John Tracy Hittel reports: The first week on the water has been a week to remember. Two Chinook Salmon over 40lbs in the past two days, the Tyee’s have arrived.
Attached is a pic of Dave Dixon who landed this monster female while drifting the Kitimat. We had to pull anchor on this feisty Salmon as she was not cooperating and making splashes like a seal in heat. We landed this bad girl in the middle of the fast flowing river and it barely fit my net.
This event all happened quite harmlessly as we watched fly angler Gary Bruce hook into a fresh Salmon on his spey rod. We noticed that Gary was all by himself so we drifted into shore and helped him net this respectable nookie on the fly, nice one Gary. Once landed we digitized the event and Gary put the fish back in the water. Attached is Gary with his prize Kitimat Chinook, his first on this river. He told us the fish were running that side of the river, so we followed the tail-out down into a deep holding pool, as we ran the Hot Shots into the pool, another angler in the boat said he saw a fish roll downstream a 100 meters of so, and once we hit the spot the rod stopped and Dave set the hook. The fish ran across the other lines and peeled line, this battle took about 15 minutes before we decided that this lady was not going to make it to the net in the pool we anchored in, so down we went and it paid off.
Our threesome from Moscow, Russia had a great week with us at the Kitimat Lodge. Living so close to the ocean we were able to fish the saltwater, trolling for Salmon in the AM, Speycasting for Chinooks in the afternoon and grabbing our catch of fresh Crab for supper. I am not sure how many places on the planet you can do all of this in one single day, but I am sure happy to have it in my backyard.
Now this is the first time for me to guide Russians and to tell you how much I love my job and the people that I meet, this is just another example. Of course the Russians are known for the Vodka, we’ll in the liquor shops in Moscow, over 100 types can be purchased. Of course I had to sample the imported spirit and it was like water, chased down with dark chocolate or dill pickle, seems odd, the story is just going to get better. The Russians always eat when they drink and â€œNosta Droviaâ€ (to your health) are my new words I learned, all because of the practice I got. These fellas landed some beauties and attached are a couple of the fish they landed. The larger fish, another 40lb female, bit two of the hooks and when we landed her she was like a dog in a porcupine fight, something I have never seen before, now that is what I call aggressive early run Chinooks.
Once back at the lodge I assumed that the roe was of no use to the Russians as well the head and fins of the fish, wow!! said Vladimir, we will eat the eggs and make soup out of the head for you tonight. I thought about the book Norman Schwarzopf wrote on the Dessert War as he was sitting in a tent surrounded by camels outside the hut and as a tradition they ate sheep-eye, we’ll the roe and fish head was in my mind the same. But I thought it would be rude to not try it and of course it was something I have never had a chance to try prepared.
The roe was washed in warm water and the skein removed, the single eggs were salted for 10 minutes and then put on bread with a thick layer of butter. The soup was awesome and had a very nice flavor, in fact the head and fins are the part with the most flavor.
So there you have it for this week. The river is still up and down each day, and run-off is still pumping hard as we are in a heat wave. The Skeena is in flood condition so we all know that it is not fishing for this month.
Arriving guests this week are the Richard threesome and our group from Saskatchewan and Alberta, so we expect a drop in water and good fishing as the fish are moving in on the high tide. All pics of the past weeks can be viewed in our Salmon gallery. Late booking for singles or corporate are available, so let us know.
If you would like to book a guided fishing trip with Tracey John Hittel, you can contact him at,th firstname.lastname@example.org .