October is here! We have been hearing great reports but, the weather has been interesting over the last two days. All that rain yesterday hit our rivers and they have spiked. We are writing the report late Thursday so keep an eye on things because we are hopeful that things drop fast and there will be some great fishing into the back end of the weekend.
In this week’s report we have details on the Chilliwack, Squamish, Capilano, and Harrison. Sterling has an interior lake update and last, but certainly not least, we have another fly box give away! Andre is giving away a fly box with the patterns he has tied on his YouTube channel over the last few months. Check out the video vision of the report for details on how to enter. Matt also goes over river levels in detail and shares a great saltwater video that all you saltwater anglers will not want to miss. CLICK below to watch the video report:
CLASSES AND COURSES
Fly Fishing For Salmon In Rivers
Fly fishing for salmon is one of the most exciting fisheries in the Lower Mainland. Let us teach you the techniques and the hot spots to catch salmon on the fly in our local rivers. In the 3hr evening seminar you will learn about rod, reel and line, sink tip, and fly selection. Then put the skills into practice during a fully guided day on the water where you will learn how to read water and swing the fly!
Zoom Seminar: Oct 13, 2021 Guided: Oct 16, 17, 23 or 24, 2021
Seminar Only Cost: $50.00+GST
Seminar & Guided Walk’n Wade Cost: $275.00+GST per angler,
Zoom Seminar Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Guided: Full Day
FRESHWATER FISHING REPORTS
Vedder/Chilliwack River Fishing Report
The weather over the past week has been all over the place, so the fishing in the Vedder/Chilliwack has been quite inconsistent as a result. Fish have been pushing into the system during and after the rainfall events we’ve been experiencing, so fishing has been good after the river crests and starts to drop, but it slows down a bit within a few days as the flow or fresh fish tapers off and the fish that are already in the system hunker down and get less “bitey”. There’s nothing unusual about this, but the frequency of these spikes and dips has been somewhat frustrating. For those of us who can only get out once or twice a week, we have to hope that favorable conditions line up with the days we can fish!
Not to be all doom and gloom or anything, there have been a lot of fish moving through the system over the past week. The chinook are around in large numbers, the coho are starting to increase their presence quite a bit, and there are still some decent numbers of pinks pushing into the river, surprisingly. The last big rainfall pushed fish throughout the entire system, from top to bottom, although it seems that a majority of the fish were being caught in the lower river.
Keep in mind that this probably has something to do with the fact that a majority of the fishing pressure is being focused on the lower river. The rainstorm we had on Thursday bumped the river up and almost certainly would’ve gotten fish moving again. All the standard gear has been producing fish, with conditions and the desired species dictating what you’re going to use. As a general rule, if the water is dirty, upsize presentations. If it’s clear, downsize.
The uncertainty in the weather forecast for the next week makes it tough to say how the river will be fishing, but this is prime time… so if conditions are agreeable, there will be good numbers of fish throughout the entire system. The chinook will be around in high numbers until early/mid-October, the coho will be becoming more plentiful until about mid-October, and the pinks should be rapidly tapering off. There will be lots of spawning pinks in the backchannels, tailouts and channel margins; please refrain from trying to catch these fish- they have no food value and will not fight especially hard. Let them do their job, they’re down to their final energy reserves, so the last thing they need is to waste it because they got hooked. Also, try to avoid wading in the areas that spawning fish frequent- there will be eggs in the gravel, and stepping on them is counterproductive if you want to catch fish in a few years.
Squamish River Fishing Report
This past week saw the pink salmon fishing taper off in quality pretty drastically while the trout, char, and coho fishing has been pretty good. Rain and water levels will play a role in access and colour but it is fishing well for the most part. Char, coho, old pinks, and trout are throughout the system.
Coho are now in the system and can provide a nice step up from the pinks. These coho are a little trickier and can fight quite a bit harder than pinks, creating a great opportunity for those anglers looking to take the next step.
All your pink spoons will work great, but this is where having a variety of lures in varying weights and colours can pay dividends. Oval and slim spoons provide different sink and swimming actions while twitching jigs hop and skip. Colorado blades buzz and flash while bobs and beads tumble and bounce. There is a reason why so much tackle exists and it is to help anglers approach different situations with helpful tactics.
