- Cascade Fishing Adventures
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Fishing on the Fraser river has been nothing short of spectacular during the first two weeks of September! Water conditions have been excellent – water clarity is as good as it gets for this time of year, and with cooling weather temperatures and some rain at the beginning of the month, the water temperatures have dropped and are perfect! We can break down the current fishing opportunities into three main fisheries on the Fraser – sturgeon, chinook salmon and pink salmon.
Lets start with the pink salmon run. With an estimated return of 6 million pink salmon to the Fraser river, downgraded substantially from earlier estimates, we have enjoyed plenty of action on the fly rods and spinning gear. These are the smallest of the pacific salmon with most averaging in the 5 pound range. Although they’re small, pink salmon are very willing biters. Pink salmon will chase down a stripped or drifted fly and will also take jigs and spoons, offering a great fishery for anglers of all ages and abilities. So numerous are these pink salmon that you can catch them along any slack shoreline allowing all anglers to access this fishery, even if you don’t have a boat. Fresh pink salmon are excellent eating, however, their table qualities diminish after freezing. Take a couple fresh fish home and enjoy!
With all the pink salmon in the river, the white sturgeon have been on a feeding frenzy. The entire stretch from Yale to Mission has been providing amazing fishing action and plenty of big sturgeon. It has been some time since we have seen such remarkable sturgeon fishing, so we are all enjoying this while it lasts. The reality is, there will be a slow down at some point and it will probably occur towards the end of this month.
A wonderful surprise has been the numbers of chinook salmon that continue to pour into the Fraser river. Many of these chinooks are the red fleshed variety and are bound for the Thompson and Shuswap rivers, but there are also some early returning fall-run Harrison white springs showing up! Many of the late summer Thompson bound fish have an average weight of 10 – 15 lbs with some reports of fish in excess of 20 pounds. It has been common of late to spend an afternoon fishing the spinning glo behind the boat and hook up to half a dozen fish in short order! And as mentioned, mixed in are a few of the Harrison white chinooks, aptly named for their white flesh. These fish are just starting and they will peak in October.
Looking ahead we will continue to see fresh pink salmon move into the river for another week to 10 days after which time they won’t be worth targeting. Sturgeon fishing should continue to be excellent for another week or so, and then we may experience a little slowdown. Once the big runs of chum salmon return in October we will see the sturgeon fishing improve as the sturgeon key in on chum eggs.
Chinook fishing will continue to be good right through to the middle or third week of October. The Harrison river whites tend to peak near October 10 – 15. Bar fishing with spinning glo’s are a favourite traditional method, while hanging spoons from the boat has also been very productive in the past. Should the current water clarity in the Fraser continue through October, we could see some excellent fall-run chinook action this year.
Coho salmon are in the river now and as such there is a bait ban for salmon fishing until the first week of October (check DFO notices for exact dates in your area for the bait ban to be lifted). We will start to see some very good coho fishing in October on the spinning glo’s, spoons, spinners, jigs and flies. Please remember all wild coho are to be released. Again, please check DFO notices for hatchery coho retention in your area.
Chum salmon will also begin to show up with the best chum fishery occurring in mid October through the first two weeks of November. Chum salmon are tenacious scrappers and are highly under-rated for their table qualities. There isn’t too much gear that a chum won’t bite at, but they do love jigs and flies. When it comes to chum, leave the light gear at home. And when you get a clean chum, take one for the table – they are excellent eating!
Good luck to all on the river, and be sure to enjoy the last bit of the summer weather that we often enjoy during this month!
Whether you are looking for a day trip fishing or you want to stay longer, we can arrange everything from your pickup at the airport in a limo, to your hotel accommodation and the best guided fishing tours in the Fraser Valley. Please contact Marc or Maggie on Toll Free: 1-877-887-4366 or use our contact form.