Happy Canada Day long Weekend!
If it floats your boat you can break out the poutine and maple syrup, wear your red lumberjack shirt and toque while watching old footage of the Stanley Cup – or we recommend you reserve some patio time, escape to the beach or better yet get out on the water for some fishing!
This is going to be a great weekend for weather and looking 14 days out, there is only sun on the long term forecast.
On the saltwater front things have not been hot but we are catching fish off Bowen and coho are starting to show up off the Cap mouth. We have had boats out all week so don’t miss Jason’s report with all the details from the water.
With nice water levels on the Capilano River we are hearing good coho reports and with this long stretch of warm weather the water levels will decrease and we should see some good beach fishing soon. Heading out this weekend for the river in the morning and some beach scouting in the afternoon is a good bet. Check out the Capilano report for more information.
The Skagit is open this weekend and if you are still don’t have plans for your long weekend make heading out to the Skagit your plan. The best fishing of the season is usually a little later but getting out scouting now should produce some fish and pay off if you plan to do a couple trips over the next few months. Matt was looking at water levels in last week’s report so check that out if you are debating a trip and take a look at his overview on how to fish the Skagit system in the Skagit Fishing Report below.
The Vedder is also opening on the 1st for chinook. On most years a few fish will be caught in the first week but with high water it is a challenge. The fishery usually gets good at the end of next month. If you are heading out swing big blue and chartreuse flies or fish roe and Colorado blades under a float. In the early season most fish are taken on the lower river around Vedder Crossing and as the season progresses the fish move up the system. Watch out for sockeye when fishing this time of year. They are catch and release only. The population is fragile and needs protecting.
Lakes are heating up but there should still be some great lake fishing this weekend. With higher water temps we will see a diverse selection of bug hatches and the fish may move to deeper water with the heat. This week’s lake report from Andre has more details.
We’re taking a bit of time to celebrate Canada Day this weekend but will be open this Saturday to ensure you have time to gear up for your long weekend fishing expeditions.
Friday June 30 – 10AM – 7PM
Saturday July 1 – 10AM – 6PM
Sunday July 2 – 11AM – 5PM
Monday July 3 – Closed
Happy Canada Day!
Vancouver Chinook Classic Catch and Release Derby
The Vancouver Chinook Classic is a premier 2-day Catch and Release Salmon Fishing Event hosted annually at the new Pier 73 Marina at the Pacific Gateway Hotel. This is one of our FAVOURITE events of the summer angling season and something we look forward to each year.
REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN for the tournament and at $300 per angler (supply your own boat) you can’t beat that for an amazing weekend and a chance at the largest cash prize of any fishing derby in Vancouver!
Don’t have your own boat? Experience the Vancouver Chinook Classic on one of our Grady White boats outfitted with the best tackle and fully guided for $1,000 per day (non-inclusive of angler fee). To inquire contact us on our charter line at 778.788.8582.
More details on this not to be missed tournament weekend here!
CLASSES AND COURSES
Fly Fishing On Beaches
Book this course early as we sold out all 3 courses in 2016 and the July 5 date is already sold out!!
This single evening 3hr seminar will cover the basic principles needed to be an effective beach fly fishermen in BC from Howe Sound to the east coast of Vancouver Island. Topics covered will include rods, reels, fly lines, flies, tides, and techniques. Andre Stepanian, the instructor for this course, has been chasing salmon on our local beaches for over two decades.
Dates: July 5 – SOLD OUT, July 10 or July 18
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Mastering Local Saltwater Salmon Fishing
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: Jul 17 Guided: Jul 21, 22 or 23
Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
FRIDAY FEATURE PRODUCT
Trophy Tyee Mooching Reels + Old Stock Hardy Reels
In this week’s report we have 2 big deals – one, for the saltwater anglers and one for the fly fisherman. In honour Canada’s 150th Birthday these deals will be on ALL summer long while supplies last!
If you are looking for a great downrigger/mooching reel to equip your boat check out the Trophy Tyee Mooching reels. They are regular $369.99 but for this week only are on sale at $269.99 while supplies last. This is an amazing deal and stock will not last.
