Squamish: Coho and Chum

Soar with the eagles. Or fish with them, at least. The Squamish Valley is famous for the large numbers of bald eagles who call the area home, and who feed on plentiful Coho and Chum found in the Squamish and Mamquam Rivers into the fall.

Small town, big time scenery. Sechelt is a laidback getaway, surrounded by mountains and water with views that inspire the many local artists. A great place to fish with kids, especially for Pink Salmon which pass by close to shore, and are also raised at nearby Chapman Hatchery.

Love the water? Then you’ll love Powell River. Located on the idyllic Sunshine Coast, the town of Powell River offers great fishing along with kayaking, scuba diving and more. Hop in a boat and start fishing for Chinook and prawns right from the dock in front of town, and all the way up the Strait of Georgia and into Desolation Sound.

Float – and fish – alongside long log booms as they snake their way slowly down the Harrison River, near where it meets the mighty Fraser. Enjoy a great day on the water or casting from shore, surrounded by low mountains and plentiful Cutthroat Trout eager to take a fly or lure as they push up the river during fall and winter.

Lay out a line, spread out a picnic blanket, or do both. Cates Park is a popular city park and beach just a short drive or bus ride from Downtown Vancouver. A great location for kids and families to cast for Pink and an occasional Coho Salmon during the fall as these fish hug the shoreline and make their way up local rivers to spawn.

Wave hello to our American friends! Bisected by the Canada-US border, Boundary Bay is a great place to drop crab traps in the morning then head out to fish for Sockeye all day long. Every year, millions of Sockeye return home to the Fraser River and for a short time in the summer they can be caught congregating here in large schools as they return from the ocean and prepare for the long trip upriver to their spawning grounds.

Gone Fishin. Fish for an hour, or for the whole day. Stay close to the city, and cast from the shore right within the Georgia Strait Basin, as Pink Salmon make their return to our local rivers on their way to their spawning grounds. Eating voraciously in preparation for spawning, Pinks will readily take a wide variety of flies and lures.

Relaxation guaranteed. Only accessible by ferry or float plane, the Sunshine Coast is a popular tourist destination with B.C. locals, especially in summer months. Here you can spend a lazy day (or more) fishing for Salmon on the calm, protected waters of the Georgia Strait, located between the mainland and Vancouver Island.

Calm waters. Dramatic views. Half an hour north of Vancouver is Horseshoe Bay, the point of arrival and departure for ferry traffic between Vancouver and Vancouver Island, the Sunshine Coast and the Gulf Islands. Here at the mouth of Howe Sound (which is actually a collection of small fjords) is a popular spot to fish for Salmon and B.C.’s famous Spot Prawns while enjoying stunning views of small, sheltered islands and dramatic cliff faces surrounding the Sound.

Catch a big one. A really, really big one. The largest sport caught White Sturgeon on record was caught in the Fraser River in 2012, weighing approximately 500 lbs and measuring over 12 feet! And while you may not make history yourself, a fishing trip on the Mighty Fraser will at least give you the opportunity. Anglers come from all around the world for the famous, White Sturgeon here and many guided charter companies specialize in seeking out – and finding – these giant creatures.

All Sturgeon fishing in the Fraser is catch-and-release only. And while you can fish for Sturgeon in the tidal waters south of the Mission Bridge, most anglers fish north of the bridge, which requires a Freshwater licence.

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