Vancouver BC Fishing Report
By Rodney Hsu, Fishing with Rod | Last updated: June 30th, 2015
Hot, hot, hot! The weather that is. The fishing? Not so much. With daytime air temperature now reaching above 30C, river level is dropping and water temperature is rising fast. Not only has the fishing been slowing down, current condition is starting to be uncomfortable for fish. On Vancouver Island, some river systems are now closed for fishing due to these unfavourable conditions. Chilliwack River is scheduled to open on July 1st for chinook salmon fishing. Fraser River's sturgeon fishing is good, salmon fishing remains closed until mid July. Lake trout fishing has been slowing down. Coarse fish, carp and bass fishing remains good as these species don't tend to mind the high temperature.
I recently put up two new video tutorials on kokanee fishing, check them out:
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Upcoming Events and Promotional News
Here are some of the latest news and upcoming events in the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley!
- We are now on Instagram!
- Check out our latest video feature "Roadside Surprise".
- Check out this story of our recent halibut fishing trip to Pedder Bay on Vancouver Island.
- Army and Navy is giving away a trip to Langara Fishing Lodge, contest ends on June 28th!
- There have been some regulation changes in Region 2 and I've put together a summary on some of these major changes in this blog post.
Capilano River is very low so hardly any coho salmon are making their way into the system. Most fish are holding at the river mouth and Ambleside Beach so it is worth trying down there. Be sure to have your saltwater fishing licence if you are fishing down there. Early morning which coincides with a low tide is best for this fishery. You can cast and retrieve spinners, spoons, jigs. Be patient and persistent as these fish don't always bite even they show themselves on the surface.
Please note that ALL steelhead (both hatchery marked and wild) have to be released with care in the Capilano River. Be sure to identify your fish correctly in the water. This is a vulnerable stock and your action will decide its future.
"No Fishing" regulations have been issued for parts of the Seymour. Please see this fishery notice.
Chilliwack River is opening on July 1st for chinook salmon fishing. The river is very low and clear, which means fishing will be very challenging. First light is going to be the best time for targeting these fish. Float fishing with cured salmon roe is the best way of catching these fish.
Fred's Custom Tackle is your go-to store for the Chilliwack River fishery. If you need accommodation or guide suggestions around Chilliwack, please take a look at the listing on Tourism Chilliwack's website.
Chehalis River usually has both summer steelhead and chinook salmon in the system during this time of the year but the river is so low that fishing is quite poor.
Stave River and nearby sloughs have plenty of northern pikeminnow in them now. These fish are great fun for kids to catch and they can easily be caught with worms under a float. You might still encounter the odd cutthroat trout, so try evening hours when they tend to be more active. Anglers have also been reporting catches of invasive species such as pumpkinseed and largemouth bass unfortunately.
Please note that BC Hydro is currently upgrading the dam so the day use area is closed and parking is limited in the area.
Tidal Fraser River
Tidal Fraser River water clarity is still poor so your best option is to fish with bait. Northern pikeminnow and peamouth chub are active in the river. This fishery is ideal for families because there are plenty of fish, which means plenty of bites to keep the kids occupied. Small pieces of bait such as dough balls, worm, shrimp kept close to the bottom will produce good results. The river is quite high so be cautious on where you choose to fish. The floating docks in Richmond are the safest place to do this if you are bringing kids.
To fish the Tidal Fraser River (downstream from the railway bridge in Mission), you are required to have a valid saltwater fishing licence.
For more information on this fishery and the latest updates on saltwater fishing around Steveston and the Tidal Fraser River, stop by the Berry's Bait & Tackle in Richmond.
Non-tidal Fraser River
River is dirty and high. Freshet is still happening. Salmon fishing remains closed. Chinook salmon fishing is expected to open on July 15th. We'll have the fishery notice available here when it is issued.
Sturgeon fishing has been very productive. Eulachon and lamprey are working well as expected. You should note that night time fishing is now not permitted as stated in the regulation changes. We recommend the following guiding companies for your sturgeon fishing trips.
Lower Mainland Lakes
The Region 2's trout stocking database is usually updated once rainbow trout are stocked by the Fraser Valley Trout Hatchery. All urban lakes are not producing well due to the high water temperature. Late evenings are probably your best bet for catching some fish.
Kawkawa Lake kokanee fishery is still very productive. Because the weather is quite warm now, fish are holding in 40ft+ of water. A boat is needed, and more importantly a sounder is needed to spot the schools of fish. Bait fishing on the bottom is effective, but you can also jig a 1/16oz Croc spoon close to the bottom. Krill, deli shrimp, single salmon eggs and even dough balls all work for these tasty silver fish.
Jones Lake is very low and fishing has been very good for rainbow and cutthroat trout as well as kokanee. While a boat gets you to many more spots, shore fishing has been productive too. Anglers are casting and resting their bait on the bottom from shore. The gravel road on the way to the lake can be rough so be sure you drive up with an appropriate vehicle.
Cultus Lake's northern pikeminnow and largescale sucker are pretty active now. Shore fishing can be a little challenging due to the boat traffic as well as swimmers on weekends. Late evening when the lake is quiet is the best time to fish. Try float fishing with Pautzke Bait's single salmon eggs on a size 4 hook under a float.
At Sasquatch Park near Harrison Hot Springs, Hicks Lake and Deer Lake are still productive, especially in the evening once the sun goes down a bit. Rainbow trout and cutthroat trout are the main target species. Try float fishing with single eggs in 5 to 15 feet of water either from shore or from a boat.
Squamish area lakes are also good options. Browning Lake and Edith Lake are doing reasonably well compared to urban lakes. Other lakes to try out include Alice and Brohm where a mixed of smaller fish and previously stocked fish are available. Evenings are best.
Whistler area lakes are also producing. Alta Lake is a good catch and release fishery for rainbow trout and big cutthroat trout. Fishing is slower now that the weather is so hot.
These articles may assist you:
Please remember that for lake fishing, if you are fishing from shore, you are only allowed to use ONE rod. If you are fishing alone in a boat, then you are permited to use two rods. Only one hook is allowed on your rod. Please note that single barbless hooks are required to be used at some lakes. You should note the daily quota of trout for the lake where you are fishing. Catch and release is required in some lakes, please check regulations.
Sturgeon Slough and Sumas River
Carp fishing is happening at Sturgeon Slough in Pitt Meadows and Sumas River in Abbotsford. Dough balls and corn work well. Fish are between 0.5 and 2lb but bigger fish can be found at times too. Deer Lake in Burnaby also has carp in it.
Before heading out, please read the freshwater regulations in Region 2 first. For more regular updates, make sure you follow our Facebook page. If you witness violations, please contact the nearest conservation office or phone 1-877-952-RAPP (7277). Conservation officers can not attend all calls, but they do their best to catch those who do not choose to play by the rules.
Good luck and please conserve your catches!
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