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May 30, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

Things are in full swing up here in Naden Harbour!

As is typical for May, we’ve had a mixed bag of weather; sunshine, overcast and torrential downpour, sometime all within the same hour. Winds have been fairly tame out of the south east this past week, and look to be getting stronger for the upcoming week.

Guests arrived last Friday, and Chinooks, mostly in the 8-15 pound range. Anglers have been enjoying success at Cape Naden, Cape Edenshaw, Bird Rock 2 and Yatze Bay, however the timing of the action has been hard to predict, so picking a spot and sticking it out has been the key to getting into fish. Both herring and anchovies have been producing fish, as well as smaller spoons and Kingcandy lures, at depths of 25 to 55 feet.

The pinnacles have been the favourite spot for anglers targeting “chicken” halibut, but some guests have been having success by fishing their regular salmon spots a little deeper, and getting their halibut “on the troll”. The weekend trip did see two Tyees on the board, one at 36.4lbs, so there’s always the chance of a big Chinook salmon out there! Tuesday we saw our first Pink salmon of the season, which means the Coho should be showing up soon!

Lead Guide, Liam Longacre


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May 17, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

Whether this will be your first visit to QCL, or your tenth, we know this time of year brings anticipation of a productive fishing and incredible memories.

Our Concierge team is working to connect with each group lead to ensure that your QCL Experience is planned to a tee. Let us worry about the details – arrive as you are and enjoy all the we have to offer.

As you await your trip, spend some time familiarizing yourself with common fishing terms and our Angler Orientation video. The below terms are frequently used on the boats and are a good starting point for those new to fishing to ensure you understand some of the basics upon arrival.

Right Rod to the Rock | When there are multiple boats fishing one particular point, we like to fish “right rod to the rock.” Meaning a boat that has its starboard side or has its right side of the boat closest to the shore, has the right of way to fish closest to the structure/kelp bed/shoreline. This helps to keep boat traffic moving smoothly while trolling and helps prevent boats and anglers from cutting each other off while trying to fish the inside pass.

Trolling | Trolling is a method of fishing where the boat is moving at various slower speeds while towing fishing lines. Most commonly to target salmon on our fishing grounds, your fishing lines can be attached to a downrigger or through the use of weighted rods in a style of fishing called mooching, to fish various depths.

Mooching | Mooching is a style of salmon fishing where lead weights, typically 4 to 10 oz’s., are attached to the fishing line, above the leader, to get the bait/hooks down to a desired depth. Mooching does not use downriggers and typically a cut plug herring is used as bait.

Back Rod | A back rod is used in the stern (back) of the boat as an additional or extra rod while trolling. Not attached to a downrigger, your backrod will have a banana weight or sliding weight attached to the fishing line above the leader. Commonly fished in the top 10 or 15 feet of the water column.

Jigging | A method of fishing used primarily for bottom fishing. A weighted lure, known as a jig, is dropped to the ocean floor , while attached to a fishing line, and is moved up and down by the angler using a fishing rod, to entice a bite.

Dummy Flasher / In-line Flasher | A flasher is a piece of fishing tackle used to attract salmon while trolling. A flasher can be used as a dummy flasher, where it’s attached to your downrigger line  or downrigger cannonball, using swivels and a few feet of thick monofilament or a flasher can also be used “in-line”, where the flasher is attached to one end of your fishing mainline and the other end attached to the leader line.

Pop the Clip | “Pop (or popping) the clip” refers to the motion of pulling your fishing line to release it out of the downrigger clip. There are a few methods to do this but the most common would be to reel your fishing line and rod tighter to the downrigger and while holding onto your fishing reel (to prevent line from spooling off of it), you lift the rod upwards to either set the hook on a fish or to bring in the line.

Let it go/Let it run/Hand off | Commonly said by QCL fishing guides, while their guest is playing a fish, these terms are used when a fish, most often a salmon, is trying to swim away from the angler and to prevent the line from breaking, one will take their reeling hand off of the reel, allowing the salmon to take line while still being hooked, which will tire the fish out. It should be noted that it is VERY important to still hold onto the fishing rod with your non reeling hand. “Let it go” does not mean let go of the rod.

