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August 31, 2021 Duane Foerter0

Getting away and doing something fun and exciting (or relaxing) with friends and family this summer has been the biggest goal of most of our guests.  Seeing them leaving the helipad and having their first good look around is priceless… Off comes the mask, revealing a big smile, and the holiday has begun. (Not that we don’t still abide by the Covid rules – we have those too) But being in a beautiful, wild place with wide open spaces and abundant, fresh cool air is pretty exhilarating this summer!

So here we are at the end of August with the end in sight; the days are shorter – off the dock at 7 am just feels weird!  But we’re enjoying some really fine weather and exploring the fishing grounds in search of fish and wildlife and adventure.  Chinook salmon are still turning up inshore with opportunities to tackle a Tyee, ever-present off our favourite points. Fishing with her husband and their guide Jake off Bird Rock, Nadja M boated a nice 32-pounder on Wednesday as did Leesa A with her husband and their guide Tristan at Parker Point.  Anthony C landed a stunning 33-pounder on Tuesday and his wife Mimi followed suit with a 32 on Thursday, fishing with their guide Colten – quite an achievement!

Jaxon R turned eleven on Tuesday. We were thrilled that he celebrated here at QCL with his Dad, his Grandfather and his Great-Grandfather!  We are very fortunate to host family groups up here all the time – they’re a huge part of our guestlist every week.  But even for us, it’s rare to see four generations all in a boat together!  So the opportunity to get that photo to mark the occasion just couldn’t be missed!  Jaxon provided the key to putting it all together – catching a nice shiny Chinook salmon on his birthday and the moment was preserved!  We know you’ll remember it fondly Jaxon!

And late on Thursday, Marli J was still working the kelp beds off Yatze with her sister and her Dad, with guide DP at the helm.  A year ago, they had an epic encounter with a big salmon over at Cape Edenshaw and Marli was able to catch & release a beautiful Tyee.  You never expect these moments to repeat themselves but, sure enough, DP lured a big Chinook out of the kelp and it was Marli’s turn at the rod!  Her deft touch was still there and with some effort they managed to boat another Tyee Chinook together.  This one couldn’t be revived, as sometimes happens, but the group shared another momentous fishing experience that they’ll never forget. Whether you keep a fish, release it, or even lose it, there’s always a story that goes with it; to be shared (and maybe embellished!) with friends for years to come, and that’s one of the things we really like about fishing that never gets old!


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August 8, 2021 Duane Foerter0

With the morning light just starting to dawn, my guests and I decided to leave the dock as early as possible. But we weren’t alone and one quick boat steered towards our fishing spot of choice. Fortunately they changed their minds and we got there with the spot untouched. With a purple dawn barely broken and not a breath of wind disturbing the waters, a magic hour was upon us. Our lines not yet in the water, we knew the bite was going to be swift upon us. “First boat, first pass!” I said to my guests. The first salmon we hooked immediately but she slipped the hook after steaming sideways next to the boat. We reset our lines and although there was a wait, we boated two nice Chinook salmon! Streaks on the sonar, calm water and the laughter created by the odd salmon biting our gear set the tone for the day. Excited to capitalize on our time on the water, we took advantage of a to-go order on the lunch boat, the M.V. Driftwood. Loaded with hot burgers cold beverages on the boat, we fished the day away, enchanted by the surrounding trees, waves, and rocks offered by the northern coast of Graham Island. Don’t worry, we topped the day off with a sighting of orcas dipping and fishing their way eastbound along the coast.

– Logan Allen


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August 5, 2021 Duane Foerter0

Every angler has their favourite time to go fishing… “Anytime” is the answer for most!  But there are a lot of QCL guests who just love August.  Maybe it’s the warmer weather, the bigger Coho, the later starts… certainly there all kinds of reasons.  For this year, we’re now at the halfway point of our season, due to the late start on July 2nd, and we’re happy to report that everything is ticking along very nicely.

