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Home / FIshing Reports / Pacific Angler Friday Fishing Report: January 8 , 2016

Pacific Angler Friday Fishing Report: January 8 , 2016


Though conditions were cold and clear we had some solid reports from the Vedder and the harbor winter chinook fishery this week. The boys were out on the saltwater and found some nice winter chinook. Check out the Vancouver Saltwater Report for more details. The Vedder was a little surprising. We assumed with the low conditions that we wouldn’t hear of many steelhead reports but all things considered a number of anglers caught their first fish of the season and it bodes well for the upcoming season. Check out Sam’s Vedder River report in the river section.

As predicted the Squamish was low and clear and a challenge for most anglers but like we said last week, the longer the cold spell lasts the better the fishing will be when things turn around. Temperatures are warming up this week and next week has a big storm in the forecast so we shouldn’t have to wait long. Check out Matt’s Squamish River Fishing report below.

Our January courses are filling up fast but we still have spots available. Call now or check out our new course section on the website for all the details.

There is a NEW fly tying course focused on Essential Steelhead Patterns, Andre has his Beginner Fly Tying Course and we are featuring two on the water fishing courses, Matt’s famous Fly Fishing Egg Patterns Course and our often imitated never duplicated Pacific Angler Steelhead Float Fishing course. Both of these courses are a great way to get out on the water with the pros and make sure you are doing it right for the upcoming season.

Deals of the Week:
We have a number of carry over items from our Boxing Day sale so there are still great deals to be had! If there was something on the Boxing Day flyer that you wanted but couldn’t make it in you might be lucky, it might still be on sale! Check out the list below:

Fishing Sale Stuff

  • Simms Headwater Full Day Pack Regular $214.99 25% off – Sale price $161.99!
  • Simms Headwater Guide Hip Pack Regular 144.99 25% off – Sale price 108.99!
  • Dry Creek Boat Bag 2014 model Regular $275 30% off – Sale Price $192!
  • Simms Pro Dry Jackets 2014 models only – Regular $850 30% off – Sale Price $595! (1Large, 1 X Large in stock)
  • Simms ADL Jacket Regular $275 25% off – Sale Price $206.99 (1 large, 1 Medium in stock)


Fly Fishing Egg Patterns  (1 Spot Left!)
This course is designed to teach you the secrets to one of the most productive presentations in the BC fly fishermen’s arsenal; nymphing egg patterns. This deadly method can be used for different species of trout, char, and salmon. During a 3-hour evening seminar we will teach you key concepts, strategies, and gear that will give you a well-rounded foundation during the seminar portion of the class. Then you will put those skills into practice during a fully guided day on the water.

Dates:   Seminar: Jan 11                Guided: Jan 16 or 17
Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Cost: $250.00

Tying Essential Steelhead Patterns (3 Spots Left!)
This course is designed for the fly tyer looking to get the best start on tying steelhead patterns. In the 3-hour evening seminar your instructor will cover everything from tying techniques, material and colour choices, size and weight. They will walk you through 3 essential patterns that will build a well-rounded steelhead fly box. If you’re looking to get yourself into tying your own flies for steelhead, this is the course for you. This course is suitable for fly tiers with a basic knowledge. Students are required to supply their own vise, tools and materials. A 10% discount is available on materials and tools purchased for the course.

Date: Jan 12
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Cost: $45.00

Steelhead Float Fishing
In this fishery, 10% of the anglers catch 90% of the fish. This is your chance to learn from the 10%! Our 3hr evening seminar will educate you on the gear, water types, conditions and other key variables that put veteran steelhead anglers in that 10%. Mastering this fishery will make you the envy of your friends. Upgrade your seminar to include a fully guided day on the water, putting into practice your new knowledge with a Pacific Angler guide.

Dates: Seminar: Jan 13
Guided: Jan 16, 17, 23 or 24 (custom trip dates are available)
Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Seminar Only Cost: $45.00
Seminar & Guided Walk’n Wade Cost: $250.000 per angler, minimum of 2 anglers per guided day on the water.

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: Jan 18, 25 & Feb 1
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Cost: $75.00



Squamish River Fishing Report

We were hoping for more precipitation this week. Unfortunately it didn’t materialize. It looks like we got some snow melt and a few blips from the hydro dam but the main river didn’t rise too much. From the River Levels Graph it looked as though there was a small rise in the river.
We are expecting things to change soon though it may not happen this weekend. Low and clear is a challenge for both the fly angler and gear fisherman.
Next week should be the week as we have a big storm rolling through. Watch the water levels and hope that the weather man is on the mark.

When I am out in conditions like this I pick very pale beads with ultra thin leaders. Make everything as stealthy as possible. Break out the small indicators, and 5lb fluorocarbon.

If you missed last weeks report we posted our video on Advanced Mending – the one we use in our egg fishing course. Check it out for some cool footage and some great examples of advanced mending and what it looks like when your indicator goes down. Don’t forget to register for the course! We have one spot left. Click Here to See all our Fishing Videos!

Good Luck on the water and watch the forecast for things to change. The longer the cold spell the better the fishing when it finally warms up.

