Fishing Trips on Lake Saimaa

Fishing Trips on Lake Saimaa

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Winter Fishing and Cottage Accommodation on Lake Saimaa, Finland

Welcome to have winter fun at Lake Saimaa, Finland! We are offering you a holiday in our well-equipped cottage in the best season of winter for recreation and ice fishing, as well as fishing with our professional fishing guide and company owner Jari Kayhko. The cottage is located right next to a lake and offers very easy access to do fishing, skiing or snowmobiling on the ice.

Ice cover usually forms in mid-December on Lake Saimaa, but the best ice fishing time starts from the beginning of January or so. The early ice is very good for ice fishing of pike. The ice fishing season of rainbow trout starts from the beginning of January and ends in April. We use both active ice fishing and tip-up ice fishing methods for both pike and rainbow trout. From mid-January to mid-February we do ice fishing for burbot. From mid-March to mid-April it is the best season for ice fishing of perch, roach and bream near our fishing cottage.

Ice Fishing Holiday on Lake Saimaa

Our cosy and comfortable Fishing Cottage Jokiniemi is best suited and especially equipped for groups of sports fishermen of 4 to 6 people. The pond just 30 metres from the cottage is good for independent ice fishing of pike, perch, bream and roach. The actual Lake Saimaa area starts from a distance of 100 metres from the cottage. This area is excellent for ice fishing of zander, pike, perch, burbot, roach and bream.

Ice fishing trip for learning best spots for catching pike and perch in Cottage Jokiniemi


Ice fishing trips to places where you can catch pikes and perches. Participants must have warm clothes of their own. The price includes rent of our fishing gear and guidance. Available: December - April.

Fun and easy rainbow trout fishing trip

We arrange rainbow trout fishing trips at a privately owned lake, which is located 35 km from the Fishing Cottage Jokiniemi. There is a small shelter, fireplace and toilet at the area for your use. The distance from the parking place to the shelter is 100 metres and to the ice is only 30 metres. Excellent place for fishing with children.

Available: December – April


The rainbow trout in the lake are between 1 and 3 kg in size. You can catch and keep 3 trout / day / one license.

Your fishing guide Jari Kayhko will teach you the best spots and tricks, and he will actively assist you with fishing rainbow trout. The price includes the necessary licenses and the use of fishing gear. Also available tasty picnic by campfire for extra charge..

You can use three fishing rods at same time in this place, so we will use one rod for active ice fishing and two sets of tip-ups. We will use small spoons, balanced jigs, leeches and ice fishing jigs for active ice fishing and for the tip-ups we'll use fish eggs as bait.

Read more about us and find prices of our accommodation!

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Fishing Trips and Cottage Accommodation on Lake Saimaa - October 2015

Latvian fishermen catching pikes on Lake Saimaa - October 2015

We started October with trolling and jigging for pikes on Lake Saimaa with our Latvian visitors of Fishing Cottage Jokiniemi.

Pike of 3 kg caught by softbait spinning. Picture was taken 4th October 2015.

 The day began windy but turned sunny and calm towards the evening, letting us enjoy the fall colors and quietness of the Lake Saimaa nature.

The season of fall colors on Lake Saimaa lasts yearly from mid-September to mid-October.

You can easily find both mushrooms and berries from the wild nature of Lake Saimaa during October also.

Despite the very cold weather, our Latvian guests were able to catch 10 to 30 pikes on a daily basis. They selected some of the pikes for food and released the most. They seemed to have really enjoyed their stay at our fishing cottage, because just one week after their visit they made a new reservation for us for June 2016.

Tip from our fishing guide and company owner Mr. Jari Kayhko:

I have been fishing for over 30 years on these waters and I have learned that the period from the beginning of June to Midsummer (which will be on June 25th in 2016) is very good for pike fishing near our fishing cottage. This is due to the coldness of the waters and the end of spawning period, which makes big pikes hungry and ready for catching. There are also plenty of smaller pikes hunting in shallow water, which makes fishing very active with lots of biting and actual catches.

