We are in for more epic weather! We are going to see 20 degrees consistently in Vancouver this weekend and close to 30 in the interior. The nice thing for the saltwater anglers is that they are not forecasting heavy winds out in the straight. It is very common when we see warm weather to also see high wind and rough seas but at the time of writing this report the forecast right now it looks to be calm sailing for the weekend! As always check the marine forecast before heading out on the water because things can change fast.
This week Jordan has a cool coho trolling feature in the saltwater section accompanying Jason’s report. It looks like we might be in for a great coho season this year so you will not want to miss it.
On the freshwater front Matt is heading up to the interior this weekend to do some lake fishing and a bit of scouting for some of his favourite summer trout fisheries. So, we will have more intel next week but from what we have been hearing things are still fishing really well. Aidan has all the details in his Interior Lake Fishing report. If the interior is not the direction you want to head Zach has some good updates on what’s going on with the Squamish/Pemberton lake scene.
If you are looking at rivers as we mentioned above Matt will have more intel next week on the outlook for the river trout season and on the salmon river front Alex has an update on the Capilano. It is going to be an interesting coho season on the Cap and Alex has some details in his report below.
Finally, if you are heading out and have some friends or family who you have wanting to get out on the water – this is the weekend to do it! BC’s Family Fishing weekend starts tomorrow. More information on this great program in in our industry events section.
Happy Father’s Day to all you Dad’s out there!
INDUSTRY EVENTS + UPDATES
BC Family Fishing Weekend
As you may have read in past report this weekend is the Free Family Fishing Weekend. There are many great events going on, both fresh and saltwater licences are free all weekend long – so there is no excuse! Get out and get fishing. If you need some advice on where to go or what gear to bring give us a call or stop by the shop.
CLASSES AND COURSES
June is here and we are heading into our summer round of courses – grab a seat in one of these upcoming classes by calling the store at 604.872.2204.
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 18
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Fly Fishing On Beaches
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. Remember, east coast Vancouver Island has a pink salmon run every year and last year the Capilano had 12,000 coho! Book this course early as we sold out courses last year!!
Dates: July 9 or July 15
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.
Dates: July 17 & 20
Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Casting Time(s): 10am – 1pm or 1:30pm -4:30pm
FRESHWATER FISHING REPORTS
Capilano River Fishing Report
Low, low, low! The Cap has been pretty dry this season and there doesn’t look like there will be any reprieve over the next week. There are a decent number of fish in the system now as they have been consistently trickling in although catching them has been a little spotty as a lot of you know this fishery can be. We have heard reports of fish being caught on flies up in the canyon and some action on bait and spoons. I normally say that roe is king for these early coho although the combination of low current and hungry smolts have made bait fishing difficult.
While the river will continually have fish coming into the river from now until the Fall, we will want to start looking towards the river mouth pretty quick here. We normally wait until later before talking about the beach fishery but with the low water this year the fish will start stacking a bit earlier. The beach fishery is fun and the fish can be caught on a myriad of spoons, spinners, and flies. Speaking of which, Andre has brought in his famous beach flies so come get them before they’re gone! We will also have a beach fishing primer in an upcoming report so keep your eyes peeled for that.
River Trout Season Outlook
I’ve been busy getting set for my lake fishing trip to the interior this weekend so haven’t extended my research past what I included last week. My plan is to do some scouting on my way up to the interior so stay tuned for some updates next week.
STILLWATER FISHING REPORTS
Local Lake Fishing Report
This weekend is a great weekend to get out and try some of our local lakes. As we mentioned above this weekend is BC Family Fishing Weekend so there are lots of fun activities for those who are looking to get started on fishing and our local lakes are just the place to do it.
Local temperatures are going to be a bit cooler this weekend as well so that will hopefully make fishing more productive. If you’re looking for details on how and where to go be sure to look at our last few weeks of local lake reports or just pop by the shop and we’ll help get you setup. For more info on where to go check out this link: https://www.gofishbc.com/Where-to-Fish.aspx .
Sea to Sky Lakes Fishing Report
The summer heat is here! I love fishing the Sea to Sky lakes this time of year as it’s an easy day trip and the fish are generally willing to bite. All of these lakes have been fishing extremely well and if you want an easy fish then I would totally recommend hitting any of these lakes this weekend. If you read my report last week, I mentioned that there’s a good population of Damsel and Dragonfly nymphs in these lakes. When the heat hits I have had some amazing days on the water fishing dry flies. When you hit a Damsel hatch it’s hard to not know it as they will be everywhere and the fish go bonkers for them. Literally anything on the surface will get hit when you have conditions like this and there’s a chance that might happen this weekend with the warm weather so don’t leave home without your floating line and some dry flies.
One lake that I have been camping at and have fished in the past is Callaghan Lake. This lake is somewhat remote and it is recommended that you have a truck to get into this lake. I have been hearing that there is still snow on the road in, so if you are thinking of heading up this way please make sure that people know you are going and that you are prepared. It is a gorgeous lake that sees very little pressure and there is some big fish in this lake. Leeches are a great bet and you can fish from shore or from a float tube, kayak or boat. There’s some great hiking there as well so you can fish all around the entire lake if you wish. If you are looking for a place to hit up over the summer, I would totally recommend checking out Callaghan.
Interior Lakes Fishing Report
The weather for both Kamloops &
Merritt looks amazing – 30 degree days with clear skies.
