STS Guiding Service

2009-07-02 12:05:58
Vancouver, British Columbia - Freshwater Fishing Report
Fraser River and Tributaries

Fraser Valley report for the week of July 2, 2009.

Join us in 2009 and Celebrate our 15 year Anniversary.

Anniversary Specials ( specials are only available while posted )

# 1 Experience the Fraser Canyon like never before.

Jet Boat Tour - Hope to Hells Gate 4-5 hours

$99 per person, includes barbeque lunch available everyday in August

see our schedule at

Salmon forecast for 2009 - the 2009 salmon season is shaping up to be one of the better runs in many years. Large runs of summer and late summer sockeye are expected and 2009 is another Pink run with 15 to 20 million extra salmon in the river.

August is expected to be a great month with large returns of sockeye salmon returning to the Fraser. Those of you who have fished with us in the past but have been disappointed the past two seasons, you will once again experience the great sockeye fishing the Fraser can offer. If all goes according to plan, August 5 to 20 should be peak for this incredible fishery.

The 2009 Pink Salmon run is expected to be in the 10's of millions with peak fishing between Sept 5 to 25. The late run Chinook Salmon co-inside with the Pink run so you can potentially fish for both in the same day. The Chum salmon are just starting to show up in the Harrison in late September with peak fishing between Oct 5 & 25. There is also a late run of Chum that enter the Fraser in early November which offers what I think is some of the best fishing for Chum.

Fraser Valley Report

Fraser River

Salmon Fishing this week has been fair to good for Chinook Salmon. Most of the fish have been between 12- 20 lbs with several over 30lbs. Water clarity is beginning to shape up nicely. The Fraser dropped a good meter in the past two days witch is a good sign for those of us who like to bar fish for Chinook.

Over the next two weeks we will see some inconsistent water conditions as we are expecting some hot weather witch may bring the river up again. If it does it won't last for long as the majority of the snow pack is already melted.

If you prefer to bar fish for Chinook Salmon, upper and lower Wellington Bar are beginning to produce results. Queens Bar, Harrison Bar, Upper Peg Leg and Middle Bar are also seeing some good results.

If you're just new at fishing the Fraser, Bar Fishing is a method developed many years ago. It is widely used on larger rivers like the Fraser and Skeena for Chinook, Coho and Chum Salmon. When water clarity is better than 8 inches, Bar Fishing with Spin n glos is very productive.

Learn about Bar Fishing -


Sturgeon fishing has picked up considerably this past week. Some larger being caught in the Mission, Chilliwack and Agassiz area. The lower River will begin producing good results once again as water levels drop. Best baits have been Eulichons, Lamprey and a few fish on salmon eggs. We have been experimenting a bit with scents and have had some good success with Gulp Alive. The three scents we have been using are Garlic, Shrimp and Nightcrawler.

New Braided Fishing Line for Sturgeon fishing.

For the past 6 weeks we have been experimenting with the new 130 lb Berkley Big Game Braid. This braided line is half of the diameter of most other braided lines of the same strength. We spooled 2 Penn International reels with Berkley Big Game while leaving Tuffline and Tuffline plus on the other two reels. After many hours of fishing we really like the Big Game Braid, the biggest advantage is the small diameter.

We were able to run 14 & 16 oz weights in fast water where we normally use 18 & 20 oz. This is because there is less friction with the water using smaller diameter line. We didn't notice any increased wear, reduced strength or premature breakage using thinner diameter line so I would safely say that this line gives the angler a bit of an advantage over some of the thicker braided lines. You might want to give it a try on one of your reels, I have a feeling you won't go back.

Peak Sturgeon Fishing Dates

Our next peak sturgeon season is in August when we begin our Fraser Canyon Sturgeon Adventures. The Fraser Canyon offers spectacular scenery with some excellent fishing opportunities. Not only that we have the safest boat on the water for taming those infamous rapids like Saddle Rock, Sailor Bar and Little Hells Gate but we also have the most experience fishing this area.