Matt Sharp

Chehalis River Fishing Report

Currently the Chehalis is very low. This river is especially challenging in these conditions. This river needs quite a bit of water for fish to enter the system. The odd fish may nose in to the river but they are very spooky and hard to entice. The temperature is expected to warm up slightly and there looks to be a bit of rain in the upcoming forecast. I wouldn’t consider that to be enough to bump the river. With the storm coming next week this might change. When we start to see +25mm of rain predicted and a higher freezing level then we debate rolling the dice. It’s all about timing. It’s also doesn’t have a graph so you’re making an educated guess. It’s always a gamble fishing this river after a good rain cause it can blow out but for those who invest the time it can pay off. This river doesn’t set up well for fly fishing. It only has a handful of runs not enough to string together a full day. With the canyon section and a heavily wooded lower section it fishes better with float gear.

Vedder River Fishing Report

The Chilliwack-Vedder River has been on the drop for the past few weeks, coupled with cold temperatures like most of our rivers, it has translated into tough fishing. Some anglers have rung in the New Year with a fish or two but fish are still few and far between. Don’t get discouraged if you have been out a few times with nothing to show for as fishing will only get better throughout the winter and even with the poor conditions we have heard of a surprising number of fish. This is  encouraging for the upcoming season.

Vedder River Bulltout nice fish Rob

Vedder River Bulltout – Nice Fish Rob

When we encounter clear water conditions it is a good idea to downsize your presentation, so that means float size, hook size, leader diameter, and shades of colour. You want to be fishing more subtle presentations.  Jensen Eggs, roe bags, jigs in light shades of pink, and wool ties in soft pink, oranges, reds, and white colours are a good idea. Switching your monofilament leaders to fluorocarbon is a game changer as fluorocarbon is less visible than monofilament.  This coupled with small floats, less weight and drab colors will give you that stealth approach we are going for. Try to keep the size of your bait down, think nickel and dime size. Adding scents such as prawn, ghost shrimp, and krill to your artificial baits can help increase your odds of hooking up.

When picking flies for steelhead, especially early in the season, pink is always a good colour to have in your box. A steelhead fly angler should never be without the tried and true Egg Sucking Leech, Marabou Popsicle, and a intruder style flys in black, blue, or orange. Leader material for swinging flies doesn’t change much because the fish doesn’t get to see what is in front of your fly like they do with the float presentation. 12lb Maxima is still the standard but leaning your leader to the long side (over 4ft) will help get your fly away from your sink tip so you aren’t spooking fish in the clear water. Don’t go too long, 5 feet is quite long, especially if it is an unweighted fly. You don’t want the fly to track out of the zone with a leader that is too long. For me I fish 3.5-4 feet in green water and 4.5 feet in clear water.

Good Luck on the Water!



Awesome Fish From early season last year - Happy Birthday Joshe

Vedder fish from early season last year – Happy Birthday Josh!

Stave River Fishing Report

Cold temperatures and clear skies have made for clear water and challenging conditions as of late.
For those fly fishing, floating lines and long leaders with lightly weighted patterns, both streamers and nymphs, are good choices.
Though it is winter, anglers who use trout spey or switch rods may want to loop on a Scandi head until the winter steelhead show up (even then, keeping a Scandi in your kit is always a great idea). It has a much softer presentations and is great for casting tight loops with longer mono or fluorocarbon leaders.

Anglers using spinning and casting gear will want to go ultra-light while looking for trout, and fluorocarbon is not a bad idea.
Keep your offerings small and sparse/natural, and cover lots of water as fish tend to be more lazy/dormant in the colder water and are less prone to chasing down what you’re offering.




The season is now in full swing and as mentioned in the last report, there has been good fishing from Washington up to Campbell River.

A little closer to home, right in the harbor along the West Van shoreline, there were some decent reports this past week. In fact the fishing in the harbor was as active or more active than Howe Sound on some days, with undersize and some nice legal size fishing providing good action. Unfortunately this week the seals were an issue and anglers that were into legal size fish were losing them to seals. Some years this can be an issue, so hopefully these educated seals move on so you can land the fish. If you do have a seal following your boat, the best thing you can do is pick up and move. When you hook a fish the seal will be on it right away and you will lose it, so best to just move on before that happens.

There was some decent action up Howe Sound this week and the scenery was amazing with the snow-capped mountains and relatively calm seas. Much like the harbor there is a mix of undersize and legal size chinook being caught.

The action at Porlier seemed to be a little hit and miss this week. Some days there was lots of undersize and some legal fish, some days were all undersize fish but lots and some days pretty much only a few undersize. This is not unusual as the fish move around a lot, here one day and gone the next.

The usual flashers have been productive, like the Green Onion Glow, Purple Onion Glow and Glow Chartreuse. Productive spoons have been the Irish Cream, Homeland Security, and Kitchen Sink in 3.0, 3.5 and Koho Killer sizes. The Pesca Clupea, Gut Bomb, and Yort have also been productive. We have taken a few fish on glow hootchies but for the most part, spoons seem to be working better so far.

Vancouver Winter Chinook Gear

A nice winter chinook from this week

This is a great time of year to shake off the winter blues and get out on the boat and get some sun and fresh air. Call us at 778-788-8582 to book a charter or Email Jason at jtonelli@pacificangler.ca

If you are heading out on your own, take a look at previous reports for detailed information on what flashers to use and what lures to use or drop by Pacific Angler and we will get you dialed in!

See you on the water or in the shop!