We don’t know what is with Thursday nights and writing the report but it seems like every day we start working on this report the weather is nasty. The good news this week is this might be the last of it. The 14 day trend looks to be bringing much warmer weather and the outlook for the weekend it pretty nice.
This week we have updates on all our major rivers and we have a brief section dedicated the reports of the salmon fry hatching. This hasn’t started yet but it looks to be just around the corner and something all rivers anglers will want to keep an eye on.
On the fly tying front Matt and Jordan have been tying up a storm for their upcoming CXI trip and though Jordan does not take credit for the design he has been working up a very cool fly design using fake finger nails. We have a brief write up on it below. If any of you are heading off on a warm water trip or just like to see very unique fly designs check it out!
Things on the salt have definitely picked up, with the new moon and big tides bringing in a fresh wave of fish. Our guide boats have been out on the water this week and it was nice to get some more action and some larger fish as well.
Finally be sure to save the date for our annual Spring Super Sale – coming your way March 30 + March 31!
INDUSTRY EVENTS AND UPDATES
Pacific Angler Spring Super Sale
Well, yesterday’s snow doesn’t have us feeling that spring will be here anytime soon but the warm days will be here before we know it. That means it will be time for our 12th Annual Spring Super Sale. Save the dates and we’ll see you in shop Saturday March 30 + Sunday March 31, 2019.
Chilliwack’s All About Fishing
If you are headed out to the Valley tomorrow, Saturday March 9 be sure to check out Chilliwack’s All About Fishing. Check out more details on the facebook event page !
CLASSES AND COURSES
March is here and so our two of our most popular classes. Andre is back in the shop to teach his famous Fly Fishing For Searun Cutthroat Trout In Rivers Course and Matt is the classroom to teach his Introduction to Fly Fishing Course, which is perfect if you’re just starting out or want a bit of a refresher.
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 a 3hr evening seminar and a 3hr casting session.
Cost: $150.00 + GST
Seminar: March 12, 2019 | 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Casting: March 17, 2019 | 10am – 1pm or 1:30pm -4:30pm
Fly Fishing For Searun Cutthroat Trout In Rivers
This spring make sure to get out and take advantage of the world-class cutthroat fishing in the Lower Mainland. This cutthroat course is designed to educate you on the life cycle, location, seasonal feeding habits, and successful techniques and flies used to catch these elusive yet aggressive fish. This course consists of a 3hr evening seminar and a fully guided day on the water
Dates: Seminar Mar 26 Guided: Mar 30, Mar 31, Apr 6 or Apr 7 (custom trip dates available)
Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm | Guided: Full Day
Captain Boil’s Crab Pattern
This fly was a mix of creativity and inspiration. Trying to come up with an easy way to create a simple crab pattern, I searched Instagram for some inspiration. That is where I came across the account Sandbar Flies. This inspirational account is from Nick Vlahos- an Orvis signature tyer. His patterns are amazing, and this is where I got the idea to use an acrylic or plastic nail for the shell.
Using some Chicones Crusher legs, some EP, and chenille, this fly is quite simple. The eyes were made by sticking a bead on some mono, then dipping it in to some UV resin. The claws are simple S well: knotted chenille that I then burned to shape and coloured with some sharpies.
For speed and efficiency I like to make up a batch of claws, a batch of eyes, and then pre-cut the lengths of rubber legs and EP brush.
Once I’ve tied up a bunch of bodies, I then UV resin the “shell” back on in batches as well. Again, you can get creative with sharpies to colour the shell to your liking.
Give Nick Vlahos a follow on Instagram– he is an amazing tyer with some great ideas!
FRESHWATER FISHING REPORTS
Vedder/Chilliwack Fishing Report
The Vedder remains low and clear
with relatively tough fishing throughout the week. Fish are still being picked
out although getting technical really helps at this stage in the game. We
aren’t expecting much precipitation but there will be some warmer weather next
week so look for a possible bump in the water with some colour, at least that
is the hope.
As with last week, you want to focus on keeping your presentation small; think nickel size or smaller. It is imperative to find holding water that they will feel comfortable in which means focusing on the outside edge of seams, the heads of pools, and any piece of water with good depth and surface distortion. Keep moving until you find spots with these qualities as they fish need to find shelter somewhere. With a little luck you might come across a few fish holed up in one spot.
Squamish River Fishing Report
The Squamish is pretty tough fishing at the moment. Low and clear has been the common theme over the past few weeks. That being said we have heard of some anglers grinding out fish lately. It looks like the tail end of this weekend could see some higher temps and that should hopefully help melt some snow pack and colour up the water.
