Well it was an interesting week in the fishing world. DFO has decided to close the Fraser both in the tidal and non tidal portions of the river. They cited low sockeye number as the reason and also commended sports anglers for using selective fishing techniques. Meaning that we as a community have done a good job of not bottom bouncing but unfortunately it was not enough. There are a number of opinions and theories as to the reasoning behind the closure and as usual with the Friday Fishing Report we are going to avoid getting into political debate. That said it is unfortunate and a cause for concern. This will obviously affect all anglers going bar fishing the Fraser and saltwater anglers will need to break out their charts and avoid fishing inside the line at the mouth of the Fraser. Read the regulations section below and familiarize yourself with the details of the closure.
All is not doom and gloom. There are still a number of awesome fisheries worth hitting and we expect fishing to improve over the next week. The weather looks like it will be turning and we are in for some sun and warm weather. This will mean that the trout fisheries, like the Skagit and Thompson that rely on heat to get the bugs hatching should be very good. Check out the Skagit report for more details.
The heat will also keep them from opening the dam on the Capilano. Given that we expect low and clear water for the future. There are still options to fish in the river and you can check out the Capilano River report below for some tactics to fish low clear water but we are recommending anglers look to the beach. We have had mixed reports but it should continue to improve over the next week. Check out the beach report for details on the Ambleside front.
In the saltwater world things have been a challenge but any day that could turn around. We can still fish in the direction of the Fraser outside the boundary line and on any given tide we could see the first big waves of chinook hitting the bell buoy. Check out Jason’s report for more details.
Last but not least we have some big product news and we are running a Summer Mini Sale with some awesome deals on discontinued product. You will not want to miss out!
Be sure you are up to speed with all of the recent regulations related to the Fraser. Here is a quick round up or recently announced regulations.
5th Annual Vancouver Chinook Classic – August 20 + 21, 2016
You’ve got one week left to register! Do not miss out on this amazing tournament. For only $300 per registered angler you can spend the weekend on the water and land the winning fish!
Aside from the chance at $15,000 for reeling in the winning fish registration includes a hot fisherman’s breakfast each morning, moorage at Pier 73 Marina and Yacht Club, Saturday evening dinner and an afternoon BBQ awards ceremony on Sunday. All that plus some amazing prizes and auction items!
Check out all of the details for this year’s tournament and download your registration form here!
CLASSES AND COURSES
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: Seminar Aug 22, Casting August 28
Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Casting Time: 2pm -5pm
NEW PRODUCT AND BIG SAVINGS
Big news this week! Every year ICAST is held in Florida. This is the event where all the big fishing manufactures announce new product and showcase the direction of their brand for the following year. This year`s ICAST was a big one. A number of our favorite brands are coming out with new products!
The biggest news is the new X rod from sage. It swept the field at ICAST winning best in show along with a host of other awards. We just received our first X rods in the shop; we have a full spread of single hand rods and we even got our hands on a 7wt Spey. Our very own Matt Sharp had a chance to preview the rod a few months ago and has been fishing it for some time. If you missed his review 2 weeks ago, click here for a no holds barred review of the new technology and the 5wt Sage X.
If you were waiting to see one in person or are in the market for a rod on the cutting edge of technology, come down to the shop and check them out! They Sell for $1150.
We also have a couple of other very cool new products from Sage and Redington. We have the new 6200 series Sage Fly reel, Sage’s flagship saltwater reel. This thing is feather light but bomb proof. It sells for $595
We also have some great stuff from Redington. They have come out with a reel that we can only say is stunning and extremely light. At a price that is debatably the best value on the market we expect it to be a top seller. The New Rise Reel starts at 65 and we have a full selection of sizes. Come by and check them out.
Last but not least Redington has come out with a new rod to replace the Redington Voyant. The Voyant has long been the guides’ choice rod as it is a rod that a beginner can cast but an expert can pick up and not be held back. With a very cool green finish, an extremely light construction, and a recovery speed that is unmatched in the sub $300 price point we think the New Vice Rod from Redington will be a go to “Guide” rod for the next generation. Retailing at 75.00 you can’t go wrong with this rod.
