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Kitimat Lodge, BC Steelhead fishing report.

Posted on January 31st, 2013

Tracey John Hittel reports. What a fabulous winter we are having this year. The rivers are in perfect condition and most of the snow has melted here in Kitimat.

Today we fly fished one nice pool and a male steelhead chased after a pink and black intruder fly and boy did it give Arch a battle.

Considering the river temps are quite low, this buck burst out of the water at least twice. I expect a early spring and with that early steelhead arriving. The local streams are producing many trout and char and bald eagles perch above in anticipation for a quick meal.

The Douglas Channel has winter springs lurking as we’ll many sea gulls feasting on fresh herring. I think that a good herring run dictates the fishery each year.

Our spring steelhead season starts in March thru to late May. Salmon season will begin in May. We expect a early start to our halibut season this April thru to November.

Many bookings are coming in and we look forward to another awesome season here at the Kitimat Lodge.

Tracey tried his best to kill me again today. It is not a deliberate thing on his part. He has tried before. The skipper just has no concept of the aging process and no clue that many of us need more oxygen than kids his age.

Where we park the truck offers no clue to what awaits.

I know we will be fishing a river favored by the warming flow of a confluence of several hot springs…a phenomenon that keeps the river fishable throughout the winter. In truth, the skipper and I have fished the river many times previous at this time of year in years past – both of us breaking into double-digits at times when most anglers have racked their rods on the wall – waiting for better weather. It is this fact that has sucked me in…

“The thing I like best about this run is that no-one ever fishes it!”

Thirty minutes later – walking downhill the entire time -breaking through a three foot deep, crust-capped mixture of snow and slush the whole way, we reach our goal.  Downhill was pretty much controlled falling the whole way and we both arrived in a humbled heap, streamside – soaked in sweat and already agonizing about the hike back to the truck.

I’m not even going to describe the agony of the trip back up that cliff. I won’t either bore you with the fact the tiny little buck you see pictured above nearly yanked my rod out of my hand on the take or that for the longest time, I thought he was much bigger than his reality. I could quite honestly go fishing every day for the next two weeks, take pictures of each fish I land and describe takes on different flies, but it would all feel like bragging or taunting. In reality – I am blessed to live where I live.

Coming to grips with my own aging is not really the point of my writing this little article. Nor is it describing the landing of another memorable fish. The point of my telling is to attest that the fish that took my fly grabbed it up exactly where Tracey suggested I cast and the fish very near pulled my rod from my hand.

It is probable I would have cast there anyway. After all, I anquite a bit longer in the tooth than the skipper and I have brought more than a few fish to the shore in my time without external guidance. In truth – I would only cast to where the fish was laying as a last resort…only after casting to the ‘most likely’ spots. Instead, I made a total of 3 casts – throwing rabbit fur at a piece of water most anglers would label marginal at best. The little buck fought with bigger fish bravado and jumped with abandon, but throughout the landing it struck me hard – the student has surpassed the teacher.

If you would like to book a guided fishing trip with Tracey John, you can contact him at, 250 632-9880. 

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