Eric Clapton generally is rated among the top rock guitarists of all time, but Slowhand has a lesser-known talent as a fly fisherman.
IceNews.is reports that the 70-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer was fishing this past weekend while vacationing in Iceland when he landed the largest salmon caught all summer in the Vatnsdalsá River, which is famous for the size of the salmon that swim in its waters.
According to the website, Clapton spent more than a half hour trying to land the fish, which weighed 28 pounds and was 108 centimeters — or about three-and-a-half feet — long. Clapton’s guide told Iceland’s Morgunbladid newspaper that after the rocker hooked the salmon, he had to run about a kilometre down the river before finally bringing the fish ashore.
People were allowed to start flyfishing in the Vatnsdalsá River, located in northern Iceland, in 1936. In 1997, the association that regulates fishing in the river implemented a “catch and release” policy for all salmon caught there.
Clapton discussed his passion for fishing in Iceland several years ago in a video filmed for the Inspired by Iceland website. In the clip, he reveals that he began salmon fishing in the country in the early 2000s, and explains that he came to enjoy the unique landscape, the peaceful quality and the character of the people of northern Iceland.
“It’s the thing I look forward to every year, in August we go out there and fish,” Clapton reveals. “It’s very safe and the people are honest, and so I kind of look forward to going there because I can forget everything.”