Nicholas Dean Lodge

447th Weekly Fishing Report from Nicholas Dean Lodge

For Tuesday, July 31, 2007 to Monday, August 06, 2007


Nicholas Dean guest Mike Bingham and head guide Dustin Kovacvich struggle to hold up a monster Skeena River Chinook Salmon. The large buck, estimated to be 55 lbs, is now the current record for Chinooks here at the lodge this year. Mike Bingham Photo


Fish Tales

Hello Anglers,

The past week here in the Skeena Region has been an incredible one, filled with many fish stories. The Skeena and its tributaries have continued to drop and, in most cases clear, which have provided excellent conditions for fishing. The Sisler and Sisler Construction group from Sacramento, California had the chance to sample some of the outstanding fishing last week. Right on the first day, Kip Kreutzberg landed the biggest fish he’s ever caught – a huge 50 lb Chinook, which was featured in last week’s fishing report. As Kip experienced, Chinooks can be very hard to land, especially when they reach sizes of 50 lbs or more! The group also travelled to Prince Rupert to sample some of the fine Halibut and ground fishing available with Ernie Webb, our saltwater guide. Though the first day was a little challenging, the second day was incredible, with 16 halibut landed, some very large snapper and a whole host of other fish, such as sablefish, turbot, and rock cod. All around us there were Sockeye and Pink Salmon breaching the water, so Dustin tried casting a pink buzz bomb lure and after a strong fight, landed a very chrome Pink Salmon. Add a Halibut fish fry that included my secret Dijon Mustard recipe, and it really was a great, memorable day. And for the Sisler group, their fishing experiences only got better from there…

A number of guys in the group had not experienced Sockeye fly fishing, so our guides Sky Richard and Cam Thiessen demonstrated some of the finer points of fly fishing and presentation, and shortly thereafter, the guests had multiple fish days with these chrome rockets! Not only do the Sockeye and Pinks fight incredibly hard for their size, but they are also very plentiful, which helps build a positive experience for fly fishers in the first stages of the learning process. Needless to say, a lot of the guests became hooked on fly fishing, and my guess is that this will continue well into the future! Meanwhile, the Chinook fishing also continued to be very good. While plunking on a large bar, Dustin and Greg’s guests landed several fish up to 55 lbs. Mike Bingham was the lucky angler who landed the 55 lb fish, and you could definitely tell that there was a little friendly competition going on between Mike and Kip!

And I have been trying to get out as much as possible to do some personal fishing as well. Cam took me to one of his favourite Sockeye spots, and I had a chance to land my first chrome rockets, as well as a hump-backed Pink. Then on Thursday of last week, I had the pleasure of fishing with Jeff Langley, another of Nicholas Dean’s great guides, and ever the photographer and videographer, our friend Noel Gyger. The Pinks responded well to both red and pink flies, and the fishing went very well until I broke my Sage fly rod. Another problem is that I had not brought along an extra rod. As unfortunate as it was though, I did not really want to stop fishing, since it was only 12 noon. So instead, I re-rigged my rod, took off the broken butt section, and placed the reel inside my wader tops. Although the 4 foot tip section did not cast 20 ft of leadcore very well, it “did the job,” and I managed to land 7 or 8 pinks. Talk about a story that I will remember for awhile! I also learned my lesson: the last time I went out, there were 3 rods with me instead of one…

I hope that these weekly reports are finding you doing well and that the fishing are biting your hook, wherever you are.

Until next week, tight lines and screaming reels,

Chad Black

Operation Manager

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Nicholas Dean Lodge 2007 Season Records To Date:

Steelhead: 27 lbs, Caught by Yvonne Williams of Vancouver, BC on the Skeena River

Chinook Salmon: 55 lbs, Caught by Mike Bingham of Sheridan, California on the Skeena River

Coho Salmon: 12 lbs, Caught by Adam Chelini of San Francisco, California on the Kitimat River


Fishing Conditions

The chart below provides an overview on the current river fishing conditions by fish species:

Fish Species Poor Marginal Fair Good Excellent
Steelhead
Chinook Salmon
Coho Salmon
Pink Salmon
Sockeye Salmon
Chum Salmon
Halibut
Sea-Run Cutthroat Trout
Dolly Varden
Bull Trout
Rainbow Trout

It is now prime time for Steelhead and Salmon migrating up the Skeena River and its tributaries. Though some runs are stronger than others at this time of year, Steelhead and all 5 species of Pacific Salmon are available. Steelhead numbers have improved over the last week, and a few have been landed on the fly, as well as on conventional fishing techniques. The Chinook Salmon fishing has been incredibly good, with multiple fish days common, and huge fish up to 55 lbs landed. Although the most popular section of the Skeena River near Terrace is closed to Chinook fishing, there are still strong runs available in other areas of the river. A few Coho have been landed on the Skeena during the past week, and should be seen in higher numbers as the Summer progresses. Both Sockeye and Pink Salmon are travelling by the thousands up the Skeena, and have provided great sport to conventional and fly anglers alike. Chum fishing on the Kitimat has also been very productive.