July 23, 2017 Duane Foerter0

This past week the trend of calm seas continued, which made for an enjoyable week of fishing. So far this season we haven’t seen any particular spot out produce the rest, which has resulted in boats being distributed throughout the fishing grounds. On most days, the best successes often come by picking your favourite spot and sticking it out using the “stick, stay and make it pay” method of salmon fishing.

Much like last season, I have continued to spend many hours each day working the kelp beds around the waters of Cape Naden. This past week my guests and I chose to spend nearly our entire days working Naden, with the occasional break to do some bottom fishing. We all felt that it looked really “fishy” and at times we enjoyed some great Chinook fishing with the odd Coho in the mix. On Thursday afternoon we decided to mix it up and give Parker Point a try after lunch. Although there were a couple fish around at Parker, we decided it was only fitting to finish the trip back at Cape Naden. Upon returning to Naden we watched another boat hook up on a couple of fish, but not much was happening for us. With only a couple of passes left, my guest was telling a funny story as we were trolling past the kelp bed off the point. Out of the corner of my eye I saw the rod tip dip down and then yelled “fish, fish, fish!!”. My guest grabbed the rod, set the hook, and the battle was on! This was the fish we had been looking for at Naden all trip…a real sizzler! After a few lengthy runs we tired the fish out and finally managed to put this 38lb Tyee in the bag to conclude a week of fishing.

Back at the dock there were a couple of other Tyees that came in, with a 45lber being the largest of the day and of the trip. Let’s hope this trend continues and we continue to see some nice Chinook rolling through!

Until next time,

“Wacko Jacko”


July 21, 2017 Duane Foerter0

The Tyee Bell was ringing last night in celebration of a couple of the season’s largest catches.  We just love celebrating at the Bell Ringer!

Joe & Ruth H spent some quality time on the halibut grounds this week with their guide Jake Harach… and they made the most of it!  Ruth boated a perfect “over” at 51 pounds but Joe had to contend with some serious heavy lifting.  He got his 30-minute workout wrangling a massive fish that taped out to 71 inches in length for a calculated weight of 187 pounds.  A few quick photos alongside the boat and a measurement and then she was gone with a splash!  Eighteen cracks of the bell on Thursday night and presentation of a gold halibut pin capped a great week of fishing.

Ten-year-old Hayden B returned to the lodge this week with his Grandpa Sam and his Aunt & Uncle to share their annual fishing adventure.  Hayden was learning to use the single-action salmon gear that we use on the BC coast and he was making good progress, albeit with a few bruises and mixed success.  On Thursday morning their veteran guide “Rainman” Dan chose to “turn right” to fish the kelp beds past Cape Edenshaw and they hooked up with “a real good fish.”  It was Hayden’s time.

And he was up to the task – kept the tip up and didn’t lock up on the Islander!  Twenty minutes of tug-o-war and Dan slipped the net beneath a very sizable salmon.  Here was one excited young man!  Of course he was dying to know how big his fish was but managed to stay out all day.  When his turn at the scale came at the Bell Ringer last night there were lots of bets on the size of Hayden’s fish.  “Rainman” hoisted the big beauty onto the hook and covered the numbers while the scaled settled.  Seconds later he lifted his hand… 45-pounds was the weight!  Welcome to the Tyee Club Hayden!  That’s a marvelous catch and quite an achievement for a young angler.  Congratulations!  With a little boost from his guide he gave the Tyee Bell four good dings to a huge round of applause from the crowd, a moment that we’re sure he’ll remember for a very long time.


July 18, 2017 Duane Foerter0

Mixed fishing catch at QCLIt was another gorgeous day in Haida Gwaii as my guests and I drove out on flat calm waters to one of the spots that has been fishing really well known as “the Nursery”. As soon as we dropped in we noticed multiple boats around us had fish on. It didn’t take long before one of our rods doubled over… Fish On!  We kept busy for over an hour with a mix of Chinook and Coho pushing needlefish in just 50 feet of water. After playing lots of smaller Chinooks we finally hooked into a better one. Seeing it jump a few times right away, I knew this was a good fish and after a 10 minute fight it was in the boat. There was no doubt it was a heavy fish but wasn’t sure it was quite a Tyee. But when we returned to the dock my and got it on the scale, first-time guests were ecstatic when it went 30.0 lbs, a real Bell Ringer!

Big Coho at QCLWith lots of what we call “cookie cutter” Chinook and the odd bigger fish around it makes for a fun day. The offshore Coho fishing has been producing really well, with guides often trolling in from halibut fishing and getting limits of coho, with the odd spring mixed in too. It’s shaping up to be another awesome week!

Tight lines. Kashes Redfern




July 15, 2017 Duane Foerter0

Wow!  We’re at the halfway mark of the 2017 season!  Happy to say that it’s been a lot of fun.  Our crew has been awesome… their enthusiasm for their work and their winning attitude makes life up here a pleasure for our guests and for one another.  While they give up many of the comforts of the city for the summer they’re seizing many of the opportunities that come with a stay in the wilds of Haida Gwaii.  Here’s sending out a big mid-season Thank You to all of our staff who help us create wonderful memories for QCL guests every day!


July 11, 2017 Duane Foerter0

Today was a spectacular day to be fishing in Haida Gwaii, better known on the west coast as the “Mecca” of salmon fishing.  With a fresh push of fish entering the grounds, we knew we were in for a treat today!

With the anxious feeling to fill tags behind us, it was time to do some hog hunting!  Today we decided to fish tight to the structure of “Brown’s Pile”. The action was consistent for the better part of the day but unfortunately the size wasn’t there.  At the 11th hour we decided to troll down to the Mazzaredo Islands.  With time winding down on the final day of our fishing trip… Boom! We were onto a good one.

