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Weekly Fraser Valley Sport Fishing Column for Feb 15 to 22, 2016
While most adventure seeking anglers of the 1920’s had their eyes on British Columbia, Montana, Oregon, and California; the old Hudson Bay Territory of Washington began finding her page in history.

Outdoor writer and environmentalist Ken McLeod had the providence of not having to travel west. Born in the town of Seattle, in the late 1890’s, Ken was well versed in the skills of rod & reel steelhead, when the accesses of the 1920’s flooded the west. In 1923, McLeod won third place in the Field & Stream Magazine’s fly caught trout contest. In 1924, he sold the story of catching that fish, a ten pound eight ounce steelhead, photo included, to Field & Stream. McLeod’s favorite steelhead stream was Deer Creek, which ironically happens to be the stream where Haig-Brown caught his first steelhead in 1927. In 1931, Ken McLeod began writing as an outdoor columnist for the Seattle Post Intelligencer, a position he held for well over twenty years. In that same year of 1931, Ken began publishing and editing The Northwest Sportsman magazine. Over the years Ken and his son George, became champion fly casters, fly casting instructors, angling instructors, and fly innovators. The Purple Peril, Skokomish Sunrise, and McLeod Ugly, fly patterns are credited to these two.

Another Washington home grown angling legend was Benjamin Letcher Lambuth. Lambuth’s educational and business background is lengthy, so we will pick up in 1928, when Lambuth settled with his family and opened Lambuth, Still, and Sprague in Seattle. His favorite pastime was fly fishing to which he applied his other talents of an analyst and craftsman. By 1930 Lambuth with the help of his friend Harold Stimson was making his own split cane fly rods. One of his rods went to Haig-Brown as a gift. To which Haig voiced his appreciation in “Fisherman’s Spring”

“…If Letcher’s rods were far less good than they are, I should still value one above all my other rods because of Letcher’s quality as a fisherman. He is a man of gentle precision, extremely skillful with his hands and with a mind that sorts detail into place and forces meaning from it; he has a scientist’s touch, a scientist’s objective honesty, a scientist’s devotion to inquiry and experiment. Yet he is also a man of intense and glowing enthusiasms,..”

In later years as his eye sight and health began to fail him, Lambuth taught his rod making skills to famed fly innovator, angling artist, and friend Tommy Brayshaw.

The Report

Our lower mainland lakes are fishing slow to fair. Try: Chironomid, Bloodworm, Wooly Bugger, Doc Spratley, Halfback, Micro Leach, Pumpkinhead, or Baggy Shrimp.

The Fraser River along with its backwaters and sloughs are fishing well for cutthroat, rainbow, dolly Varden, and early steelhead. For cutthroat try: Rolled Muddler, Flesh Fly, Eggo, Professor, Silver Doctor, Borden Special, Zulu, or small black Stone Nymph. For dolly varden try: large Clouser’s Deep Minnow. Zonker, Eggo, Flesh Fly, Dolly Whacker, or Kauffman Stone. For rainbow try: Czech nymph, Cased Caddis, Coachman, Rolled Muddler, Mico Leach, or Zulu. For steelhead try: Big Black, Flat Black, Squamish Poacher, Polar Shrimp, Popsicle, GP, Steelhead Nightmare, or Kauffman Stone.

The Harrison River is good for cutthroat and rainbow.

The Vedder River is good for rainbow and steelhead.
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