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Fishing Report
April 1, 2007

Hello and welcome to the M&Y fishing report for Sunday April 1, 2007. Spring is finally arrived, and its time to get out! Lakes will be going soon, cutthroat will be feeding on fry, and steelhead are a lot more willing to take the fly. The days are longer and warmer now, and despite a few chilly nights ahead it feels like winter is finally over. Unfortunately fishing has been really slow over the past few weeks after the monsoon rains we were having. Rivers are starting to drop back into shape, and fishing should really pick up in the next week or so.

Starting with steelhead fishing, the Vedder/Chilliwack River is still very high right now, but dropping and clearing every day. There will be fish throughout the entire system now, with fresh fish still pushing in. Water temps will be warming up, which will make these sea-run beauties more aggressive. We’ll see more wild fish returning at this time of year as well, and they tend to be naturally more aggressive to the fly. April can be the best time to fish for steelhead on the fly. For flies take all the usual suspects – intruders, popsicles, egg-sucking leeches, etc. – but take some large fry patterns along as well. Despite popular belief that steelhead don’t feed, it has been proven time and again that they will eat fry at this time of year. You can also fish lighter tips now, especially when the water drops down more.

This is the best time of year to hit the Squamish and its tributaries for steelhead, as the bulk of the run will be returning now. It’s in really good shape right now as it dropped and cleared much quicker than the Vedder. Fish all different types of water, from broad tail-outs to choppy shallow riffles. You’ll get the added bonus of some bull-trout out there, and it can be a lot of fun to actually target these char on sculpin patterns, wooly buggers and egg-sucking leeches. Other steelhead opportunities include the Chehalis and Stave.

Cutthroat fishing should be picking up now as well. The annual salmon fry migration has started and with it the Cutthroat have started to move out of the main stem Fraser, which with recent rains and warm weather has gone muddy, and into the salmon rearing tributaries. The Harrison, Stave, Allouette, and most of the Sloughs should all be seeing decent cutty activity right now. Fish smallish style minnow patterns such as Rolled Muddlers and Tied Back Minnows on floating lines and slow sink tips. You do not need to bounce your flies on the bottom for these little battlers, they will move quite a distance for minnows and you will show your fly to more fish the higher in the water column you fish. Also low light is often crucial for success; concentrate your efforts to early mornings, late afternoon and/or cloudy days. Also, remember not to put away your mini leaches and stoneflies yet as the fish are still not completely turned onto the salmon fry yet.

Local lake fishing is decent right now, as most are stocked in early/mid March. Try Mike, Sayers, Rolley, Deer, Hicks and Bunsen, to name a few. These hungry trout will key in on any hatches, particularly chironomids, but make sure you are well stocked on the staples – leeches, dragonfly nymphs, etc. The interior is off to a slow start this year, as they received heavy snow and very cold weather over the last few months. At this time reports are that White Lake and Stump Lake are fishable. Dragon Lake in Quesnel still has a little way to go, as do some of the other low elevation lakes like Jacko, Six-Mile, Sawmill, and Barnes. Your staple patterns will produce well just after ice-off, but there will be some chironomid activity as well, so take along small olive and maroon chironomids, as well as bloodworms.

Here at the shop we are in the midst of our spring courses. We currently are running classes in Fly Casting and Fly Fishing & Entomology. Give us a call or check our website for details and dates. We’re also hosting our 2nd Annual Spey Clave at Peg Leg Bar on the Fraser on Saturday April 21st. This is a free event to try out gear, practice casting and learn some new things. We’ll be having demos on distance casting, Skagit Casting, Single-hand Spey Casting, among others. Come on out and enjoy a free barbeque lunch and have some fun.

Till next time, tight lines.
 
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