Skeena trip... tons of questions

Hey guys, I'm planning a trip to either the Kispiox or the Bulkley with a couple buddies in September. We'll be strictly swinging. We're just in the beginning stages, but I figured some of you guys have done this already and may have some warnings or helpful info.

We'll be towing a raft (with a very experienced rower) and fishing 5 days, Mon-Fri, since we can't fish the weekend. I know about license costs including daily fees. I'm mainly wondering about places you guys have stayed, like cabins or hotels, and if there is any info on put-in / take outs on either river, or where I could get that info. I'm searching the net like crazy, but figured I'd ask you guys for info as well.

Steve Knapp


Well-Known Member
There is a campground and several motels in Smithers that are reasonable. Also campgrounds on the Kispiox, but my guess is that cabins are already booked for this coming season. You can look them up and check however. Most launch and retrieval sites are either obvious or pretty easy to find. I'm drawing a blank at the moment regarding place names, but a map and Google will help you out. The big change is that the Tribe on the lower Kispiox now charges $100 to fish on or launch or retrieve on the rez. So if you can afford it, you can have relatively uncrowded access, but most anglers are fishing upstream from what I heard last year.

Jeremy Floyd

fly fishing my way through life
Where the water flattens out below the big bend below the steelhead cabins (above the bridge just past the fairgrounds on the Kispiox) is a sweet run. I highly recommend it. We bathed in the lake just up the river road a few minutes from the steelhead cabins and tented it (which cost almost nothing). You can contact the fairgrounds people and see about putting up a tent there.
Be forwarned that the local Natives were charging launch fees on certain parts of the Kispiox last year , and the fee for American anglers was steep . You`ll not be charged those fees on the Bulkley .

RE: the fairgrounds . You`re not supposed to camp there ,(unless things have changed) , but I`ve done it

Jeremy Floyd

fly fishing my way through life
Yeah I have a special "in" at the fairgrounds due to doing production for the Kispiox Music Festival. You can always try though.
If you want the best fishing on the Bulkley with dry flies go first week Oct.Be warned however that the skies can open that time of year and you can be spending a few days watching logs go down the river.Bear encounters are not rare but I won't let that stop me.
Low hole someone at your own risk-some of the people up there will take matters into their own hands-but be courteous and so will they
The First Nations charge $100 for fishing access, plus another $150 for boating access on their waters, per day. I fished above there and still was reasonably successful. The campground is the cheapest option; they have flush toilets, water points, and fire rings at each site. The cabins do receive last minute closures so I would check with them up to and including the day you leave.
PS, you have a PM.
All great info guys. I think we're settled on a campground a bit north of Smithers and focusing on the Bulkley. If it blows we'll go in search of clear water. Awesome to hear about dry flies, I've never skated a dry, but I will be trying.
I will go prepared for all water conditions, but what has been the main line systems/flies you guys have used? Skagit with big intruders, or skandi and smaller flies? I know it's a vague question.

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In my experience , Kispiox fish tend to like big flies , but they don`t need to be weighted . I like smaller flies on the Bulkley .
My preferred set-up includes a scandi line with a hover poly leader if conditions allow .

Bring a skagit line though .

Rob Allen

Active Member
Stay at the storks nest.. hot breakfast with the room and they have a lap top you can buy your licenses each morning based on conditions without having to wait for a store to open..

Jeremy Floyd

fly fishing my way through life
I wish I could remember the name of the breakfast joint downtown, a half block away from the Liquor Store.. That place was great every other morning or so to make the camping blues go away.