Book Your Lake Saimaa Sport Fishing Holiday and Cottage Accommodation in Finland for Year 2016!

See memorable pictures from the past 5 years of our company Old School Trolling! 



Landlocked Salmon 4 kg, caught by trolling. Landlocked Salmon and Brown Trout are both endangered species on Lake Saimaa. This is why Jari quit catching salmon and trout with the adipose fins still intact in the year 2012 both in personal fishing and on our company events. We only keep the fish that have had their adipose fins cut out (they are planted for sports fishing purposes) and release all landlocked salmon and brown trout that still have the adipose fin (as they are wild fish).  From the beginning of the year 2016 it will be officially forbidden to take any landlocked salmon or browntrout with the adipose fin by Finnish fishing law. Minimum landing size is 60 cm for both species. Picture was taken 2nd November 2010.

Picnic breaks by campfire are favourite moments during  Jari`s fishing events. Picture was taken 3rd December 2011.

Jari helped his mother catch a pike of  +3 kg by softbait spinning near our fishing cottage. Picture was taken 7th October 2012.

In this picture Jari has marked a landlocked salmon of less than 50 cm in length and one of our clients is releasing it back to Lake Saimaa. Picture was taken 2nd November 2013.

In this picture we have perch +500 grams caught by softbait spinning. Picture was taken 12th October 2014.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Fishing Trips and Cottage Accommodation on Lake Saimaa - September 2015

Zander fishing by trolling and spinning on Lake Saimaa

We started our autumn fishing season with trolling and jigging for zander with Russians. The day began rainy and windy but turned sunny towards the evening, letting us enjoy a nicely warm and semi-cloudy fishing weather. In addtion to zanders we also caught pikes and perches.

Our very first +50 cm zander for September 2015

Russian fishermen caught pikes, perches, breams and roaches at Fishing Cottage Jokiniemi, September 2015

The first days of September were days of a real “Indian summer”, hot and sunny, perfect for relaxing, picking mushrooms and berries and for fishing pikes at Cottage Jokiniemi, of course.
Our Russian guests started their fishing week by learning the very best fishing spots near our fishing cottage with the help of our fishing guide and company owner, Mr. Jari Kayhko.

Pike appr. 3 kg`s catched by fresbait angling in Cottage Jokiniemi, September 2015

All our fishing groups from St. Petersburg were very successful in pike fishing also on their own. They caught lots of pikes, released the most of them and prepared food of the ones they kept. For pike catching they used the methods of spinning, trolling and freshbait angling.

Catching breams in Cottage Jokiniemi, September 2015

For catching perches, roaches and breams they used bubble and hook angling with worms. This way it was very easy to catch smaller fish, our guests told us.

 Tip from our fishing guide and company owner Mr. Jari Kayhko:

 The weather is still warm in late August and early September, making it great for picking berries and mushrooms near our cottage as well as fishing for perch and pike. The beginning of the season of fall colours, from mid-September to the beginning of October, is excellent for catching big pikes close to our fishing cottage. The season of fall colours will last until mid-October. From the beginning of October bigger perches start forming flocks in the deeper water areas of Lake Saimaa. Bigger pikes are also moving to deeper water areas to hunt vendace, which have their spawning season from mid-October to mid-November.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Fishing Trips and Cottage Accommodation on Lake Saimaa - August 2015

Softbait spinning for zander on Lake Saimaa

The weather in August varied from beautiful sunny days to cloudy and rainy. First we had a family staying at our cottage for two weeks and they did independent fishing on the waters near our cottage, catching good size pikes, perches and zanders. During their stay they really got into jigging, using the boats of our cottage a lot. We also had guided fishing trips on beautiful and warm summer days, catching lots of pikes, perches of over half a kilo and evening-active zanders.

Picnic by campfire on Lake Saimaa

During one guided fishing day we stopped without hurry for a nice break on land. We took our time relaxing, cooking coffee and food on an open fire. The lady of the family took the opportunity to pick mushrooms and blueberries.

Fishing Guide Jari Kahko and released zander 47 cm ~ 1 kg.

