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Archive for August, 2010

2010’s adventure to trout paradise, day three

Published on Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

This morning we started even later. Carlo and Shane decided that they would try out a different stream. We decided to stick to the same stream where we have been fishing in the last two days. There are so many options when staying in Fernie. So many tributaries of the Elk River to choose from, just the Elk River itself is already so long and it would take weeks to experience it all.

We decided to go back to the magic hole where dozens of cutthroat trout congregated and fed on the surface yesterday. We arrived and found the exact same scenario. Fish were still coming up to sip down insects. Nina set up the video camera, I stood on the high bank and prepare to make the first cast. Once the camera started working, I sent the dry fly out. At the end of the first drift, a chunky cutthroat slowly rose and sucked down the fly. I set the hook precisely, but after a few dives it came loose. I quickly flicked the fly back out. Halfway through the second drift, another good good sized cutthroat came up and grabbed the fly. Like the first fish, it too came loose after only a few seconds. Two casts, two fish, none to my hands, the morning excitement was already climaxing and we were only ten minutes into it.

The third fish took a bit longer to entice. After another ten casts or so, a smaller fish rose and took down the fly. This time it was not as lucky. It was hooked firmly and I brought it downstream for the release.

After all the drama, it suddenly died down. There was still a hatch happening but fish were not as eager to feed on the surface. We spent another 30 minutes without much success so it was time to move on and switch up the technique. I rigged up an indicator and a small nymph so we could walk and cast to see if any fish were hiding in deep slots. By early afternoon, the sun was beaming so fish were shier. We walked a stretch of river for two hours and I managed to connect with half a dozen more cutthroat trout and one brook trout. Some big ones were caught under log jams, which made the fight rather interesting. Most of these were lost after a few head shakes.

Mosquitoes are crazy this year and there is a drinking/tap water advisory in effect around here for anyone who is thinking about coming up to enjoy this type of fishing.

Casting upstream for a rise.

Lunch break.

One more day before heading back to the real world.

2010’s adventure to trout paradise, day two

Published on Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

Day two!

This morning the knocks on the door started at 8:30am again. Carlo and Shane greeted my sleepy eyes. I told them to get a head start. Nina and I took our time and didn’t reach the river until 11am. What’s the hurry? There are lots of unfished spots anyway. We pulled up to where their truck was parked and radioed them to find out where they were. They told us that they went upstream, so we decided to go downstream.

The first couple of spots were a bit shallow but should still hold some fish. After gaining no attention with my dry fly, I decided to switch up to a nymph. It took two casts to trick a nice fish that was resting in 2ft of water. Afterward, we continued downstream and I could see a nice looking spot ahead of us. It looked nicer and nicer as we approached it. Finally when we arrived, I was beyond excited because there were fish splashing all over the run. We had hit the hot spot. The timing coincided with a good hatch so the surface feeding frenzy was extremely intense. Dozens of fish came up repeatedly to sip down whatever they could fit in the mouth. I quickly changed back to a dry fly, the one that worked yesterday.

After ten or so drifts without getting a strike while fish were still coming up around it, I realized that the fly was too big to match the hatch. The second fly was smaller but still not small enough, so it also had the same reception. The third fly was the smallest one in the box so it was my last hope. A fish sipped it after a couple of drifts but I was too slow on the strike. A few casts later, another fish also went for it but it was not as lucky. Finally we had a connection. I carefully played the chunky westslope cutthroat and brought it downstream so it would not spook the others. After releasing it, I quickly came back up for fish number two, which fell for the fly after ten or so more drifts. Fish number three sipped the fly while I was not paying attention. I only realized that I had a fish on when I saw the floating line was pulled straight below the surface. These and a few misses were only a small percentage of fish that were in the run.

Our time was cut short when a thunderstorm rolled in quickly, forcing us to scramble back to the car for refuge. The storm passed after fiften minutes and we had blue sky above us once again, a pretty typical weather pattern in the Rockies.

The rest of the afternoon we explored a few new areas with only some success. No fish photos today, all actions will be available in a subscribers’ video soon.

Day three’s weather forecast doesn’t seem so enticing, so we may just take it easy and try a few spots nearby in Fernie.

2010’s adventure to trout paradise, day one

Published on Monday, August 9th, 2010

There isn’t a better time to get away from the Lower Mainland for a fisherman, one just has to take a look at our discussion forum leading up to the sockeye salmon opening in the Non-tidal Fraser to realize that. We are spending this week in Southeastern British Columbia, targeting westslope cutthroat trout, mountain whitefish and bull trout.

The drive yesterday seemed to take forever from Richmond to Fernie. With four “quick” stops, it lasted just under 12 hours. I’ve done the Richmond-Fernie drive four times now and this was the most tiring one so far. Our stay for the week is the Red Tree Lodge, which makes things really convenient because it has a big shared kitchen lounge where we can do all the cooking after a day of fishing.

This morning we woke up to blue sky and a great view of surrounding rocky peaks. Nina and I took our time after recovering from yesterday’s trek, we didn’t arrive at the river until 11am.

There were lots of photo opportunities.

Some goofball kept jumping out and ruining the photographs as if we were fishing the Fraser River.

Actually, we had to put up with Shane and Carlo since they are our guides once again.

The four of us alternated and worked each run as we moved downstream from our meeting spot. The fishing? It was fantastic as expected!

The number of fish that I connected was no where near how many Shane and Carlo brought in, but I was more than satisfied. Two of my westslope cutthroat trout were the most exciting. The first one grabbed my dry after the other two had worked through the run repeatedly with their nymphs. The second fish, also grabbed my dry after I spotted it sipping down a hatch at the corner of my eyes when I was chatting with Nina during a break. Both fish were pretty big. 16in? 18in? No idea, didn’t measure them. All I know is that they were really chubby.

Day one done, lets see what day two brings.

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