Quesnel Lake B.C.

Discussion in 'Trip Reports with Pics' started by Dave Henry, Sep 12, 2011.

  1. Dave Henry Member

    Posts: 160
    Langley, British Columbia
    Ratings: +1 / 0
    The scene played out like one of those from the National Geographic channel. You know the ones where the Lions, Hyenas and Vultures all pace nervously close to one another. Waiting for something, anything to happen so that they can attack a herd of Wildebeests. Normally sworn enemies, these animals all circle within feet of one another without, other than the odd outburst, any kind of major melee erupting. Only this time the Lions are Bulltrout, the Hyenas are Rainbows, the Vultures are Whitefish and the Wildebeests are represented by Sockeye Salmon. It's a scene that has played itself out for me over a dozen times in the last decade.

    Our family was anchored off to the side of a creek mouth on Quesnel lake. We gazed into the vodka clear waters as the bright red salmon waited, at the drop off into the lake, staring up into the creek. They paced nervously back and forth waiting for some instinctual force to draw them into the small waterway where they would spawn and then die. The other fish stuck close, waiting patiently for an easy meal of salmon eggs and flesh.


    Sarah and I quietly explained the scene to the kids as we prepared their gear. Spinning rods with a float and single egg fly patterns for the girls. A switch rod with an egg pattern for me and another switch with a large, white egg sucking leech for her.

    Olivia went first, casting her fly into the water. We watched as fish of all types took a good look. The float twitched a couple times but she wasn't fast enough to hook up. On the 3rd pass, though, there was no need to strike. Her float disappeared under the water with a loud pop and line began to tear off her zebco reel. A fish cartwheeled 40 feet out and there was a collective gasp. Sarah and I coached her and after a few tense minutes the best rainbow of the trip was in the net.


    Emma was next, landing two beautifully colored rainbows in quick succession. Olivia nailed her second before the rainbows started to get wise to the game. The fishing slowed and the girls attention span waned. It was time for us to get our turns.


    I passed Sarah the rod with the big streamer and pointed out the big bull, the alpha fish of the creekmouth. She made a perfect cast upstream and as the fly approached the drop off where he sat, she began the slow Bulltrout strip. The white tipped fins flared and her target began to follow the fly. It only took a pause and another good strip to entice a strike and the game was on. This fish was big. The 6 weight switch rod bent deeply and line peeled off of the reel. It took us a good few minutes before we could get it close enough for a good look. "I better get the big net." I said after failing to get the entire fish into my wooden trout net. I measured the fish at 31 inches in the net. I'm sure it would have gone another inch if we had held it straight. Almost the size of the 14 pounder we landed at a spot near by a few years back. The biggest fish of the weekend.



    My turn yielded another bull, though quite a bit smaller. By now the fish as a group had seen enough of us and lockjaw had set in. We headed back to "camp" for some tubing, swimming, fireworks and the hot tub. Family vacations are rough.



    We fished a little more in the following days but were more intent on playing in the new boat and exploring some new areas. It was still early for the sockeye run so we didn't find any other places with enough of a concentration of fish to get consistent action. If the chance arises in the coming weeks, we'll make the long trek back to one of our favourite places for some more serious fishing.

  2. shutupnfish New Member

    Posts: 24
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Wow this was a great way to start my day. Last time I was there was in 93 with a farewell trip with my dad and brothers. This was his favorite spot to fish. He started going there in the 50's with my older brothers. I grew up listening to the stories of the monster trout and how they spooled them every time. I got my first trip in when I was around ten. We loaded up a a rental boat and headed up to Lynx creek. We were gear heads like every one else at the time and fishing was marginal at best. The adventure could not be beat though and i still wish of getting back. I have tried getting a group together for mitchell creek but no takers. Anyway thanks for sharing this one it got my blood boiling.

    Don L.
  3. ganglyangler Bird Dogs and Fly Rods

    Posts: 465
    Port Gamble WA
    Ratings: +42 / 0
    That bull is huge! Nice report!
  4. Dave Henry Member

    Posts: 160
    Langley, British Columbia
    Ratings: +1 / 0
    Hey don. We've been talking about putting together a group tri for next September. We should stay in touch and get you back up there.
  5. Gary Thompson dirty dog

    Posts: 3,891
    East Wenatchee, WA
    Ratings: +131 / 0
    Wow, Dave
    I'm going to be retired after Sept. 19, 2012.
    I would like to pitch in on a trip.
    Beautiful women holding beautiful trout, my favorite!!!!!!
    Keep me in mind, thanks
  6. Dave Henry Member

    Posts: 160
    Langley, British Columbia
    Ratings: +1 / 0
    Gary, send your contact info to waskocreek@shaw.ca so that I can contact you once I have something in the works.
  7. Steve Call Active Member

    Posts: 1,570
    Wetside, WA
    Ratings: +188 / 0
    Great report. What a treat for the whole family!
    Thanks for sharing.
  8. shutupnfish New Member

    Posts: 24
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I would be honored
  9. Patrick Gould Active Member

    Posts: 2,356
    Ellensburg, WA
    Ratings: +688 / 1
    Great report and pics Dave. My little girl is inspired.
  10. Broderick Smith SeaToTree

    Posts: 257
    SeaToTree, WA
    Ratings: +40 / 0
    You rock man, those are some rad pics!