The extended sockeye opening — and the fine weather — have brought hundreds of fishing fans to the banks of the Fraser

Sockeye run continues to attract anglers

Local RCMP will issue tickets for parking in restricted highway areas

Sockeye fishing enthusiasts had been blessed with 10 days of friendly weather — but it was pretty impressive to see the numbers who still came out, despite the guaranteed soaking they’d be getting during Monday’s deluge.

Fishing buddies Paul Niemi, John Coburn and Kit Larouche were carrying a few extra kilos of rainwater with them when they sloshed into the local Tim Hortons on Monday afternoon to warm up on soup and coffee.

They looked like drowned rats but they were invigorated by the good fortune they had just had at a local fishing bar. Niemi and Coburn have cabins at Sunshine Valley and Larouche came down from Kamloops for the fishing.

“We’ve been going at it since last Tuesday,” said Coburn. All three have gotten their daily limits of sockeye, and Coburn has landed four springs and Niemi one.

“I’ve never seen so many springs,” claimed Coburn, who has owned property at Sunshine for about ten years.

“I caught a pink today too,” added Niemi, who resides in Langley. “They put up a good fight, coming right out of the water. The fish are a nice silver colour this year… just like when they’re in the ocean.”

Though the water levels are unusually high for this time of year, the trio agreed that the flow is receding, opening up new areas for fishing.

“The water has really dropped since Saturday,” figured Larouche.

“Yeah, probably a foot a day,” guessed Niemi.

After Timmy’s, the friends headed down to Cheyenne Sports to pick up some gear and get a reel re-spooled.

Employee Rebecca McDonald said, “This morning, when we opened, it was just nuts. People were replacing the gear they lost over the weekend, the weights, hooks and line. The river’s a thief!”

For fishers expecting as easy a time as they had during last year’s phenomenal sockeye run, McDonald cautioned, “It’s not like last year, when everyone was catching them. You will have to put in your time.”

She acknowledged that springs were being caught as well, mostly on bottom-bouncing rigs intended for the sockeye.

“It’s hard to target the springs without bar fishing,” she explained.

Problem is, you can’t use a stationary bar rig where everyone else is sweeping the river with their Bouncing Betties.

The Rupert Street Bar has largely been ignored this year, as it’s easier to snag up a bottom bouncer there— but this makes it more viable for bar rigs. Cheyenne employee Eric Laaback said he saw a six foot sturgeon landed there on Sunday.

With the pink salmon now appearing — and a huge run expected — fishers will have another option to pursue.

“Pinks traditionally get busy at the end of August and the beginning of September,” said McDonald. “You can use a spinning rod or a fly rod, or drift a float with a jig. Anything pink on your hook is what they go after.”

The mouth of the Coquihalla is a popular spot for the pinks — and there’s plenty of legal parking there, unlike the parking that is happening on Highways 1 and 7. Westbound at exit 170 on Highway 1, there is a large sign that states parking is only allowed for emergencies. And that’s precisely where the parking begins.

“I guess that’s their emergency… to go fishing!” said Larouche with a laugh. He and his friends have been parking along Tom Berry Road.

Local RCMP officers are currently issuing written warnings to cars parked in restricted areas along the highway, but Staff Sgt. Suki Manj says that will change if the problem continues. The detachment has received reports from the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure about parking complaints. Manj said there are safety concerns for drivers as well fishers trying to access their vehicles on the highway.

“Any time there’s high speeds and vehicles involved, it’s a dangerous situation,” he added.

Just Posted

Young Hope man with autism wants understanding, end to taunts

Brayden Duplessis, Grace 10 student at Hope Secondary, shares his story

New welding equipment for Hope Secondary

More time on welders for Hope high school students, thanks to new gear

Hope teens headed to BC Winter Games

Julius Brysch, 14, and Danielle Bacon, 13, are in Kamloops this weekend

UPDATE: 10-20 cm of snow expected Friday in Lower Mainland

Snowfall warning in effect from North Shore mountains out to Hope

Parents cross over painting job on 6 Ave. crosswalks

Crosswalks, not painted since September, are a safety concern for two parents

VIDEO: Mixed bonspiel weekend at Hope Curling Club

The all-weekend tournament is the group’s final event of the season

The way government learn someone has died is getting a digital overhaul

Governments in Canada turned to private consultants 2 years ago to offer blueprint

Bobsleigh team misses Olympic medal finish

Canadian team finishes four-man event 0.84 seconds behind first place, 0.31 seconds from podium

B.C. Games: Athletes talk Team Canada at PyeongChang 2018

From Andi Naudie to Evan McEachran there’s an Olympian for every athlete to look up to

Snowboarders sliding into fresh territory at B.C. Games

Athletes hit the slopes for first appearance as an event at the B.C. Winter Games in Kamloops

Cariboo woman raises funds for Seizure Investigation Unit beds at VGH

VGH Foundation gets VCH approval to begin fundraising for SIU beds; local efforts are paying off

Looking back at the 1979 B.C. Games: Good memories, even better jackets

39 years later, Kamloops is hosting the Winter Games again, with some volunteers returning

OLYMPICS 101: Oldest and youngest Canadians to reach the podium

This year, Canada sent its most athletes in Winter Games history, here’s a look at record breakers

BCHL Today: Cowichan Caps play spoiler and Nanaimo wins 10th straight game

BCHL Today is a (near) daily look at what’s going on around the league and the junior A world.

Most Read