Now with all the cool new stuff there is a second benefit. The products that they replace are now on SALE at big discounts.
SUMMER SALE ITEMS
We are upping our Sage One Sale price to 35% off! This rod has been widely considered the best fast action rod on the market for the last 5 years. If you have ever drooled over one but could not justify the cost now is the time to reconsider. At $715 you can’t go wrong. Supplies are limited and when they are gone they are gone. I expect anglers to be raving about the Sage One for years to come.
The other big product that was replaced this year is the Rise reel from Redington. This has been our number one selling reel for over 3 years. It is an awesome disc drag bar stock reel that is tuff as nails. They range for 35-75 depending on size. We are blowing them out at 30% off so this means you can get into one for 165$! This is a steal but again supplies are limited so act fast.
Obviously that was all good news for our fly fishing anglers but don’t worry we are not going to leave out the saltwater anglers. We also have some awesome prices on a few items that rarely go on sale.
They may not be big ticket items but these are your bread a butter fish catching machines.
We have picked 4 of our favorite spoons and they are all on sale for 1 week only at 15% off! You can’t beat this price and you will not see it again. Now is the time to load up!
ONE WEEK ONLY – FRIDAY AUGUST 12, 2016 – SUNDAY AUGUST 21, 2016
Home Land security King Fisher Spoons 15% off
Pink Sink King Fisher Spoons 15% off
Flaming Hans King Fisher Spoons 15% off
ALL Coho Killers 15% off
Owner Stinger siwash Hooks – 15% off
Amundson Mooching Reels – 10% off Reg $399
If you can`t make it down to the shop call us. If you pay by credit card we can put sales items on hold so you do not miss out. 604-872-2204
Now on to the report!
FRESHWATER FISHING REPORTS
Vedder River Fishing Report
From everything we have heard the Vedder has slowed down for red chinook. There should still be fish trickling into the system and lots of angler are catching and releasing sockeye. Coho, chum and fall chinook will be hitting the river and we can expect the odd report before the end of August but middle to end of September will be when we really start seeing big numbers.
Capilano River Report
The water has been low for some time now, making for pretty poor fishing within the river itself. Most anglers will now be heading to the mouth in search of a Capilano-bound Coho. For those that still wish to fish the river, be prepared for very clear conditions with easily spooked fish. Since there is a bait ban in effect from August 1st until October 31st, your best options are to cast lures or to present a fly. A small spoon like a 3/16oz Gibb’s Croc or a Gibbs Koho 35 in orange or blue is a good bet, as well as size 2 or 3 Blue Fox Vibrax spinners. For an even more finesse lure presentation a small Mepps Black Fury spinner can be used. Go with fluorocarbon leaders for a maximum finesse tactic. If you would like to try fly fishing for them, small olive or blue flies such as a Muddler Minnow can entice them. If you want to select a known winner, Andre’s Cap Bugger was built specifically for these situations and has been a proven producer even in tough conditions such as these.
Skagit River Fishing Report
The Skagit is coming into great low hike able conditions and with warm weather coming down the pipes we expect it to be a great option. The only problem with lower river levels in the middle of summer is the fish see more pressure and can get picky. I recommend hiking hard, get away from the easy access spots and know that a run that may look void of life all morning can turn on when a hatch starts. Being at the right spot at the right time with the right fly is critical but when you get it right you can knock it out of the park this time of year.
We have heard of the standard grey mayflies in an assortment of sizes. We have had a few reports of green mayflies but we have not heard of any heavy caddis hatches. That said all of these patterns will be in my box when I had out. This time of year when the heat hit you can see 4 or even 5 different bugs hatching. Sometimes the fish will eat them all but more often that not they will key in on one of the bugs and reject everything else.
Good luck and keep the reports coming.
Okanagan Fishing Report
Last week I had the pleasure of spending a few days in the sunny Okanagan. While many go to indulge in fantastic wine and warm beaches, I was determined to wet a line while I was there to see what I could entice. Over the course of a few days I began dialing in at the new locations I discovered and got into a good number of fish. It was predominantly a smallmouth bass and northern pikeminnow show, however I did come across a number of other species such as rainbow trout, peamouth chub, and yellow perch. A worm under a bobber caused chaotic action with small northern pikeminnow getting hooked every 20 seconds, but larger specimens were around and I successfully hooked them on spoons when I wanted a bit more of a challenge.