Late August through to mid November is peak fishing for sturgeon in the mid and lower area of the Fraser. This is because of the large runs of salmon that migrate the Fraser in this time period. Once the salmon spawn and die, their carcuses begin to drift downstream. The Mission area offers some of the best fishing because of it's large deposits of salmon carcuses. From the confluence of the Sumas to the confluence of the Stave River, sturgeon fishing it at it's best. Our boats are moored in Mission Harbour where we have quick and easy access to some of the best fishing on the Fraser. Come join us this Fall and see why STS is #1 in the valley.

Monster Sturgeon Caught on Fraser River

This fish is the largest sturgeon hooked and landed on the Fraser River this year by a sport angler. It measured 11'1 with a 58-inch girth or 337.82 cm with a 148 cm girth and was caught by our guests from Langley. The day was 5 minutes from being over when our guests recognized a small bite, they set the hook and 90 minutes later landed one of the largest sport caught fish ever caught.

Vedder River

The Vedder River is clearing and dropping rapidly. Although water clarity is still a bit off, it won't be long before we see prime conditions. As a general rule, opening week produces some nice Chinook. Most of these fish are taken from the larger deeper runs where these fish have been holding since arriving into the river. The lower River will begin producing better results once water levels have dropped. There is some good trout fishing available in the Vedder in July so crab the fly rod and give it a try. This fishery is also great for the kids using spinners or worms and a float.

Trout fishing in the Valley

Trout fishing has been fair to excellent this past week, we have caught some nice fish on several rivers in the valley. Our largest fish this week was just under 7 lbs with good numbers of fish in the 2-4 lb range. If your looking for a fly fishing experience of a lifetime, now's the time. I still have a few dates for next week if your wanting to get out.

Harrison River

The Harrison River is producing some excellent cutthroat fishing. Most of the fish we have been finding are in the side channels and still waters off the main flow. Flashy patterns like minnow imitations are working best or for those of you that don't fly fish, trolling a small spoon like a Gibbs Gypsy has worked great.

STS Guiding Service is committed to providing current and future clients with the highest level of service and quality angling experiences at the lowest price possible. We pride ourselves on our personal and friendly service, our ability to catch fish on 95% of our guided charters. We are fishing the area 12 months of the year. For us fishing is a year round commitment, not just a summer job.

The West Vancouver coho fishery is in full swing right now. Excellent numbers of coho salmon have been actively feeding off the flats of West Vancouver. We have had some really good success fishing anchovies and white hootchies from 15-30 feet on the downriggers. These fish are not huge, but they are great for the bbq. The beauty of this fishery is it is located only 10 minutes from our dock location. The bigger chinook salmon have been found in decent numbers off the Fraser River Mouth, the Gulf Islands, and Howe Sound. Crabbing is starting to slow down with the recent opening of the commercial fishery.

Vancouver Saltwater Report

Field Test Report

This past spring, we started receiving our new rods and reels from Pure Fishing. Brands such as Berkley, Fenwick, Abu Garcia, Pflueger, & Penn. Fishing lines include Berkley Big Game, Berkley Trilene, Fireline and Spider Wire. We carefully selected rods, reels and lines suitable for fishing the Fraser River and tributaries but most of this equipment would also be suitable for most rivers or lakes with in the Province. As we begin using this gear, we will post reports on fishability and how the tackle is holding up.

Fly Fishing Rods - Fenwick World Class Series.

The past two weeks we have been fishing for Bull Trout using the Fenwick World Class Fly Rods. We chose the 8 weight series do to the large streamers we cast. You could probably use a 7 weight but casting large streamers is much nicer with a 8 weight. We also like the fact that the 8 weight in the World Class or HMX series can handle Steelhead and small to medium salmon like Pinks, Coho or Chum. One rod works very nicely for a large variety of species and conditions.

