Most rivers in our area are fairly high and dirty at the time of writing this report. Prior to the rains a few chinooks were caught on the Skeena and the Bulkey. Pinks and Chums have started to make their appearance in the Kitimat. A few springs are also still making their way into the Kitimat.
As most of you have heard Sockeye fishing in the Skeena Watershed is closed until further notice. The index is terrible.
Rainbow Alley / Babine Report by Pierce Clegg
Rainbow Alley is virtually devoid of anglers, but that does not mean it is devoid of fish. Rainbow Trout, Cutthroat Trout, Cutbow for a lack of a biological specific, Lake Trout, Bull Trout and Burbot. All of these sport fish are numerous from the outlet of Babine Lake to the Babine River Weir and below…they have their preferred areas and it pays to know when, where and what fly.
This time of the season, the Golden Stonefly hatch of the river section downstream of Nilkitkwa lake, that hatch is still going depending on sunshine which we have not had lots of lately. Even so the fish in this section have had their fill and that are looking up so work the waters with a stonefly dry pattern…anchor throughout and master the art of the dead drift dry fly and you will be rewarded.
The river section between Babine Lake and Nilkitkwa lake is not to be overlooked…and especially the outlet of Babine Lake this time of year is full of trout looking up. My eighty year old Mom enjoyed some great action today despite white caps on Babine Lake and some showers throughout the day.
And for those who understand the Brian Chan way of thinking, mainly that lakes with certain habitat hold fish, well then Nilkitkwa and it’s amazing weedbeds are still happening and so few anglers spend the time to figure them out…where they are and what to use, and the patience to fish them. They are my favourite of the entire fishery, and the largest of trout are classic to a lake with deep water edges amongst shallow shoals and weedbeds that breed the food that trout depend on.
Be aware that this season is a low water season so it pays to be able to read water and keep your prop or jet drive from harms bottom…especially the river section downstream of Nilkitkwa lake. But the rewards are worth it…
Flies you say, well for mayflies, I prefer the good ole Royal Wulff size 14, the Parachute Adams size 14 and the regular Adams size 12 and 14…also try a Humpy size 14 as well, any body colour you like…yellow and green sure work. For stoneflies, well if you pick up a copy of my first book, Babine, you will find the Fred Watts pattern called the Freddie…great pattern and a larger version works well waking for steelhead. You can play with nymphs, but at this time of the season, I just use three patterns for the entire fishery…so simple, easy and effective.
And when you take a trout, keep the fresh head and prepare a set line for Burbot in Nilkitkwa or Babine lakes…great fish for fish and chips.
And yes when the salmon and steelhead fisheries are shut down, and I think they will be unfortunately…we have this great resource called Rainbow Alley…it may be one of the few natural tail water fisheries available to us locals and tourists alike. Guides, well there are really any available thanks to our stupid government, but finding un-guided fisheries in Skeena country is rare so enjoy. And like I said at the beginning of this report…the alley is devoid of anglers, go figure…
Ocean Fishing Report by Lee Mac
The weather has been hot and so has the fishing over the past week. We were on the water again over this past weekend and managed to get into a bunch of really nice fish. Out of Rupert, I've had reports of anglers finding a good mix of Coho and Chinook around Dundas island all the way down past Banks Island (and everywhere in between), My general rule of thumb when fishing Rupert is that if the fishing are not biting at your spot,MOVE. There are alot of fishing spots in very close proximity to one another in the Rupert area, making it very easy to be mobile and try a bunch of different holes. Look for the 3 B's when after salmon, Birds, Boats and Bait. Seeing 1/3 is promising but if you can locate 2/3 then it's almost a sure thing that you'll get into some salmon.
Down the Douglas channel, things have been fishing well. We have seen a bunch of coho getting closer to the Kitimat River and have still seen great chinook action on the outer reaches of the channel. This past weekend, we had great success the first day trolling around a cut plug on one side and a Luhr Jensen Coyote 6.0 on the other. The next morning we found that there were massive schools of small anchovy around so switched it up to a Coyote 4.0 and an Anchovy and did very well.
Up until the last couple of days, the weather has made it very easy to get out and target those big ling and hali offshore. Unfortunately a gale force warning has put a damper on that (for most of us) but there are still lots of inshore places to try. Look for 150-200ft flat spots when targeting halibut and rocky pinnacles when after ling and roskfish, The P-Line Hali drop jig was lights out for us over this past weekend and is very effective when fishing pinnacles mid tide.
Crabbing and prawning remain good and should continue to be steady for the rest of the summer.
Looks like this gale is going to pass and the wind is going to be decent for the weekend so get out there and go fishing.
Till next time.....Tight lines.