Steelhead Fishing on the Chilliwack River
Water levels in the local rivers have risen these past few weeks. A month ago, steelheaders were bagging for some rain, and boy did they ever get it. First it was the Pineapple Express that soaked the Fraser Valley with monsoon-like torrential downpours which blew the rivers right out. Just as the rivers got back into shape, another large low pressure moved through the Valley, dropping more heavy rains that spiked the river levels yet again. Although we lost a few days of fishing due to the rivers being blown out, it’s sure nice to see a bit more water and color in the system. All this extra water triggered fish movement again, spreading fish throughout the entire river. The excess rains also brought in a bunch of fresh chrome Steelhead and the daily reports coming in are fantastic. There seem to be a lot of wild fish around this year, which is great to see. When it comes to chasing winter-run steelhead on the Chilliwack River, March and April are top producing months. Fishing is great right now and we expect this to continue for another month or so, so get out there and enjoy some great steelhead fishing before the season closes.
With the milder weather and the temperatures on the rise, fish have become more active and are keying in on various presentations such as roe, shrimp and Colorado blades.
Spend the time to show these fish the different presentations above, especially in some of the larger pieces of water where you know fish are most likely to stack up. Covering water and being versatile are two key elements to increasing your daily success rates….don’t be scared to change up baits if you believe the water is holding fish….they might not look at one presentation but might absolutely hammer another one….it happens all the time.
The fly has also been producing well in the mid to lower river. Low and slow is the key phrase when seeking out winter steelhead on the fly. Look for the longer, wide runs with depth and structure. Fourteen feet of T-14 are the standard sink tips for mid-river runs. Type 6-8, fifteen foot Rio tips work well for some of the slower, lower river hiding spots. Blue and black marabou flies with lots of flashabou seem to be the ticket. Don’t hesitate to try a minnow/fry pattern at this time of the year, as more fry start to hatch from last year’s salmon migrations.
Sturgeon Fishing on the Fraser River:
It’s that time of the year again. The late winter/early spring sturgeon fishery has arrived and the fishing is good to excellent, depending on the stretches of river being fished. With all the extra rain we’ve received over the last few weeks, the water temps are on the rise, and the fish activity has increased as well. As more eulachons show up in the Fraser river over the next 2 months, the sturgeon fishing will only continue getting better and better. This is a great time of the year to get out on the water and shake off those winter doldrums. If you’ve never tried the spring sturgeon fishery, it can be an absolute blast. Big number days are not uncommon.
A reminder to all fellow anglers that current fishing licenses will expire on March 31. Don’t forget to renew all your fishing licenses for the 2013 fishing season! You can purchase all your freshwater (non-tidal) and saltwater (tidal) licenses online by visiting the links at the bottom of every page on our site.
If you are interested in a steelhead fishing trip or want to experience one of our spring sturgeon fishing charters, please feel free to contact us at any time and we’ll be more than happy to help.
Tight lines and hope to see you out on the water!