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flyguys.net Ice Off 2018 Fishing Reports

2018 Fishing Reports post Sponsored by …….

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And with the new year comes the new…….

… Official flyguys.net Northern British Columbia, BC Interior, Kamloops Area Lakes & Rivers Ice Off 2018 Fishing Reports post!

As before, please use the comments/reply section at the bottom of this post to share and discuss your 2018 fishing reports, ice off reports, and even (but hopefully not) winter kill reports. Where did you go (not mandatory)? What worked? What didn’t work? General or specific questions about a fly, a technique, or whatever … feel free to ask it here and we’ll try our best to get you an answer! Oh, and a picture is worth a thousand words so please feel free to include one if you can (just include image link in your comment ๐Ÿ˜‰ )!

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For those that would like to share a little more than just 2018 fishing reports we encourage you to submit your story (along with images/video links/etc) & we’ll write it up in a stand alone post for ya!

And continuing from last years debut …….

Historic (& Live for 2018) BC Interior Ice Off Chart

Keep providing ice off info in the comments below and we will update the 2018 column! Big thanks to Lando, Tom & Darryl! ๐Ÿ˜€


That’s it folks … tight lines & good times to all! ๐Ÿ˜€

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About BCFlyguys

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276 Responses to flyguys.net Ice Off 2018 Fishing Reports

  1. herefishyfishy says:

    Does anyone know how Murray lake (near coldwater) is doing this year. is the road clear? ice off? fishing good?

  2. Chaluga says:

    Hey folks,
    Looking for some feedback from people. Over the last 5 years I have really struggled in May for really good fishing days. I generally troll with all kinds of gear. I don’t use a fly rod doing traditional fly-fishing . I fish all over , the cariboo chilcotin, Merritt, Kamloops, Princeton areas. Probably fished 40 days in May last 5 years and only maybe 5 days with lots of action. Lots of action for me is catching around 3 to 5 fish an hour.

    In june, July, August (high elevation), Sept, and Oct I generally do really well. I’ve tried dozens of different spots in May just after ice is off to just after turnover( I know fishing is slow during turnover)

    When I’m out I don’t see a lot of other people doing great as well in May. This is a limited sample because I don’t hit Edith,Roche or other lakes in May that are really busy.

    Places I have has success in May are Fawn, Greenlee, and Raven. I troll a variety of flies, lures, and bait depending upon the lake.

    What I am asking you is do you do well in May compared to the other open water months ?
    Maybe May demands a real specific hatch matching that I don’t do ?

    I live in lower mainland and there are places here to go where I am successful in May but catch size is under 2lbs usually.

    I’m not looking to change my whole approach since the other 5 months I do really well. But I need some tips for May. Might need to get a chironomid setup for my spinning rod and work on that during May.

    Even when fishing is slow I still have a good time with my son. Always learn something and will continue to try to improve.

    • deesee says:

      I think you are probably right with what you said about using chironomids. In a typical May, the water temp rises, and the sun is shining, and fish seem to really key in on various chironomid hatches. Kind of tough if you are trolling though. One thing that might make it easier is to set up your spin rod with a bobber with a chironomid suspended beneath (similar to a strike indicator set up). When I go fishing with my young daughter, she just fires out her spin rod (as she is too young to fly cast), and lets the chironomid dangle (just reeling in any slack in her line). Works pretty well. Mind you, we are anchored while doing this. Being a chironomid nut, I usually find May to be my most productive month (assuming that I can get out enough). Also, I find may to be a good time to troll darner dragonfly nymphs. Not sure if the flies that you periodically troll include these, but I recommend trying some if trolling is your game. Hope this helps (even though it is tough to feel sorry for someone who averages 8 fishing days in May). What I wouldn’t give…. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Chaluga says:

      Those are great feedback. I usually troll leeches, spratly, pumpkinseed. I will try the fly you suggested and will try Chiron a bit as well.

      Yes I’m lucky with my fishing . Get out 35 to 40 days a year.

    • Art Vandelay says:

      Deesee is bang on. At many lakes during the month of May, in particular, the trout get really focused on chironomid hatches to the point that they will ignore all else. This can also happen during mayfly, damsel and dragon emergences but they seem to get extremely fussy during the chironomid hatches.

