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July 11, 2019 Duane Foerter0

QCL salmon fishingMid-season fishing is living up to expectations with the arrival of plentiful Coho salmon offshore to augment the Chinook action we’ve enjoyed off the kelp beds.  Though we’re seeing some big ones up to 13 pounds, they’re averaging about 6½and we’re getting them from the surface down to 120 feet so it’s an adventure hunting for them!  Most anglers are seeing success on Chinooks in closer to shore in all the favourite spots.  Cape Naden has been productive, fishing shallow through the ebb tide, QCL guests have done very well there recently.  Likewise, the busy water in the rip between Klashwun Point and Shag Rock has turned out some really good Chinook action – with all the challenges that come with fishing a rip!  In the past week we’ve seen quite a few nice Tyees in the high 30’s and some in the low 40’s come to the boat.  These are such stunning fish and we’re especially happy when a guest elects to turn them back in hopes that they’ll return to their home streams.

QCL Halibut fishingHalibut fishing has been reliable as always with most anglers taking their limit home.  The regulation change for this season is going over very well –anglers can choose to take either – two fish under 90 cm length or one between 90 and 126 cm length.  That’s a maximum halibut size of roughly 55-pounds for those who like the big ones!  We’re still seeing a few of those 100 pound-plus giants alongside the boat this summer –loads of excitement whenever that happens!

Talk about exciting, how about doing battle with a sea lion over a 75-pound halibut!  That happened to Nancy & Tim L while they were fishing off the Little Peanut last weekend.  Nancy had hooked a pretty big halibut and almost had it to the boat.  They knew it was oversized and were prepared to release it when a sea lion grabbed it by the tail before they got it to the boat!  It was literally a tug of war with the sea lion pulling the halibut around by the tail and Nancy reeling away on its lips!  This went on for a few minutes; the halibut was too big for the sea lion to do his usual damage, especially with Nancy yanking it away every time he released his grip.  Unbelievably they eventually boated the halibut; it was quite alive and the teeth of the sea lion had not even penetrated the skin!  They had to release it but there was no way they were giving it back to the sea lion.  So they put the boat in gear and drove off a few hundred yards in hopes of eluding the hungry sea lion.  But he was right there with them.  Luckily the Fishmaster was close by so they recruited him to distract the sea lion and they were able to release it!  Great job you two! Hopefully the free-swimming halibut got away okay. Crazy stuff happens when you’re fishing!


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July 9, 2019 Duane Foerter0

QCL salmon fishingFishing with family is always fun. This past weekend I had the pleasure of guiding my father, Ross, and my great uncle, Pat. With flat calm water forecasted for the weekend we had only one thing on our mind, catching a Tyee.  We’d had a couple of good days on the water but before we knew it, Sunday morning came and although fishing had been productive, we still hadn’t found what we were looking for. We decided to head to my “office”, Yatze Bay. The water was flat, and a low fog hung in the trees; perfect weather for a hog.  We dropped in at slack tide and our rods were bouncing immediately. Over the next hour we released many mid-teen-sized Chinooks and put a beautiful 18 pounder in the box.

Celebrating a Tyee releaseEventually, the tide started to push, and there was a short lull in the fishing. But it didn’t last long, as we tacked along the kelp our inside rod popped off and started screaming out line. This was the fish we were looking for. A few hard runs later, it was in the net. We taped it out to 31 pounds, snapped a quick photo and quickly had it back in the water. Watching a Tyee swim away with strong strokes is always an incredible moment, but doing it with family was really something special.

 

Tight lines and tips up,

Liam


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July 4, 2019 Duane Foerter2

Tyee salmon at QCLWow!  July! Already?  Like they say…Time flies when you’re having fun!  Our 29thseason –the 20thunder the stewardship of Paul Clough –has pretty much been a banner one so far.  Fair weather (for the most part), a terrific staff assembled for the summer, shiny new boats and, oh yeah, great fishing!  Lots of baitfish inshore with the requisite numbers of salmon, Humpbacks and eagles to go with it, even a couple of sea lions around at times to add the “on safari”component to the QCL Experience!

This week we’re seeing a major bump in the Coho numbers, just a little offshore and throughout the water column from surface down to 120 feet.  June Coho were all around 5-8 pounds but now the 10-pounders are pretty common so that certainly spices up the fishing action between the tides!

QCL salmon fishingChinook fishing remains very solid throughout the grounds, all the way from Cape Edenshaw to Green Point.  Most anglers are able to successfully target their favourite spots. Light to moderate northwesterlies have been predominant this summer; that steady push keeping the bait in Virago Sound where we (and the salmon) like it. The new moon this week has the tidal range up to 15-feet so being in the right place at the right time is fairly critical for success.  That said, our guests leaving tomorrow will go home with lots of tasty filets to enjoy and share over the coming months!

