Jul 30

Big Bow River Fish July 2016

The Bow River has been completely amazing the last two days. I have ran the new jet boat the last three days. I am super impressed with how the boat performs.

Check out these amazing fish from the last two days on the Bow River.

big-bow-river-brown-trout-2016

Come book your seat in the all new Explorer Industries jet boat today !!

spin-fishing-the-bow-river 2016

 

 

Jun 26

The 2016 Trout Fishing Season Kicks off With a Big Bang!

bow-river-rainbow-trout-fishing-june26 2016A Shootout at the Bow River Saloon!

The 2016 fishing season started for me today with a bang, a BIG bang. Chris and his father Dan were my first clients of the year. The weather here in Calgary was rainy and the forecast for today called for more of the same. Sometimes when it rains too hard, it can stain up the water to the point of being unfishable. I went down to the Bow River last night to check on the water conditions and all looked well. I messaged Chris via Facebook and gave him the green light go for today’s trip. We launched today at Policeman’s Flats at 7:00 Am. The wind was calm and it had not started raining yet, which made for ideal fishing conditions. With the water stained up just the right amount, I had great vibes we were going to be in for a stellar day out there.

Today I opted to use baits that rattle as the water was not perfectly clear. I made that decision based on what I saw last night while checking the water conditions of the river. I went with the Live Target Minnow and the Rapala BX Jointed minnow series baits. Both brands of lures have rattling capabilities and some very realistic swimming movements, making them ideal baits to use in these types of conditions. It never took long for the first trout to take hold of the Live Target Lure, after just thirty minutes into our float; Dan had hooked and landed a monster rainbow that taped out at twenty three inches. Chris’s first fish took a little longer to hook but it was another complete tank of a rainbow. The rainbows are now done their spawn in the Highwood River, which is their major spawning tributary for resident Bow River rainbow trout. The rainbows have now made their way out of the Highwood River system and have now come back into the Bow River and are ready to chow down and fatten up to replace all that energy and weight they lost during mating.

pit stop on the bow river june 26 2016

We found many trout in their classic habitats today. I centred our casting to the undercut banks and choppy, turbulent oxygenated runs. We hooked and landed seven fish while drifting in the boat. The river was quiet today in terms of boat traffic, so we had lots of time to make pit stops without getting caught up in a slew of boats. I told Chris we were going to dock off in one of my all-time favorite runs in the river. I have landed some amazing fish in this spot year after year. I had a strong hunch that the fish would be back in this section of river now, and boy was I ever spot on! We never hooked any fish while we drifted through, but that never stopped me from what my gut was telling me, (Get out and fish the bank).

I glided the boat to the shore and helped both Chris and his father out of the boat. The raft was wet from rain and it can get a little slick when wet. I decided we should walk up the river to the run at the top of the chute. I grabbed my pliers and my rod, which was also rigged up with a Live Target Lure for finding the fish for Chris and his father. When I guide, I don’t fish, but every now and again I make a few casts to help my clients with retrieve speed and presentation of the lures. We marched up the bank on a mission, a big fish mission! I saw a fish rise in front of a tree that was downed and hanging off the bank and in the river. A perfect obstruction for fish to hide near, or under! Chris tried several casts below the tree as I looked on and coached his retrieve. I asked him if he minded if I go above the downed tree and make a few exploratory casts, he nodded yes and I immediately probed the area with my lure. The first came up empty but cast number two I was rewarded with a nice 16-17 inch rainbow that completely slammed my lure on the down swing. I moved off the bank and let Chris move up into my location, I wanted him to take as many fish as possible from this run. It was not long and another slab rainbow was on board his BX Minnow, and taking line going on several rod pumping runs. Chris’s face lit up like the shy on the 4th of July. The fish finally tired out and I netted him. Check the size of this monster out below.

big bow river rainbow trout

Two quick pictures and I revived the fish bankside. He darted back out towards where Chris had hooked him and we exchanged slimy high fives in celebration of this epic battle Chris won. We kept moving up the river pecking our way as we went up, and landing fish after fish after fish. It was as if someone had flipped a switch and turned on the feeding frenzy button. Between Chris and I, we caught and released fifteen fish in this stretch of river in under an hour. I am sure that forty five minutes is a block of time Chris will never forget. Chris calls me “The trout Doctor” and boy did we ever operate in that time frame, surgically picking every inch of that hole apart, and landing every fish along the hundred and fifty yard chunk of river bank.

Chris and I joked along the walk back to the boat and he said something that rang true to my heart, he said if he had a choice of places to live, it would be right in this place and time along the river. We all know “home is where the heart is” and I feel his heart was in it to win it today. It was a perfect way to start out the year for me, and with the perfect pair of people. More memories to follow as we journey along the ebb and flow of the mighty Bow River!

May 15

A Young Girl’s First Fish

A child catches her first bow river trout

Kids, fun and floating the Lower Bow River

I awoke on Sunday to the sweet sounds of spring robins chirping out my window. Nothing quite beats the sounds of robins in the spring time. With new young in the nest now, I see the mother gathering worms from the freshly watered lawn out the back common area of my condo. I think it’s safe to say winter has disappeared now and the effervescent colors of spring have sprung.  The only other thing that beats those resonances of robins chirping on a Sunday morning is the sound of excited children’s merriment upon awakening, knowing that they will be going on a boat ride later that afternoon.  My daughter Paige had a sleep over this past Saturday night and we had plans to take the boat out for a short two hour trip with her new friend Delena. The girls had a hard time slumbering on Saturday night as they were both pumped for the next day’s adventure! Paige has floated with me on multiple occasions, but this was Delena’s maiden voyage and she was extremely excited to say the least. I think I finally heard the giggling of the girls stop at about midnight.

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Apr 17

The Maiden Voyage of 2016

brown-trout-of-the-bow-river

Taking The Rapala’s To Brown Town

With the weather unseasonably warm and the water gin clear, I decided it was time to shake the winter cob webs off the Saturn watercraft and take her for the first float trip of the year. I spent two previous days in Banff taking pictures and unwinding from the concrete jungle. It was a much needed getaway from the city noise! I woke up early and checked out from the Tunnel Mountain Resort before ten o’clock in the morning, I wanted to make it back to Calgary before noon and launch the boat by one o’clock at the latest. Before I left the hotel I called my friend Steve to see if he wanted to accommodate me on the trip. Steve is the Rapala Representative for most of Canada, his territory covers from Alberta all the way to Thunder Bay, Ontario.

Steve picked up the phone after the fifth ring and was totally down to hit the river and hook into some early spring trout. I headed East back in the city and loaded up the gear from my house, then over to my mom’s place to pick up the boat. Normally I make the lunches for all trips but I was running a little late and had to settle for Tim Horton’s. We launched out at Policeman’s Flats at 1:00 and made the slow trip down to McKinnon Flats where I was told the boat launch was open for take out’s and put in’s. Steve asked me what lure he should tie up first, and I suggested the BX Minnow would be a good start. I opted to go with a Countdown for my first lure. These lures work well in deeper pools and holes, but will often get hung up on the bottom if you don’t hold your rod tip up high in the air. When the water levels are low, it is wise to have two rods rigged up for your day’s adventure! I usually go with a lure that will dive into deeper holes, and another rod rigged up with a lure that runs shallow, like an original floater or the new Shadow Rap Shad, which will dive to around 5 feet, but also rises to the top when you stop the lure on your retrieve. Read the rest of this entry »

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