    • Chaluga says:

      So I troll around and do one lap of the lake and see a few spots where the fish are rising. I’ve seen the how to’s on chironomid fishing. I have a fish finder showing me the depth the fish are at.
      Two questions
      1) how long do you spend at a spot before moving to next (my guess would be 10 minutes or so)
      2) which chironomid flies to use when i haven’t caught anything to pump and I’m a newbie to the insect cycle. Is there a couple go to ? See mention of chromie a lot.

      Thanks for your input. Going up to chilcotin next weekend and I usually do well early.june . Hope to catch a 7 to 10lb trout at a couple of my favorite spots.

      • deesee says:

        Some of the “Go to” chironomids that I use (pre-pump) are some of the more common patterns:

        1.) Chromie (silver body, with either red, black or brown rib, black nickel bead or white bead)
        2.) Black body, red rib, white bead
        3.) Thanks to FlyGuys – Zucchini (black holographic tinsel body – red wire rib, white bead)
        4.) Olive with red butt, and copper rib (white or black nickel bead)
        5.) Maroon with silver rib (white or black nickel bead)

        If there are shucks on the water, I may use those to determine the size I start with. If not, I go size 14 to start – maybe size 12 later into June.

        Once I catch a fish that is big enough to pump, I usually say, “Wow, I was way off! What ever made it decide to eat this thing?” – then I put the right one on.

        As far as how long I wait at a spot goes, I only just bought a sounder, so I often lingered longer than most would, and adjusted depth a bit. If I could see a bunch of fish in a small area at a particular depth (using a sounder), I would be hard pressed to leave them and go somewhere else. I would probably adjust my flies (size, colour, insect type, etc). I know for a fact there are far better, and more experienced chironomid fishermen out there, but I have learned enough to keep me going back. Then again, perhaps that isn’t the reason at all, I may just hate gardening that much…

        Good Luck!

        • deesee says:

          To clarify – when I say size 14, I am referring to the shorter scud hooks, not the 2XL curved nymph hooks – but that is just my preference.

        • Chaluga says:

          Great help Deese. Just what I was looking for. Really appreciate it

  3. Chaluga says:

    Well my trip to the chilcotin area was successful. Hit Palmer lake first and only spent about 3 hours here. Missed a 3 to 4lb trout and had a couple other hits. Road in is really narly. 5km takes 30 minutes. Was a tonne of campers. Kind of lake you need to spend a few days to dial in
    Went to Raven in the afternoon. Always do well there. Son and me caught a dozen 1 to 3lb trout in 2 hours. Nice place to camp.
    Today in tatla lake and hit my favorite lake thats near here. Caught a 4,3.5 and 3lb. Buddy’s son caught 3lb. My friend had around 6lb break off hook 3 feet from the net. He forgot to put tip down and had rod straight over top of fish. I learned that lesson the hard way too.

    We were trolling with spinners but fly guys were using wide range. Chironomids were near end, some using leeches, and half backs.

    Although it’s a long drive chilcotin is worth it. If your looking for beautiful country, adventure (grizzly bear crossed road in front of us this evening) and big trout it’s here.

    • Fish for Steven says:

      Thanks for the report Chaluga.

      It definitely makes me want to go explore lakes far away from home.

  4. Chaluga says:

    I have had a hard time finding a spot near Merritt/Kamloops that you can consistently catch 4 to 5lb trout. Have several to catch around 2lb. I know there out there I just have to find em. Have one I will try next week near Logan lake that I will try.
    Also don’t like trolling with a dozen boats around me so that makes it a bigger challenge.

    • BCFlyguys says:

      Consistent true 4-5 lbers is a big ask man! Lots of Kamloops area lakes have them but they also typically have many more of the younger age classes that you have to cycle through. If you find Shangri-La though PM me ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • deesee says:

        HAHAHAHA!! I love the use of the word “true” above. I totally get what you mean. Chaluga – I know a few guys that could take you out, and catch 4-5 pound fish all day…..Only thing is, they are actually two and three pound fish max. These are the guys who love McDonalds because they order a quarter pounder with cheese, and get their sandwich, and are like: “Sweet, another 3/4 pounder…Must be my lucky day again!”

