Thursday, October 21, 2010

We're fortunate to fish for salmon

Who would think Eastern Canada would be the hottest spot for Atlantic salmon fishing in all of North America.

Fishermen from all over the world travel to our eastern rivers for our Atlantic salmon. And yes, New Brunswick is the place to be from April 15 to Oct. 15.

Only 176 days until we get out our fly rods. And who would be counting the days for a fresh new season of fresh silver salmon and hearing that old Hardy reel screeching? Readers like you I hope? How lucky we are to live near the Miramichi River.

Salmon fishing officially ended today in all of New Brunswick for 2010 season.

The Nepisiguit River was the only river that had an extra week of fishing this fall.

I had a chance to give it a try this week, but had to say no to a wonderful offer from Ron Godin. Sorry to hear he did not have very good luck as the water was too high and the weather was cold and windy.

The last few days of the season on the Miramichi were very tough as heavy winds made it hard to cast. Cristian Stathis and I only had four fish for the last week and did not see many fish. Most fish we saw seem to be very dark in colour.

I also fished with Country Haven Lodge last week with guest Willy Wood and Richard of Maine. We landed three salmon and lost another fish at the Sabbies pool using Ally Shrimps.

Country Haven said they had a pretty good season under the extreme hot weather conditions this summer.

Trout Brook Fly Shop owner Syd Matchett said the last couple weeks on the North West Miramichi was not too bad. One lad hooked five fish at Blacks and Allison Pool on an Ally Shrimp and a Copper Killer. Syd said there were not many fishermen about as the weather stayed cold the last week.

Curtis Fly Shop said they had a good year and sold a lot of flies and gear. There were not many reports of big hook bills being caught, or none with proof with a picture.

They will open up the shop for anyone at Christmas time. It would be best to call ahead if travelling a great distance.

Have you ever wondered how many fish are hooked and landed each season in our rivers?

I have and I hope someday we will be able to go to a website and check out the numbers of fish hooked, landed and tagged each day.

Many rivers in Scotland (if not all) can tell you their salmon counts per season. What pools produce and which ones will have the best chance at hooking up. Just something for our new government of New Brunswick to think about for future seasons.

They do it for deer, moose and bear why not for our famous Atlantic salmon? Let me know what you think of this idea.

I almost forgot to tell you the story of the grilse that was in the net and found a hole to squeeze through to get back into the Cains River again.

Louis Cormier is from Memramcook and a fly fisherman that is a victim of the netter of Sabbies. We saw many fish at the Sabbies pool whilst there had to be 15 rods fishing on both sides of the river each of the last two days.

* Rodney Colford is a third generation salmon-fishing guide on the Miramichi River and has been guiding fishermen ranging from greenhorns to some of the finest fly-fishermen in the world for 27 years. His fishing reports appear Thursday in the Times &Transcript.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Good Fishing Winds Down

After a windy week of fishing last week anglers were still hooking fish on the river.

Green Slimes, Ally Cascades, Ally Shrimps, GPs, LTs, Undertakers and Purple Allies were some of the flies that were working well.

The Ally Cascade which is very new to some anglers has been on the river for a few years now. I have had good luck on these flies for four years now and it is a fly to have in your box for fall fishing.

The yellow and orange blends very good in our rivers and makes it a hot fly for Atlantic salmon fishing.

And with a good fly you still need the conditions of the river to make a salmon take. River levels are very good and with today and tomorrow left it should be an end to a very good season of salmon fishing. Temperatures are in the low 50s Fahrenheit (10C) and many fishermen have turned to using sinking tips to get down to the fish as they are not showing much at the surface.

Fishing on the Cains River was very good this week as we landed fish every day at Moore's Pool. Cristian Stathis of New York landed a 25-pound salmon the first night of his trip using a GP. He landed another at Pool 66 on Tuesday.

Ken MacLeod of Nova Scotia landed a few fish on one of my Green Slimes on a No. 2 hook on the Cains.

Willy Wood, staying with Country Haven Lodge, landed fish almost every day on the Cains and Southwest Miramichi. Many fish were taken on the Ally Cascades. Other anglers were hooking fish at Country Haven and Valentines Pool was one of their hot spots on the Cains.

Wilsons Sporting Camps has been hooking fish on the middle stretches of the river in the Doaktown area this week. Fish were travelling they thought as they landed some hook-bills that looked to be in the river for just a few days.

I have no reports for the Northwest Miramichi this week.

Don't forget to attend the Dieppe Fly Fishing Forum March 26-27, 2011. It's the No. 1 trade show in New Brunswick for salmon fishing so let's see you there. Contact the fly fishing forum or Jacques Héroux for more information.

With another year of Atlantic salmon fishing behind us we will start the countdown to 2011 about two days after this season ends, or at least I will!

And with that I would like to say thank you too all who have read my reports and the ones I have had the pleasure to write about this season. Let's hope next year we all will have tighter lines and bigger fish to look forward too.

(You can follow me on my blog for pictures of fishing this season 2010 and the upcoming season.)

Until next year, tight lines.

