Thursday, August 1, 2019

Skagit River Therapy

Skagit River Therapy


 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout

Skagit River - fly Fishing with Ebi Fisher
 

The sun’s heat had convinced the mayflies to leave their river gravels and move to the surface for a hatch. We were approaching midday and had considered a break to dive into our bacon sarnies, but our hunger was stopped short by the small grey mayflies coming to the surface of this crystal-clear river. It wasn’t one of those hatches where you’re convinced that there’s no way your imitation could ever be differentiated from the real thing. But every few seconds another bug would emerge through the surface film and start the next chapter of it’s lifecycle. We hastily changed our nymphs to grey Parachute Adams and made our casts just as another rainbow broke the surface. The call went out loud and clear “I’m on”, and it was only the first morning of the trip! We’d arrived on the Skagit River a few hours earlier and what had been a slower than usual start to the days fishing, quickly turned into an afternoon of magnificence. Bacon sarnies aside, it was a pretty good way to close out the first morning and it provided a positive outlook for the next few days on the water.

Fall trout season -2 wt fly fishing rod - dry fly - BC - Vancouver



Skagit River Trout fly Fishing

Skagit River | CzechNymph

The upper Skagit is a visually stunning place to lose yourself on the water; it’s a destination that offers solid fly fishing close to a significant metropolitan area of Vancouver, BC. It’s headwaters are near Allison Pass in the Cascade Mountains, where it initially flows westwards for approximately 56km through the lower mainland of British Columbia, before turning south just before entering the Ross Lake reservoir at the United States border. From Ross Lake the river continues its path through Washington State and into Puget Sound near Mount Vernon. The upper watershed has been shaped from past glacial activity and like most of the rivers in British Columbia, snowmelt dominates the rivers’ flow regime. Peak flows typically occur during June and July each year, while low flows are during the January to February period. We had arrived at the beginning of August after the influence of freshet, but before the lowest annual flows were to be expected. The river was prime for action and on our first morning it was already delivering on our expectations.

 

small stream wild trout on the 2 wt fly rod - BC canada

Skagit River Therapy fly fishing
Skagit River - fly Fishing with Ebi Fisher


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skagit river fly fishing 2019, skagit river, fly fishing , skagit river fly fishing

The river has undergone many human related changes in the past, with dam building activity beginning in the lower watershed in 1906. This culminated in the construction of three hydro dams, being the Gorge, Diablo and High Ross dam in the 1930’s, until a series of treaties between the United States and Canada between the 1940’s and 1960’s sought to manage the reservoir levels within the watershed. By 1967, the height of Ross Lake dam (the uppermost impoundment of the three) was capped to prevent further flooding of the Skagit River Valley, culminating in a US-Canada treaty signed in 1984 to prevent further level increases within Ross Lake until at least 2066. Prior to these anthropomorphic changes, the watershed was originally used by the First Nations people for trading and meeting between the interior and coast peoples for thousands of years, with archaeological finds indicating habitation and/or use for over 8,000 years. Trading activity included dried salmon and oolichan from the coastal area, while dried berries, wild hemp and red ochre rock were traded from the interior. More recently, fur traders and prospectors used some of these same coast Salish trails to provide access into the British Columbia’s Fraser Valley and the interior.
For the recreational fisher, in BC the river supports healthy populations of char (bull trout, dolly varden and their hybrids) and rainbow trout, and their healthy populations are likely in part through the change in regulations to catch and release in 1992. This significant increase in the number of rainbows since catch and release regulations were introduced, and we’re talking three to five times increase in numbers depending on the size class, is testament to the benefits of such regulations especially for rivers in proximity to large urban populations. This increase in abundance is consistent with other trout stream population responses found elsewhere following such regulatory changes. The lower Skagit within the United States also provides spawning habitat for chinook, coho, chum, pink and sockeye salmon, along with steelhead, rainbow trout and coastal cutthroat trout. However, these species no longer run freely upstream into Canada given the three hydro dams within the lower system. So, perhaps it’s worth the odd day dream about what the upper Skagit would be like if such restrictions to movement were overcome, and how this would change the flora and fauna in the wider ecosystem both on land and in the water



Skagit River is a great option for anglers who enjoy targeting rainbow trout and bull trout. These can either be caught by fly fishing 


