Dave Fife with a nice three-pound trout caught on a plug. Photo contributed

Dave Fife with a nice three-pound trout caught on a plug. Photo contributed

Locals plugging away in search of trout

By Don Daniels

In the month of July, the weather, at times, will get hot and that makes for a number of changes in how we fish the local lakes for trout.

The smaller lakes, like Echo and Maple, will have trout that consistently go after worms from shore or dock, but in some places, like Maple Lake in Cumberland, the access is very limited for shore anglers. Also, parking is limited and fishing activity can be elbow to elbow.

The warmer weather will get the insects hatching and those who fly fish will search out the shallows and wait for the late afternoon/evening bug hatch and the fun begins on the fly.

There are a number of trout anglers who have the equipment and consistently catch big trout in big water such as Buttle Lake, Upper Campbell and Comox Lake. They have a boat and use downriggers to find the fish and get out a plug or spoon along with various fly patterns that catch fish.

Reginald Lake is fly fishing only and once in a while a four-pound fish is caught and released on a fly. The road is rough getting there but other lakes, such as Fry, can be fished during the summer and early morning, close to shore, will have fish going after the current bug hatch.

If you’re willing to spend the extra money on gas, the lakes north of Sayward are waiting for you to get out and try your luck.

There is a bait ban on Roberts Lake but those getting out will fight the wind at times but you can hide around the islands on the north side of the lake. Wait it out and fish the deep water with a small plug. At times, you will hook a Kokanee and the small fish are in there in good numbers. Kokanee fishing is a great way to enjoy a great day on the lake and many interior lakes have big numbers of fish. Target them using small pink fly patterns or lures.

I am seeing a number of people from Alberta arriving in Campbell River to try fishing for salmon and more will arrive after July 15. I met with Terry Mandrusiak from Edmonton last week and we spent the afternoon on the pier. He expressed an interest in spincasting and simply spending the day on the pier. A number of fishing lodges are sending salmon to be smoked, canned or frozen to processing shops here in Campbell River.

Even though it’s non-retention for Chinooks locally, a few tourists are having the salmon fishing experience and are fishing about two hours north by boat. A challenge for most anglers at the moment is the high price of gasoline.

You will notice a number of anglers wading out in the Campbell River to try casting out to the pinks but it is a little early. During the heat, the wading out, and even casting out bright-colored fly patterns will cool you off.

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