Fraser Valley 2014.10.25 — Rain Rain Rain

This has been a really wet weekend with the rain warning in effect, bring the water levels up to a all time high this season.  For us, this has been a challenging year with the abundance of many species.  Most of which we did not get, sockeyes, springs and chums.  Even the numbers of coho was not nearly what we got in September of last year.  Hook ups are way down as well for most of us if not all.  Timing is crucial and i believe the substantial amount of rain came at a time when the peak of the coho run started which has allowed for the fish to shoot way up and fast.  Is it good, possibly but i would love to get my hands on a few more before it comes to an end.

Let’s start the weekend journal.  All i can say is the water has some good color but high.  Normally if the water is at this level with more fish, we would be slaughtering them.  But with the low numbers, this made it difficult to entice that many.  Well, let’s say between the 4 of us, we had a handful of bites but only 1 that was able to take home.  We drove a ton of  kms after kms in search of these buggers.  Fished the vedder for the first half of the day and then moved on to another system.  Was it tough, definitely!!  But near the end of the day, I managed this one fish.

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A 5lb female hatchery coho for a days effort.  I guess that’s not that bad considering the conditions.  I know that some may think that it’s great with the extra water and know exactly where the fish was hiding.  We tried many different spots and was trying all different techniques but roe was the answer to this chromer.

Was also hoping to write once for the both days but todays water was even higher and brown to say the least.  Hopefully with all this rain, enough fish will make it to the hatchery so that we could have an even stronger run 4 years later.  But i pretty much wrote this year off for now and if the next few weeks turns out good, great but if not, still a fun year for what it is.

Anyways, hope you all had an exciting weekend and see you back next week or if i decide to take a sick day.  :)

Fraser Valley 2014.10.19 — The purist brings home his first!!!

This post will be for all the fly guys out there, mainly Hook.  It’s been a tough season for him as he has gone weeks without something significant on the end of the line.  Don’t get me wrong, he has had a couple of chums on the other end but doesn’t really counts if his mindset is, “Doesn’t matter if it comes off”.  Today we searched another river as yesterday didn’t yield anything, not even a hook up of any sort.  I have not even fished as hard as him with the fly and managed one last week as i was getting frustrated with the pin.  But i can honestly say, he has tried everything in his fly box.  But nothing seems to work.  He might as well just tie the whole box to the end and chuck it in as he was losing quite a few flies to the debris.  Not good at all, no fish, losing flies, and to top it all off, Zero teaching him what flies to use to catch fish, hahahaha.  Anyways, lets start with his highlight of the day.

Searched another system for the elusive cohos that we normally would do during this time of year.  Is it too early?  Probably.  Is there a chance?  Always!!  So we hiked for majority of the day searching high and low for these cohos.  Did i mention elusive?  We found them, but it was so hard to get them to bite.  But i do believe that there is a time for each and every method.  If it was an overcast day, then i say he would have a high chance to hook something.  Was it overcast today, not a chance.  We fished for about 9hrs today.  The sun was shining as bright as can be for an mid October day.  Nice weather though but not for Hook.  He fished here and he fished there.  Trying to entice the cohos to bite his beautiful flies, as he always refers to them.  Every so often, you would hear him mumble to himself, “Don’t you like my flies?  Aren’t they pretty?  Why won’t you just bite the damn fly”.  When one starts to talk to himself in such a manner, we have some serious issue here.  hahahaha.  Only 1 conclusion, he is dry.  hahahaha.  Not in a personal way cause i wouldn’t know.

Moving from run to run, they are there!!  Not in huge numbers but definitely present in the water in front of us.  Even for myself, i’m getting frustrated here but i know that, when the water is clear and fish become a bit stale, they are not going to take anything.  Well, at least not consistently.  But that doesn’t stop the purist of all people, Hook.  He went at like the energizer bunny.  And finally as the last beams of warmth hides behind the clouds on the horizon, he gets his first hook up of the day.  A big male with battle stripes is landed and gentle released to do its thing.  A smile changes everything.  Another few more cast, BAM!! fish on.  He starts talking to himself, “Something different!!”  After a few runs from left to right and right to left.  A flash of silver!!  This could mean the end of his dry spell.  Shortly after, he lands the 5-6lbs female hatchery coho.  Literally jumping with joy and walking as far away from the waters as possible to secure his prize.  A sigh of relief can be heard.  Way to go bro!!!  Damn, i had the gopro on my head the whole time but forgot to press the record button.  I kept on clicking the On/Off button.  Give me a break, it’s been a long time since i made a video.  So the whole time, i was just talking to myself.  Anyways, here is the his prize of the year.

