A momentary break in the nasty weather has allowed the local rivers to drop into a high but fishable state. Unfortunately, more rain is expected over the weekend, and this will likely push the rivers back out of the realm of fishability. The good news is, next week is supposed to be dry for the most part, and the temperature will drop below freezing for a few consecutive nights. This should give us a good window to get out and do some early winter steelhead fishing, at least until the next warm rain front moves in!
Pacific Angler Holiday Hours
If you still have a few more items on your Christmas shopping list we have extended holiday hours so there is plenty of time to get all your Christmas shopping done!
Monday, Dec. 15th – Tuesday, Dec. 23rd 10AM – 7PM
Wednesday, Dec. 24th 10AM – 4PM
Thursday, Dec. 25th CLOSED – Merry Christmas!
Friday, Dec. 26th 9AM – 7PM- Boxing Day Sale!
Saturday, Dec. 27th 9AM – 7PM – Boxing Day Sale Continues!
Speaking of Boxing day keep an eye on your inbox next week for the full list of items that will be on sale during our famous boxing day sale!
Boxing Day Sale runs December 26th- December 31st.
Be the first through the door at 9:00am on December 26th for some great deals.
Some new 2015 Simms products have just arrived and they are some of the best packs and bags I have seen in a long time. The new Simms Dry Creek Z series is a truly waterproof series of bags and packs. These are the real deal, high end waterproof welded seams and zippers. You can submerse these bags and the contents will be dry at the end of the day. If you need to protect your gear and make sure it is bone dry at the end of the day, these are the bags and packs for you.
The new Headwaters Tackle Bag and Headwaters Gear Bag are also standouts. The tackle bag features dividers and pockets inside so you can keep your gear highly organized for easy access. I also like the water bottle holder on the outside and even more pockets to hold all your gear. This is an excellent bag for organizing your gear on a lake fishing trip to Kamloops, a steelhead trip to the Skeena, or a warm water trip to Cuba. The gear bag is also a great piece. It has multiple pockets for gear, personal items, and lunch. One of the best features is a vented lower compartment for your boots and waders. This is the perfect bag for holding all your layering pieces like wicking layers, fleeces, and Gore-Tex shells, and all you gear for the day. Load your waders and boots in the bottom, set the bag by the front door, and when you wake up in the morning all you need to do is grab this bag and head out the door! All are in stock and ready to go for Christmas at Pacific Angler, Vancouver’s source for Simms.
To say that anglers can be hard to shop for is an understatement. Picky at best and always eager to load up our tackle boxes throughout the year, by the time Christmas comes around what more could we possibly need? Well if this describes the saltwater angler on your list, look no further. These hand crafted Shipway Gaffs are a truly a unique, functional, and beautiful gift. Each one is hand crafted by Romney Shipway, designed to tame the largest of halibut and lingcod.
What is a gaff you say? Gaffs are a critical part of an angler’s toolbox. They are primarily used to land halibut, lingcod and rockfish. They are also used to release fish from the hook by sliding the gaff down the line, into the hook bend, then reversing the hook thereby releasing the fish. If there is one consistent trait among top saltwater anglers, it is that they are meticulous. Meticulous about their boat from bow to stern, from rod to reel, right down to the lure and the variety of tools we use along the way. A handcrafted Shipway Gaff will be sure to meet the standards of the most meticulous saltwater angler season after season, fish after fish.
We have a great selection of classes in January 2015! Start 2015 off with learning something new and don’t forget a course with Pacific Angler makes the perfect gift! A full course listing for the year will be released soon.
Fly Tying Courses
INTRODUCTION TO FLY TYING
Class Size: 7
There is no greater satisfaction than catching a fish with a fly you tied yourself. This course was specifically designed to give you the fundamental skills needed to tie proven fly patterns used here in BC for trout, salmon, and steelhead. This course consists of 3 sessions; each session is 3hrs. Students are required to supply their own vise, tools and materials. A 10% discount is available on materials and tools purchased for the course.
Cost: $75.00 Dates: (Jan 19, 26 & Feb 2)
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
TYING JIGS FOR STEELHEAD & SALMON
Class Size: 7
The use of jigs for catching steelhead and salmon is not a new idea; however, in the last few years we have seen a revolution on our local rivers. Fisherman using hand tied jigs are accounting for record numbers of steelhead! Join us around the tying tables and learn how to tie jigs for steelhead and salmon! If you have never thought of making your own lures don’t feel intimidated, Pacific Angler will help you with each step. For those who have lots of experience we will hone your skills and show you the tricks that make jigs the choice of top rods across the Lower Mainland. Students are required to supply their own vise, tools and materials. A 10% discount is available on materials and tools purchased for the course.
Date: Jan 12
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
FLY FISHING EGG PATTERNS
Class Size: 8
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.
Dates: Seminar on Jan 14. Guided Jan 17 or 18
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
STEELHEAD FLOAT FISHING
Class Size: 20
In this fishery, 10% of the anglers catch 90% of the fish. This is your chance to learn from the 10%! Our 3hr evening seminar will educate you on the gear, water types, conditions and other key variables that put veteran steelhead anglers in that 10%. Mastering this fishery will make you the envy of your friends. Upgrade your seminar to include a fully guided day on the water, putting into practice your new knowledge with a Pacific Angler guide.