    • deesee says:

      As of May 19, 2018, Logan Lake contains 100 fish that are roughly 57.5 pounds. Well sort of. That would be their equivalent value in British Pounds. Since the lake winter killed this year, it was stocked with 3000 catchables. Of these, 100 were tagged. Anyone catching a tagged fish can take the tag to the Logan Lake Municipal Office, and receive $100. (You would have to convert this to pound sterling yourself ๐Ÿ˜‰ I had already booked camping at the campground before I knew the lake had killed, but you better believe that if my daughter catches one with a tag, we will be calling it a 57.5 pounder. She has long arms for her age, so we could make a believable picture. Here is the link that was on Radio NL:

    • deesee says:

      I have heard that Big OK is returning to its former glory. Since it was stocked with catchables the year after its bigger kill, those may all be pretty good size. Can’t keep them though. Anyone been up there this year? It has been a few years for me. Mostly wondering if the last bit of the road down to the lake is as rough as usual. Also wonder if the rest of the journey would be possible with an SUV? I could walk the tube down the last rough bit if needed. Just a long way to go to find I can’t get in.

  5. Chaluga says:

    I’m assuming that when people.talk of secret lakes that getting big trout is consistent. My secret lake I’ve been too 8 days and every day I have fished it we have either landed a 4lb plus or had one to the boat and seen it, or had the rod almost ripped out of my hands. A 2 to 3 lb trout doesn’t take out line screaming from my reel with my drag set where it is.
    Bcflyguys pm me and I’ll let u know where it is.

    I’m not expecting to find lots of lakes this good. I would like to find a handful more. Best lake in Kamloops area I’ve found for this is Bleeker. Been there 3 times.and Everytime I’m there another boat landed a 5lb. I lost one 3 to 4.

    Best in cariboo was Simon. These are all know lakes for bigger trout so I’m not letting the cat out of the bag.

    I know bigger lakes like.sheridan and bridge have big ones but my boat setup isn’t good for big lakes.

    • BCFlyguys says:

      Ya sorry I didn’t meant to say there wasn’t many around with a the ability to land solid 4-5s in a day, just that landing 4-5s at a minimum (that’s what I was reading into the word “consistently”) is a pretty high bar. Even at Bleeker, Simon, Sheridan, etc, all with there ability to pump out biguns, you will be hooking into 1s, 2s, and 3s while waiting/hoping for a lunker to grab on. Looking forward to hear what you find up north! Oh, and I may just be emailing you re that local lake you mentioned ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. Chaluga says:

    I’m taking road trip to a new level next month. Visiting my brother in Whitehorse and fishing on way up and back. Plan on hitting Charlie, Muncho, dezadeash, Braeburn, and Fox. Going after lake trout, Pike, rainbow.
    If anyone has fished these lakes let me know. I’ll give a report when I get back.

  7. Armadillo says:

    Was at Big Bar Lake for 2 days….I saw some nice fish โ€ฆ..I also caught a few fish , they were not as big as the ones I drooled over…mosquitos were terrible but if you could get on the lake they didn’t bother you on the water…mayflies , damsels, sedges were in the air…fish were caught on Chans caddis pupa


  8. Dragon Fly says:

    Anyone have any theories on what is going on at Isobel? Have been there several times and while fish show up on the finder there is no activity (bites, fish rising). Have heard the same thing from other folks.
    Was there when the ice came off and saw no sign of dead fish from winter kill.
    Also, hasn’t been stocked yet this year, while it was done May 25th in 2017.

  9. Gunderj says:

    First I want to thank fly guys for posting the Glitter Thread Chironomid pattern. A week ago I was fishing one of my favourite lakes. I caught a fish on an ice cream cone chironimid and pumped itโ€™s stomach. It had lots of size 18 blacks and a few size 16 gun metals. I decided to go with the gun metal. I changed flies and I was off to the races. I landed 6 more fish on a lake that is known for being tough to fish but capable of producing large rainbows. Two of the fish were at least 8 pounds. At the end of the day I had a closer look at the fly I was using and realized it was the Glitter Thread. I have fished the lake three times since with the glitter thread and had similar results. Each time there were other people fishing with little or no luck.

    While I am not willing to reveal the name of the lake, I make it a practice to tell anyone who is fishing the same lake exactly what fly I am using and what depth I am fishing at. If you see a guy fishing out of a 14 foot Marlon John boat and having good success, feel free to come over and I will show you what I am using. If you see me and Iโ€™m not catching fish, come over and tell me what youโ€™re using

    Thanks again fly guys.