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There is so much rain coming that everything could change in a matter of minutes.  Make sure you have a safe way out if you plan to wade across a channel to get to the greener side.  Play it safe, it’s only fish.  See you all on the flow next week!!!

Vedder River 2014.10.18 — Would have been a long ride home!!

With all the rain we have had in the recent days, it was time to see how the river shaped up.  Went back to the same spot as last week but i had doubts that it would be as productive as previous weeks.  For sure not as many hook ups but still did manage to get something.

Zero with a hook up not long after arrival.  Yes, Zero gets a fish.  I couldn’t believe he would be the first today to get into something that was retained.  Not many people on the flow where we were fishing and the trash talk could be echoed throughout the stretch.  The one day i didn’t have my headphones on.  Just yap yap yap.  Coming over to teach me how to fish for coho is the trademark of this good friend of mine.  Explaining how once must approach the flow in order to get a fish.  hahahah.  it’s funny how he doesn’t that every time.  Hook and I just walked away to fish lower down but more to just get away from him.  I gave him his moment to bash as much as he can.  Either way, he did good to kick start the day.

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The photo was taken at the end of the day but it was as silver as can be.  Same colors as mine from last week.

Now is time for me to push even harder to make sure that this type of attitude does not persist.  This is just to make sure that everyone stays cool with all the yapping.  A couple of hours has passed with only a hatchery coho jack to show for.  Released of course cause that would only make the bleeding worst.  So many ways for Zero to twist it if it wasn’t released, so off you go little fella.  Finally, i did manage a fresh hatchery female coho about the same size to keep him quiet for a bit.  hahahaha.  A sigh of relief while Hook and I latched and bled.  We looked at each other and just laughed as we knew what each other was thinking.  For those that don’t believe, you have to come fish with us to fully understand the situation.  hahahah.  Just to top it off, i got another hatchery jack coho which i decided to retain to just have the edge.  But it’s also because my daughters love to eat these little guys and very minimal effort to have these cooked the night of.

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One more day to fish before the rain starts to kill what is left of this run.  I know others may beg to differ but i feel it is tapering off and it might be time to start to look at the different systems.  Hope tomorrow brings a bit more luck but if not, it’s still was fun on the vedder this season.  Anyways, hope you all get to enjoy it but if not, see you all on the other systems.

Vedder River 2014.10.13 — Is the Coho run starting or ending?

Since i had 2 cohos on Saturday, don’t let the action stop.  Decided to head out again with Hook on Monday after a long Thanksgiving Sunday.  It’s a great time to get together with family and just have some food.  Not that i don’t have food regularly but it’s good to have all the family members within sight.  My dish was the coho salmon from that day and i personally don’t enjoy eating it at all.  Should have made sashimi instead but not enough time to freeze.  Oh well, next time.

Went back to the same location where i got my fish to find a well occupied run.  Does that matter?  Not really because they are all friends.  Doesn’t mean i will squeeze in just to fish but at least, if i battle something that takes a bit more time, they don’t frown and tell me to fight it down stream.

It started off quite frustrating as you can see fish surface and i was short floating for coho mainly.  But for some reason, i found all the snags possible on the flow.  Lost a dink float and drennan which got me really upset as i have been using that dink float for a long time without having to break my mainline off.  Somehow, i managed to break setup twice in a 15mins time frame.  Oh well, it’s one of those days.

Time to switch to the fly to calm myself down just for a bit so i don’t keep on losing gear.  Making my cast slightly downstream.  Can’t seem to get the timing right.  I know it’s been awhile now but man, did i suck.  Should be more like riding a bike, if you did it once, your body should just pick it up again.  So after a few messed up cast, i finally make the right one.  The right one means that the line gets laid out without catching itself.  I slowly straighten my line just so i get a better tension on.  Next thing you know, BAM!!!  Fish ON!!!  I was thinking, wow, it’s always nice to get fish with a fly.  Couple of darts later, i notice that it’s not a chum or a spring.  The rolls and head shakes confirmed that it’s a coho.  Now, just hoping that it’s not wild.  My buddy just released 2 earlier, both wild.  After a short battle, a nice 5-6lbs male hatchery to the beach.  Lost a couple more to the debris but that’s okay.