Seminar Only Cost: $45.00
Seminar & Guided Walk’n Wade Cost: $400 for one person or $500 for two people
Dates: Seminar on Jan 13. Guided Jan 17, 18, 24, or 25 (custom trip dates are available upon request)
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
If you thought you had a “secret” spot on the Squamish, it’s probably not there anymore. The river has made a number of drastic changes from the constant barrage of high water. The upside is that there should be a ton of new spots to explore over the winter. We are expecting more rain for the weekend, but if the conditions allow trout fishing should be solid. Fly fishing with eggs and sculpin style patterns has been productive. There is an interesting theory circulating that because all the salmon have been washed out, the trout will have to focus more on sculpins rather than salmon eggs and flesh. If you are planning to hit the river, have a rod rigged with a sink tip for streamer fishing and also pack a rod rigged with a floating line for indicator nymphing.
Remember to stay safe when wading and exploring new areas. Also, be extra vigilant and careful with fish handling. It is hard to tell how this high water will affect the bull trout and rainbow populations. Make sure to not add to possible problems with poor catch and release practices.
While you are on the Squamish, please give the eagles as much room as possible as many of them are now feeding on the dead chum salmon along the gravel bars. It has been noted that angler activity can push the eagles off of these gravel bars and it can affect their feeding habits. Pets should be controlled and kept on leash so as not to disturb the eagles as well.
The Squamish System is 100% catch and release for all wild species. Retention of one hatchery coho (adipose fin clipped) is permitted. Be careful when identifying your catch, hatchery coho are rare on this system.
If you see any people fishing illegally make sure you call the ORR (observe, record, report) line 1-800-465-4336.
The first fish have been weighed in this week for the Wally Hall Jr. Steelhead Derby, so more fish are present in the river but fishing is still tough. The river is still on the high side of things, so expect to be fighting the conditions for the next while as we are due for more rain this weekend. If you are heading out to scratch the steelhead itch, make sure you bring your 6” pink rubber worms, Mad River Roe Eggs, and Bent Rods Steelhead Jigs. Early season fish are typically more aggressive because they haven’t seen as much gear, so fishing large bright presentations will help improve your chances of hooking up. People who head out early and cover lots of water can be rewarded with some early season chrome. If you’re looking for a great stocking stuffer for that float fisher on your list come on in and check out our new selection of “Top Shelf Premium Floats”, they’re designed so that they won’t crack like plastic or tear like foam.
Sam Graham, Max Stickel, & Dimitri Roussanidis
We have not heard anything from this system since coho season. There are usually a few early winter steelhead that are encountered around Christmas time. Fishing fast and covering plenty of different pools will increase your chances at finding a fish. Be confident in your presentation, and keep moving. Having a variety of presentations on hand is important, ranging from single eggs to medium gooey bobs,and 4″ to 6″ pink rubber worms. This river is best fished after a good dump of rain, as it clears up very quickly.
The slide in the upper portion of the reservoir must have been a big one, the Capilano is still flowing muddy brown! There is less than a foot of visibility at the best of times, even at low flow. It will be interesting to see how long it takes for the water to run clear again. It has been blown out for months now and has shown little sign of improvement. Between now and March, you may encounter the odd winter run steelhead.
Please note: ALL steelhead (adipose clipped and unclipped) must be released with the utmost care.
As long as there is no ice, you may encounter trout in the local lakes, but fishing will be slow between now and next spring.
Well, as predicted, things did perk up a bit this week! Some anglers hooked some chinook up in Howe Sound and there were a few chinook taken in Vancouver Harbor as well. Productive setups have been glow flashers with a 6 foot leader and a glow spoon, like a Pesca 2.5 or 3.5 in It’s Not, Bogart, and Leprechaun. Keep your gear close to the bottom, look for bait, and cover lots of water.
Prawning has also been decent but it is set to close soon, so make sure you check out the regulations, especially if you prawn in Howe Sound.
Howe Sound Prawning Closure: From January 1st to March 31st – Subareas 28-1 to 28-5 (Howe Sound) will be closed to prawning. Please see: http://www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/fm-gp/rec/species-especes/prawnclos-fermcrevette-eng.html for complete details on closures with maps.
Todd, one of our guides, was out this week and here is a picture of the bounty. Some nice chinook and some prawns! Crabbing has also been good in the harbor.
Take a break from the Christmas hustle and bustle, book a winter chinook charter for some wintertime fishing action. The seas are often flat calm, the fish fight hard, and they are some of the finest eating salmon of the year.
The P.A. Saltwater Guide Team: Jason, Eddie, Dimitri
Give us a call at 778-788-8582 to book today or buy a gift card for the angler in your life, redeemable for charters or store product. The shop number is 604-872-2204.
On behalf of the Pacific Angler staff we wish you the best in your fishing endeavors and we hope to see you either at the shop or on the water. To check out the latest Pacific Angler news view the Pacific Angler Facebook page.
Jason, Matt, Max, Andre, Sam, Eddie, Dimitri, Kathryn