Another week of wet weather is coming to a close, and we are very excited by the prospect of clear skies, cold mornings, and dropping rivers. With next to no rain in the forecast for this coming week, we should finally see our local rivers stay in shape for more than a few hours!
River fishing for coho fishing has been solid when conditions allow, and it should continue for the next couple of weeks. Winter chinook fishing in our local waters is just around the corner, and we should hear the first reports over the next month.
Simms Freestone Waders: Toray vs Gore-Tex
The Simms Freestone Wader is the most affordable wader offered by Simms, however, the quality is far from entry level. The Freestone Wader features highly breathable 4 layer Toray QuadraLam technology, and is equipped with center seam construction. Because most waders offered by Simms are made of Gore-Tex, one of the most frequently asked question we have at the shop is, what makes Toray different from Gore-Tex?
We measure 4 things when looking at breathable material; water resistance, breathability, weight and durability.
Water resistance is measured by the pressure of water, in millimeters (mm), that can be kept out of the fabric for a 24-hour period of time. If a fabric is rated at least 20,000mm/24hr, it is considered completely waterproof. Toray is not quite as water resistant as Gore-Tex but it is well over the 20,000mm rating.
Breathability is measured by the grams of water that can move through a square meter of fabric over a 24 hr period (g/m²/24hr). Toray is actually more breathable than PacLite and Performance Shell, two of the three kinds of Gore-Tex. Only the Pro-Shell 3-Layer Gore-Tex is more breathable with a rating of 25,000. When it comes to weight, Toray really excels. The Freestone Waders happen to be the lightest wader we carry!
The last factor is a big one, and this is where investing in Gore-Tex will pay dividends. All waders will wear out over time and lose water resistance in the coating. In our experience the Freestone will wear out faster than the Gore-tex construction waders. Though the numbers are not set in stone and will vary with the kind of use, we feel that the life of a Freestone Wader is about 150 days of use. That may not seem like a lot, but even the most avid angler may only fish 20 days a season. With Gore-tex waders, we hope for at least 200+ days of use.
This past year went by in a flash, and it is once again time for the British Columbia Federation of Drift Fishers Annual Banquet. We look forward to this evening of fun, food, prizes, draws, and auctions all year long! Net proceeds all go towards preservation of salmon and steelhead and retention of angler opportunity. You can find out more about the event here.
We are putting the finishing touches on our 2015 Course Schedule. We’ll release the dates and course list in the upcoming weeks here.
That said we have one more course left this year and we need your help to finish off 2014 with another sold out course. Join us on November 24 + 25 for Tying Intruder Fly Patterns class. Let’s make this another year of 100% sell out on our courses. Call us at the shop to sign up today!
TYING INTRUDER FLY PATTERNS
Class Size: 7
This course is designed for those that are interested in tying steelhead flies in the “Intruder style”. This style of fly is extremely productive for steelhead and salmon due to its profile and movement in the water. During this two night (5hr total instruction) tying series, you will learn the very specific techniques and unique materials used to tie this fly. This course is suitable for intermediate to advanced tiers. Students are required to supply their own vise, tools and materials. A 10% discount is available on materials and tools purchased for the course.
Dates: Nov 24th & 25th
Time: 7:00pm – 9:30pm
Keep an eye on this section for our 2015 Course List – to be released soon!
Stamp River Trip Report
Last weekend, Max traveled over to Vancouver Island to fish the Stamp river in Port Alberni. The Stamp offers year-round fishing opportunities and is one of the most well known steelhead rivers in the province. Unique to most other steelhead streams, the Stamp has fish entering the system 12 months of the year. During the fall months, the summer and fall run steelhead concentrate in the upper river and feed on salmon eggs deposited from spawning chinook and coho salmon.
The Stamp is best fished by boat as walk and wade fishing is very limited. The water was high, but that did not seem to hinder the fishing at all. Egg like presentations such as trout beads, corkies, and rubber eggs all worked well. There was no shortage of steelhead throughout the day, but that was only a part of the over-all experience. The Alberni Valley is one of the most beautiful places to spend a day on the water and the fishing can be world class. If you are thinking about heading over to Vancouver Island to explore what great fishing it has to offer, give us a call at the shop and we can set you up with the best guides on the island.