At a certain time of the day, the fish are way more active.  Either there are new fish moving into the run or they just want to come out to play.  Wasn’t getting anymore hits on the fly so time to switch out again.  Sometimes, i feel very luck to be able to just switch between pin and fly with 1 rod.  Couple of cast later with roe, a huge take down!!!  I thought it was a chum at first because of where i casted.  Right now was more just to battle fish cause i already secured 1 coho on the beach.  These days, i don’t ask for much, i’m happy if i already have one and everything after, doesn’t really matter.  Big head shakes!!!  Big pulls like a spring and always wanting to go into the deep waters.  Chum or spring but haven’t seen any springs today.  Now it takes me down river, expected.  But it leaps into the air.  Coho for sure!!!  Game on now, slowly retrieving but not babying the fish as i know that at any given time, you baby the fish, it will come off.  A few more quick dashes but finally i get the better of her.  An 8lber female hatchery coho to the beach.  Super excited again.  Latched and bled.

Another half and hour has pass and things started to calm down.  Not much rolling anymore so it was time to fish water closer in.  I would say, that water was 3ft tops but i do see a little pocket that suddenly turn from dark green to black.  Lets make a cast and see what’s sitting there.  The float doesn’t dip but i have passed that slot many times.  It flows all the way through without a snag of any sort.  It’s standing on end but pauses so i gave it a second and setup the hook.  Silver flashes, indeed it was holding my bait and not taking off with it.  Most of the time when this happens, the hook is at the tip of it’s mouth so i know that i don’t have much time to bring it in.  Not saying that it will come off but it does come off easier than if it was on the side of the mouth.  That is just my experience but not always the case.  Finally, bring that in as well.  Another 7-8lbs female hatchery coho.  Latched and bled again.

Now the determination was to limit out but the rain came.  When it rains, it pours and it was time to say good bye and fight the battle another day.  It was great fun with all the coho and 1 chum that i had.  Could have limited out if i didn’t lose the 2 earlier in the day but life has twists and turns.  Either way, a fun fill day with highs and lows and if i got to do it again, i have it no other way.  Just happy to see that the cohos are coming in but i do feel that it might be the end of the run with all this rain.  Lots of other systems to fish but i do enjoy the Vedder more than any other river.  I enjoy the people i fish with more than anything, without them, i’m just fishing.  Thank you to all for making this a wonderful experience and i have to give thanks to my bro Hook for securing my fish and letting me get an extra couple of drifts in.

The big rain has finally come and water will be high and dirty so watch your step and have a safe one.  Hopefully the season doesn’t end but just have to put in extra leg work to find where they are holding next.  Until next weekend, play it safe and dress warm!!

Oh right, here is the picture.

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Vedder River 2014.10.11 — Good times

I’ve been reading my post lately and have noticing i have just been writing about the whole day, step by step.  It’s getting kinda boring and my wife told me to just write about the highlights so i think i will try to keep it short and do just that.

Started the day quite early for myself but had to wait for some time before Zero got to my place.  I totally forgot that i was going to take a friend out today and had her wait at the gas station for over an hour.  Finally getting to the river with familiar faces everywhere but this time, all with smiles.  The day has begun with multiple hits for everyone around.  With a friend on the side, not completely new to fishing but let’s just say, “It’s been a long time”.  Fished here and there to get things going but none of the spots connected with anything.  No worries, it’s still early in the day.