In mid-August we had three sunny and hot fishing days with my fFinnish friend. The warm surface waters made zanders and pikes really eager to bite. 

Pike 3 kg`s catched by softbait spinning.

My friend really appreciated pike for food and we did catch pikes a lot on each of our fishing days. We did release most of our catches. We only chose to keep pikes of 60 cm or more, and picked 2  pikes of about 1,5-3 kg for daily food. Back on land the pikes were filleted and there was even enough to put into the freezer for my friend to take back home with him.

Zander +50 cm catched by softbait spinning.

Our visitor had never fished zander before and the definite high point for us was catching a zander of over half a meter by softbait spinning.  We also landed in the boat a handsome and feisty ide, which we filleted and smoked.  Thanks for good company and having a great mini holiday with us on Lake Saimaa!

Ide +50 cm catched by trolling.

In the end of August the weather was still hot and zanders as well as pikes and perches were active to bite throughout the day. 

Perch appr. 300 grams catched by softbait spinning.

We had a visit by a very experienced spin fisherman and it was simply a pleasure to observe his work, jigging for zander from our boat.

Zander 44 cm, catched by softbait spinning, released.

Tip from our fishing guide and company owner Mr. Jari Kayhko:

 In Finland July and August are the best months for fishing on Lake Saimaa due to warm waters and often very warm or even hot weathers. There are plenty of fish about and you can fish around the clock if you wish, thanks to our light summer nights. Big perches normally move to the shallow waters in mid-July and they can be caught there in the daytime during a period of a couple of weeks. If you do late evening / early morning or night time fishing near our cottage, you will be able to catch zanders and pikes from the shallow waters as well. The best season for night-time fishing on Lake Saimaa continues from Midsummer until the end of August.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Summer time fishing on Lake Saimaa - July 2015

July 2015 on Lake Saimaa

Early evening on Lake Saimaa, July 2015

The beginning of July 2015 gave us rain but also a couple of hot summer days. It was also time for big pikes: on our nearby waters one fisherman caught a pike over the magic weight of 10 kilos, and our cottage customers were able to pull in pikes up to 7 or 8 kilos. We had a group of Belarusian visitors staying at our cottage, and they told that in their country the waters were more shallow and the pikes smaller. In addition to pikes they also caught big perches and smallish but full-grown zanders.

Zander 46 cm, catched by Softbait Spinning in early July 2015. Zander was released.

In the middle of July we started to do evening-time trolling for zander and day-time jigging on the big open waters of Lake Saimaa. The rapidly changing weather conditions have been a bit tricky this summer, but luckily true fishermen and fisherwomen aren’t made of sugar!

Pike fishing in the beginning of July 2015

Also the eagerness of the fish to bite has varied a lot. When the time and the conditions are right, you can pull in perches with every cast. When the fish are lazier to bite, catching fish becomes more challenging and requires good fishing techniques. You have to know how to use vibrating movements and other tricks to force the fish to bite.

Softbait spinning for perch 12 July 2012

When the fish are lazier to bite, it’s also more important to cast more accurately and use baits of the right size, shape and colour. Baits can be painted with marker pens to give them the desired colour and a tempting scent. A group of our customers recently learned the importance of colour. They used two identical softbaits for jigging, one was painted with marker and the other wasn’t. The result was surprising: they caught fish only with the painted one. Another group tried different colours and to their surprise the most successful colour was the one that they never could imagine working. When fish are lazy to bite, you are forced to experiment and at the same time learn a lot.

Evening time fishing 22 July 2014

 Pikes, perches and zanders have been moving on more or less the same areas this summer, which means shorter boat rides to catch fish. The size of the fish is normal but catching them has required more work than last summer. And when you work hard, it’s also more important to have proper breaks and eat well during your fishing trip. The ideal way to unwind is to seat yourself around an open fire, empty your mind of fishing thoughts for a while, have a nice chat with a good meal, and after a good break like this you are refreshed, filled with energy and 100 % ready for fishing again.