 

QCL salmon fishingQCL salmon fishingC&R Tyee at QCL

 


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July 2, 2019 Duane Foerter0

QCL salmon fishingIt seems like just yesterday as we watched our new fleet of 8 boats make their way into the harbour and to the docks after weeks of anticipation. It has been amazing how many guests have told me they watched the video of the boats arrival. I wanted to provide you an update on how these boats are to fish out of.

Over the past 5 years I have been lucky enough to run all of our aluminum boats so as you can imagine it has been a great first month running one of these beautiful new ones!

QCL Salmon fishingBuilt by Bridgeview Marine, they feature Mercury SeaPro 300 HP engines, 2 Lowrance HDS 9 sounder units, a head up front and even a built-in urinal! Our 4 cabin boats come equipped with Shockwave seats which make any waves feel obsolete. No feature was missed in the design of these boats. They handle the waves beautifully and provide tons of room for fishing!

Seeing these incredible boats out on the grounds has really transformed our fleet  and brought QCL to the next level.

Next time you are on the dock stop by boat 86 and have a tour! The next 2 months couldn’t be more exciting and it’s a great sight to see these stunning boats out on the water every day!

Best Regards,

Ryan Kelly
Lead Guide


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June 29, 2019 Duane Foerter0

Hey everyone it’s Kraig “Konezone” Coulter here up in the Charlottes at QCL with a fishing update.  The bottom fishing has been very consistent for the great tasting Pacific Cod in the past week!  Of course there have been some nice-sized halibut released and some nice turkeys coming in to the dock as well.  As for the salmon there are good numbers of feeder Chinook offshore along with a few Coho. There are Tyees coming to the dock every day.  All in all fishing has been very consistent in the last week which indicates to me that July fishing up here is going to be dynamite.

Tight Lines everyone!

KoneZone.


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June 25, 2019 Duane Foerter0

It’s another beautiful June day in Haida Gwaii and guests David, Ariel and myself have formulated our game plan for the day. We’re headed to Bird Rock One excited to ‘stick and stay and make it pay’. As we run out to the fishing grounds the blue sky pokes its head through the clouds, weather is warm, drinks are cold and we’re excited. Dropping in on the west side of Bird One to fish the eddy forming in the bay we look around to see we are the only boat; however we are not quite alone as we are greeted by a big black bear combing the beach beside us. While watching the bear enjoy the beautiful beaches along the fishing grounds we drop our gear and begin trolling. First pass through and we hook into our first fish of the day, a nice 15 pound chinook! The boys get the gear back in the water quickly and we drop in for another pass. Shortly after working along we hook into our second fish of the day. This time we were able to land a nice and very scrappy 25 pounder! Spirits and excitement are even higher now as we drop in again to troll between Bird Rock One and Cape Naden. This time it takes a little longer but the fish hits and takes off running! After peeling 100 feet of line three separate times we are able to get this fish closer to the boat and get a look at it… and it’s a good one! Dave keeps his cool playing the fish as Ariel and I look at each other with excitement. After a long and well fought 10 minute battle, the fish is in the net and the Tyee beers are being cracked in celebration of this beautiful 32 pound Chinook!

As the tide begins to slack off we decide to go out halibut fishing and head off shore. After some hard work jigging at a few hundred feet the boys land two nice halibut and it’s off to the Driftwood for lunch. They’d worked up quite the appetite! Once refuelled and recharged we head out hunting for that last chinook. Working along the face of Parker Point we are able to get a couple bites but nothing stuck right away. However, we resort back to our stick and stay plan and after an hour land our fourth and final Chinook.  Next stop was back to the Bell Ringer to celebrate another great day out on the water full of many laughs and some great fish! While there’s no such thing as a bad day out on the waters of Haida Gwaii, this one was definitely a day to remember!

Tight lines,

Dayna

QCL salmon fishing


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June 21, 2019 Duane Foerter0

Barn Door Halibut at QCLAs we roll into the weekend fishing trip we’re happy to report that all is well in the Gwaii!  The usual mixed bag of weather has given QCL guests plenty of opportunities to explore the fishing grounds and discover all that they offer.  The Chinook numbers are growing steadily with a continuous variety of sizes and strains. Most guests are getting 3 or 4 to go home with and the average size is running in the high teens these days –perfect filets for those 1-pound chunks!  The Tyee bell is still ringing every night, celebrating those larger salmon, halibut and lingcod catches.  We saw a couple more 40-pounders this week and several in the mid-thirties.  It’s been nice to see some hefty lingcod on the dock these past few days with some keen jigging-anglers working around the pinnacles, pulling up tasty fish in the mid to high twenties. Halibut action saw an uptick this past trip as well with 5 fish measuring out to more than 100 pounds.

The BIG story however is the proverbial “barn door” halibut pulled up by California angler David Machinski, fishing with veteran guide Ryan “R”Kelly.  This one taped out to 81 inches in length for a calculated weight of 291 pounds!  That’s a lot of work but the view when she comes to the top is amazing!  Fortunately David managed to find a 32-pound keeper later on the next day!  Well done boys!

