Well the weather was a little interesting this week but this weekend looks perfect! Relatively light winds are in the forecast with a perfect mix of high temperatures, sun and some cloud to break up the heat.
Saltwater fishing has been very solid all week and with any luck it will continue. At times we have had to work for bites but almost every day has seen a good window of action. There have been a number of spots producing fish so make sure to check out Jason’s Vancouver Saltwater report.
Though we are still not hearing solid Capilano River reports it should pick up any day. Last week in the Capilano report we talked about fly fishing with the Cap Bugger. This week we look at the standard tricks for hooking Capilano coho on a gear rod.
We are hearing great reports from the interior lake anglers and this week. Since we are all thinking about lakes we have a very special offer.
LIMITED VERY SPECIAL FLY OFFER! $65 for Andre’s Reserve Damsel Box
Only 2 in stock!
It is getting close to the time when fish will start keying in on damsel patterns. Andre has opened his personal fly box to share his 3 secret patterns for imitating damsels. This is a very limited offer. These flies have never been seen in the fly bin of any fly shop… ever. We wanted to keep it that way. We have two fly boxes with 15 flies in each. This is a first come first serve offer and we will not be breaking up the boxes. Each box has the perfect amount of flies to last a good season of fishing damsels. The first 2 anglers that come down to the shop can purchase one of the two boxes (Boxes including flies are $65+GST). If you miss out on one of the two boxes, the patterns will not be available again but if you come down to the shop and ask very nicely, André will show you how to tie them. Good Luck!
Last but not least we have two new brands in the shop! Two of the coolest fishing inspired clothing companies are now available – Howler Brothers and Hook and Vice. If you are looking for some cool summer fishing apparel or even some around town clothes and reflect your love of fishing, check out Jordan’s review of the two brands and come down to the shop. All Howler Brothers and Hook and Vice gear is 10% off this week!
CLASSES AND COURSES
Introduction To Fly Tying
There is no greater satisfaction than catching a fish with a fly you tied yourself. This course was specifically designed to give you the fundamental skills needed to tie proven fly patterns used here in BC for trout, salmon, and steelhead. This course consists of 3 sessions; each session is 3hrs. Students are required to supply their own vise, tools and materials. A 10% discount is available on materials and tools purchased for the course.
Dates: Jun 5, 12 & 19
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Introduction To Fly Fishing
This course was specifically designed to give the new fly fisher the basic knowledge, casting skills and fly fishing strategies to effectively fish our local BC waters. This course is comprised of two sessions; 3hr evening seminar and a 3hr casting session. The dates below show the seminar date first and casting date second.
Dates: June 21 (seminar) and June 24 (casting)
Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Casting Time(s): 10am – 1pm or 2pm -5pm
Introduction to Fly Fishing Trout Streams
Stalking trout on mountain streams defines fly fishing. In this course we will teach you the fundamental techniques for fly fishing trout streams; dry fly fishing, nymphing, and streamer fishing. This course will get you as close to being Brad Pitt (River Runs Through It) as you will ever be! This course is comprised of one 3hr evening seminar.
Date: June 20
Time:6:30pm – 9:30pm
Mastering Local Saltwater Salmon
Over 50 million salmon migrate past Vancouver annually. Learn how to catch these fish with a Pacific Angler. This course offers an in-depth look at the local saltwater scene. We cover the local saltwater salmon fishing for the entire year, showing you the how, when, and where. This course includes a 3hr evening seminar and a fully guided day on the water in one of our Grady Whites.
Dates: Seminar: Jun 7 Guided: Jun 10 or 11
SOLD OUT – call the shop to be added to the waitlist for potential new dates!
Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Call us at the shop to sign up for any of our June or other upcoming classes – 604-872-2204
FRIDAY FEATURE PRODUCT
Howler Brothers and Hook and Vice
For this week’s Friday Feature Product, The Pacific Angler team are excited and proud to highlight a couple of new brands. You may have seen me wearing some of their clothes and gear here in the shop or on the water over the past few years, or more recently, some of their hats that are released in small batches. Both Brands are gaining a massive following and it is all based on a clean cool fishing inspired style.
Howler Brothers shirts have become a mainstay in my wardrobe over the past few years. I got my fist shirts from them in 2013 and love the fact that whether I am out on the water or out on the town I can rock the same gear. They have a very cool clean style that will appeal to anyone who loves surfing, beach life and fishing.
When I first saw the Hook and Vice hats, I knew I needed to have one! My (obsessive) collection of hats wouldn’t be completed until I did. With modern designs and various snap-back and Velcro options, along with trucker, mesh back, and high-crowns, these hats are perfect for everyone.