Hatheume, Lundbom, and Tunkwa, along with Harmon and the Kane Lakes have all been fishing well through the heat. There have been a few monsters pulled out of Sheridan Lake as well. Chironomids are still king on these lakes, but damsel nymphs have been fishing well, along with your attractor patterns such as boobies or crystal leeches.
I’d be looking at some of our searching chironomid patterns. They’re a safe bet on most any lake. After the first few fish hit the boat, you can narrow down your presentation to something that matches the lake and conditions a bit more. These patterns are killer on slightly murky lakes as well, but clearer lakes such as Roche have worked with these as well.
Matt is heading up to the Douglas Lake area this weekend and a number of our friends and loyal customers are also on the water in the interior this weekend so we will have more reports next week.
SALTWATER FISHING REPORTS
Coho Trolling Feature
Coho season is just starting to get going here in Vancouver. We have already been encountering them both out on the open water and closer in on our beaches. A few have even made it up into the river already.
With the way the water levels and season is shaping up we expect fishing to be very good and you can expect more information soon on casting techniques and fly-fishing techniques in future reports but today I am going to talk about saltwater trolling techniques.
For years, we’ve been targeting coho successfully with UV and reflective tackle fished shallow along the north shore in 20-50ft and we also hook quite a few running deeper with our standard glow chinook setups in the 60-120 range. With the chinook closure still in effect until July 15/30 many of the local guides and avid anglers are changing up their gear to specifically target coho and we are having a ton of fun with some tried tested and true setups as well as some experiments that we are testing right now.
For fishing shallow UV/Flashy stuff is king. Popular tried tested and true flashers include Purple Haze and Purple Onion in both the standard and smaller sizes such as the O’ki Lil’ Shooter. For flashy and reflective, the Betsy series of flashers are a great choice in silver, gold, and UV blades. There is still quite a debate whether the standard large blade flasher or a smaller blade catches more fish but one thing is for sure, the smaller flashers make fighting the fish way more fun.
Pairing these flashers with similar spoons, hootchies, and teaser heads round out the traditional methods. UV Purple, Chrome, and Chartreuse teaser heads are a great choice if running bait, while UV white and UV pearl hootchies are a mainstay if running plastics.
With so many coho around last year and similar projections for this year, like I said a handful of us are starting to experiment. Some fun things we’ve been doing lately too is put small Colorado blades or spin-n-glo’s in front of our hootchies. Rigged with a couple beads first so the blade can spin, this is similar to how people bucktail.
We are also playing with willow leaf setups, small Dog Tail dodgers and even 7” spoons used as flashers in front of small mini G Spoons.
Other fun lures to change things up are the new Gibbs TKO and Apex Hot Spots in various bright and UV colours. These were designed more for trout and kokanee, but they are perfectly sized and designed for our local Coho fishery.
With coho generally being smaller, using lighter rods can also be more fun. Changing out to medium or medium light rods can increase the fun factor and also help with landing the fish when they jump, role and headshake. Most manufactures make a medium and medium-fast model, so having a couple rigged up and ready with coho flashers and lures is a great way to quickly switch from chinook fishing and focus on Coho.
One other things we like to do is troll faster than normal. Depending on gear, it it’s more important to look at your cable angles than actual SOG. With some people using 18lbs\ balls and others using 15lbs, your SOG can vary when making your gear work. Watch your angles, making sure they’re slightly more than the standard issue 45 degrees or speed that you like for Chinook.
Come on in to the shop we will walk you through the tried tested and true setups and we will also show you the “experiments” that the guys have been playing with. Keep things light and fresh, and have fun with these acrobatic fish.
Vancouver Saltwater Salmon Fishing Report
Well you knew it couldn’t last forever… The red-hot fishing we have had for the past 60 days significantly slowed down this week. We don’t have much to complain about though, from April 15 to this week will easily go down as some of the best, if not the best local chinook fishing in 30 plus years. There were lots of fish, and lots of big fish. There were also a lot of hatchery fish, which we should have been able to harvest. It was nothing short of a catastrophe for the marine community due to the non-retention of chinook announced by DFO in an effort to keep First Nations nets out of the Fraser River. This will also go down as one of the worst decisions by DFO in the last 30 years and I truly believe they are going to pay the price come the elections this fall.
Okay back to fishing. The fishing will without a doubt pick up locally. I think one of the main reasons it slowed down this week was that there were a lot of orcas around. Even though they are transients (seal eaters), the chinook don’t know that and scatter when they are around. There are always pushes of chinook off S. Bowen in June, so it will pick up once the orcas leave. A little bit of a slow down in June is normal and usually what we will do is look at the Gulf Islands and sure enough, if you could get there this past week, it was red hot. Unfortunately the winds kept us from crossing most of this week, but fortunately they look good for the weekend. There are lots of fish from Thrasher up to Entrance and for the most part the fish are no longer offshore, they are closer to the rocks and closer to the bottom. There have also been some good reports of coho offshore in the deeper water from 600 to 1000 feet and in the top 100 feet of the water column.
Locally coho has been slow thus far, but that too will change. It should be good off the Hump any day now, so if the winds aren’t too strong, that would be a good place to try this weekend.
Crabbing has been very good, but will start to slow down in the coming weeks as the commercial effort picks up.
In the meantime, enjoy this weekend, as the weather and winds looks good for some coho action off South Bowen and the Hump or for a crossing to the Gulf Islands for chinook and coho.
See you in the shop or on the water,