* Rodney Colford is a third generation salmon-fishing guide on the Miramichi River and has been guiding fishermen ranging from greenhorns to some of the finest fly-fishermen in the world for 27 years. His fishing reports appear Thursday in the Times & Transcript.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Big rise in water levels

Miramichi fishing reports for the morning of October 8th. We have a good rise in water this morning on the Cains, it must be up almost 2 feet in Shinnickburn area. We saw some fish jumping but had none that were interested in our flies. The Miramichi is up on the SW about 18 inches or more on the lower stretch, and salmon are still not opening there mouths! The guy I am fishing with had a pull this morning but only from me sneaking behind him and pulling his line as we laughed from being beat from these Atlantic's again.

If you take notice on my last report I added it and it dated October 5th. There are some nice photos to see there. I am not changing it as it takes to long to reload the photos. Have a look and I will add more to this section tonight. Tight Lines, Rodney Colford

Wednesday, October 6, 2010



Grand Prize Winner: Port Alberni, BC
  • Winner of $25,000 community donation
  • WFN to produce and broadcast a 30-minute feature about Port Alberni, BC
Second Place Winner: Nestor Falls, ON
  • Winner of a $5,000 community donation
Secondary Prize Winners:

The following towns will receive a donation on behalf of WFN and their TV provider:

Thunder Bay, ON
  • Winner of $2,000 courtesy of Shaw Cable & WFN
Miramichi, NB
  • Winner of $2,500 courtesy of Rogers Cable & WFN
O'Leary, PEI
  • Winner of $1,500 courtesy of EastLink & WFN
Niagara Falls, ON
  • Winner of $1,000 courtesy of Cogeco Cable & WFN
Dauphin, MB
  • Winner of $1,000 courtesy of WFN
Top 10 Standings

Here are the final standings of our Top 10

  1. Port Alberni, BC
  2. Nestor Falls, ON
  3. Dauphin, MB
  4. Nipawin, SK
  5. Seeley's Bay, ON
  6. Port Rowan, ON
  7. Miramichi, NB
  8. O'Leary, PE
  9. Thunder Bay, ON
  10. Chilliwack, BC

Congratulations to all the towns competing for WFN's Ultimate Fishing Town. We thank you for your dedicated and community spirit during the contest.

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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Salmon move upstream

Salmon fishing on the Miramichi is going well and there is good signs of fish in the river. Water levels are very good and temperatures are in the low 50s F the past week. The river had a good rise from the last storm and some fresh salmon decided to make there move upstream so we can have our last chance into hooking a beautiful hook-bill.

Cains River hook-bills are well on there way as anglers at the mouth of Cains are hooking fish and seeing good signs of fish. Black Brook Salmon Club this week are catching a few fish and one hitting the 26-pound mark by Jeff Shearer.

<---Jeff also limit out the day before on the same fly, this fly was tied out of purple marabou on a 1/0 hook.

Guide Donald Colford with the net weighing Jeff's fish.

Other fishermen were hooking fish on GPs, LTs, green slimes, allies orange and purple and bombers, yes bombers. We are still getting fish on bombers in late afternoons. They are also hooking fish at the Island pool on the Cains about a mile up from the mouth.

Johnny Vickery of Bangor, Me. landed a few salmon this week on bombers at Pool 66. David Miller of South Carolina fished six days and hooked a nice 15-pounder on his last evening of fishing. He was using a purple ally shrimp Number 6.

Rob Strange landed a couple grilse on a under-taker at Pool 66. Anglers at Wade's Fishing Lodge was hooking a few fish and one fish was well over 25 pounds and was hooked on a Allies Cascade. Ken MacCloud of Nova Scotia landed a grilse on a GP.

<----Joel Kitchen with a nice hen salmon on the Miramichi!

Country Haven Lodge are hooking fish everyday in the Main SW and also on the Cains. Guide Gary Colford was hooking two or three fish a day at Moore's pool near Shinnickburn and saw many fish running through. Vickers Salmon Pools are hooking a few fish and Marty Vickers landed a grilse at the Washburn Island pool on a streamer pattern.

I fished the North West this week before the rise and had no luck. Water was low and had not raised up, sorry I have no report from the NW after the rain.

With periods of rain for today this should set up the rivers for the last week of the season pretty good. I expect to see many anglers on the Cains this weekend and keeping there fingers crossed for some big fish.

So get some good flies for the last run at them, and try those marabou patterns as they do work very well in this cold water.

Let me know of that fish of your dreams caught on the beautiful Miramichi. So keep your rods high and your reels screeching until next week have tight lines.

* Rodney Colford is a third generation salmon-fishing guide on the Miramichi River and has been guiding fishermen ranging from greenhorns to some of the finest fly-fishermen in the world for 27 years. His fishing reports appear every Thursday.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

High river levels on the Miramichi

Update on the river levels on the SW Miramichi river for October 3rd 2010. Water was very dirty today on the main river and the Cains. The levels were very high and must of been a 2 foot rise at the most, it was still rising at noon today. There were leaves and debris in the water and very murky. Not many fish showing but there were a few if you had patients to stay for a while. I fished the mouth of Cains river this morning and only heard of 2 fish being caught at Black Brook in the cleaner water coming into the river.

My father Gary Colford guiding for Country Haven fished the Cains river at Moore's pool and only saw one fish at the lower end of the pool.
Why are the fish not taking? any theories on it? Have the fish been in the river too long, or is it they are spawning, is it our methods of fishing changing as to patterns, is the water now too high or too cold to warm. Is there a fall run yet to come into the river and where are those big hook-bills? Let me know your thoughts by using the comments on the bottom of this post.

Tight lines and tighter loops!
Rodney Colford