Here we are in the final two days before Christmas, and the stay-at-home protocol is in, people will alter plans to keep busy when it comes to keep fishing on the water or find something to do at home to pass the time during the Covid-19 pandemic.
December is not prime time fishing for salmon but the people who can get out are spending time hooking into undersized springs and plenty of undersize fish. This is the time where cooler weather will deter many people from getting out but other areas of note are Powell River where the tides are different from what we have here in Campbell River. Anglers will fish there from December to February.
For some, it will be getting into a boat and drop crab or prawn traps, to enjoy as Christmas snacks at home.
On the mainland, the Squamish river is hit by those who are avid steelhead anglers and locally the Quinsam, Oyster and Campbell rivers will be fished but water levels can be a challenge. Those who go after trout will have time to fish the various pools and wet a line during the holidays.
For trout, shore fishing will be added to the list and bait, both natural and artificial, can be used from shore, but always know the regulations at each location fished. Lower elevation can be reached until we get the first snow dump of the year. Most lakes around Campbell River will not freeze over and during the past number of years open water is clearly seen. A good rule of thumb, though, is STAY OFF THE ICE.
On my weekly visit to the local tackle shops, I am always looking for new materials and stock up on hooks and fly tying thread and dubbing. A lady in the store was tying up a steelhead fly pattern and was looking for orange grizzly hackle. She made two comments that caught my attention. She liked the grizzly material, it was fun to work with and she said she was hoping to maybe get out and hook into a steelhead this winter.
From now ‘til the end of March, the majority of the flies I tie will be done at home during the pandemic and, for the most part, fly patterns I create will catch fish. A number of flies I tie are given out to people who don’t tie and want to go fishing.
Last year at the end of March, the fly tying at the library was canceled and a number of inquiries came in as to when the next sessions will happen. All I can say is, upcoming fly tying sessions are on hold. I received a few fly kits from families who simply have no interest to use and they donated materials that will be given out to students of all ages that are involved with the fly tying program we have been running for many years.
I also received some salmon rods, that were donated by Ernest Anderson, and those will be checked over and given out at a date to be announced.
At this time of year, when fishing or getting outdoors: Mask up, maintain social distancing and let’s go through the year enjoying the sport fishing around Campbell River! Happy holidays everyone and stay safe.