On the fishing front, we’re currently seeing a nice bump in the number of larger Chinooks, with the Tyee bell getting a workout each evening.  Big fish are especially celebrated and those over 40 pounds are revered.  On the weekend, self-guided guests Sasha and Brandi spent some quality time at Klashwun Point with a beautiful big Tyee that they taped out to 42 pounds before carefully sending it back on its homeward journey.  Nicely done you two!  Jeff F and his buds had a pretty fine day fishing with QCL guide Tristan O’Brian, with Jeff boating a chunky 46-pound halibut and releasing an awesome Chinook that scored 34 pounds.  We saw a couple of big chrome beauties on the dock this week with Tom S boating a handsome 47 lb. Tyee with guide Craig Wensel and Taylor H, fishing with his Grandad, caught the fish of a lifetime in a 43-pounder with guide Noah Crumb at the helm.

The light southerly winds have continued to provide easy and comfortable access to the offshore waters and every angler is getting lots of opportunity to get down for some nice halibut and lingcod.  We get reports of several big hali’s over 100-pounds hooked each week but most everyone is having a good time pulling up some nice keepers between 15 and 50 pounds.  Getting over the pinnacles to catch your first lingcod is generally an easy feat, while finding that spot again for a second one is the bigger challenge!  That’s why we call it fishing!

While we’ve been enjoying a lot of calm water over the past couple of weeks we are looking forward to a general shift to westerly winds for the coming days.  We find that southerlies tend to disperse the feed, and the fish, while west and northwesterlies bring everything back closer to shore and concentrates the salmon fishing noticeably.  We’ll soon see if that rings true in the early days of August!  Stay tuned!


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July 11, 2021 Duane Foerter0

July 3rd Report

And here we are!  So excited to be in Naden Harbour and be open for our 31st season!   With all the uncertainty of the past 15 months it certainly feels wonderful to open the doors and welcome our friends back the The Lodge.  We want to send out a huge wave of thanks and appreciation to our guests and friends who have demonstrated amazing support and patience throughout that time.  We know that this pandemic has been a shocking and sobering experience for many on so many levels.  But if people are now able to venture back out into the world to enjoy some of their favourite things, we feel very fortunate that so many want to get back up here!

With opening day as a moving target, our whole staff enjoyed the benefit of a full two-week training period!  But Wow!  What a great two weeks it was!  The level of excitement on Opening Day was off the charts as our first guests arrived and everyone fell into their roles so well.  And our guests?  They are just so thrilled to finally be here… we know it’s going to be an awesome season, already!

July 10th Report

One week in and I gotta say, it’s so great to be back!  We’ve had a few days of nice sunny weather and the usual northwesterlies that come with it, but the fishing has been on fire.  Through most of the past week we’ve been fishing the prime stretch of water from Klashwun Point down to Cape Naden.  But a lot of our guests love working the quiet water around Brown’s Pile down to the Mazzaredos.  Loaded with a healthy mix of Chinook and Coho, anglers have enjoyed terrific action inshore.  Average Chinooks right now are generally in the mid-teens, mixed with a good dose of 20-somethings and enough Tyees to keep everybody really interested every time the reel goes off!

Often in midsummer the Coho are feeding offshore but these days we’re finding lots of them in close, swimming with the Chinook.  And they’re feeding aggressively on both needlefish and herring in the middle of the water column.  Coho size has bumped up in the past couple of days and we’re seeing some 9 and 10-pounders, but the bulk of them are still 6 to 8…beautiful feisty fish all the same.

The NW winds settled back to light variable in the past 3 days, giving easy access to the rest of the fishing grounds.  Many of our guides love fishing Cape Edenshaw and they were not disappointed when they finally got over there this weekend.  The steady push of several days of westerlies tends to move a lot of bait in that direction and that brings in the salmon.  It’s a favourite place to hunt for the big ones!

But Bird 2 and Parker Point have been rewarding dedicated anglers with some great action and some spectacular fish.  We’ve welcomed our first new member of the 50-Pounder Club for 2021 already this week when Brian M brought a stunning fish to the boat that taped out to 56-pounds before it was carefully released from a cradle by guide Marcus M.  Ellen D and her husband Patrick teased a big beauty out of the kelp at Cape Naden on Tuesday that got everyone at the Bell Ringer super excited when it tipped the scale at 38-pounds.  Nice work!

