In the early months of the spring, Mother Nature awakens and spring steelhead, typically the biggest of the species, enter the Skeena. They’re headed to it’s lower tributaries, as well as rivers along B.C’s illustrious coastline. Fish up to 20 lbs. are not uncommon and they’re extremely hot when in the lower Skeena. However, this can be a challenging time of year as the water temperatures are lower than in the summer months and the weather, like anywhere, can make it a bit tricky. For anyone looking for a challenge and to find some solitude, this is a great time of year to do so chasing the best freshwater game fish on the planet. We fish for these beauties from the third week of March to the third week of April. We angle in small groups using drift boat or jet boat to move between spots. A week minimum is recommended for this type of fishing trip to ensure you get optimal fishing.
Starting the second week of June our Chinook season starts full swing. Some anglers will argue that this is the best pacific fish to catch on the swing but one thing is for certain, they’re “as tough as nails.” Contrary to popular belief, Chinook are aggressive and are more than willing to take a swung fly. When you hook one, chances are it will jump, turn and try to head straight back to the pacific where it came from. The power of these fish is ineffable. Catching a Chinook on the fly will be a true testament that you have conquered one of fly-fishing’s most prestigious feats. Check it off your bucket list today!
In the early months of summer, from the end of June to the third week of July we target the monsters of the Skeena. With bar-fishing, back-trolling, and float fishing tactics you will get to have a crack at a trophy Chinook of a lifetime. One of these fish on your line will give you a new understanding of the unimaginable power of this species. Big game fish in the 100 lbs class and more are unique to the Skeena River. They say the next world record will come from our home waters and there is a good chance that you will be the one to bring it to hand. Broken 40-50Lb lines and shattered rods are the sad reminder on the ones that got away. If you like big game trophy fishing, this time of year is for you.
This time of the year from the mid July to the end of August is prime time on the Skeena and probably the most exciting. Every species has now begun to enter the system in abundance. Summer Steelhead fishing is at its peak at this time with fish upwards of 20 lbs. being taken weekly and some even larger. These fish are high flying, hard fighting and down right aggressive. It is this fish that has really made the Skeena so popular amongst fly anglers worldwide. Not to be forgotten, the rest of the fish entering are also quite grabby being fresh out of the ocean, covered in sea lice, and bright as a mirror. Chinook, Sockeye, Coho, Chum, and Pinks are readily available to bite your fly. This is your best time of year to try and hit the Skeena Grand Slam- All five species of salmon and a steelhead during your stay.
Towards the end of August to mid September things start to slow down in comparison to the heavy migration some weeks prior. However, fishing is great at this time of year for quality fish. Come Mid September things start going again as the big Northern Coho and Fall Steelhead make their final pushes to their home waters before the cold winter months.
Come mid-September the later run of Northern Coho also known as Silvers begins. The lower rivers of the Skeena are loaded with salmon that have made it back to their home waters to spawn. A mixture of colours from bright chrome to hints of red and pink will be seen on the fish. Many Coho up to 20 lbs. are caught each year, and some even bigger are recorded. We have seen salmon over 30lbs. caught and released this time of year. There are also large numbers of steelhead making their final pushes to up-country rivers. For some lower tributaries, it will mark the peak of their run time that will carry into Dec. All in all this is a great time of year for anglers in pursuit of trophy fish. Whether can play a major roll at this time of year as heavy rains can fall. However heavy rains are typically followed by big bites in numbers. Don’t forget your raincoat!