

That's the way it is, and sun-dried all winter:

Like fish in Norway

The Italians and Norwegians idolize each other: dried cod comes mainly in Italy. A tradition started cooking cod in Italian cuisine Venetian merchant Pietro Querini, who already in 1432, visited the island and brought a barrel of dried fish. Since then, the Italians are inseparable with their favorite dishes from Norwegian cod.

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The next morning I met Borge. He cheerfully greeted me, after another night's solitary fishing. To the question "how to fishing" received the answer:

- One thousand!

- One thousand kilo - ton? - I asked.

- No - one thousand fishes, only 3 tons! And the biggest weighed about 30 kilograms!

Like fish in Norway