With designs and concepts born out of the love for adventure and water, both companies offer functional and stylish pieces that can be worn to the river, beach, lake, or BBQ. Whether or not you’re setting out to catch waves, salmon, trout, or sailfish- or even an après-fish buzz, Howler Brothers and Hook and Vice are the perfect complement to any angler’s closet, over-night bag, or go-to when heading to the water.
Howler Brothers was founded by Chase Heard and Andy Stepanian, two friends who grew up spending their summers exploring the waters and fisheries of Florida and Virginia while also riding those states local waves.
Their vision for Howler – and the name Howler Brothers – was inspired by a sound they each heard on surf trips to Costa Rica: the call of the loudest animal in North America, the Howler Monkey. After hearing it a few times, the sound became a part of the collective feeling of being in Central America and serves as a constant reminder that you’re in a good place, doing something you love.
With this emotional connection as a base line, Heard and Stepanian formed Howler Brothers to craft limited run, high quality clothing and goods that draw inspiration from the style and tradition of surfing and coastal sports- notably fishing. They set out to make gear that works in the water, on the boat, and around the fire pit when the stories are told. Clothes you might wear when you’re hearing Howler Monkeys from your hut, the sound of a kicker starting up before you drop an anchovy, or after a day well spent hiking the local rivers. Or clothes to wear when you’re wishing you were.
Howler Brothers clothing designs honour the soul, passion and timeless style of sports such as surfing and fly fishing but update historic garment ideas with modern influence from waves, water, geography, fashion and art. Every garment and accessory is crafted with functionality and attention to detail at the forefront. They avoid trendy or overly traditional ideas and use small batch production and collaborations with artists and craftsmen to create original, alternative offerings.
Hook and Vice
Hook and Vice creator Noel Fox grew up fishing right here in British Columbia. As a small child fishing is what provided for the family when times were tough and being a good fisherman came with a lot of honor. He would spend countless hours hiking rivers, canoeing lakes, and fishing the ocean blue. Growing up off the grid on Vancouver Island and then on the Slocan River in the Kootenays, it was there that Noel developed a deep love for adventure, the outdoors, and fly fishing.
Since college, Noel has been making the world a better place by building powerful brands for clients he believes in. His company, FreeBird Agency, has the perfect name. With a name like FreeBird, clients can’t be too upset if he’s not able to reply to emails or calls because he’s out of cell range exploring, hiking, and fishing.
After thinking about starting a fly fishing company for a long time, Hook and Vice was created out of necessity after his lucky hat disintegrated after years of wearing it. Searching high and low for a new lucky hat that exuded adventure, good times, outdoors, and fly fishing, he decided to make his own and called it Hook And Vice. Friends and strangers alike were pretty stoked on it and he was flooded with people asking where they could get one. Turns out everyone needs a little luck so he made a few more as an experiment and here we are.
FRESHWATER FISHING REPORTS
Capilano River Fishing Report
Excitement is mounting and there are more and more whispers surrounding the first local freshwater salmon opportunity on the North Shore. It is now June and we expect to see the first good push of Coho coming into the Capilano any day now. This can be a tough fishery but with a little bit of perseverance it is possible to have amazing success. Andre covered how to approach this fishery with a fly rod in our last report and for this week I will give a little bit of insight into the gear fishing side.
Regardless of your method of choice, the water level plays an imperative role on the effectiveness of each. For those that don’t know, a great resource for checking water height is at the following link: (www.vankayak.org/capcam/). Gear fishing can cover both high and low conditions, but let’s break it down further and relate it back to the vankayak.org graph.
Drift fishing is best when the water is between 2 and 4 on the graph. This is because there is a good amount of flow throughout the river, which sets up perfect “drifts”. A drift fishing setup consists of a longer rod in the 9′-11’3″ range in spinning, baitcasting, or centerpin configurations. We have a number of Trophy, Fenwick, and G. Loomis rods in the Shop that will fit the bill. These fish are not big so using heavy line is not necessary, though depending on the fishing location heavier line may help guide the fish to a safe spot for landing. I like running 8-12lb STS or Blue Label fluorocarbon for my leader as fluoro is harder for the fish to see and gets the bait down to the fish faster. In addition, while pencil lead is certainly usable this fishery does sometimes require a level of finesse so spaced out split shot can buy you a precious extra second before the fish feels the weight and decides to spit the hook. Pro-cured roe, deli shrimp, colorado blades, and egg imitations such as trout beads are all top producers and the hooks I trust the most are Gamakatsu and Owner Cutting Point in sizes 4 and 2. These coho are masters at stealing bait, so using the most sensitive float you can get away with coupled with either the split shot or small chunk of pencil lead is pretty crucial in not missing fish. Small Clear Drifts and 20gram DNE floats are perfect for this.