 Dry fly for Wild Rainbow Trout Vancouver area



Nonetheless, the resident char and rainbow trout in the upper system would be our focus for the weekend. Day one on the water ended at the tail of a long sweeping run, where we’d seen feeding char flashing in the deeper section of water earlier in the day. I say char here since even the most seasoned expert struggles to identify the difference between bull trout and dolly varden on the river bank, but also acknowledge that these species do hybridise successfully in this river, among others, to create viable offspring that combine the physical attributes of both species. The char in this river come in a range in sizes and can reach sizable proportions in the late summer period. I decided to use a heavily weighted stonefly nymph of my own creation cast upstream, while my buddies preferred to swing a few sculpin patterns downstream. Employing our respective techniques together in the same deep pool elicited multiple strikes and allowed us to view some of these beauties up close.
Hard to believe what a day we had the scenery was something out of this world the fishing was incredible I caught this wild Beauty on the dry fly 2 wt fly rod ! it was incredible I cannot believe my eyes when I Collett such a beautiful big fish it was nonstop raining but I loved it I love the rain I love the fly fishing and I love the chance to go fishing thank you thank you thank you to all ❤




fly fishing in Vancouver for trout with ebi fisher



The weather was wet the #flyfishing was awesome in the beautiful valley and the mountains calling in the rains it was surreal and very pleasant at the same time the white #trout where jumping and laughing in the waters of the spectacular #river we had fun #ties the evening was oh so grand the rains came down hard it was so joyful and peaceful listening to the hoots of an owl deer afoot in the valleys all for the love of Mother #Nature ♥️♥️
#nymphing #nymph #fishing #rainbowtrout #nautilusfly #nautilusflyreels








Fly Fishing for brook Trout in BC







 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout


Fly Fishing for Bull Trout in BC








Fly Fishing BC for bull trout / ebi fisher







Fly Fishing BC for Brook Trout & bull trout & rainbow trout





Skagit River Trout Fishing
A Weekend of Fishing the Skagit River
Skagit River | CzechNymph
Skagit River Therapy
Skagit River - Fishing with Ebi Fisher
skagit river bc access
skagit river bc access
skagit river fishing regulations
skagit river bc map
skagit river fishing 2019


 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout















boom 💥 I caught my first bull trou a s brook trout







 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout





 Rainbow trout - Dry fly - 2 wt Fly Fishing Rod - Vancouver
Another trout filled Day off !! Love this time of year !






I'm in shock ... the nerve...the audacity... ok! I will never get sick of catching these.. First ever bully !!!

 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout




Small Stream Dry Fly Fishing Vancouver area

Ultralight Fly Rod (# 2 wt) for Small Stream native rainbow trout










Small Stream Dry Fly Fishing Vancouver area




Of what a glorious stay our over night camping and fishing at Ross lake the sixty Kilometer drive up to the lake is quite beautiful once we got to the lake we where surprised Ross lake was not a lake but now a river rustling through the once lake it was quite the sight it's the first time in fifteen years that there was no lake apparently the park rangers Said the mountains hardly had any snow hence no run off. The fishing was wonderful at the lake the scenery breathtaking I caught incredible rainbow trout further up the river was fish where biting lots of enjoyment from a peaceful place I love Ross lake and it's surrounding Beauty 8/10

 

 The picture perfect Skagit River is a trout fishing hot spot between July 1st and October 31st. Accessible by 2 wheel drive and located only 2 hours outside of Vancouver. The Skagit River offers anglers a dry and wet fly fishing for wild rainbow trout and bull trout. In this blog post we will cover some of the flies, lures and rod combos to help you get started.






I must say, after this great adventure and only a couple hours from where I reside in the lower mainland, I will be back full force again and make many more trips in the years to come.





I have yet to see such a river which offers so many challenges but great ones at that, from wading chest deep to ankle high, the fish were in many areas, areas which most people would wade through or not think fish would hold in. There were also pools and tail outs on runs that were also a challenge to access. If you have a wading staff I would suggest bringing one just to be on the safe side, this will help you access many more areas on the river that might be a challenge to wade to alone.