With everyone around, busy with hooking into fish, people are still quite nice even when the bites are on.  I have met a lot of people on the river, i would have to say, 99% are great people.  Always laughing and smiling regardless of catching anything.  That’s what fishing is all about.  Sure, you can catch the biggest, you can catch the most but still, everyone enjoys good company.  Today is no different except for the fact that more fish is in the system.  I would have to say, today has been a tough day for me on the river when fish are actually present and within grasp.  But i blame it on my friend as i had to tie hooks after hooks for her.  But that’s ok, that’s what friends are for.  But i want to give thanks to those that have made the day a good one.  I wasn’t able to land anything, heck, couldn’t even connect with anything.  So a buddy that i have been fishing with over the years didn’t want a spring and decided to give it away, yup, hands up here.  No shame in taking fish from a friend.  But it wasn’t for me but for my friend, hahaha.  Anyways, all in all, lots of springs and chum to be had and when friends are fishing amongst friends, no one goes home empty handed.

It’s been really tough for me on the Vedder this year.  After seeing everyone get something, whether it be a spring or a chum, i wanted to get some action too.  Even my friend had a hook up.  I know i have been saying friend without a name to it but still haven’t thought of what to call her just yet.  Everyone has a story behind their names but let’s wait to see if she will come out again.  Anyways, she had a fish one but didn’t know so i kindly pointed out, “I think you have fish on”.  But i got the response of, “No, i think it’s stuck again”.  Then the next time you know, lines starts to peel off here reel like she left the bail open on her spinning rod.  That was funny as she was just holding on to dear life, hahaha.  Without a proper hook set, guess what happened after a 100ft dash.  Pop, goes the hook.  That was fun for the 3 – 5 secs, now she has to retrieve a ton of line.  Still, all in all, good laughs.

My turn, moving from run to run, after saying “Hi” to everyone that i knew, it was time to really put the roe to work.  Can’t seem to hit the far side so i decided, let’s just fish in front.  Maybe around a 15ft cast, nothing fancy, just flick and drop.  A few seconds later, float down, jack coho to hand.  Quickly release even though it was a hatchery.  Everyone nailing springs after springs.  Nope, done with that from the Cap, don’t want to do that anymore really when cohos are around.  Moved down river a bit and made a cast roughly the same distance.  Again, a few seconds later, float down, head shakes, rolls, and jumps.  Hell ya, coho time.  After a few minutes, this is what i got.

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After landing this beauty of a coho, i thought to myself.  What if i didn’t get this fish today?  Does it matter?  Probably not, the prize was not this rare coho in the canal but fishing around great people that know you on a first name basis.

Anyways, it was a great day fishing and there are more to come.  Rain is coming and river will rise, bring more and more fresh fish into the system so we are not all jam packed like sardines.  It’s quite funny right now where salmons are all stacked at the deepest pockets like people are stacked thinking they will lose their honey hole.  But just keep on smiling and the fish will eventually come!!

Capilano River 2014.10.05 — Great fishing close to home

Well, another week has past and it’s the same thing on the Vedder.  I was fortunate enough to have been able to fish both days this weekend.  I’m hoping i could do that till the season ends but i think i will have to do some crazy negotiation.  Anyways, lets start with the Vedder.

Saturday morning, started off really promising as we arrived rather late due to some people waking up late.  Let’s not point fingers here but Dice always needs a wake up text.  But i don’t think it was going to make a difference what time we got there.  Not a whole lot of new fish coming into the lower parts of the river but talk about stacked.  Nope, not the fish but rather the fishermen at every possible hole down the canal.  Insane!!!  Back in the days, when i was starting out, i would go where the crowd was just because i didn’t know any better.  But over the years, i have learned that, if the hole is stacked like that with people, it’s not worth getting your line all tangled.  We fished where people didn’t want to fish.  Sometimes, you get the best results that way.  Nope, not this time but maybe next week.

Drove up and down the river in search of fish and we talked to a friend that normally fish the system as well.  Nothing worth mentioning.  What to do?  Great reports from mid and upper river but do i want to go?  Not really.  You don’t want to catch fish?  I do but i want to do it together with everyone.  The mid and upper is a bit different, i do want to fly fish as well if the fish are in.  I have noticed that i have been doing lots of centerpining and i have lost the touch when it comes to fly fishing.  So we all came to the conclusion of just leaving the river to head over to the Stave to give it a try on the chums.  Lets make this part a bit shorter.  Quite a few dark chums but didn’t even get a bite on the fly.  Fished till almost dark with nothing to show for.  Oh well, there is a Wendy’s along the way, let’s grab some dinner.