Lure fishing, on the other hand, is similar to fly fishing on this river as it typically excels in low water conditions. In relation to the graph that means anything at a level lower than 2, especially once we get into the >1 category, is prime real estate for chucking lures as it creates deep, stagnant pools that Coho tend to school up in. This can be an extremely simple setup with a spoon or spinner tied to a 10-12lb monofilament or fluorocarbon leader. My favourites are the Gibbs Crocs (especially in the fire stripe pattern) in 3/16 to 3/8 size and the Blue Fox Vibrax spinners in sizes 2-4. Rods are relatively short compared to drift fishing, with rods in the 7-9’6″ range being ideal in either a spinning or baitcasting outfit. We have a number of options when it comes to piecing together a good lure setup for the Capilano as well as pre-done combos that are ready to go.
I must reiterate that this can be a tough fishery, but understanding how the water level affects the fishing will help you pinpoint what you should use the next time you check out this urban river. If you have any questions or require any gear, please don’t hesitate in visiting us at the Shop!
STILLWATER FISHING REPORTS
Interior Lakes Fishing Report
Lakes at 3600 ft and up to 4000 ft are fishing well now with temps rising up to 60 degrees. There were good report from Stoney Lake in Douglas lake ranch; fish were caught on chironomids along with lots of damsels hatching. Roche, Peter Hope, Glimpse, Harmon, Kump, Tunkwa, Marquart, Lundbom, Knouff, Community, Courtney, Corbett, Bleeker Lakes continue to fish well. Nicola and Stump Lake have a boat ban right now due to high water; this ban can be lifted at any day so be sure to check for updates.
Chironomid fishing is still the most productive way to fish but this is the time of year when the temperatures rise to high 50s and this is when the damsel nymphs start hatching so make sure you have damsel nymphs in different sizes and colours.
The way to fish damsel nymphs is by using a floating line with a long leader. You want to station yourself close to shore and retrieve the fly towards you. The damsel nymphs tend to swim to shore and crawl on weeds before they hatch to its adult stage. If the water is too choppy sometimes it’s best to use clear intermediate line to keep the nymph under the surface.
You will also notice May fly hatches in the afternoon if the sun gets covered or it is a cloudy day. May flies do not like excessive sunlight. To fish more efficiently throughout the day and catch all the hatches you want to have two rods set up with a floating line and one with a clear intermediate line ready to go. This way there is no lost time when changing reels or spools back and forth. Another tip I will give you is to organize you fly boxes so you are not struggling to find a specific pattern. Put chironomides, leeches and scuds, dragons and damsels and caddis in different boxes and label them. The more organized you are in your vessel the less frustrating it will be when racing to change presentations. Cariboo lakes are worth a try as it usually starts heating up from the first week of June onwards.
SALTWATER FISHING REPORTS
Vancouver Salmon Fishing Report
Fishing was pretty good this past week with lots of fish around in our local waters. With so many fish on this side of the pond we haven’t been heading over to Nanaimo, Thrasher, or Porlier very much. So this weeks report will focus on what is happening close to home.
Let’s start by talking about the water, more specifically the colour of it. The Fraser is in full freshet now, so lots of dirty water has been pumping out of the N Arm and S Arm. This dirty freshwater sits on top of the saltwater and makes things a little darker down there. As a result the bait is shallow and so are the chinook. We have been marking chinook on our sounder this past week from 50 to 100 feet and at times have even seen salmon slashing at bait on the surface. As a result productive downrigger depths have been 60 to 120 for the most part. Often a little shallower early in the day and a little deeper as the day progresses. Anchovies and spoons have been the most productive. For anchovies, a 6-foot leader and a glow green or glow green/chartreuse teaser head has been working well. For spoons, 3.5 and 4.0 Kingfisher spoons have been working. Productive colours have been Cookies n Cream, Irish Cream, Homeland Security, Yellow Tail, and Kitchen Sink. Productive flashers have been Salty Dawg, Yellow Green Kinetic with a glow stripe, Lemon Lime, Madi, and Betsy on your shallowest rod.
In terms of where to go, it has been interesting to see how drastically it changes each day. The bait and fish are moving around a lot, especially with the big tides we have had recently. This makes it a bit difficult as one morning you are into multiple fish in a location, you go there the next morning on pretty much the same tide, and the fish are gone. Sometimes you are into multiple fish with lots of boats around and other days you are a mile from the pack and doing well. The best thing to do is troll with the current to cover water until you find bait and chinook. Once you get some action, try doing some turns in that general area to stay on top of the fish. Don’t be afraid to put in a waypoint on your chart plotter to use as a reference. This past week there was good to great fishing from Cowan up to Roger Curtis, and then past that area all the way up to Gower. In terms of how far the fish are offshore it has varied from close to the rocks in 250 feet to as far out as 700 feet. As noted earlier each morning is different and you need to cover water to find the hot spot that morning.
Crabbing has been decent, definitely worth dropping the traps, but it won’t go down as a record year for crabbing.
See you on the water or in the shop,