For the fly fisherman we have some great deals on old stock Hardy Reels
Hardy Feather Weight 30% off Reg. $290.00 now $199.99
Hardy Princes 30% off Reg. $330.00 now $229.99
Hardy Marquis #1 30% off Reg. $350.00 now $245.00
ALSO – All Hardy Feather Weight & Princes Spools are 40% off While Supplies Last
FRESHWATER FISHING REPORTS
Capilano River Fishing Report
Well July is almost upon us and the Capilano still is wet; there’s a sight that we don’t see every year! This is bad for beach fishing opportunities but good news for those of us who enjoy fishing the river. Most of the fish are still not stopping at the mouth so fresh fish are coming into the freshwater portion every day. While they can be hard to entice, there have been quite a few positive reports lately from anglers heading out either first light or last light. With the current water levels (no pun intended) we should see some decent drift fishing opportunities at least for one more week before we see more seasonal low water conditions. Pro-cured roe is the weapon of choice for drifters, but don’t disregard lures such as Gibbs Crocs, Vibrax Spinners, and Mepps Spinners especially in the slower moving pools. Low water is also key for successful fly fishing on the Capilano; small olive patterns such as Andre’s special Cap Bugger on a fast sinking line can work wonders in the deep canyon runs.
Skagit River Fishing Report
The Skagit is one of the best local trout rivers for fly fishing. It is a classic bug rich environment and though there is a very healthy population of rainbow trout, cutthroat and bull trout it takes skill and an understanding of aquatic bug life to match the hatch and have success. This is why I enjoy this fishery. I have been fishing the Skagit since I was 13 and to this day I learn something new on almost every trip.
For rods, I fish 4wts and 3wts but 5wts and even 6 wt rods will work. In a perfect world you fish a 8-9ft 3wt for dry fly fishing, a 9.5ft 4wt for nymphing and a 6wt for swinging patterns. I usually pack all 3 but if you have to have one, a 4wt is ideal.
On a simple level you need to understand the 3 basic presentations of fly fishing. Nymphing, Swung fly and dry fly fishing.
It is very common I will use all three techniques in a given day on the Skagit. There is a healthy population of mayflies, stone flies and caddis. We use the dry fly and nymphing presentation to imitate these species.
On the nymphing front, equip yourself with a floating line, and a 9ft 5lb leader. Standard taper monofilament leaders will work but at least for nymphing, fluorocarbon sinks faster and is less visible making a 9-10ft fluorocarbon leader idea. I build custom fluorocarbon leaders for this fishery and if you are interested come down to the shop and the guys will show you how I tie them.
On the 9-10ft leader you will want to attach fluorocarbon tippet. There are a number of advanced ways to do this but the simple method is to attach 18 inches of 4-5lb fluorocarbon. Behind the tippet knot you will attach a small spilt shot and then the fly. Lastly we recommend you anchor a strike indicator in the first 2-3 ft of the leader.
My Nymphing Checklist:
- 5lb tippet
- Split shot
Though I carry hundreds of flies with me on the Skagit my favorites are the prince nymph, the hare’s ear and a golden stone on size 10-14.
On the dry fly front we will need to use monofilament because fluorocarbon will make the dry fly sink. Again a 9ft 5lb taper leader is best. I will still add 18 inches to 2 feet of 3-4 lb tippet before tying on a fly. Dry fly floatant is a must and my go to flies are orange stimulations, parachute mayfly patterns in grey, brown and green and then yellow caddis patterns. There is a wide variety to sizes. Some of my favorite mayflies are as large as a size 8 and I have seen caddis and mayflies as small as a 22. Size 12 is a safe bet but building a box with variety is key.
Lastly there is a large population of bull trout on the Skagit and swinging medium to large olive, white, black or even purple streamer patterns can be very successful. You can do this with a floating line and a very heavy fly but sink tips are much more effective. You can simply loop a sinking 10-12 ft versi leader in the 4-7ips rating onto your floating line. If I am only carrying one rod, this is a good trick but they do not cast as well as a dedicated sink tip line or single hand Spey style sink tip line. Commando heads are very good for this purpose. Off the sink tip I use 4ft of 8lb maxima or equivalent stiff mono tippet material.
