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Rune Westphal: ASI team member from Denmark

ASI Team

Rune Westphal:
team member

I grew up along the shores of northern Zealand, Denmark, influenced by my father and grandfather it was a natural progression for me to became a sea trout fisherman. At the age of ten I was old enough to join them on the hunt. The fishing was tough, the conditions hard and bad gear, not really designed for saltwater, made it an all-in or nothing mission. I went all in!

The first lesson was probably the toughest of them all, patience. I was trying everything, I read all the literature about sea trout fishing (not much at that time) and still I couldn’t figure it out. in two years I did not land a single sea trout while my two mentors had their share of fun.

My granddad kept telling me, patience is a virtue, and I defiantly learned the lesson right from the start. But eventually it did happen - on a warm spring day everything changed, and the two years of struggle was forgotten in a true magic moment. A shining silver seatrout was at the end of my line, and I succeeded getting it all the way to the waiting net. It was total bliss, and from that moment my life changed. I had found my holy grail, and a year later - after many hours of field practice - I hooked my first seatrout on the fly, which was another eye opening magic moment. From there on I started focusing more and more on fly fishing and later fly tying as well.

As the years went by I realized that it was not only the thrill of the fishing but the pulse of the nature changing with every season, that I enjoyed. I truly fell in love with the rough and cold winter coast, and as a bonus the dark and cold water was holding on to some massive sea trout. To me it was Nature in perfection - hard enjoyable work in harsh conditions, creating an awareness of what it's all about to me: Simply being out there!

Sometimes my wife sends me off the coast, normally it’s when I don’t answer her or the kid’s questions - and my eyes are in a dreamish blur. She knows that my thoughts are not present but wandering down the coast looking for the perfect spot. I am not whole unless I get my share of saltwater and time alone out there. Fly fishing is the perfect excuse: The rhythm and pulse combined with the flow of waves gives me ease and mindfulness.

Heavy wind or waves from all corners of the world can’t hold me back. When I realized that sea trout in trophy sizes were much easier when the water was troubled and dark, I decided that it should not be an obstacle, and over time it improved my fly casting/fishing significantly being able to make long casts even in head winds.

Seatrout is my chosen drug and I live and breathe it. When I’m not out on my own I’m out guiding helping others to make their sea trout dream come true.

Occasionally I find my self along a river in Sweden or Norway. That too is magic and the feeling of handling a Doublehanded rod is in its own way magic for the soul.

Summer nights brings on its own magic, the shallow water is boiling with life, in the dark behind you fox whelps plays in the sand. You are not alone out there! During certain periods phosphorescence is lighting up every step you take bringing your thoughts to a state of being in a fantasy world, and suddenly a hard pull in the line brings you from one magic moment to another.

When Robert asked me to join the ASI team it was a dream come true, I had some experience with the free-flex fly rod system and it didn’t take many casts to convince me that this was the future. With almost no effort I could produce the same amount of energy that I could with a conventional rod, it simply blew me away. There was no hesitation in my mind when I was asked to join this team of excellent fishermen/women and be a part of what I see as the coming future within fly fishing.