I just returned from a fabulous 10 days of fishing in British Columbia Canada for Salmon and Giant Sturgeon. After salmon fishing for four days as a warm up for the Salmon Masters Tournament at our favorite West Coast Resort’s Hippa Lodge, I traveled back to Vancouver and met Stu Hay and his SMT partner Mike for a quick giant sturgeon adventure on the mighty Frazier River. What a great trip. I booked the sturgeon venture thru the BC SportFishing Group out of Harrison Hot Springs ( 604-796-3345). The trip was about $700 (Canadian) for each of us and that also included 2 nights at a good hotel, all fishing gear and great lunches. I would recommend this tripto any and all who are up for the challenge big fish present.
We only caught 5 fish as the river was high and muddy due to late season rain. My friend Stu Hay caught the largest giant sturgeon at 7 feet 2 inches, Mike’s was 6 feet 4 inches and my biggest was 5 feet 4 inches and I also caught 2 30 inch class fish. Even the smaller fish have no problem making the big Shimano reels sing as they strip off lots of 200 # test line. I was amazed to see them jump and provide a great fight. Our guide, Mike Neufield, told us there are some 63,000 tagged in the Frazier river, and they are closely monitored. Mike said it takes about 10 years for the first 4 feet, and a year for every additional inch. Given that formula, Stu’s fish was about 52 years old. The largest taken in the Frazier was a whopping 11 feet 9 inches. The largest Mike’s clients have produced was 11 feet 2 inches and more than a 2 1/2 hour battle.
Bait on our trip was either a gob of salmon eggs or a small piece of lamprey eel presented on an Owner #8 barbless hook. All I can say is after the take – hang on! It is an interesting process once the fish are ready to be landed.
Normally the guide works the boat towards a nearby beach where the anglers don waders and get in the water for photos and the release. On our trip, however the river was so high there were no beaches, so we had to release the fish from the boat. Once they get close to the boat a scanner is put near the fish to see if it was previously tagged. If so, the scanner records the tag number. If no tag, one is quickly applied before the release.
If you want to have a blast- try this trip. Mike said the fishing is good from June to October. Be sure you ask for Mike- he is a great guide! Next year we plan to go when the salmon are in the river in August or September. Send me an email and join is 2018!