If you are heading out this weekend or plan to hit the Skagit over the next few months come in and we will help you round out your fly box and show you how to set up your leaders. If you have hit the Skagit before and know the basics come down and talk to Matt about how he makes his custom leaders and setups.
The Skagit is 100% catch and release and you will need to make sure all your barbs are pinched.
STILLWATER FISHING REPORTS
Interior Lakes Fishing Report
I have had some good reports of damsel hatches followed by caddis in the evening. Also at this time we will see gumphus dragons flying around, especially in the lakes in the Cariboo Region. As we head into July it is safe to say that we are approaching the summer doldrums as the temperature of the water in many lakes exceeds 70 degrees. That said, lake fishing is not over as you can fish Tunkwa all through out the summer with the “bomber hatch” which are big chironomids that are tied on a size 8 hook. If you are fishing deeper lakes, fish a Booby fly on a full sink line, as the trout will be in the cooler water in the deeper parts of the lake. Another couple of lakes to consider fishing throughout the summer are Stoney, Minnie and Salmon Lake.
SALTWATER FISHING REPORTS
Beach Fishing Outlook
If you are fly fishing, the tides are not in your favour until July 4 when the tides are below 6 feet in the morning. This will allow you to wade out to the drop off. Last week the tides were great for fly fishing off the beach. I saw a few fish where we would normally be able to stand close enough and fish for them on a day with suitable tides. This is good sign as the tides from Tuesday onwards are going to be good to cast to these fish. Make sure you take advantage of this, as the fish are fresh and they are more prone to biting. The Capilano River continues to have good high water levels. This makes the river fishing better than the beach. I have already heard of fish caught on gear and fly in the cable pool. Alex has more details on the river fishing in his report. Also keep your eyes out for the arrival of pink salmon soon as this could happen overnight.
See you on the beach.
Vancouver Saltwater Salmon Fishing Report
Happy Canada Day Long Weekend! There is lots going on out in the saltwater this time of year, so let’s get right into it!
The coho are in the Cap, if you don’t think so just take a trip to the hatchery and you will see that it is packed with nice size coho and anglers are catching them in the Cable Pool. There hasn’t been much effort by the saltwater anglers off W. Van, but the time to start looking around is right now. There have been a few fish off Point Atkinson, Fisheries, and W. Van. As usual, these early fish don’t hang around too long if the river has decent flow, and right now it does, but it is still worth taking a look around. White, white and red, white and pink, and peach colour hootchies on a 28 inch leader to a chrome or UV flasher will get the job done. The fish are generally shallow this time of year, in the top 30 feet of the water column. Sometimes on calm, sunny day they will go a bit deeper, but for the most part fish shallow and expect your best catches to be in the morning or evening.
There are still some chinook getting caught off S. Bowen from Cowan Point to Roger Curtis. Bait and spoons fished 60-120 on the riggers with glow flashers on the deeper lines and UV or chrome flasher on the top lines has been the go to tactic for a few months now. There have been a few big fish caught in the last few days and these are very likely Squamish chinook that start to roll into Howe Sound this time of year.
Speaking of Howe Sound, Canada Day generally marks the beginning of anglers looking for large Squamish bound fish around Hole in the Wall. This is a hit and miss fishery, so don’t wait for the hot report, as the fishing is often slow by the time you get there. These fish are just stopping by to say hi on their way up the Sound so they are here one day and gone the next. Bait seems to work best and early morning usually sees the best bite. Try as shallow as 45 if you are there first light but for the most part the action is 60-120 on the riggers.
It won’t be long before we start hearing of a few chinook off the Bell Buoy as well. This fishery usually picks up around mid July but if you are only out for a few hours this weekend and want a crack at big chinook, try the Bell Buoy, with anchovies or herring, 50-80 on the riggers and you might be surprised.
Not many boats have been over at Thrasher in the last 2 weeks of June because of the NW winds, but in recent days we have finally managed to make it across and have had some decent fishing. It is hard to say if this is just a blip on the radar or if it will continue for a few weeks as this time of year it usually slows down off Gabriola. In the meantime we will take these lighter winds and bent rods and keep fishing there until it slows down. The fish have been pretty deep, 170-225 on the riggers with 18 pound cannonballs and glow flashers and glow hootchies are the go to.
See you in the shop or on the water,