 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout


There is one thing which I haven’t covered yet, the Mosquito’s. Make sure to bring bug spray, we unfortunately we not allowed to have any fires due to the provincial wide fire ban but we managed them by bathing in some deep woods repellant and wearing sweaters and pants after dark.






If there is a prettier trout stream than the Skagit somewhere I can't think of one. Having sampled all of British Columbia's trout streams, and many of those in Alberta, the United States, New Zealand and Tasmania, I don't know of a more scenic stream than the Skagit River.

Confirmed Rainbow Trout are in Skagit River.




Certainly, there are many beautiful streams with larger and more challenging fish, and rivers with better insect hatches, but for sheer physical beauty, none can top the Skagit River. To have such a jewel so close to a major city is a blessing that all fly fishermen should treasure.
The Skagit River is a trout stream we almost lost. The British Columbia government signed away the water rights during World War II. For the princely sum of only a dollar an acre, Seattle City Light had the formal right to raise Ross Dam at any time and flood a further 10 miles of the Skagit Valley. British Columbia wouldn't have had even a lake out of the deal because during water draw down only an ugly mud flat remains. As it is, the so called Ross Lake Reservoir is nothing but a mile of mud flats and dead trees on the Canadian side of the border.




About 1965, Seattle City Light made its intentions clear that it intended to raise the Ross Dam. By that time many anglers from the Lower Mainland had discovered the excellent trout fishing on the Skagit. They began to petition the government to stop the project, but their cries fell on deaf ears. The W.A.C Bennett government cared nothing for the environment and thought only of development. Rape and Run was their motto as long as it created jobs. It wasn't until 1967 when our mass protest in the valley got newspaper coverage that the government finally listened. After that, negotiations continued for almost 20 years before a settlement was finally reached. An agreement was signed in 1985 where British Columbia would supply cheap power from its Columbia Dam system in exchange for getting our land back. Considering what we almost lost, the agreement was a steal.



As a trout stream the Skagit River is priceless. It rises high in mountains of Manning Provincial Park and flows west until it runs headlong into Sumallo Creek that flows eastward. The two streams join at Sumallo Cedar Grove on the Hope-Princeton highway, then push their way south-west through a narrow mountain valley until spilling onto the glaciated flood plain that we know as the Skagit Valley. From there, the Skagit River joins Klesilkwa Creek and turns south towards the U.S. border and Ross Reservoir. As a crow flies, it is about eight miles from Sumallo Grove to the 26 mile bridge in the Skagit Valley and another 10 miles to the reservoir. As a river flows it is many more miles than that.


The upper Skagit is a mountain creek where it crosses back and forth across the Hope-Princeton highway. It contains only a few small trout. Sumallo Creek isn't much better and the fish are just as tiny. It isn't until several miles downstream that the Skagit becomes the classic trout stream that fly fishermen know and love. Fortunately, from Sumallo Grove downstream to the Skagit Valley the river has been protected from logging and is still in its natural state. There are no roads and only one hiking trail along the river. In the Skagit Valley basin, a gravel road parallels the river as far as the reservoir. Luckily, the road is far enough away from the river so as not to destroy its beauty.



The Skagit from Sumallo Grove to Klesilkwa Creek, and from there downstream to the reservoir are like two completely different rivers. The upper river is contained in a very narrow mountain valley. It drops in a series of pools and rapids until reaching the mid-way point. Then it slows down into a series of glides and runs. The water is crystalline and the pools emerald green. There are a few log jambs, but for the most part the pools remain stable from year to year. In some places, huge trees form natural bridges over the stream. The conservatory section with it stand of large cedar and old growth Douglas fir trees is especially beautiful. Every fishy looking run and pool has its own resident trout. Anglers are rewarded by seeing the trout rise to a well presented dry fly.


The Skagit from the 26 mile bridge downstream is a different river entirely. It meanders back and forth across a flood plain. There are long runs, wide gravel bars, tangled log jambs and deep slow pools. It is no less beautiful, just different. Where the upper river is too wild to run in a raft, the lower river enchants the river drifters. However, in high water beware! The Skagit River buries canoes every year in its log jambs. Even in the ugly mud flats near the reservoir there are good pools for anglers who don't mind the scenery.