Cut Plug | A presentation for salmon fishing using a herring as bait, where the head of the herring is cut off at certain angles, roughly 45 degrees and the ‘guts’ are removed. There are various ways to attach your hooks to a cut plug,  but the cut plug herring will imitate a wounded baitfish moving through the water.

Tyee | Tyee is most commonly a term for a Chinook salmon which weighs 30 pounds or more. Any guest at QCL who catches a Tyee, released or kept, rings the Tyee bell at the Bell Ringer, and later presented a celebratory pin.

As these are only a handful of the terms used when fishing, please let us know if there is anything else you want to learn! 

We’ll see you at the Dock!


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May 14, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

We’re only a few weeks away from another season of first class fishing! Which means that soon enough you’ll be bringing your catch home to enjoy while sharing stories of your time on the water.

Prepare your Halibut with this Signature Series recipe before your trip, or after. Our chef’s have crafted this to enjoy at any point of the year, with your favourite side dishes.

Materials

  • 4x 170g Halibut Fillets
  • 2g Garlic Powder
  • 2g Paprika
  • 4g Salt
  • 1g Ground Black Pepper
  • 30ml Neutral Cooking Oil
  • 225g Butter
  • 1x Medium Lemon, cut in half

Method

  1. Mix spices together and use to season halibut fillets
  2. In large saute pan place halibut fillets down and sear both sides until both are golden brown, cook 2-4 minutes on each side.
  3. Remove fish from pan once ready, add butter into the hot pan and melt.
  4. Simmer butter for 1-2 minutes and then add juice of lemon.
  5. Simmer sauce for 2-3 minutes while stirring often.
  6. Plate the fish alongside your preferred sides and drizzle lemon butter over top of the Halibut.
  7. Serve and enjoy!

Don’t worry if you’ve moved through your supply of QCL caught fish already, our Taste of B-Sea program runs year round. The finest quality fish and shellfish, these products are Ocean Wise and come from some of the most sustainable fisheries in the world using the most eco-friendly fishing methods.

To learn more and to place your order, contact us | 1-800-688-8959


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May 1, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

The 34th season of operation for QCL is swiftly approaching and soon the doors will be open, reels will be screaming and smiles will be plenty.

Every season we welcome guests from around the world for the fishing adventure of a lifetime. From opening day to closing, our guests are in constant awe of the thought and consideration that goes into their vacation. Beyond the rich waters, that offer some of the best fishing grounds in the world, QCL is known for incredible hospitality.

With May 24th just around the corner now, the months of working behind the scenes, both in our Richmond Office and on-site at the Lodge, will soon come to an end. Like every year, our team has been implementing your suggestions and bringing continued improvements to life.

We’re excited to share with you a few updates taking place at the Lodge – new boats, exciting programs (new and revised), and on-going upgrades to our infrastructure.

In 2023 we saw the addition of 10 boats to our fleet, and this year will see an additional 3! Partnering with Bridgeview, we have added to our premium vessel class with one 26” Cabin boat, and two 22” Centre Consoles.

As a testament to the high standard of client care and satisfaction that our guides provide on the water, this year will also see our largest guide team to date!

Without a doubt, one of the most exciting program additions this year is the introduction of our new Tyee Release Club! Designed to promote sustainable fishing by encouraging our guests to engage in salmon conservation, QCL will make a donation towards Salmon Enhancement for each Tyee released.

With our on-water program only a portion of your QCL Experience, the Lodge has seen updates across property.

Continuing to put an emphasis on sustainable choices across the whole property, don’t forget to pop your head into the Kingfisher Gallery or Pro Shop to see the new additions to our retail program. Our team has worked hard to partner with sustainable brands that continue to offer the best in the industry.

Now in the final push, Operations is in the midst of refinishing logs, replacing walkways, and updating finishings. Among these smaller projects, we have also seen completed larger projects – namely replacing the roof on the Main Lodge, and cosmetic changes to select guest rooms. Whether these changes are small or large, the Operations team works alongside the Hospitality team, ensuring guest rooms are well-appointed and comfortable after a full day of being on the water.

Although, these are only a handful of the noticeable updates happening at QCL this year there are plenty that we are anxiously awaiting to share. Together, we are certain that this season will be the best season yet.