Same as last week, headed to the Capilano on sunday to try my luck again.  Fish are stacked everywhere you go on this system right now.  But as you know, bait ban is still effective till the end of the month but you can still get fish with other methods.  I don’t want to talk about the violations that happen on the river and will just stick to the success that i have had today.  Pretty much the same as last week but nothing to bring home.  Still a great day out as the weather was overcast for the majority of the day.  But the important thing was i brought my jacket.  It gets cold pretty quick in the Capilano.  Last week, i didn’t have a jacket or gloves.  Today i was well prepared and got to fish the last light portion and that was spectacular.  I had 2 big springs on near the end of the day.  But this one here is what i got early in the morning.

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I would have to say this was pushing 15lbs+ but let’s just say it was 15.  Just a quick photo and off it went.  A bit dark for my liking but i didn’t really want to keep a spring if it’s not in mint condition.  I lost a really nice coho and some other bright springs as well in the earlier part of the day.  So total hook up was 6 today.  Landed 1 and lost 1 bright one as my foot because i pulled a bit too hard near the end to get it in.  Should have spent another 30secs and i’m pretty much guaranteed.  Oh well, that’s fishing for you.

I have had some luck the last 2 weeks but not exactly what i was looking for.  It’s great to get fish but when you have noone to share the moment with, it’s kinda pointless.  Hahaha, not really.  I just don’t like the part where i have to take my own pictures.  Anyways, talked to a fella on the Cap and he has that the coho had a nice push in the later part of the afternoon on the Vedder.  People were hooking up on the canal section.  So…  Next week with Zero coming back, i hope the Vedder could kick start the team.  Everyone is pretty down at the moment for not having anything to date.

Happy fishing everyone and enjoy the warm weather!!

Capilano River 2014.09.28 — Success but not the Vedder

After a brutal day of fishing on Vedder, i thought it was time to give the Capilano a try.  Normally i don’t fish this system during the fall as i would rather fish the Vedder where i could do both gear and fly.  But today, didn’t feel like waking up early and driving for an hour, Capilano would be the best option.  Even if i don’t catch anything, it’s okay, it’s close by and i get to just take it easy for a change.  Let’s start with what happened yesterday first and then come back to the Capilano.

Right now with the less abundant of fish in the Vedder, first light seem to be the best option if you want to connect with a fish.  As a matter of fact, any salmon will do for me right now.  Not so much for food but just want the tug on the other end.  I wasn’t able to connect with anything except for a chub in the lower section of the canal.  It was one of the largest i have gotten, so i was quite happy when that connected.  But still not close to any fight a salmon would put up.  We worked from Keith Wilson bridge all the way down pass HWY 1.  What a long walk back, gave me a bit of time to reminisce about the pinks we had last year.  What a blast we had but this is a bit of a shame.  When you reminisce, that only means you are not doing so well, hahahah.  But to top it off, we moved up river to find lots of fish milling about.  But we couldn’t get them to bite.  We had flies, roe, yarn and blade.  All from different people so we can’t say it was just the way we were doing it.  Hook with the fly, Dice with yarn, roe and blade.  Well, i did both.  I thought i would have the best chance as i brought all my gear but just carrying extra weight all day.  Oh well, that’s fishing!!

I thought about it last night, what we are doing wrong?  But my conclusion is that the fish are a bit scattered and there just isn’t enough of them around to have constant bites.  So today, i took it easy and just enjoyed the day.  With that in mind, it does wonders.  I managed to hook 4 fish in the 6hrs of fishing.  Everything happened in the first 3 hrs upon arrival.  I only landed 2 of the 4.  1 jack spring and 1 hatchery coho.  All on yarn and pink seem to be the ticket.  The 2 fish that i lost was so much bigger than what i had kept.  The coho that i lost was at least a good 8lbs if not more and the spring was an adult in the 12lbs range easy.  Oh well, still happy that i got to fight that many in one day, hahahah.  Here is the picture.

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Anyways, i hope that the Vedder picks up next weekend.  Not much rain in the forecast that would make a big impact but i hope they are just late.  I know there are fish in the hatchery already but the big push should be coming.  Just wish we could all be there when they make a run for it.

Good luck all!!!