  10. MoCor says:

    I have fished Marquart Lake regularly over a number of years, and while she is very generous with her small Rainbows, 10 to 17 inches, I have yet to catch a Brook Trout; even though Triploid Brooks have been stocked for years. My question; has anyone caught a decent sized Brook Trout out of Marquart?

    • Fish for Steven says:

      Hi MoCor,

      I was at Marquart for the Mother’s day week-end… with my mother! It was the first time I was fishing this lake. After mapping a bit of the lake, I kinda figured where the brookies were holding on that day (which is the key I find so far with brook trout fishing). They were right by the walk in campgrounds at the other side of the lakes, feeding heavily on chironomids in 8-9 feet of water, just on the weed edge (that was beginning of May).

      One funny thing is that there were both brookies and rainbows feeding in the same spot. We did not catch any rainbows bigger than 2 pounds, however, we landed a healthy 2 pound brookie and another one that must have hovered around 4 pounds.

      Lots of smaller fish to filter through but there are some good size brookies in there.



  11. Chaluga says:

    Is the boat launch at marquart still a mud bog ? Fished there couple of years ago and it took 20 minutes to walk thru almost quicksand to get to water.

    • MoCor says:

      Chaluga, you are in for a surprise, the heavy snows of the past two years have returned both Marquart and Lundbom to their historic levels; no more muddy shorelines.

  12. Chris K says:

    Hey Guys,

    I got a tip from a friend that guys were doing okay on chironomids at Roche a few days ago. I decided to try it out with my Father Inlaw today. Iโ€™ve never chironomid fished Roche in July let alone 32 degree heat.

    We got up to the lake at 8:30am and headed out. There wasnโ€™t a breath of wind on the lake. The water temperature was 61 degrees and the visibility about 5-6โ€™. It looked like a light algae bloom had just started. There were hundreds of adult damsels cruising along the surface and lots of shucks in the reeds at the West boat launch.

    We fished the first shoal across from Monster Bay in 24โ€™ of water. There was the odd chironomid hatching but not much marking on the fish finder. My Father Inlaw hooked a nice 2 pound, 20โ€ Pennask after about fifteen minutes. I hooked and lost two and he got one more before we decided to try another spot. We were both fish size 14 chromies with black beads and black rib.

    We then tried some damsel patterns in Monster Bay. I got a light take but didnโ€™t hook up with anything. After thirty minutes we tried the deep 36โ€™ trench right out from the boat launch. We both had our indicators go under twice each but missed 3 out of 4 of them. We got one within 5โ€™ of the boat and lost him there. It looked to be about the same as the first one around 2 pounds and twenty inches.

    After BBQ Burgers we headed over to the entrance to Carlโ€™s Flats. We set up in 14โ€™ of water about 100โ€™ off the right shoreline. This is one of our favourite spots in May. In hindsight, we should have just gone straight there at 8:30am. We landed 4 beautiful 2-2.5 Pennasks and lost several more within an hour of anchoring. The action was all on the same black bead, black rib chromie under an indicator with a #10 barrel swivel.

    I never would imagine having a great day of chironomid fishing in the heat at Roche in July. We saw some Caddis scurrying across the surface and a few Mayflies hatching as well. The fish we caught all had a mix of chironomids and olive gammarus shrimp in them. The lake temperature was up to 69.2F when we left.

    Hopefully, itโ€™ll stay good for the weekend. There were less than a dozen boats out on the entire lake today.



  13. Chaluga says:

    Was in Fort St. John couple days ago and fished Charlie Lake in the morning . Really fun time with Walleye hitting like crazy. Caught near a dozen in couple hours. Locals told me area by golf course runoff was good and it was for fishing, not for viewing. Water looked like green sludge. Caught one small pike. When we went back to boat launch guy was casting from shore and caught around a 22″ pike in 5′ of water.
    Pub right near lake is good !

  14. deesee says:

    PLEASE PLEASE….Anyone been to Big OK (Island) Lake this year? Wondering how the fishing has been, but more importantly – how the road is getting in.

  15. Chaluga says:

    Beautiful day at Pine Lake Yukon. Gorgeous spot and great fishing. Caught 5 lake trout and 5 Pike. Can someone remind me how to post pictures and I will.

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