With just under a month until Opening Day, we cannot wait until your helicopter lands.


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April 24, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

We strive to push the boundaries when it comes to the level of service we offer and are always looking at new, exciting ways to make the QCL Experience more memorable than the last.

Experiencing fishing first class extends beyond the water into our dining room, with dishes that will create memories all on their own.

Our Food and Beverage team has been hard at work, all off-season, preparing for opening day, May 2024. To those that will be joining us this summer, we have come up with various new offerings for you enjoy!

When it comes to beverages, our team definitely knows how to build a well-rounded menu! On the wine front, we have kept several guest favourites around, such as Austin Hope Cabernet Sauvignon, while updating with some new options like 1 Mill Road Pinot Noir Rose from Naramata, BC. Other than our wine list, we have also updated our QCL cocktail recipes as well as the addition of a couple new canned beverages for our guests to sip on their day on the water.

Not only can we curate an excellent bar list for our guests, but the team has been busy tasting, sourcing and planning exciting new dishes for our guests as well. A few notable items to look forward to would be our Boursin Stuffed Chicken Supreme that will be served in the Main Lodge Dining Room or our Chorizo Hash Bowl that will be available for breakfast in the Main Lodge. Also watch out for our new Après Pêche snacks, exclusively at the Bell Ringer, after your daily fishing adventure.

Remote dining like you’ve never experienced before!

We are thrilled to share this piece of your QCL Experience with you.

 


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April 13, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

We’re back with another Signatures Series recipe to wow your family or your guests. Our Back of House team has done an excellent job creating dishes that are easy to prepare and worth adding to your dinner lineup. This Ginger Soy Lingcod is a great addition to any plate.

Materials

  • Lingcod Fillets | 4 x 170g
  • Ginger Slices | x4
  • Cooking Oil | 60ml
  • Honey | 30ml
  • Shallot, finely minced | x1
  • Garlic clove, finely minced | x1
  • Soy Sauce | 125ml
  • Fresh cracked black pepper

Method

  1. In a wok, heat oil.
  2. Add ginger slices to the wok, lightly fry then discard.
  3. Place Lingcod in the same wok and sear for 5 minutes on each side. Remove the fish and keep warm.
  4. Add shallots and garlic to the same wok and saute slightly. Add honey and soy sauce and reduce until syrup. Pour over fish.
  5. Pour the sauce over the fish, paired with your choice of sides. Serve and enjoy!

Don’t worry if you’ve moved through your supply of QCL caught fish already, our Taste of B-Sea program runs year round. The finest quality fish and shellfish, these products are Ocean Wise and come from some of the most sustainable fisheries in the world using the most eco-friendly fishing methods.

To learn more and to place your order, contact us | 1-800-688-8959


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March 22, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

Last year, on World Water Day, we announced a new conservation initiative for 2023 – The Guest Water Bottle program.

Each guest was gifted a QCL water bottle for their use at the Lodge, and on the water, with the intention of reducing our plastic consumption. Paired with this was the addition of water bottle refill stations across the property. This program was developed, as most of ours are, by listening to our guests’ needs and suggestions.

There is no doubt that the creation of plastic bottles has a significant impact on our environment. With plenty of natural resources consumed, and pollution produced, we agreed that our consumption was out of balance with our values.

Proud to continue this initiative into 2024, we are excited to share with you the impact we saw in the 2023 season and adjustments we’ve made to better our conservation efforts this upcoming summer.

With 20oz bottle, our collective usage, by both guests and staff, saw a reduction in plastic bottles by over 65%!

Looking to better this number, we have increased the Guest Water Bottle size to 25oz. Additionally, you’ll notice that when on land, we no longer offer plastic bottles but rather will provide a glass or jug of water for your use.

We appreciate each of you in supporting our initiatives to better support the environment we all know and love.

We are looking forward to another exciting season of providing you continued excellence, known only as the QCL Experience.

 

 

 


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March 19, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

We specialize in special moments. In making memories last a lifetime.

The QCL Experience is a simple way of describing a feeling so unique that it’s nearly indescribable. Every guest is different and whether your trip is a celebration, annual tradition, bucket list or simply a new adventure, we understand that every guests’ idea of the perfect trip varies. From the moment you call our office, to your arrival at the Lodge and beyond, our team works to tailor make your QCL Experience.