QCL salmon fishingThe 17thAnnual Kingfisher Derby wrapped up on Sunday with $100,000 in prize money up for grabs.  With all the Tyees we’ve seen this month we knew it would shape up to be a great derby and they didn’t disappoint.  In the end the $50K first prize for largest Chinook salmon released went to Randy Rognlin (again!) for his 35.42 scoring Tyee. Following closely to claim 2ndprize was Jordan Smith with a 32.92 and 3rdwent to Dmitri Brunislav for a 32.72.  So so close!  Congratulations guys and a big Thank You to everyone who came up to participate!  This derby is always a highlight of our season.


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June 18, 2019 Duane Foerter0

One of the special privileges of being a guide is having the opportunity to be a part of some truly unforgettable moments on the water, creating memories that last a lifetime. Last Sunday morning, Father’s Day, Grady White 107 was cutting its way through the glassy ocean with myself and 3 generations of family, a classic father, son and grandfather fishing team.

Anticipation was high as we dropped in at Klashwun Point, low slack was approaching and there was hardly another boat in sight. As we began working the formidable structure of Big Point, reminiscent of an ancient ruined castle, we were treated to a show of humpbacks breaching and eagles dive bombing boiling balls of needlefish. The only thing missing were the salmon! After hours of fishing with only one feeder sized chinook landed and released, the current soon pushed all the baitfish out past the point. Our high hopes faded and we decided it was time to make a move.

Father's Day Fishing at QCLAfter the boys had a burger break on the MV Driftwood, we decided to roll the dice and cruise across Virago Sound to Cape Edenshaw. We set up in Piggy’s Bay and I only had time to put in one rod when it suddenly lurched violently. Fish On! After boating a beautiful 20 pounder, we set up again and quickly hit a double header. Looks like we found the spot! Pure pandemonium ensued over the next several hours, with beautiful, hard fighting Chinooks refusing to leave us alone. The highlight fish was a serious reel-melter that later weighed in at 29.4 pounds- a true “Tryee”! I for one can’t think of a better way to spend quality time with family and friends than experiencing this one-of-a-kind fishery in such a beautiful and remote corner of the world.  It’s my privilege to be able to introduce people to the amazing migratory salmon of Haida Gwaii every day – it’s a dream come true.

Rockfish Ron


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June 11, 2019 Duane Foerter0

The winter season is often spent pre-planning tactics, tying leaders, and thinking of the memories that previous season have left imprinted within my memory. Now that the season is well underway these preparations have become invaluable. Leaders are used on a daily basis and I am eager to run the newest spoons, flashers, and hoochies that I have purchased.

QCL salmon fishingThe new moon has brought large tides to Area One and with these tides Chinook salmon have arrived as well. Numerous 40 pounders have already been hooked by keen anglers fishing the coastline of Graham Island. The Tyee bell has been sounding on a regular basis each night and the June fishing this year has started to remind me of the old days. Cape Naden has been my favorite point to fish this year. Tidal rips will form along this point bringing in baitfish and packs of Chinooks to follow. I have experienced sizzling lines still in the rod holder and can say that these fish are hard fighting and hungry. My excitement is growing each morning to get out onto the water and see what the 011 can produce. Haida Gwaii is known as the land of plenty and the start of this year is proving this to be true. I look forward to seeing familiar faces walking down the dock this summer and making dreams become reality.

Luke “Skywalker” Wagner, Lead Guide


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June 10, 2019 Duane Foerter0

It’s amazing that they can predict weather a week in advance and when the day comes, it actually happens exactly as promised!  That brief 6-hour burst of southeasterly wind that sent us to the shelter of Cape Edenshaw yesterday was bang on the money.  It didn’t blow quite so hard as we’d feared but it blew.  All is well.

Tyee Chinook releasedGuests on our third trip of the season were treated to beautiful days on Friday and Saturday and they sure made the most of it! Greasy flat water, skies just sunny enough and hungry fish everywhere.  We’re starting to see the salmon species mix coming –we saw only Chinooks last week but now we’re getting some Coho, Chum and Pink salmon as well.  The Tyee count continues with a 31 for Richard M, and a 34 pounder for Chris M on Friday.

Chinook salmon fishingRobert N caught and released our third 40+ Chinook while fishing with guide Tristan O’Brian at Yatze, taping the big beauty out to 42 pounds!  Way to go Robert!  Nice to see those amazing big Chinooks swim away from the boat!  Five more Tyees on Saturday included yet another giant released! QCL guide Kylie Tokairin was working the legendary structure of east bay Parker Point when her guest Andrew M set the hook on a solid fish.  Twenty thrill-filled minutes later Kylie was releasing a gorgeous big Chinook that they’d just taped out to 44 pounds!  That makes four over forty in the first eight days of the season!  Sure is nice to see!  Congratulations to all involved and we’ll hope these big spawners find their way safely back to their home streams this summer!

QCL salmon fishing


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