Warm weather in the end of November is an oddity and it has thrown a wrench into a couple of our river fisheries but on the upside winter chinook fishing in 10 degree weather is awesome.
On the river front the Squamish got smoked Wednesday and Thursday by the warm weather and rain. She hit a 7 on the graph and it looks like it broke the monitor. The river is dropping as we write this but the forecast does not look good for the weekend. Matt was out last week and had some success. Check out his report for more details.
The valley rivers did not get hit as hard but they did spike up and are blown out. The Harrison is very high and hard to fish but we have a few reports from that direction and sloughs in the area have been fishing well.
The Vedder and Stave salmon seasons are winding down but the egging has been good and offer a cool alternative this time of year when we are waiting for the first pushes of steelhead. It will be interesting to see how good the fishing is after the water levels come down with tons of eggs disturbed from the gravel. Take a look at all the river reports for more details.
On the saltwater front like we said the weather has been good and the reports, though sporadic have been solid. Jason has more details at the end of the report.
We held our annual Steelhead Tying Jam Season on Wednesday and we want to thank all the feature tiers as well as everyone who turned out to tie and learn. It was a blast! Tons of you turned out to support and we hope everyone learned a few tricks from the masters.
Last but not least Black Friday – We are not jumping on the Black Friday bandwagon but we do have some great deals still in stock from our Salmon Sale. We have listed all the items that we have in stock and on sale below and remember that the famous Pacific Angler Boxing Week Sale is the biggest sale of our season and if you are hunting for deals you will not want to miss it this year! Boxing week will be here before you know it
CLASSES AND COURSES
Our 2017 Courses have come to an end for the year. Thanks to all our students who joined us this year and we hope that you each learned some tips and tricks to implement out on the water. Keep an eye on your inbox for our 2018 course lineup to be released soon
It has been a busy week with many events!
From the Sport Fishing Institutes Annual Policy Conference and the Big Splash Gala + Fundraiser to the annual pub night supporting the Steelhead Society it was a big week supporting many great causes. Thanks to everyone who attended and supported these important events.
We also wanted to say a big thank you to all that attended this week’s Fly Tying Jam Session! A shout out to Scott Baker McGarva, Dennis Gamboa, Scott Norris, Ben Gehrke, Andre Stepanian, Dimitri Roussanidis and Jordan Simpson, for tying flies and demonstrating techniques. It was a great night of tying, learning and catching up with friends!
FRIDAY FEATURE PRODUCTS
Fall Salmon Sale!
Discontinued Fly and Spey Lines
Rio Intouch Streamer Tip, WF5F/I, WF6F/I, WF7F/I x3 Regular $118.99 ALL 50% Off
Switch Chucker 5wt and 6wt All Regular $129.95 50% Off
Rio Outbound WF7I/S6 Regular $89.99 50% Off
Rio Scandi Shooting Head 610gr Regular $71.45 50% Off
Airflo Spey/Switch Regular $74.99 All 50% Off
Skagit Switch 360gr, 390gr, 450gr All 50% Off
Airflo Spey/Switch 50% Off
Skagit Compact Float 30gr & 450gr Regular $74.99 All 50% Off
Skagit Compact 390gr, 450gr Regular $74.99 All 50% Off
Select Kingfisher Spoons Regular $8.99 – $9.99 All 30% Off
Rapala Classic Moochers reg. $399, now $229
Trophy Tee Moocher $369, now $269
2017 Simms G3 Waders LL 12-13, ML, LK x2, XL Regular $599.99 All 20% OFF
Simms 2016 Dry Creek Boat Bag Reg $299.95 25% Off now $224.99
Sage 4250 spool Regular $180.00 30% Off
Sage 4650 reel; spare spool Regular $235.00 30% Off
Sage 3230 reel regular $260.00 30% Off
Sage Accel 7126-4 Regular $1105 30% Off now $773
Hope there is a good deal in here for you guys and now on to the report!
FRESHWATER FISHING REPORTS
Chilliwack River Fishing Report
While there are still small pushes of fresh coho and chum moving into the system, the salmon fishery on the Chilliwack has basically come to an end. That doesn’t mean that fishing is done on this river however, far from it in fact. Steelhead will begin trickling in now and though it isn’t necessarily worth a trip all the way out there for early steel yet (unless you are local) there is a great opportunity for bull trout, cutthroat trout, mountain whitefish, and rainbow trout.
These species are currently gorging themselves on chum and coho eggs and can be a ton of fun on appropriate gear. Egg flies or beads are the key here and they can be fished on both a 4-6wt fly rod or a light drift rod. For those thinking to get them on the fly a full floating line and a strike indicator are needed. It is basically a nymphing setup with a bead. To see how this is set up please refer to our “How To” video on setting up an advanced nymphing rig that Matt Sharp did on the Fishing With Rod YouTube channel or come swing by the shop as many of the guys here have intricate experience with this type of fishery.