Fenwick WCF908-2 9' #8 - The world class high modular graphite is slightly faster than the HMX making this rod great for casting large flys and long distances. An excellent choice for both medium and long range work due to the ease of loading. We spent 3 days fly fishing with a group from the middle east. This was their first time ever fly fishing, after 4 hours of fly casting lessons we hit the water. One true test of castibility is to have beginners cast 2 inch weighted streamer patterns in a fast flowing river. Well these guys made it look easy casting 35 to 40 ft of line with no effort.

The World Class Series is slightly higher modular graphite than the HMX, slightly faster, great for those casters who like to cast to the backing with strong double hauls. The HMX might be a bit easier to fish with in the short to medium range casts but if your looking for distance, World Class Series will do the job.

Fly Reels - Pflueger President 2090

The grin on my face is from ear to ear, Wow , what a reel. The pflueger president series is top notch, comes in large arbor spool design, forged, machine and anodized frame and spool. It features a oversized ball bearing and one way clutch bearing with the center-disc drag system that is as smooth as they get. You can switch form left or right hand, which I haven't figured out how to do yet, and a beautiful rosewood knob.

I selected the Pflueger 2090 to match the Fenwick World Class #8 which might be a bit large, you could probably go to the 2078 but I like 200 yards of backing since these rods and reels will be used for large trout and steelhead and salmon. Nothing worse than watching a $150 fly line disappear off the reel and wonder if you have enough backing.

In the past two weeks we have landed over 90 fish and have put a substantial number of hours on these reels. So far so good but the reel test will be in the Fall when we put those hard fighting Chum Salmon to the test. I have no doubt these reels will stand up without any issues.

Fly Line - Scientific Anglers Mastery Series

Quad Tip Interchangeable tip fly line

If any of you have seen my seminars at the Fraser Valley Boat and Sportsman Show, you would know that I don't use anything but Interchangeable tips for river fly fishing. Reason, well it's easy to change to lighter or heavier line weights, takes up very little room in my vest and they cast as nice as a full sink tip or floating line.

Interchangeable tips like the Mastery Quad tip have revolutionized fly fishing like no other product on the market. We use to spend $100's of dollars on fly lines and spare spools where now we can buy one reel and one fly line for a multitude of fishing situations.

The entire coastal region offers the fly angler some incredible fly fishing opportunities for trout, steelhead and salmon with a wide range of challenges. Interchangeable tip fly lines have for the most part, addressed these challenges.

Join our team of 8 professional guides for the 2009 season and see why STS is considered #1 in the valley.

To Book Your next guided adventure, call us Toll Free 1-866-771-3474

To Book Your next guided adventure, call us Toll Free 1-866-771-3474

Remember to conserve your catch

Tight Lines and we will see you on the water

Vic Carrao

Fish Species: Salmon, trout sturgeon
Bait Used:
Method Used: all
Water Depth: 10-30 ft
Water Temperature: 62
Wind Direction:
Wind Speed:
11 ft sturgeon released after photo
11 ft sturgeon released after photo

fly fishing for trout
fly fishing for trout

About The Author: Captain Vic Carrao

Company: STS Guiding Service

Area Reporting: Fraser, Harrison, Vedder & Pitt Rivers - BC Canada

Bio: STS Guiding Service offers world class Salmon, Trout, Sturgeon and Steelhead fishing on the Fraser River in British Columbia, Canada. We are located just 50 miles east of Vancouver on the Fraser River. Fishing on the Fraser River, Vancouver, British Columbia assures our clients some of the best Salmon, Trout, Steelhead and Sturgeon fishing anywhere to be found on the West Coast of British Columbia. We offer fully guided day trips as well as full inclusive fishing packages with lodging on the Fraser River. We fish all styles and methods including fly fishing, spin fishing, plug fishing and bait fishing for sturgeon. Inside our site you will see why fishing on the Fraser River and Harrison River area is considered world class.

Click Here For Past Fishing Reports by Captain Vic Carrao