PLANNING A TRIP
The 2011 season is up and running full steam! Yes, on my home waters, the season starts late, salmon arrive early in June. Over the past few days salmon have moved up from the fjord and are starting to take up holding lies up and down the river.
The #8 pool
As always, once the word gets out that the river is hot, I start getting inquiries for last minute bookings. This weekend, I'm also sending out the info packages to friends as well as potential and confirmed clients. I always wonder if the packages I send are too detailed, then I think back to my preparations for last Christmas' Bonefish trip (Fly fishing Cuba Part 1 of 3)
Most of you fish regularly. We hit our home waters every chance we get. The preparation and planning is routine.
For newcomers (to Atlantic salmon fishing or simply fly fishing), the planning and preparation can be daunting. As a Guide, I prefer to make this activity as enjoyable and painless as possible. After all, getting ready for what could be your fishing trip of a lifetime should be fun!
Unfortunately, on Quebec salmon rivers, this can seem rather complicated. Well, it isn't. Up here, you only need three things: your fishing license (for Atlantic salmon), rod (access) fees and your gear.
One also needs a Provincial Atlantic Salmon licence. You can get this from the river association when you reserve or when you sign in. A C&R salmon license in Quebec is 37$ cdn for the year.
Simply put, in Quebec, salmon rivers are managed my local river associations. Anglers must pay daily access fees (rod fees). Your Guide or booking agent can also arrange all this for you. Rod fees on the Ste-Marguerite range from 45-65$ cdn per day.
On 99% of the rivers in Quebec, Guides are NOT mandatory, even for non-residents.
My home waters are the Ste-Marguerite River in Central Quebec. It is a small river compared to other salmon rivers in Eastern Canada. Most casts are easily under 80 feet and 40-60 being more the norm.
Pascal P on the #23
My work horse set up for salmon is an 8wt 10ft loaded with a WF floating line. I like to roll and switch cast a lot, thus the 10ft rod. A 9ft is just fine. A quality reel is helpful but not really essential as long as it can hold 200-300 yards of 20lb backing.
Flies for here range from #12 "nymph" type wet flies right up to #6 dries so a 10ft 12lb test leader with a stiff butt is recommended.
Stuff folks (may) forget:
Hat of ball cap;
Camera and extra batteries;
Polarized fishing glasses (we use brown or amber lenses);
Rain gear and warm clothes (it's chilly in the early morning and late in the evening);
Sun screen (we're on the river for 8-12 hours per day!);
If you're new to Atlantic salmon fishing or want to discover some new waters, look around on the on the Salmon Quebec Web site. There is a wealth of information and contact numbers there!
Tight Lines and screaming reels to you all!
Christopher Chin – Proulxville Quebec