Fishing the Squamish has been a battle with the weather all season, and this week was no exception. Heavy rain and fairly warm temperatures have water levels fluctuating dramatically making water clarity poor. Last week the river came close to being in good shape and even though it was still dirty, a few determined anglers worked around the poor conditions and had good results. The river blew out again on Monday and Tuesday. For the most part fishing was poor as the water rose 1.5 meters, but even in the flood conditions we had a few anglers find good pods of chum and coho.
We are attributing this “good” fishing in poor conditions to the fact that there are so many fish in the system and not many people have been out fishing. The fish are happy and haven’t seen a million lures and flies, so they are very willing biters.We have had to cancel trips because the water is unsafe and anyone going out should be very careful around the river when it is running high. Do not be discouraged by coloured water, fish big flies or large lures and you should do okay.
The forecast is looking good for late in the weekend and temperatures are dropping in the mountains. Next week could see the first good water clarity of the season. On a side note egging for trout is picking up and we have had some great success when salmon are hard to find. Come into the shop and we can show you the rig, flies and technique.
This is an excellent river to target salmon with a fly rod. The coho can be more aggressive in the Squamish than other lower mainland rivers and will often take big marabou flies swung on a tight line. The chum like pink and purple flashy marabou flies which will also catch coho in the same run. Chartreuse patterns can also be a deadly choice.
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.
The Vedder has been fishing okay this past week, conditions have been on the high side but it’s still fishable. Anglers that are willing to put their time in have been quite successful. Clarity seems to be the biggest issue that can determine success; clarity in the upper river has been better making it more fishable than the lower. There will be some rain this weekend which will affect clarity, but expect the river to come into shape by the beginning of next week. We are still hearing plenty of reports of bright fish this last week so the fishing is far from over.
Float fishing is the primary technique used to catch fall salmon. The proper setup for float fishing is a 10-11ft medium power casting rod. Light action rods are excellent for coho, while those who are targeting chinook and chum will benefit from a medium-heavy action rod. Roe, wool combinations, and colorado blades are all great float fishing presentations. Spinners and spoons are also deadly effective, especially for coho. 8ft-11ft spinning or casting rods are ideal for retrieving lures. Gibbs Koho and Croc spoons are good choices, as well as Blue Fox spinners.
You can also use a fly rod to target coho salmon. An 8wt single hand fly rod lined with a versi-tip system is ideal for this fishery. The versi-tip line allows you to quickly change out different sink tips to cover different speeds of water more efficiently. Small flash flies, muddler minnows, and wooly buggers are all good choices in clear water. Coho will also take big flies if water clarity is an issue.
Please familiarize yourselves with species identification as you may encounter Cultus Lake sockeye which must be carefully released.
Sam Graham, Max Stickel, & Dimitri Roussanidis
The Chehalis is producing some coho, but there are a few dark fish mixed in. This river can fish well for coho until the end of November. Float fishing with roe, wool, and blades is the most common method, but spinners and spoons are also a good choice. Fly fishing in the lower reaches is also quite effective.
This is an excellent river to float fish in, but carrying a second setup for the frog water is a good idea. Fly fishing for coho with an intermediate sink tip line is effective in the slower water.
The Capilano has dropped a lot in the last few days. The river now running quite low, but the clarity is still not great. The salmon season is pretty well over as most of the fish still swimming around are dark and not worth targeting. You may find the odd bright coho, but spending your time on other systems will be much more worthwhile.
Please note: ALL steelhead (adipose clipped and unclipped) must be released with the utmost care.
A number of lakes have just received their fall stocking of catchable rainbow trout. Take a look at this website for up to date stocking reports in your area.
Fall can be an excellent time to fish the Whistler lakes. As the weather cools off, the trout seem to really turn on the feed and move into shallower areas. For cutthroat trout in Alta try olive Wooly Buggers, and Muddler Minnows in various colours and flash combinations. Don’t be afraid to crack out the big streamers for Green. Large flashy rabbit strip streamers work well for the bull trout on the drop offs.
Please remember that Alta and Green Lake are catch and release/bait ban fisheries.
While many people are starting the countdown to Christmas, we’re starting the countdown to the winter chinook season. Our saltwater guides are in fishing withdrawal so even though we are a few weeks out from the start of the winter chinook season we’re hoping to get out this weekend and do some prospecting in anticipation of this great fishery.
Stay tuned for more reports,
The P.A. Saltwater Guide Team: Jason, Eddie, Dimitri
Give us a call on our charter phone at 778-788-8582 to book a charter or come by the shop for all the right gear and some friendly advice. 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