Late evening fishing in July 2015

Tip from our fishing guide and company owner Mr. Jari Kayhko:

 The last week of June and the first two weeks of July are good for catching zander near our fishing cottage. After mid-July zanders will start to move towards the streaming water areas in the distance of 5 - 6 km from our cottage and also to the big lakes of the Great Saimaa lake system, such as Paasselka, Orivesi, Savonselka and so on. Big pikes do the same and both zanders and pikes will be more often caught from the deeper areas or bank slopes of the big lakes of Saimaa in the daytime.



July 2014 

In the beginning 0f July 2014 we welcomed a group of four fishermen from Lithuania to our cottage in Savonranta. We started with a one-day guided fishing trip during which I introduced them to the best lures and fishing spots of the area. The week was quite cold and rainy, but the guys managed to catch fish every day, by trolling as well as casting. Our guests were pleased with the pikes, perches and zanders they caught, and prepared tasty dishes out of them at our cottage. They also caught a nice fat ide.

Zander fishing 5 July 2014

 In the middle of July we welcomed Gennady, Sergey and Aleksey from Moscow. The weather was brilliant and very warm almost every day. We fished together for five days, catching big pikes, zanders and perches, which we naturally cooked and ate with delight. The guys went fishing also on their own by using the two motorboats we have for our customers to use, free of charge. In addition to sunbathing and having sauna they also went for a bit of sight-seeing in Kerimäki and Savonlinna.


During the last weeks in July we also headed for the bigger open waters of Lake Saimaa to cast for larger perches. The sunny spring days made them pleasantly active and hungry. I had daily guidances for over 2 week period with differrent groups enjoying of Finnish summer and great fishing with me.

Perch fishing 14 July 2014

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Fishermen Group from Belarus on Lake Saimaa, July 2015

We spent a one-week fishing holiday at Cottage Jokiniemi in the village of Savonranta.

We planned to have a fishing week at Lake Saimaa area and saw the proposal of Old School Trolling. I wrote an email to the company owner Mr. Jari Kayhko and received a reply with a detailed description of the cottage, boats and other equipment. All very clear and quick!

Location of Fishing Cottage Jokiniemi on Lake Saimaa

We travelled 1200 km from Belarus to Finland by using route Minsk–Vilnius–Riga–Tallinn–Helsinki–Savonranta. The roads are excellent. On the way to Helsinki, we stopped for a night in Tallinn. On our way back home, two drivers did it without any stops.

When we arrived at Cottage Jokiniemi, our host Jari Kayhko was waiting for us and showed the cottage and house equipments for us. This fishing cottage is located only 30 meters from Lake Saimaa. 

Fishing Cottage Jokiniemi on Lake Saimaa

It had more than everything needed for a one-week stay for fishing: a spacious living room, kitchen with everything you need, including a dishwasher, two separate bed rooms, a sauna. The house is clean, comfortable and it can accommodate six people easily.

Fishing Cottage Jokiniemi on Lake Saimaa

On the shore there were two boats filled with petrol and equipped with sonars, all ready for us! There was also other gear ready for us, including excellent casting and spinning rods for trolling, lots of spinners and Softbait lures.
Very cool!

Our sturdy fishing boats in Cottage Jokiniemi are equipped with a 8 hp Mercury and 5 hp Yamaha outboard engines

Cottage Jokiniemi in July–June is a great place for catching pike, walleye and perch. We managed to catch a couple of trophy-size pikes up to 7 - 8 kg as well as perches up to 500 grammes and walleyes up to 2 kg`s.

Pike fishing on Lake Saimaa July 2015

Our host Jari showed us how to carve the fish into fillets. We cooked some of our catch and put the rest into a freezer. The cottage has a separate 100-liter freezer especially for fish, which we greatly appreciated. We brought some of the fish to cook at home .

We also enjoyed the sauna. How nice it is after a day of fishing to have a good steam, and then run out to the beach and a dip in the cool water of a northern lake.

Enjoy the atmosphere and sensitive heat of our sauna in Cottage Jokiniemi

Our host Jari helped us with everything. He bought us the necessary fishing licenses, helped us with rainwear and told us how to smoke fish. He even prepared a map for us with the target depth of the lake and the most promising fishing spots!