Our team strives to deliver unmatched hospitality by helping create treasured memories, throughout the entirety of your stay. With programs carefully designed to take full advantage of the unrivaled fishing opportunities, highlight the local flavours, and offer peace away from the busy world, the promise of a first class fishing experience awaits.

We work diligently for 8 months of the year to prepare for each season. Taking into consideration guest comments, reviewing previous season programs, and working towards what will make your next stay unforgettable. As we approach Opening Day, our Concierge Team is connecting with group leads to provide an overview of Lodge services and opportunities. They are available to plan the finer details of your trip, from unique dining options and custom apparel to spa treatments and more. All before you arrive at the Lodge!

And when the time comes, and you’re finally at QCL, we strive to deliver a sense of awe. Tucked away amongst the old growth and a short boat ride from the rugged coastline and incredible fishing. A place where modern-day travelers can revel in a taste of wilderness adventure that is perfectly blended with our warm, attentive hospitality that is delivered by our QCL team. Sharing a passion for delivering your first class fishing trip in a remote paradise. Each member of our team brings a piece of your QCL Experience to life.

The QCL Experience, a simple way to describe that distinctive feeling you get when you think about your first class fishing trip; the recognizable sense of home upon your return. It is our passion to ensure each of our guests leave having experienced memories that you want to share for a lifetime.


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March 13, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

Our Back of House team has prepared another QCL Signatures Series dish for you to prepare at home! Whether you are enjoying with guests or family, this Chili Crab will enhance any dinner.

Materials

  • Dungeness Crab, broken down | 4
  • Shallots | 3
  • Ginger | 3-ince piece
  • Red Chilis | 3
  • Ketchup | 30ml
  • Shrimp Paste | 5ml
  • Cooking Oil | 30ml
  • Chicken Stock | 360ml
  • Rice Wine Vinegar | 30ml
  • Sweet Chili Sauce | 120g
  • Green Onion, chopped | 1
  • Butter | 50g
  • Soy Sauce | 30ml
  • Palm Sugar | 30ml

Method

  1. In a food processor, add shallots, ginger, red chillies, garlic, ketchup, and shrimp paste. Pulse until it combined, forming a paste.
  2. Heat oil in a wok over medium heat, add the chilli paste and cook for five minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the crab pieces into the wok and stir until they are fully coated. Allow the crab to absorb the flavours and colouring until it begins to turn red/orange in colour.
  4. Add the tomato puree, chicken stock, rice wine vinegar, sweet chilli sauce, soy sauce and palm sugar, then stir until combined. The crab should be fully orange by now. Place a lid on top, allowing the mixture to simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. Remove the crab legs and head, plating on a shallow dish.
  6. Add butter and green onion to the sauce and stir to combine.
  7. Pour the sauce on top of the plated crab, garnishing with cilantro.
  8. Serve and enjoy!

Don’t worry if you’ve moved through your supply of QCL caught fish already, our Taste of B-Sea program runs year round. The finest quality fish and shellfish, these products are Ocean Wise and come from some of the most sustainable fisheries in the world using the most eco-friendly fishing methods.

To learn more and to place your order, contact us | 1-800-688-8959


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February 26, 2024 Tayler Fuerst0

QCL is a paradise for anglers however, there is so much more to QCL than what is underwater. The next time you’re at the Lodge take a moment to look beyond the tides and take in the unique beauty Haida Gwaii offers above water.

A secret known only to those who are looking for it, the area is home to incredible bird-watching opportunities. With unique species hiding amongst the forest’s edge, shorelines, rugged coastlines and diving down below the tides.

A few of our favourites to keep a lookout for are:

  1. Eagle

Holding a special place here in Haida Gwaii, the Eagle is one of the most recognizable soaring through the sky and hanging out at low tide.

Powerful and beautiful birds of prey, you’ll find upon reaching maturity these birds are dark brown with a white head and tail. Featuring a beak, feet and irises that are all yellow in colour, with highly developed talons to pierce their prey. Known as opportunistic feeders, these birds can be found wherever they can find something to eat – Whether that is along the shoreline or diving into bait balls.

