Ebb & Flow Week 11 | August 10, 2018
August 10, 2018 | 1645 Viewswcfcviews
By Deepwater Don
It tends to happen round about this time of year. Large mature salmon that are feeding voraciously in preparation for their final push into their natal streams are appearing in greater numbers, with a total of 11 tyees reportedly on the board during the most recent trip at The Clubhouse. Guide Bud Stafford guided guest Bing Graffunder to one of the top fish of the week with one that measured 38 pounds before being released. It was Bing’s lucky day as he also caught and released a second tyee that measured out to 30 lbs. His wife, Jan Graffunder also caught and released a beautiful 31 lb tyee. Thanks to Bing, Jan and guide Bud for their conservation efforts. What a way to celebrate Bing’s birthday!
The same afternoon saw Screamer fishing with Jollean Hancen and John Simpson in Boulder Bay, which proved again this week to be a hog hangout, with Jollean finalizing some business with a 33 found in a mere 25 feet of water. Doug Gowland picked up a 34 guided by Brent Gallacher. On the previous trip, Clubhouse guest James Barnett caught and promptly released a 35. Running close behind on the leaderboard was Kevin Kelly with a released 33 followed by Brad McCuaig with an even 30.
But what I find as exciting is that the word “northern” is now on the lips of a handful of guides, referring to the so-called “northern coho” that become increasingly common in the latter part of the season. Truth is that I don’t know for certain if this is a unique breed of coho but I am more inclined to believe it is simply a mature fish that tend to appear in late season and are characterized by their size – 15-20 pounds – and sometimes a hooked snout. Whatever they are, they are a handful when they strike. Rumour has it that one weighing 17.5 pounds hit The Clubhouse dock this week with a whole lot more being reported in the 12-14 pound range. Wouldn’t surprise me to see a whole lot more big coho on the books before this season is over, cuz that’s the way it usually goes. My best is an 18 caught at about this time of year in 2016 at The Outpost. It was the best coho of the season for The Club at the time, but I was bested a mere 24 hours later by a fellow Albertan whose name I don’t recall, who boated a 19.
The gang over at North Island Lodge have had similar results this past week, with an increase in the coho count and a handful of tyees on the most recent trip. Robbie Orbaker was atop the leaderboard with a 32 on a self-guided mission. Alex Klinov hit a double on Sunday with two tyees of 30 and 32 pounds while Ryan Laplant netted an even 30.
To top it off the weather has been spectacular with temperatures in the low 20’s under sunny skies and upon calm seas. I particularly enjoy these kind of conditions down Port Louis way, where clear skies afford views of the highlands of Graham Island, which when seen from the water are altogether unique, even for supernatural British Columbia. Speaking of The Outpost, I suspect that the fish are getting bigger down that way too, and that the coho are providing for ample adrenaline on the part of guests currently soaking it in on those mystical seascapes. Watch for Jordan Knight’s report from down that way soon.
Next up on the special events calendar is the Coastal Culinary Experience, which this year features special guest chef John Horne, executive chef of downtown Toronto’s famous Canoe restaurant. If the weather cooperates, guests of this long-sold-out event will be whisked by helicopter to the most far-beyond-extraordinary beach lunch ever imagined.
Until next week, stay safe and well friends.