Fishing Guide and Company Owner Jari Käyhkö

After the week of fishing, we were tired but happy. We had a lot of fun, thanks to our host Jari for the excellent organization and warm hospitality.

Best of luck to you, Jari Käyhkö and Old School Trolling!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Fishing Trips and Cottage Accommodation on Lake Saimaa - June 2012 - 2019

Our first fisherman group of five persons from Latvia arrived at our cottage on 5th of June for a 8-day fishing holiday. The beginning of their holiday was very hot and they decited to do most of their fishing early morning and late evening. In this part of the year we do have daylight for over 20 hours a day, which do make night fishing on boat safe and effective. Warm and hot air as well a wind from south to west makes fishes bite well. Cold north wind makes fishes passive.

Their fishing results were good, They had a lot of action with pikes when using softbaits, biggest one weighted 6 kg`s and was caught by jerk fishing method. Unfortunately we do not have any picture of their fishes available.

Softbait spinning for zander in 28 June 2012. This zander was released after photo shoot.

During the last week of June 2012 I worked as a guide for two Finnish fishermen. We did softbait spinning in a semi-sunny and warm weather. Afternoon and early evening were the best times for catching zanders which we were looking for. One of our visitors caught his biggest ever zander during this event.

Zander +50 cm which our visitors prepared for a tasty meal.

Hooking and cooking on Lake Saimaa!


Fish soup for 4 - 5 persons

  • 1 kg fish
  • 1 liter water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 onion
  • 10 allspice (whole)
  • dill stems
  • 1/2 leek
  • 4 large potatoes
  • 4 decilitre milk
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • dill and chives
Clean and fillet the fish. Boil the bones with coarsely chopped onion and spices. Cook for about 20 minutes. Strain the liquid into another saucepan. When the liquid comes to the boil, add the leek cut into rings and the peeled, diced potatoes. Cook for about 15 minutes. Cut the fish into chunks and add to the soup. Cook for another five minutes. Mix the flour with milk and add to the soup. Let the soup simmer for a few more minutes. Sprinkle plenty of chopped dill and chives on top of the soup.

 Memorable midsummer fishing in 2014


  Midsummer is the period of time centered upon the summer solstice, and more specifically the northern European celebrations that accompany the actual solstice or take place on a day between June 19 and June 25 and the preceding evening. The exact dates vary between different cultures.


Lighting bonfires and bathing in saunas are two of the most typical traditions in Midsummer celebrations. Barbecuing, fishing and boating have later become standard Midsummer pastimes while enjoying cottage life. In the olden days, Midsummer spells were cast, many of which had to do with hopes of increasing fertility and finding a future spouse. Midsummer was also a popular time for weddings.
Evening fishing 23 June 2014

An important feature of the midsummer in Finland is the white night and the midnight sun. Because of Finland's location around the Arctic Circle the nights near the midsummer day are short or non-existent. This gives a great contrast to the darkness of the winter time. The temperature can vary between 0 °C and +30 °C, with an average of about 20 °C in the South.

During midsummer 2014 I did spinning with soft baits and Rapala minnow spoons in shallow water areas near our cottage. The weather was beautiful and warm, perfect for recreational fishing. We caught this big pike from a water area of 2 to 2,5 meters deep. The fish hit our lure from the offshore side of the lake. Usually pikes are caught from the shoreline, where they are hiding among plants or looking for cover from stones or sunken logs. It is also a good idea to do spinning in deeper water areas that have underwater humps, pools or banks to catch bigger pikes in summertime.

Great catch for Anatoly during midsummer 2014

We started June 2015 by angling of pikes. First we caught a small baitfish, which we used as a bait for pike angling. The end of May and beginning of June are good for catching pikes of 1 to 3 kg right along our shallow cottage shoreline. Pikes of this size contain only low levels of mercury and they are the most suitable size for cooking. Making a rig for pike angling is a simple task. Attach a swivel to a leader line of 50 – 60 cm long. Thread a big fishing float in to the line and attach one single or triple hook to the another end of the line. It is not necessary to use any line weight in this rig.

