ZANDERLAND - Species - Asp


Tampere Region - Finland


Asp fight like salmon

Photo: Jussi Pennanen

The regional fish of the Tampere Region

Asp is a predatory cyprinid, which spawns in streams and grows to be large, being a very hard fighter on the end of a line. As recently as the 1980’s, this species was extremely endangered, only to be found naturally in the River Kokemäenjoki and its upstream Lakes Kulovesi, Rautavesi and Liekovesi. Stocks of asp have been invigorated by introducing new fish. Today, big asp may also be caught on Lake Pyhäjärvi. The Finnish record asp of 8.3 kg was caught in the Kulovesi-Rautavesi area in 1949.
Asp eat small schooling fish found in surface waters, such as bleak and smelt, but also roach and perch. This is why small (5–10 cm) and slim bleak-coloured, i.e. black-and-light, plugs are good for asp fishing. The speciality of the Kuokkalankoski Rapids is the colour of minnow. Deep-running lures are good where there is lots of water, such as in the Lukkilansalmi Strait of the Nokianvirta Stream. Asp also bite streamers and tube flies. Jigs and leeches are worth a try as well.
Asp fishing spots and tricks
On Lakes Kulovesi and Rautavesi, asp are fished on rapids and torrents, as well as on open lake areas. In current spots, the asp reveals itself by splashing while pursuing its prey. Therefore the fish often nabs a lure swimming just below the surface. In open waters, you can find asp above the deeps or by the rocks.

The best season for trolling is in late summer, from August to mid-September. The Nokianvirta Stream, flowing into Lake Kulovesi, is a good site in autumn. The Hulttistenvuolle and Sarkolanlahti areas also yield the best catches in autumn. The Hulttistenvuolle, Myllyvuolle, Hiedanvuolle and Kutalanvuolle Straits between Lakes Kulovesi and Rautavesi are traditionally good asp sites.

The Siuronkoski Rapids are at their best in the spring during the spawning season. Also the Kuokkalankoski Rapids in Lempäälä and the Vilppulankoski Rapids in Vilppula have become a good site to fish for asp and this hard fighter whizz the lines of anglers at an increasingly frequent pace.