Big storm incoming! As we write the report the rain is coming down hard. If you are reading this on Friday night it is worth checking your weather and water levels to correlate any info in this report. We write the report on Thursday night and with a big weather event hitting the coast as we write, it is hard to be 100% accurate on anything water level related. If the weatherman is on his game we will see most of our rivers blow out with the rain predicted overnight Friday and again on Saturday. This will make fishing a challenge today and into the weekend. The silver lining is the bump of weather will bring in fresh fish to our salmon rivers and shuffle up the ones that are already in the system.
This week we have reports off the Stave, Vedder, Squamish and Harrison. We have some good numbers to run off when looking at weather events on the BC river levels page. If you are not using this site, time to get familiar with it!
If you missed it in last week’s report, there have been some major changes in salmon regulations and if you are heading out you will need to educate your selves. Head on over to last week’s report for the details or check out the official DFO page for the most up to date info.
Jason is back this week on the saltwater report and in short it is absolutely worth heading out even if it is in the slow part of the season. He’s also got some information on how you can participate to promote and protect your rights as a sport fisherman to have reasonable access to saltwater fishing!
Finally, if you’re looking to get your fishing fix but stay dry there is still time to get tickets to the Fly Fishing Film Tour next Tuesday night. Details on where to get tickets is below. There is also one spot left in Matt’s Fly Fishing Egg Patterns Course. Reach us at 604.872.2204 to get that spot.
Good luck out on the water!
Fly Fishing Film Tour
If you haven’t got your ticket yet there is still time! We’ll see you at the show next Tuesday night!
Don’t miss out on this years Fly Fishing Film Tour. It is always a great night to get together with friends, check out the films and dream of your next adventure. Get your tickets online or at the shop for $15. $20 at the door.
Date: Tuesday November 6, 2018
Time: Doors at 6:15PM, Films Start at 7:00PM – 8 films with an intermission
Location: The Cinematheque – 1131 Howe Street Vancouver
Tickets: Online at www.flyfishingfilmtour.ca or at the shop for $15 (cash only)
Category(s): RECREATIONAL – Salmon Fishery Notice – Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Subject: FN1216-RECREATIONAL – Salmon – Region 2 – Squamish River – Chum Salmon Non-Retention – Effective November 1, 2018
Assessment of the Squamish watershed indicates that the return of Chum salmon to the system is low and cannot support a retention fishery at this time.
Waters: Squamish River
Management measures: Effective November 1 until December 31, 2018: You may not retain Chum salmon.
Variation Order numbers: 2018-RFQ-588
Notes: Barbless hooks are required when fishing for salmon in tidal waters of British Columbia.
The term “marked” means a hatchery fish that has a healed scar in place of the adipose fin.
Anglers are advised to check http://bcsportfishguide.ca for fishing closures
CLASSES + COURSES
Fly Fishing Egg Patterns – ONE 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.
Seminar: Nov 20, 2018, 6:30PM – 9:30PM
Guided: Nov 24 SOLD OUT, Nov 25, 2018, full day – 1 spot left!
Cost: $250.00 + GST
FRESHWATER FISHING REPORTS
Chilliwack/Vedder River Fishing Report
The bulk of the run is in the river now and this is the time you want to hit it. We had a blow out on Sunday and the river levels have fluctuated between high and perfect. Keep an eye on the weather as the water levels will play a huge role in fishing success. A lot of fish are being caught after each spike in the levels as they are on the move and can be aggressive. The run will start to taper off from here though there will still be clean coho and chum right up until early December.
Now that the water isn’t gin clear don’t be afraid to fish bigger presentations. Since the fish are on the move either find their travelling lanes or look for the spot where they are holding. Remember they tend to take the path of least resistance so keep that in mind when reading water. This sometimes means they’ll be swimming right by your feet, so stand back and assess before casting to the other bank.
Capilano River Fishing Report
We finally got some more water released from the dam and there have been some decent reports of clean fish moving into the river. This will most likely be the last good push of fish for the season and although there will be clean fish up until December this is the time to hit it for one last good shot at some fresh fish. The water has been at a good height although if we get any more torrential downpours check the levels as you don’t want to end up at a swollen river that’s unfishable.
The bait ban has been lifted since October 31st so give pro-cured roe a try especially when the water has some flow to it. All of your other presentations will work too, so don’t be afraid to bring your single eggs, colorados, wool ties, and jigs. For you fly guys think small flash flies in side pockets or try swinging bigger flies like hobo speys in darker colours for fish that are travelling.
