Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Kootenay Rivers

"Time is but a stream I go a fishing in." - Henry David Thoreau

Well the full weight of summer is upon us. The heat is almost unbearable so
the best thing to do is to wade into a refreshing kootenay stream and throw
flies at hungry trout.

I was on the Salmo and Columbia Rivers this past week and had good success on both. The Salmo is a pretty stream that flows through the town of Salmo and empties 60km later into the Pend d'Oreille River. It holds rainbows and bull trout as well as smallmouth bass in the lower sections. The rainbows fight hard and will come to a dry fly or hopper pattern. I also had success in the lower Salmo casting stonefly nymphs into the faster water.

The Columbia has been nothing short of spectacular. Monday I waded into one of my favourite spots and promptly caught and released a healthy 16-inch trout on a Klinkhammer caddis. I also missed many, as the trout swirled over my fly the barbless wouldn't stick or would be thrown on the first jump. I did manage to land another nice rainbow but the one I lost at the net and the two that broke me off were hogs: typical Columbia River redband rainbows in the 3-5lb range.

The evening has been the most productive time of day for me on the Columbia. Good hatches and less sun make for a pleasant couple hours on one of the best trout rivers in the west.

Best of luck out there... wherever 'there' is.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Bass Fishing PdO

Fly-fish-BC goes bass fishing

In an effort to cutdown on the introduction of alien species, such as bass, perch, sunfish, walleye etc., into BC waters, BC fisheries has implemented a "no fishing" ban in its 2009 regulations. It is now unlawful to fish for alien species such as the aforementioned on any lake or stream in Britsh Columbia. However, read your regs carefully because many waters are exempt from the ban.

This past week my sister, Juli, and I hit one such local reservoir to fish for smallmouth bass. It didn't take long before Juli had a hit on a bright red woolly bugger. Minutes later she landed a nice smallmouth bass. I followed right behind her with another caught on my own bass fly creation. We exchanged fish for the next three hours and even had a few double headers.

The retention limit is still a generous 8 fish and we caught over 20, casting from shore or trolling streamer patterns, releasing all but two. We saved these for our mother who absolutley loves fresh fish and chastizes me everytime I return home without a couple for her frying pan. My sister doesn't get out much since the birth of her third child so it was a pleasure to spend a few hours on the water with her.

I understand and deplore the spread of alien fish to our fine BC trout waters but alas, as a wise old fly fisher once told me, sometimes you just got to catch fish. And a morning spent fly fishing BC for bass in those areas that are still allowed, is a morning well spent.