Guide Marcus was at it again on Friday, with new guest Daniel N, who showed his fishing skills, reeling a big chrome beauty to the boat. It was quickly taped out to 44-pounds in the cradle before revival and release back to the wild. Congratulations all!  Wonderful fishing experiences and precious salmon filets add up to memories to savour for a lifetime.

Flat calm days like today are a treat for those who love to fish the deep water.  Off the north shore we find some spectacular underwater terrain that holds massive stocks of halibut and lingcod.  Anglers have done very well out there this week, bringing impressive catches back to the Bell Ringer.  Of course, every day there are some fish caught that are simply too big to bring back.  On the last trip, Craig A, fishing with Ray P out at HaliWood, pulled a huge halibut up alongside the boat that they were able to measure out to 74-inches in length for a weight score of 215 pounds!  Seth K released one at 128 lb., Chuck H and Sean G each measured giant “butts” out to 121 pounds!  Happily, they all managed to find some nice keepers in the 20-30 pound class.

This weekend, QCL anglers have been exploring the full breadth of the fishing grounds, enjoying perfect conditions on the water and catching some very nice fish to take home and share with friends and family.  They’ve been thrilled by the presence of several humpback whales feeding in the area, especially when they decide to launch themselves from the depths and breach the surface with a massive splash.  All these moments add up to create amazing stories that our guests go home with – to share with their friends.  It’s our privilege to play some small part in that and we all look forward to doing it again and again!


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February 24, 2020 Duane Foerter0

QCL Kingfisher DerbyThe QCL Kingfisher Derby has been annual tradition for many years. In fact, many of the participants have been fishing this derby for more than a decade!  The Kingfisher is a Catch & Release salmon derby that happens in mid-June – so that means Chinook salmon.  Fish guided or self-guided, weighted rods or downriggers; Go with what you know!  All entered fish are measured, scored, revived and carefully released by derby marshals.  Guides may not touch the rod.  It’s 3 exciting days of intense fishing effort, right down to the wire on the last day.  More than once the winner was netted in the final hours of the derby!  To spice up the competition a bit, there is one prize for largest killed salmon; often a strategic decision!  With an entry fee of $2000 per angler the top prize has ranged from $40K to over $60K.

QCL C&R This year’s event, our 18th Annual, is our biggest yet, with the richest prize pool ever!  It’s a highlight of the summer with over $100,000 up for grabs for anglers pursuing the largest Catch & Release salmon.  Top prize for the largest salmon released will be minimum $50,000 and there are prizes for runners up as well as daily catch.  It’s a party all weekend with special treatment from the food & beverage department as well!  Tons of fun!  At this time there are still a few spaces left so if you enjoy a little competition in your fishin’ you should give us a call today!

 


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December 24, 2019 Duane Foerter0
We Wish You a Merry Christmas! All of us at QCL in Haida Gwaii hope you enjoy wonderful days with loved ones over the Christmas holIday. Thank you for making so many great memories with us this year!  

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November 28, 2019 Duane Foerter1

Thanksgiving, whenever you celebrate, is absolutely the perfect time for reflection.  As we gather with friends and family to celebrate Thanksgiving it’s wonderful to share some of the stories and the memories of the year that is coming to an end.  And in reflection we’re reminded to be thankful for those memories.  Our lives are so rich and we often forget how very fortunate we are.  At QCL we feel that our guests and staff all have something very important in common… our experiences at the Lodge in Haida Gwaii and especially our stories.

We feel especially privileged to be able to share a few days with our Queen Charlotte Lodge family each summer.  Thank you all for allowing us that privilege.

For the past 29 years Queen Charlotte Lodge has helped to create those memories for adventure seekers of all generations.  Families and friends make up a large part of our guest list on virtually every trip of the summer.  With all that experience, we make it really easy for you to come visit!

As our American friends celebrate Thanksgiving this weekend, it’s the perfect time to start planning one of those escapes!  We still have some space available for next summer but people are talking and planning and select dates are filling up.  Explore around our website to learn more and feel free to give us a call to enquire.


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October 24, 2019 Duane Foerter0

QCL Moments is our new slideshow series featuring the many memorable experiences that QCL guests enjoy every summer.  It could be fishing, dining, wildlife or wild life!  It’s all about the QCL Experience – every day is a new day at the Lodge!  You never know what’s going to come your way.