Squamish River Fishing Report
Well the rains have finally come and we expect the Squamish to blow out this weekend. It is now November and the past few years we have enjoyed having an opening for the retention of chum salmon. This year, however, that is not the case. The numbers of chum coming through our local waters are just not there this year. We are hoping that they are late so we will just have to wait and see. Please release any of these fish that you encounter with the utmost care. Don’t drag them on to the rocks or kick them back into the water, as my mother used to say “treat them how you would like to be treated.” Please take the time to revive them properly if you are targeting them.
Not all is doom and gloom though! Coho fishing is still going strong. On the main stem the water is still dirty and bigger presentations of spoons, twitching jigs and larger dark coloured flies are bringing success to anglers. I have tied up a few of my Olive/Black Popsi-ho’s for the shop so come and grab a couple before they are gone! The tributaries of the Squamish are clearer than the main stem and are still fishing well.
As I am writing this report, we just got some intel that fishing trout beads have been producing fish consistently over the past few days on the main stem of the Upper Squamish. We haven’t touched on beading much this season as we have been focused on coho. The couple of anglers that we have spoken to were into rainbows and bulls almost all day.
Jeremy + Raphael enjoying a great day on the Squamish!
There have been eggs in this system for quite a while now so focus on lighter coloured eggs and focus on the shallows of runs and find the troughs that are holding fish. We have a full assortment of the essential beads in stock as well as everything else like the Airflo AirLoc Indicators, bead boxes, split shots and hooks. Come on in to the shop and let us get you set up for this very effective way of fishing!
Stay dry out there
Harrison/Chehalis River Fishing Report
With the rain forecasted to remain steady, anglers will want to keep an eye on the graph if headed to the Harrison. As of writing, it is just below a 9, which means anglers will still have foot access to most spots. If it climbs above a 9, some spots will start to become harder to access.
If it peaks or stays stable around the 9.0 height, anglers should be able to walk both sides, but if it climes above 9.2 or so, you’ll be limited to the golf course and French Creek side.
Be aware if you are hiking to the mouth of the Chehalis, that it is quite a long ways back (about a 45 minute hike or so), and that fishing until dark is not recommended. Please keep that in mind, and give yourself enough daylight to get back.
That said, anglers are finding some fish, using both fly and gear. Anglers targeting coho are usually tossing spinners, spoons, and flies. If float fishing, jigs and Colorado blades have been the go-to. Colour and size of gear will be dictated by water colour and height, so it pays to have a good variety of sizes and colours.
Stave River Fishing Report
The Stave water level is very dependant on the dam. We expect them to open it with this weather but how much is hard to gauge. No matter what happens this rain will be a good thing for the system. It will shuffle around the fish in the river already and bring in fresh fish. Fishing today and Saturday might be challenging with possible high water but as it comes down, expect things to be excellent.
Chum numbers have been poor across the lower mainland this fall but with any luck we will see a big push of them with this rain. Even with low numbers we have seen good catch and release opportunities and it is well worth the trip.
Float fishing with pink and purple jigs is a very product method and twitching jigs commonly catch chum and are great for targeting the coho. As always come down to the shop and we will walk you through the methods.
SALTWATER FISHING REPORTS
Vancouver Saltwater Salmon Fishing Report
We haven’t been out on the water much this past week with windy and rainy weather so we don’t have too much fresh information to report. We are basically in the early winter chinook season holding pattern. What does that mean? Well it means there are a few fish around and as usual, if you wait for the “hot report” those fish are long gone, so the best thing to do is go when the nice weather days line up with your personal schedule.
We mentioned this in previous reports, but with the 35-45 mm heavy rain fall warning for tomorrow, make sure you have lots of juice in your batteries and make sure those float switches for your forward and aft bilge pumps are working perfectly. Every year we see pictures of boats that fill up full of water and sink during heavy rainfall events, so go check on your baby if you keep it in the water year round.
There are some things going on with SRKW (southern resident killer whales) and DFO these days, so I am going to pass on a few links to keep you busy during the rain storm and while you are tying leaders. This affects you and you need to be informed. If you don’t fish these areas, don’t think that you are home free, there are likely similar actions headed our way. Read these links articles and then get involved by joining and supporting SFI (Sport Fishing Institute) as this is the organization that is working to promote and protect your rights as a sport fisherman to have reasonable access to saltwater fishing.
If you have been reading my fishing report for the last 11 years you will see I very rarely use it to get political. Today I am, which I don’t take lightly, and neither should you. I hope it shows you how serious the situation has become. If we as recreational anglers don’t come together and get involved now, all those leaders you are tying will be for nothing, so please take the time get involved.
A great way to learn more, get involved, make a difference, and have a great time is to attend the SFI Annual Policy Conference and Big Splash Gala Fundraiser this month. There are some great speakers lined up for the Conference, including Dr. Andrew Trites and the Big Splash Gala is always lots of fun.
See you in the shop or on the water,