Midsummer’s Eve is a big deal in Norway. The day is to celebrate the brightest day of the year. People go camping, boating and BBQs at the beach. Midsummer’s Eve is about enjoying the endless sunshine.
However, in Alta, shops close early, people leave work before time and the city becomes a ghost town as everyone has headed to the rivers. Midsummer’s Eve is the last day of free fishing in Alta and all the locals are out in force along the banks to catch some Midsummer’s salmon. The salmon have started making their way back up to their breeding waters in June. They aren’t hungry at all when they get to the rivers as they have already filled up in the ocean, so this makes it extra tricky to catch a one.
At Twelve-midnight, when the sun is high in the sky, the free fishing ends. Alta folk sure know the rules down to the letter–if you hook a fish before midnight, even if it is 11:59pm, you are allowed to keep it no matter how long it takes you to reel it in.