For the gear chuckers you can simulate this setup by using a drifting rig; my favourite way is to do it with a centerpin as this allows you to use light terminal tackle but still get a drag free drift. Egg fishing, regardless of the type of gear you decide to use, can be extremely effective at this time of year so definitely give it a try. If you find you are missing a bunch of strikes, it is possible that you have come across a hungry school of mountain whitefish. Because of their small mouths they generally can’t take any plastic presentations like trout Beads and thus sometimes switching up to a more traditional egg fly or a soft jensen egg will allow them to take it.
In December we will get into the nitty gritty of chasing steelhead on the Vedder. For now though, enjoy this cool and relatively untapped trout fishery and who knows, maybe you might just find something big and chrome on the end of your line.
All the best,
Squamish River Fishing Report
Well we tested the waterproof jackets last weekend. It was freak’n wet. We were out Saturday and Sunday and found fish both days but had some challenging conditions. Funnily enough on Saturday the water was low and clear, even though it was dumping buckets. We found the pale peach-colored 6 mill eggs produced well and we hooked some pretty good-sized bulltrout. The river was rising and I was hoping that we would hit it right on Sunday. Unfortunately it rained a little too hard over night. When we arrived at the river it still had some clarity and we quickly hooked 2-3 fish but within an hour it was down to a foot of visibility and brown. We bounced around and found a couple more fish but I feel that we missed the sweet spot by about 5 hours. I love a rising river to push eggs out of the gravel but you will find that when it really starts to rise even if there is still clarity the fish get scared and stop biting.
Looking at the graphs you can see the blow out on Sunday. Use these numbers to help you predict future fishing.
This week we have seen some more warm wet weather. Usually I love warm wet weather for this fishery but not when it is mixed with this much rain. The graph is literally broken. The river hit 7m on the graph. I have not heard anything from the water in the last day and when looking at the other graphs in the area is safe to say it is not fishable today. As of yesterday the upper river rod was closed and we expect some road damage. The river is dropping but we also have more rain and warmth in the forecast. All I can say it keep an eye on water levels and the forecast. When things settle we should have great fishing and it looks as though that could happen next week when things get cold again.
Good luck out there!
Harrison River Fishing Report
The river is high and it is only accessible by boat now. The forecast is calling for more rain and we are almost wrapping up the season for this year. The coho are pretty much coloured and getting ready to spawn so this is a good indication that the coho fishery is coming to an end. Please do not intentionally target spawning coho and if you hook one by accident then handle with care. However with this rain the Nicomen slough continues fishing well as coho and chum are still pushing trough especially after high tide. The slough is a great place to fish spoons and spinners as there is not a lot of back cast room for fly fishing. If you don’t mind the rain I would definitely give the slough a try before it ends soon. You can also try Norrish creek starting below the bridge all the way to the out flow at Nicomen slough. This system is a little better for fly fishing as there is more room for back cast.
Stave River Report
Stave salmon fishing is coming to an end. There are still chances to get one or two fish, and we have had some reports of guys finding pods of late coho. This should continue for another week or so but it is at the end of days.
Although the salmon season on the Stave is wrapping up like many of the other salmon rivers in the lower mainland this is the perfect time to fish egg patterns for trout and whitefish.
Trout are abundant in the system as lots of them follow the salmon in to gorge on dead eggs and flesh.
Due to the large amount of chum spawning in the system, roe gets washed downstream and trout will be busy picking them up. Thus, fishing 8mm trout bead near the bottom can be very effective. When you find riffles below spawning chum you will usually find feeding trout species.
There are also lots of whitefish that are feeding on eggs. We have found that fishing with a bead isn’t a great option if you wanted to catch these fish. Whitefish have small mouth and they will have hard time picking up bigger beads and egg imitations. They are very aggressive though, so you can easily get them with small egg pattern flies and wool ties. If you wanted to hook lots of them on light gear, add some scent to it can also up the game.
Be safe out there,
SALTWATER FISHING REPORTS
Vancouver Saltwater Salmon Fishing Report
Windy and wet has been the theme these last couple of weeks and it looks like that isn’t going to change much for this weekend. Not too much has changed on the fishing front either. There has been moderate effort from our guide boats and customers in the traditional winter chinook spots of Howe Sound, Vancouver Harbour and the Gulf Islands. Success has been decent, if you put the time in you will get the rewards, and there has been a mix of undersize fish and legal fish on most outings. Crabbing and prawning continues to be decent.
As many of you know, winter chinook fishing is highly variable, they move around a lot, so don’t wait for the hot report. Unless you can go the very next day, the report really doesn’t carry too much weight as the fish may have moved on. The best thing to do is look at the wind and weather and try and pick your days, or if you have to go on the weekend, just bundle up and head out there!
In terms of productive gear, glow flashers, glow spoons, and glow hootchies, fished just off the bottom are the way to go. If you get a legal size chinook it can be a good idea to check its stomach contents and see the size of feed, if any, that it has been feeding on. Sometimes the fish are on larger herring, sometimes small herring, or even anchovies. Matching the size of your spoon to the feed is always a good idea. With today’s wide variety of productive spoons, this is easy to do. Skinny G and Koho Killer spoons are good choices for representing smaller bait and the Kingfisher or G –Force spoons in sizes 2.5 up to 4.0 will represent larger bait. It’s a good idea to have a variety of sizes and colours in your tackle box.
See you on the water or in the shop,