Until then you will want to use smaller lightly or unweighted fly patterns if you are targeting steelhead and trout. Hobo Spey style flies are one of my favourites when conditions are like this in black/blue and pink. Single eggs and small jigs have been producing fish and some anglers are even having luck on smaller spoons when it warms up around midday.
It is still a bit early and a touch too cold for fry but it wouldn’t be a bad idea to start stocking up on some of Andre’s fry as well as some one my fat fry patterns that we have at the shop. We have a little write up on the fry outlook below so take a look at that if you love using fry patterns, small spoons, or Colorado blades to target the bulltrout, cutthroat and even steelhead on the Squamish.
The other key thing that a lot of anglers overlook when conditions are tough is to cover water. With how low the levels are, the fish aren’t going to come to you, you will have to put on the miles to find them.
Put your boots to the ground and go get them!
Stave River Fishing Report
Its pretty much business as usual on the Stave this week with scattered reports of cutties in and out of the system, and a healthy whitefish population to be found. It is always great fun, but if you’re chasing steel, you’re going to have to put in your time and we haven’t heard many reports.
Pretty soon, if the warmer weather arrives, we’ll be in a fry hatch, which will liven up the system tremendously. Stay your course with the regular patterns and gear you’re used to. Bright bugger patterns, small spoons, (Dick Nite’s or Mini G’s) and spinners.
This time of year you will hear us talk about the fry hatch a bunch. It is obviously when the salmon eggs hidden in the gravel last fall begin to hatch. When this happens there a multitude of fish species that target the early fry as a food source and in turn we as anglers can imitate the different stages of salmon fry growth in our flies and lures to target these species.
The fry hatch is not one mass event and is very subject to water temps. Simply put when an egg has been exposed to water temps over a certain amount of time they will hatch. This means areas on the river that get more sun and or slower water where there is time for the sun to warm it, is where we will see the first signs of life from salmon fry.
Start identifying these spots on your local streams and every time you are out take a moment to do some hunting. It’s like being a kid again and is fun!
Temperatures after the hatch also affect the salmon fry and if it gets cold again they will hide back in the crevices around rocks and gravel waiting for water temperatures where the metabolisms can kick in and they can move.
We had reports of a few fry coming out even before this cold spell that started in early February and we expect the second we see some warmer days more will hatch.
We would recommend that any angler heading out make sure they have fry imitation in their fly boxes and tackle bags. They start small and obviously grow, so for the fly anglers, look to smaller epoxy fry and minnow imitations and for the gear anglers small dick night spoons mini Gs and Colorado blades should be in your kit.
As we look at the weather going forward you can see the 14 day trend (below) will bring warmer temps this weekend and into next week. It is probably too early this weekend to see any noticeable numbers of fry but if the weather continues to improve it could be as early as mid-next week. We will continue to update you in this report as we hear of more fry hitting the rivers and with any luck we will see more warm weather soon.
SALTWATER FISHING REPORTS
Vancouver Saltwater Salmon Fishing Report
The fishing this week definitely picked up, as it seemed like a fresh wave of fish came in around this new moon and the big tides. Luckily the big tide changes were at night and we enjoyed relatively mild tide changes during the day, always better for fishing. It was nice to get some more action and some larger fish as well.
Some of our top producing flashers were Herring Aide in glow, Lemon Lime, Salty Dawg, and PA Custom in chartreuse. The water wasn’t as clear this week as previous weeks, about 35 feet of visibility, where earlier in the season we could see the flasher down about 55-65 feet. The brighter gear was definitely out producing this week while in the extremely clear water earlier in the season the UV purple and black blades with a herring aide spoon seemed to be the hot ticket. The hot spoons this week were Skinny G in Outfitter, Trap Shack, and Irish Cream. Other productive spoons were G-Force 3.0 in Outfitter and Trailhead and Kingfisher 3.0 spoons in Homeland Security and Irish Cream.
Crabbing has been decent and so has prawning. All in, it’s pretty good out there right now and would be a great time to book a trip, so give us a call at 778-788-8582.
In terms of what the 2019 season has in store, regarding fish politics, there have been proposals put in to DFO. A big thank you to all of those who wrote letters and let DFO know how important boating and fishing is to you. Now we have to sit back and wait and see how this all plays out. We will know what is going on before April 1st.
Have a great weekend and see you out on the water!