News from Oscars in Smithers, British Columbia, Canada - part 5


Fishing Report, June 29, 2018


Get out your toques, poutine and maple syrup; it is the 151st celebration of Canada! And what better way to celebrate (or just enjoy a long weekend) than by getting out on some lakes and catching some fish! Whether you are camping, doing day trips or just enjoying the long weekend, make sure you stop by the new Smithers Brewing Co. for some great craft beers. The brewery is the perfect place to grab some beer for camping and or fishing expeditions or just to hang out. Whatever your enjoyment may be, please do it responsibly.

Here is a quick primer for some cool local spots where the bite is on.


Rainbow Alley is fishing decently. The weather going back and forth is creating a little bit of odd timing and the fish area responding similarly. However, stimulators in the afternoon on a floating line seem to be getting some play.

Duckbill Lake

Duckbill Lake is a smaller lake which is good for float tubes, canoes, kayaks and pontoons. This lake fishes best on the fly, but can use ultralight spinning tackle as well. This lake is stocked by the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC.  Here is the skinny:

  • Fish: Rainbow Trout
  • Max depth 10m (34 ft), mean depth 4m (13 ft), surface area 10ha (25 ac)

Ultralight Gear:

  • Mepps, Panther Martin, Vibrax or Gibbs spinner
  • Vertical jig with spoons or power baits around shelf structures

Fly Fishing Gear:

  • Scuds and chironomids in the early part of the year.
  • Caddisfly and dragonfly hatches should be happening now or soon which turns the feed on for the rainbows with fervor.

Access: 8km from Moricetown turn off Highway 16 onto the Telkwa High Road. After 500m on the Telkwa High turn left onto the 2000 Forest Service Road and travel about 4km. After about 4km turn right onto a narrow unmaintained road for about 2km. The road gets soft after this distance and is recommended to either walk the 400m to the lake or use an ATV.  Duckwing Lake is also accessible from here.

Ross Lake

Great family lake for a day trip or paddle on the lake. Ross Lake has multiple facilities including picnic area, washrooms, boat launch and hiking trail around the lake. This lake only allows electric motors or non-motorized boats.  This lake is stocked by the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC.  Here is the skinny:

  • Fish: Rainbow Trout and Brook Trout
  • Max depth 8m (27 ft), mean depth 4m (13 ft), surface area 33ha (82 ac)
  • Fish brook trout around shoreline, near cover on cooler days. On warmer days the fish will go deeper.
  • Rainbow trout are more aggressive and cruse the lake all day long. On warmer days they will also go down deeper where vertical jigging with light spoons can be very successful.

Ultralight Gear:

  • Wedding bands tipped with worms or powerbait.
  • Spinners and spoons work in a dead drift or sink pattern. Allow the spoon to fully sink with a slow retrieve around shelf drop-offs.

Fly Fishing Gear:

  • Standard affair of mayfly, caddis nymphs, woolly buggers, damsels, dragons, micro leeches and shrimp patterns. Match the hatch for best seasonal success.
  • Tip: When using leeches, try to stay closer to the shoreline. Leeches are most active in the early morning or dusk/sunset. They are best used to explore a lake.

Access: 4km south of New Hazelton, turn left off Highway 16 onto Ross Lake Road. Follow the road 4km until you enter the park. There are two parking lots and access to the lake.

Round Lake

Easy access to this lake just south of Telkwa. There is a small boat launch and a community centre where you can park, picnic and enjoy the view. This lake is stocked by the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC. Here is the skinny:

  • Fish: Cutthroat Trout, Northern Pike Minnow
  • Max depth 20m (67 ft), mean depth 10m (32ft), surface area 193ha (477 ac)
  • Best way to fish is being patient, aka still-fishing, either on spinning gear or the fly with sinking line.

Ultralight Gear:

  • Small spinners or spoons, Mepps, Krocodiles in a slow retrieve pattern.
  • Worm-and-bobber, wedding bands tipped with worms or powerbait.

Fly Fishing Gear:

  • Damsels, beadhead micro leeches, Woolly Buggers and minnow imitations. Match the hatch for best seasonal success.

Access: About 10km south of Telkwa, turn left off Highway 16 onto Round Lake East. Follow the road 4km until you reach the lake.

Irrigation (Dunalter) Lake

Just north of Houston, this lake is easily accessible with a dock, swimming beach and day-use picnic tables. Like Ross Lake, this is an electric motor only lake. This lake is stocked by the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC. Here is the skinny:

  • Fish: Cutthroat Trout, Rainbow Trout
  • Max depth 18m (59 ft), mean depth 6m (20 ft), surface area 22ha (56 ac)

Ultralight Gear:

  • Small spinners or spoons like Triple Teasers, Dick Nites and Needlefish patterns.
  • Trolling with torpedo bobbers can be very successful.

Fly Fishing Gear:

  • Trolling on a ’52 Buick, damsel, dragonfly, muddler minnow or beadhead leech is key.

Access: About 15km north of Houston, turn left off Highway 16 onto a dirt road with the Irrigation Lake sign. The lake will be about 300m off the road.



No report from Lee Mac this week (he will return with salty tips next week). However the waters are still fishing well off the coast. Remember to check the DFO regulations before going out on the water.



Even though we don’t want to rush the summer, just a friendly reminder that Steelhead season is just around the corner (a short two months away)! We live in prime Steelhead country with access to the Telkwa, Bulkley and Nass Tributaries just out our back door.

If you haven’t been Steelheading here in the Steelhead Paradise or are looking for a guided excursion, we can help with guided Steelhead trips on the Bulkley River and on five different Nass River Tributaries. We offer trips ranging from one day to weeklong holidays.

Please contact us at Oscar’s should you have any questions or to check on availability!