Targeting smallmouth bass was a blast as well with both crankbaits and texas-rigged senko-style worms getting bites throughout the day. If you are taking a vacation up to the Okanagan in the near future consider wetting a line while you are there to experience this cool alternative fishery. Though we are not experts in this area both myself and Matt have fished in this area so if you are heading up to the Okanagan come down and have a chat. We can give you some help picking spots and gear.
SALTWATER FISHING REPORTS
North Vancouver Beach Fishing Report
I went out on Thursday for the early morning low tide to just see if there were any more coho but unfortunately it wasn’t happening again the way it should be at this time of the year. Yes, you might see the odd one get caught on gear or fly but that’s about it. I hope the fish are late instead of being a poor return year but we can only make this call at the end of the season. The tides are really good the whole week and it is also full moon on Aug 18th so this might help the fish finding their way to our estuary so hopefully I will have some positive report for next week.
Vancouver Saltwater Report
Well it was another lack lustre week with the coho fishing and the chinook fishing in our local waters being very difficult for the most part. The coho season has certainly not shaped up how we were hoping. With some good early season catches of oversized fish for June and July, including lots of hatchery fish, we were assuming West Van would be good by late July and August. For the most part this has not been the case. A lot of fish definitely made it up the river during the July rain but there are still some more fish to come so lets hope things pick up in the back end of August. The fish that are around are getting picky. That means trying to get out there early in the morning before it is too sunny out. Also try using bait as the coho that have been hanging out off West Van for a long time start to turn off the white hootchies a bit this time of year but they will still bite anchovies. The fresh fish that come in will respond well to a white hootchie.
The chinook fishing has been very tough in our area as well. There have not been a lot of encounters with chinook at the Bell Buoy, T-10, and only marginal fishing at Sandheads. We definitely got spoiled last year, the fishing was on fire, so this year the slower fishing especially hurts as last years great fishing for chinook is still not to distant of a memory. Peak migration for chinook into the Fraser starts next week and lasts until the end of the month, so don’t despair, it will pick up, but don’t expect it to be anything like last year.
Note that they re-issued the closure for the Fraser Non-Tidal and for the Fraser Tidal and for the Fraser Mouth. This closure is because of very low sockeye numbers, it has nothing to do with chinook numbers, however, the closure states no fishing for salmon in the closed areas, so it does shut the anglers down on the Fraser who want to bar fish for chinook. In terms of saltwater fishing, these closures may affect you if you plan on fishing T-10 and the South Arm aka Sandheads. You need to read the closures and plot the lines and know where you can and can’t go. We often get asked at the store where you can and can’t fish during these closures. You really need to take the time to plot the lines on your chart plotter so you know if you are outside of the closed area. That is the best answer we can give you. It is impossible for us to tell you where you can and can’t fish in such a huge area so you need to take the time to plot the lines or draw them out on a chart. If you do that you will know if you are outside of the closed area and in doing so you can still effectively fish for chinook in these popular spots.
For the closure notice you can go here Fisheries Notice 0838
To get the description of Area 29 and the Subareas mentioned in the above closures, click on this link Management Area Boundary Descriptions and then scroll down to Area 29 and the Subareas and you will have the co-ordinates and descriptions you need to chart it on your chart plotter or draw the lines on a chart.
Take a deep breath, grab a fruit smoothy, a cup of coffee, a 6 pack of beer, or your favourite single malt, because it is going to take some time!
Okay, enough of that. Time for some positive news. When the winds have allowed and our customers have booked 10 hour trips, we have found some nice chinook over around Gabriola and Nanaimo. We normally don’t fish that far this time of year so it is all a new game, but we have had some great results when the winds have allowed us to get over there. It hasn’t been easy, fishing 240 feet down with 18 pound cannonballs is no joke, but the results speak for themselves.
So in closing, keep your spirits up and let’s look forward to some more Fraser chinook showing up in the coming days and take the time to be educated and plot those lines so you can fish effectively in that area.
See you on the water or in the shop,