Pike, 2.9 kg`s. Catched in Cottage Jokiniemi June 2nd 2015.

Smoked pike is a very tasty meal. For smoking we use a gas burner, which makes controlling the smoking process easy for everyone. You get a good aroma of wood as well as a juicy and moist texture to your smoked fish with this equipment.

Smoking fish in Cottage Jokiniemi.
 If you have never smoked fish, here's a quick guide for smoking pike, zander and big perch: 

Place the scaled and gutted fish onto a bed of coarse sea salt for a couple of hours. Sprinkle salt generously on the skin of the fish and also apply some on the inside. Place some alder wood chips or sawdust on the bottom of the fish smoker such that it is almost covered. Shake the excess salt from the fish and place them onto the grill. Close the smoker lid, light the fire and smoke on a highest flame for about 20 – 30 minutes and another 20 – 30 minutes on a lowish flame. The fish is ready when its skin is nicely golden-brown and the scales come off easily when you pull them with your fingers.

Hot and sunny summedays of June are perfect for catching big perches on Lake Saimaa. Bite can be wild when you find a flock of perches eating smaller fishes. Perch + 500 gramms caught 22 June 2015.

Bread Crumbs-Coated Fried Perch

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 cups bread crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon whitepepper
  •  1/4 teaspoon dried garlic
  • 1 pound / 500 grammes lake perch fillets
  • Vegetable oil
In a shallow bowl, beat eggs and milk. In another shallow bowl, combine bread crumbs, garlic, salt, and whitepepper. Dip the perch in egg mixture, then coat with crumbs. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Fry fish for several minutes on each side or until it flakes easily with a fork

Tip from our fishing guide and company owner Mr. Jari Kayhko:

 I have been fishing for over 30 years on these waters and I have learned that the period from the beginning of June to Midsummer (which will be on June 25th in 2016) is very good for big pike fishing near our fishing cottage. This is due to the coldness of the waters and the end of spawning period, which makes big pikes hungry and ready for catching. There are also plenty of smaller pikes hunting in shallow water, which makes fishing very active with lots of biting and actual catches.

Fishing Reports of June 2016

 The first week of June was exceptionally hot and summery this year, and it brought us a group of five fishermen from Latvia.

 They had fantastic weather conditions to fish for pikes and perches by spinning and trolling on Lake Saimaa, as well as to go fly-fishing for brown trout on the rapids in Heinävesi.

Pikes were particularly eager to bite in the evening time, making it easy for our guests to cook delicious pike dishes at our cottage.

 All aboard. Riga-Tallinn-Helsinki, plus 5 hours drive to The Fishing Cottage Jokiniemi. Everything is clear - thanks Jari for detailed instructions. Our group had an opportunity to fish local Lake Saimaa and also went for fly-fishing trout in near-by area streams. Each evening we had a gourmet fishing meals accompanied with a splash of wine (vodka, whisky, etc.). Accommodation environment positively surprised us- there was much MORE than we expected from "country cabin". Using 2 boats was smart idea- we split into 2 groups and had twice more opportunities to learn waters. It paid back. Each day there were 10-12 good size pikes cached and same amount released. Two nice pikes were lost because one broke our landing net and another broke brided cord ( we estimated size of pikes in 8-10kg each). During evening gatherings Jari was giving us valuable advice, in exchange - we share own observations and established plan for next day challenge. Even weather conditions were difficult (too hot) we managed get fish each day, enjoy calm nature and comfort of accommodation.

Ervīns, on a behalf of Northproject team (Latvia)

Second Week of June:

The first week of June was very cold and rainy this year. It brought us another group of fishermen from Latvia.Unfortunately they did not sent me report or pictures of their holiday.

Third week of June:

In June 2016 we welcomed a family of four from St. Petersburg. The father, mother and their 2 daughters used our boats to catch pikes and perches in near by waters of our fishing cottage on Lake Saimaa.

Family did mainly trolling for pikes and bubble and hook angling for perches, breams and roaches. Biggest perch was caught by daughter of the family and it weighted over 500 grams.