Yay! Aggressive fish ready for Kootenay Lake

Spring fishing is here! Although the weather might not indicate it.

BC Lions linebacker Jon Hameister-Ries with a small Kootenay Lake Rainbow

BC Lions linebacker Jon Hameister-Ries with a small Kootenay Lake Rainbow

Spring fishing is here! Although the weather might not indicate it. The water has been rising constantly. Now we just need the temperatures to start rising and the good fishing will follow.

The higher water means more debris floating around in the water. Which means more food on the surface. This should start to bring most of the fish to the surface to feed.

The forecast looks pretty good for the next week or so. My favourite time is coming up. Usually by the middle of May, our water temperature has warmed up and the fish begin to get aggressive.

We have had some good days lately with five to 12 fish being caught in a day. Also had some tougher days with only a couple. Every day is different.

Rainbows up to 22 lbs. and dollies up to 15 lbs. have been caught lately. We’re also seeing lots of smaller fish starting to feed. Now that the insects are out and floating on the water, we should see more and more surface action. Looking forward to the next six weeks.


What are they biting on?

Since most of the fish are coming to the surface to feed, we are mainly running our bucktail flies. My favourite colours have been: black/white, grey/white, green/white. Common numbers have been: 210, 215, 228.

Also using my favourite Lyman plugs and Apex lures on the calmer days. My favourites have been: black/silver, silver/gold, blue/green or lucky numbers of 10, 53, 55, 135.

We’ve also managed a few fish on the downriggers. Still using the old flasher/hoochie combo for the dollies. But we’re catching lots on my favourite plugs again down deep. Magic depths have been 60’, 80’, and 100’.


Gerrards are spawning

It’s also that time of year when these amazing fish head up to spawn. The latest counts have us predicting another great run. The count as of May 7 saw over 933 fish at the grounds. Looks like the beginning of another great run. If you get a chance to see this amazing sight, it is well worth the trip. There’s usually fish up at the bridge until about the second week of May. So, you might still have a chance to check it out. Maybe a nice Mother’s Day picnic. Always worth the trip.

A little tip for everybody: try to get up there earlier in the morning before the wind picks up. It makes for better viewing.

If you want to check on the latest numbers, go to the ministry’s website for a current count. Check it out at: env.gov.bc.ca/kootenay/fsh/main/mainfish.htm

The water temperature is rising slowly. Lately I’ve had readings between 41 and 44 degrees. So, it shouldn’t be long before these fish really turn on! My favourite time of year has arrived.

The next month or two should be fantastic fishing. So, let’s get out there!

Tight lines…..


Kerry Reed owns Nelson’s Reel Adventures Charters. He can be reached at 250-505-4963.