How We Fish on the Chilko
Fly Fishing Guides
At Tsylos Park Lodge, we fly fish on the Chilko River a variety of ways. With full guide support, we wade all the different pools and ledges for the first 9 km’s. Your guide will keep you moving from shelf to shelf and offer assistance when needed.
We also drift fish from our flat-bottom jet sleds. With one person fly fishing from the bow, and one from the stern your guide can direct you over all of the shelves that hold our big Rainbows. This can be very productive as you can cover a lot of water in a short period of time. Once at the end of your drift, the jet motor is used to move upstream for another drift.
McKenzie Drift Boats
We offer a McKenzie Drift boat trip down the Chilko River about 22 km’s. This is a treat to fish in some of the faster water, find secret eddies and pools, and experience the beautiful lower end of Chilko River. Float tubes are a nice way to fight those bigger fish, this gives you the flexibility to stop at all the shelves and really work those drop-offs.
When fishing Chilko Lake we use a larger lake boat that typically carries at least four anglers at a time. You will fish off the banks of Chilko Lake using large streamers on sink-tip and full sinking lines on 6-7 weight rods. A day on the lake comes highly recommended and depending on weather conditions we will get you up there to experience a little bit of paradise.
Different Flies for Different Water
Because of the diversity of the water on Chilko River and as the river’s characteristics change as the season progresses, we fish in a variety of ways. In the early season (June) with higher flows and colder water temperatures we fish both dry flies and streamers. If the fish are slow to rise then the streamer fishing can be explosive with big Rainbows and Bull Trout smashing a well swung streamer pattern from either the jet boat or from a suitable wading shelf. Typical patterns used are Bunny Leaches, Wooly Buggers, crystal bugger motor-oil, Clouser Minnows, Zonkers and anything ugly with a lot of movement.
Predominantly, however, we fish dry flies (see fly guide), either on a dead drift from the jet boat or wading, searching out structure and drop offs where big Rainbows commonly hold. At Tsylos Park Lodge we pride ourselves in the certain knowledge that the consistent dry fly action for large, scrappy Rainbows is second to none.
Once the water temperature climbs into the low 50’s the river boasts massive Stonefly, Caddis, Mayfly and midge hatches. This brings big trout, in large numbers to the surface and you will undoubtedly be astounded by the quality, size and numbers of the fish caught.
Fishing large, visible dries is quite simply the most productive and enjoyable way to fish this river. Once the Sockeye, Chinook and Coho enter the system in late August/early September and begin to spawn you can witness massive Rainbows, both resident and lake-run, torpedoing furiously into the sides of the salmon in an attempt to dislodge their eggs. Egg patterns quickly become the norm although fish will still rise to a well presented dry fly.