If fly fishing, swinging and stripping flies in various weights and sizes can prove successful. Remember that laid up and stacked coho may want small and sparse patterns while traveling fish may want a larger profile. Keeping a variety of flies and sink tips/leaders can often be the key to unlocking these fish.
Please be aware that bears exist and that you are going into their home. Be smart and safe.
Capilano River Fishing Report
We have seen some heavy rainfall this past week with an excess of 90mm of rain hitting the North Shore. This has drastically spiked the river levels on the Capilano with it sitting at 3.4m and rising at the writing of this report. With blowout conditions, fishing will prove to be challenging as river levels rise. This past week there has been an incident where a stranded angler had to be hoisted up to safety by SAR; we see this every season, unfortunately. Please remember safety should always on your mind when fishing this unpredictable system. Be aware of your surroundings as water levels are prone to rise without notice.
Although we do expect more rain to come next week, it will luckily be a lot less heavy as this past week. Once the river drops back to a fishable level, expect excellent fishing as we are into the peak times for this system. Fish will be spread out and can be found throughout the river in good numbers. Float fishing with beads, blades and yarn can be very effective on fresh fish that have just pushed up.
Once the water recedes, some chinook and coho will be trapped in the upper pools and it provides a unique opportunity to target them on the fly. 8-9wt rods are recommended as encountering an adult chinook is not uncommon. Type 6 and 3 full sink lines are utilized in these deep and slower pools. Take a look at Andre’s fly board at the shop for patterns that are relatively sparse yet flashy which will produce for both chinook and coho.
Please be reminded that there is a bait ban on this system until Oct 31.
Hope everyone exercises caution when enjoying this beautiful river,
Harrison River Fishing Report
Things are relatively quiet on the Harrison front right now. A few chum salmon have entered the system but the main push is a few weeks out. Fishing for pinks is now closed as well. This fishery really hits its stride from the third week of October until about the second week of November, depending on water levels. Chum fishing can be easily done by either float fishing with jigs in some combination of purple, pink, chartreuse, and fluorescent blue, or by swinging large streamers of similar colour on a fly rod. Coho fishing gets a little more technical as the need for stealth does come into play but they can be caught on twitching jigs, spinners, or spoons for gear anglers and flash flies, rolled muddlers, and wooly buggers for fly fishermen.
A lot of the water where you will find these fish is slow and relatively shallow so lighter weighted lures and intermediate or slow sink fly lines are all that are needed.
In order to effectively do a walk and wade on the Harrison, you want it to be below 9 meters. Once the water is below 9 meters much more bank will open up. Otherwise launching a boat can get you to most of the water, regardless of levels.
STILLWATER FISHING REPORTS
Interior Lake Fishing Report
The temperatures continue to drop, which inevitably means that the fish will continue to push up shallower. I’ve always found that I have to fight against moving deeper, as you would do the majority of the year, when fishing during the fall. It tends to pay off to throw your lures and flies in areas where you find yourself saying “There’s no way that they’re that shallow”.
This is the point of the year where fishing becomes a hunt meaning that covering water is an absolute necessity. Fall fishing means pulling up the anchor a ton and moving around until you find that one or two spots on the lake where all the fish are seeming to congregate. It can be a bit grueling as conditions can turn frigid quickly and winds tend to be decent at the best of times. Being willing to brave the conditions can lead to some amazing results as quite a few of the best lake fishermen will tell you that the largest fish are caught in the fall. The best part is that you can pretty much neglect the middle of the lake, for the most part, meaning you can focus your attention on the perimeters and shoals. The best way to break down fall fishing is to search the lake using 2 or 3 high-confidence buggy patterns. A few popular fall patterns are leeches, scuds, and boatmen in a variety of colours. It’s always tough to beat an olive, black, or brown colour in all three of those variations if you’re wondering where to even start when it comes to colour. Another great fall option is blob patterns. They really simply seem to produce when fish aren’t interested in the natural preentations.
I’d be more than willing to discuss a game plan with you if you come through the store. I know fall fishing can be daunting but, it’s really tough to beat if you get a day where everything goes right.