High water occurs during snow pack run-off, usually from May through July. The best fishing is normally during August and September, just when lakes are in the doldrums. The river is closed to fishing from November 1 to June 30 and there are catch and release regulations for the entire stream. Although any angling method is allowed, the use of bait is not permitted. This allows children to use spinning rods. Most anglers on the Skagit River prefer to fly fish. 


Many years before the Ross Reservoir was built, the Skagit river contained native cutthroat as well as rainbow trout and Dolly Varden char. Anglers took pack-horse trips from Hope and caught cutthroat trout to three pounds in the upper Skagit. After the dam was built, only the Dolly Varden and rainbows survived. The lake was stocked with domestic rainbow trout and these interbred with the wild strain. U.S. anglers caught huge numbers of fish in the reservoir and killed most of what they landed. Today, rainbows that have migrated up from the lake to spawn make up the bulk of the river catch. The few that take up residency are usually the larger fish in the river. A few huge dollies are also taken each season. They are commonly caught by spin fishermen, but the odd fly caster gets one on a streamer pattern. Big dollies often grab small rainbows that fly fishermen are playing



It is the fly hatches that make the Skagit special. Mayflies, caddis and stoneflies make up the Skagit trout's diet. During a summer hatch, trout can be very selective to fly and presentation. Often, very tiny flies are needed. The two exceptions are during caddis hatches and when Western Green Drakes are active. These large fat mayflies always bring trout to the surface. A dead drifted emerger pattern in the surface film is very effective. In late summer and fall, trout are more fussy. They move into the head of runs and feed almost entirely on nymphs. They can be taken on small beadhead fur body imitations. Often, the only rise is just at dusk. A seemingly barren pool during the day will come alive with rising trout in the evening. If there isn't an obvious hatch, these trout will be feeding on tiny, natural drifting mayfly nymphs in the surface film. Getting these trout to bite can be frustrating. Dead drifting size 16 and 18 emerger patterns is the answer. 


A few years ago a serious study was made of the Skagit Valley. A number of proposals were suggested: including paving the access road, developing and building more campsites, cutting more access trails, clearing log jambs and establishing park buildings. Fortunately, it was decided to leave well enough alone. Developing "wilderness" only ruins it. Hopefully, with continued good management the Skagit River will remain the fly fishing jewel of the Lower Mainland. 

Small Stream Dry Fly Fishing Vancouver area









Ultralight Fly Rod (# 2 wt) for Small Stream native rainbow trout

 



The weather was wet the #flyfishing was awesome in the beautiful valley and the mountains calling in the rains it was surreal and very pleasant at the same time the white #trout where jumping and laughing in the waters of the spectacular #river we had fun #ties the evening was oh so grand the rains came down hard it was so joyful and peaceful listening to the hoots of an owl deer afoot in the valleys all for the love of Mother #Nature ♥️♥️
#nymphing #nymph #fishing #rainbowtrout #nautilusfly #nautilusflyreels








 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout





Skagit River Trout Fishing
A Weekend of Fishing the Skagit River
Skagit River | CzechNymph
Skagit River Therapy
Skagit River - Fishing with Ebi Fisher
skagit river bc access
skagit river bc access
skagit river fishing regulations
skagit river bc map
skagit river fishing 2019




 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout


Skagit River Trout Fishing
A Weekend of Fishing the Skagit River
Skagit River | CzechNymph
Skagit River Therapy
Skagit River - Fishing with Ebi Fisher
skagit river bc access
skagit river bc access
skagit river fishing regulations
skagit river bc map
skagit river fishing 2019





Skagit River Trout Fishing
A Weekend of Fishing the Skagit River
Skagit River | CzechNymph
Skagit River Therapy
Skagit River - Fishing with Ebi Fisher
skagit river bc access
skagit river bc access
skagit river fishing regulations
skagit river bc map
skagit river fishing 2019




  
Skagit River Trout Fishing
A Weekend of Fishing the Skagit River
Skagit River | CzechNymph
Skagit River Therapy
Skagit River - Fishing with Ebi Fisher
skagit river bc access
skagit river bc access
skagit river fishing regulations
skagit river bc map
skagit river fishing 2019

 Ultralight Fly Rod (# 2 wt) for Small Stream native rainbow trout

 Skagit River British Columbia , Rainbow trout , Brook trout , Bull trout , Cutthroat trout

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