This big Chinook took a naked anchovy at 37 ft. The fight was heavy and lethargic, but the fish jumped multiple times in desperation to shake the hooks.  Fortunately, we were able to keep the pins in it long enough to get him in the bag. We had high hopes of releasing a fish of this caliber, but due to the hook placement he wasn’t going to make it.

Looks like he was coming back to the Bell Ringer with us after all!  This one turned out to be a 41-pounder, a great way to finish the day and an unforgettable trip at QCL.

Until next time, tight lines!

Ryan “Horseshoe” Winger


July 8, 2017 Duane Foerter0

Rolling over into July, we’ve been very happy to see strong numbers of mid-sized Chinooks showing up along the kelp beds this week.  They’re widespread, from Cape Edenshaw all the way to Green Point.  Through June we’ve done the bulk of our salmon “catching” a little offshore, along the 130-foot line.  Much of the current catch is coming from a little closer in, often from depths 18-28 feet.  The Tyee Bell has been ringin’ for sure.  Mark S boated a big 40-pounder at Cape Edenshaw with his guide Nick Mercer on Tuesday while Liam N released a barn door halibut that taped out to 104 pounds today.  Long time lodge guest Jim B also landed a 40-pound Tyee, fishing self-guided with his partners Andrew and Jay.  Veteran QCL guide Ryan Winger celebrated a career benchmark yesterday with his guests Greg and Chris.  Green Point turned out some big fish for these boys and they didn’t waste the opportunity.  Chris landed a pair of 31 pounders while Greg started with a 30 and capped it off with a stunning fish that tipped the scale at over 47 pounds!  As if that wasn’t enough, they spent a beautiful calm afternoon offshore and boated 35 and 31-pound halibut! That’s an amazing day of fishing by any standard!

We’ve been spoiled by light variable winds this week and the offshore grounds have been the perfect spot to hang out and jig up some halibut and lingcod.  Flatties in the 30-pound class have become pretty normal for us this year and QCL guests really appreciate the excellent GPS/Sounder units installed on every boat.

Between the offshore jigging and the inshore trolling we’re find increasing numbers of Coho spiced with the occasional Chum salmon.  These early Coho are generally in the 5-8 pound range and they provide a nice compliment to all the other tasty treats in the box!

The weekend is shaping up really well with light winds from the west and moderate tides. We have a full slate of guides on the water this weekend so expect to see some great catches on the books!  Will keep you posted!


July 3, 2017 Duane Foerter0

I wake up, rub my eyes, get dressed and crack a smile. It’s time to get ready to go fishing. What a time to be alive. The winds are manageable, the fish are running, and I’ve got a bucket of bait and nothing but time and opportunity. Game on, let’s get these lines in water.

On Day 1 the fish are not cooperating but we are having a great time. We have landed a few, missed a few, and lost a few. All in all, a pretty good start. Most importantly, I have gathered all of the information I need to make a plan for Day 2. There are tons of fish at Brown’s Pile. We’re going to slay ‘em tomorrow.

As Day 2 kicks off, I share the plan with the boys. I can’t even call them my guests at this point because they are such cool guys that at this point, we feel like a couple of old fishing buddies. We start out slow, waiting for the slack tide to hit to send the fish into a feeding frenzy.  Like turning on a switch, the tide slacks and the fishing lights up. We are hitting fish every 10 minutes and we even have a couple double headers.

After what seems like hours of fun but turns out to be about 90 minutes, things settle down and it’s time for me to reach into my bag of tricks to find us a big one. I decided to go with a big sexy 7-inch spoon. After only about 20 minutes, the rod tip buries 4 eyes into the water and the line is just screaming out. YEAH BABY!  Hooked up. It’s a big one.  After all of the gear is in the boat, we get on top of the fish and I can tell by the bend in the rod, it’s a big one. After about 20 minutes of circling and battling, this monster comes into sight.

Huh? Really? No way. It’s not a Chinook at all. I race for the harpoon and take aim.  Whack. Right between the eyes. Game over fish. I drag the monster over the side and the three of us marvel at the 38-pound Halibut that we’ve just hauled out of 60 feet of water on a spoon. Sometimes is better to be lucky than good.

You never know what you’ll get when you fish in the most amazing place on earth. By the end of the day we had kept 4 Chinook, 3 Coho, and 2 big halibut. The second of the 2 being 69 pounds. Just another day in the Gwaii. Living the dream.  Hope we see you soon.

Derek “Demo” Poitras


July 1, 2017 Duane Foerter0

With the strong northwest winds we had last week fishing has been a little scratchy. Today was another changeover and as all the guides waited on the dock to meet our newest guests the question is always where to fish today. It’s kind of a roll of the dice.

QCL fishing lodgeAs we left the harbour in One-O-Four, we were one of the last boats off the dock.  I placed my bets that the northwest winds had pushed a few fish over to our eastern fishing grounds.  Fishing up at Slab Rock we had a few missed hits but our first hookup was a double header. This is always a bit of a chaotic way to start a trip but for me it also is very positive. There’s fish there!  We landed both fish, a nice little Coho and a beautiful 19-pound Chinook.  As I watched some of the boats drift down wind I fought to stay in the spot we hooked up.  Staying on top of a pocket of fish is always key.  As the tide was flooding we worked hard to not lose the school.  In what sounded like a fairly spotty day on the grounds, we hooked roughly a dozen fish, kept three, and released a few smaller ones.  Also we saw two other really good fish landed.

It’s a great start to the trip and we’re looking forward to heading out tomorrow and getting into some more salmon and… going offshore to do some bottom fishing!

Tight lines!

Dan “Rainman”

Salmon fishing at QCL