We are going to see some light rain over the next 2 days both for Vancouver and the interior. Obviously, this is not the best for fishing, but it comes with a silver lining.
Lake fishing in the interior and up the Sea to Sky area has been very good and we have reports on it below, but warm temperatures were becoming a small concern and we heard reports of lethargic fish on some of the shallower lakes. The lower temps and rain over the next couple days should help this and extend the great fishing.
On the rest of the freshwater and stillwater front we have info on the Capilano, local lakes as well as some preliminary info from Matt on water levels and snow packs as we start to look forward to river trout season in July.
Saltwater fishing continues to be amazing for chinook and we are starting to hear reports of coho off-shore near Bowen and off Thrasher Rock. We can expect the numbers of coho to increase over the next few weeks. This year we are going to have some fun with the coho and next week Jordan is going to go over some new and interesting stuff we plan to try for coho so stay tuned for that and check out Jason’s saltwater report for details this week.
INDUSTRY EVENTS + UPDATES
BC Family Fishing Weekend
It’s almost here – BC’s Family Fishing Weekend. There are free fishing events all over the province June 14 – 16, 2019. This is your opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors with loved ones (the weekend coincides with Father’s Day!) and learn the joys of fishing.
Knowledgeable volunteers are on-hand at most events to teach you the tricks of the trade. In addition, Canadian residents can fish licence-free for the entire three days (but certain rules do apply – see the Freshwater Fishing Regulations Synopsis for details).
Check out the Family Fishing Weekend webpage for details and events close to you!
Here is some info. On an event in North Vancouver!
BC Family Fishing Day – Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve
Family fishing activities and other festivities at Rice Lake – Sunday June 16 | 10AM – 3PM. Details below.
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
Fishing continues to be a bit spotty for coho in the Capilano though they are starting to accumulate in the upper pools now. At this time of year, we can expect the bigger pushes of fish to come in so keep hitting the river and with any luck you will be there when they roll through. We have been hearing of fish getting hooked on roe and on flies in the canyon. If you do plan to fish bait please be aware that there are a number of smolts in the system currently and they are notorious for stealing bait. Please release them with care. In addition, all Steelhead in this river must be released as well.
For those that aren’t aware, the Cap Cam has officially gone extinct. There is still a water gauge that can be found at the following link:
Squamish River Fishing Report
For those of you thinking about the Squamish as we reported a few weeks ago that there are limited opportunities but it is challenging due to warmer temps and associated snow melt which makes the water high and dirty.
Though there may still be windows of fishing on the system, for the most part, fishing will be over until the end of summer. We will tune in again with reports when the pinks start showing up around July/August.
River Trout Season – Early Outlook
Every year I take a hard look at my data and historical data from the government during June to look at snow pack levels and water levels. Usually I wait until the end of the month before making predictions but this year the data looks clear. We are going to have low water.
When looking at the snow packs across the lower part of BC and Vancouver Island they are noticeably lower than last year and well below the 10-year average. With that in mind I will be making some fishing and fisheries related assumptions and recommendations in upcoming reports so stay tuned.
STILLWATER FISHING REPORTS
Local Lake Fishing Report
The local lakes have been on and off for the last week. Many have reported tough fishing although there are flurries of action here and there. Finding what they want has been key and it can change from hour to hour. When tossing gear, it can be a good idea to have both bait and lures at your disposal as they may respond to one but not the other. Worms, shrimp, Powerbait mice tails, and Powerbait dough are all proven fish catchers in the bait category. With lures I like to throw a combination of small Panther Martins, Rooster Tails, and Gibbs Mini G’s. For those that prefer the fly rod a combination of mini leeches, Doc Spratleys, and Carey Specials are your go-to’s. Chironomids and balanced leeches under an indicator will also work.
For the lakes that have spiny ray species such as Sunfish, Crappie, and Bass, this warmer weather has gotten them a lot more active and these fish can be readily caught in the heat when the trout get more dormant and seek cooler waters.
For more info on where to go check out this link: https://www.gofishbc.com/Where-to-Fish.aspx
Sea to Sky Lake Fishing Report
The Sea to Sky Lakes are a great place to look at for a quick day trip. There are tons of lakes hidden along the way from Britannia all the way up into Pemberton. Some have super easy access and you can drive right to the edge of the lake and others you can hike into. If you want a body of water to yourself it is easy to find some water that is off the beaten path. I especially like this area not only because it is close but because you can fish multiple lakes and for different species all in the same day. These lakes are stocked with rainbow, cutthroat as well as brook trout. There is also a few lakes that contain bull trout too. Add in the epic scenery at most of these lakes and the Sea to Sky corridor is definitely worth looking into for your next fishing trip.