 

  1. Raven

Also, culturally significant to the Haida people, the Common Raven is an all-black passerine bird that has co-existed with humans for thousands of years. This species is among the smartest animals in the world and is highly regarded among mythology.

The Ravens found in Haida Gwaii are some of the biggest globally, due to the colder weather.  The iridescent plumage and dark brown irises that they feature are among a few of the distinguishable features. Look for these birds in trees along the coastline while out on the water.

 

  1. Red-Breasted Sapsucker

Don’t let the name deceive you, this beautiful bird is a part of the Woodpecker species that regularly drill holes in bark to find food. Your best bet at sneaking a peek at the vibrant red head and breast is to head into the lush, old growth forest. Most often spotted near ground level, you’ll see them feeding on insects tucked away into the bark of Spruce and Hemlock trees.

 

  1. Varied Thrush

A beautiful songbird that features a large, rounded head and a straight bill, and will most often be found amongst the trees. The male thrushes are dark blue-gray and rich burnt-orange with a soot black breastband and an orange line over their eyes., while females feature the same, but muted colouring. These beautifully coloured birds are mixed among the humid evergreens along the Pacific Coast.

 

  1. Black Turnstone

A small and short shorebird, the Black Turnstone can be found along the rocky outcrops forming our little piece of fishing paradise. Identified by the dark black and brown colouring with a white belly and bold patterns only visible in flight, the mature adult’s individual white stripes on each wing, with a mostly white tail.

 

  1. Rhinoceros Auklet

A favourite at QCL, so much so that we named one of our freight boats after it – the Auklet.

A seabird that is closely related to the puffin. Getting its name from the horned bill, this bird can be distinguished among the crowd through its cloudy gray colour, two white facial plumes and the thick orange-yellow bill.

An aquatic bird at heart, keep your eyes peeled while on the water as they are often in large flocks, swimming underwater as they chase prey.

 

  1. Tufted Puffin

Not as commonly seen but certainly a sight to behold if you do, the Tufted Puffin is one of two Pacific Puffin species. Sometimes called the Crested Puffin, this pelagic seabird is thriving with interesting facts – One of is that they nest mostly in deep burrows as it digs into cliff edges, they can get more than 1.5 meters deep.

Identify this bird by their long, pale yellow head plumes and intense red bill that offset the white face and black body. As they spend most of their lives on the open ocean, far from shore, Virago Sound is a perfect viewing spot.

 

  1. Black Oystercatcher

Camouflaged by their dark bodies, and only noticeable by their red orange bills and eyes, and pale pink feet, the Black Oystercatcher goes after marine organisms that are left unprotected when the shore is visible.

Another species with interesting facts – the Black Oystercatcher was first described as being “blood-footed” due to the pink colour of its feet.

 

9.  Harlequin Duck

Another beautifully coloured bird worth looking out for during your time on the fishing grounds is the Harlequin Duck, a small sea duck that boasts many names. With striking plumage, the males are easily identifiable boasting a slate blue body, a white facial crescent, spot chestnut crown patching/flanks and bold white strips. Females are brown with similar telltale facial markings as the male.

Like most ducks, they dive for aquatic invertebrates along the turbulent coastal waters. Keep a look out during the tide changes and wavy days as they favour white water.

 

10. Belted Kingfisher

Featured in our original logo, in 1991, the Belted Kingfisher holds a special place in not only our history but our hearts.

Blue-gray with a white band around the neck and under belly, the Kingfisher sports a large head with a shaggy crest. Females have a rusty band on their bellies, unlike the pure white and blue gray of males. Spending majority of their time perching along the edges of nearby water sources, these birds will hunt for small fish by hovering over the water and diving with their thick, pointed bill.

Around the Lodge, you can spot them when walking the trails and sometimes, they will perch amongst the trees on property. And if you look hard, you might even see a guest sporting a cap with the vintage logo.

These are only a few of the many birds that frequent Naden Harbour and Virago Sound. During your time at QCL, we encourage you to look beyond the tides, towards the skies to see how many you can identify.

Save this for reference and keep an eye out for what other adventures are yours for the taking while you experience fishing first class.