The fish in these systems tend to be on the smaller size (12-16″) but there is some hidden trophy lakes along the way that hold fish in the 5-6lb range. My weapon of choice is either an 8’6″-9′ 3 or 4 weight fly rod with a 9′ 5X leader and both a floating line and a type 3 sinking line. This area is great to start fishing lakes more seriously than your lower mainland area lakes as you will need a float tube as shore fishing is fairly limited and the fishing gets a little bit more technical than just floating power bait off the bottom of hanging worms under an indicator.
The fishing in these lakes over the past 2 weeks have been nothing short of amazing. We have had lots of customers coming into the shop that have been getting some awesome fish and some epic number days. These lakes generally hold a lot of Damsel and Dragonfly nymphs so fishing Olive Wooly Buggers, ’52 Buick’s, Doc Spratley’s and Pumpkin Heads around weed beds do extremely well. One technique that is often overlooked is Chironomid fishing. This technique has been lights out for my buddy Brad up in Pemberton over the last 2 weeks. We don’t get the same kind of hatches that the interior gets but the photo below is one of the better stomach pumps that I’ve seen this year from anywhere…
If you are new to fishing this area, I would start by checking out Brohm, Alice, Nita or Alta lakes. All of these lakes have easy access and are a great into to the sea to sky area lakes. A few of us at the shop have spent a lot of time out that way over the last couple of years fishing these lakes so if you want more info come on into the shop and we will get you going in the right direction.
Interior Lakes Report
Well May is gone and June is here, and if you were able to head to the interior last month, you know what the fishing has been like. From top to bottom, small lakes to big, they have nearly all been producing fish. Now is when you’re able to switch up your techniques a bit, and stray from chironomids to other hatches that have been taking place on lakes. We’ve heard some strong reports coming from Roche all week that the mayfly hatch is starting to heat up, and with the lower elevation lakes such as Stump and Lundbom, both mayflies and damsels have been coming off with increasing frequency. If you’ve never had a chance to fish dries on a lake during a hatch, you’re missing out. It’s one of the most exciting fisheries we can get out on stillwater, the takes are electric.
The weather seems to be shaping up very nicely in the Merritt / Kane valley region. Looks to be rainy Friday, followed by blistering heat on both Saturday and Sunday, perfect conditions for a hatch. The lakes I’d be looking at for this weekend would be Marquart, Lundbom, and Harmon, as we’ve received good reports from each, and the weather should hold up. Further north, near Kamloops, you should be looking to change your techniques a little bit, focusing on leech and attractor patterns, while having a rod ready to drop chironomids if the hatch comes off.
SALTWATER FISHING REPORTS
Vancouver Saltwater Salmon Fishing Report
Fishing continues to be excellent, so lets look at your options this weekend. The first thing to do is look at the winds, and for the most part they look great. Once we get past this bit or rain today, it looks like the sun is going to be out for the better part of the weekend. So the winds are good, it’s going to be sunny, and there are lots of fish around, so get out there!
For chinook it has been another great week around South Bowen with fish from Cowan up to Roger Curtis and lots of fish out on the Hump as well. Productive depths have been from 60-140 on the riggers. Bait, spoons and hootchies have all been productive and here is a picture of some of the chinook gear we have been using.
There have been some reports of coho off South Bowen in around 600 feet of water and out on the Hump. Productive depths on the riggers are from 25 feet down to about 65 feet. It wasn’t on fire for coho this past week but that can change very quickly. We are hearing about big schools of coho off Nanaimo and also some decent coho action off Thrasher.
If you are planning on making the crossing, fishing has been excellent over there as well. The same gear pictured above will work over there for chinook and coho, and depths are similar, especially for the coho. Sometimes the water is a bit cleaner over there and you will find chinook deeper, even down around 200 on the riggers on a sunny day. Bottom fishing has been decent as well.
A quick reminder you can retain 2 hatchery coho a day and there is non-retention of chinook until July 15 and Aug 1 (depends on the area). Crabbing has been very good lately and should stay that way until the commercial fleet opens up in a couple of weeks.
See you in the shop or on the water,