Book Now for Best Dates in 2021
OCTOBER 2020 NEWSLETTER – BOOK NOW FOR SUMMER 2021
A Message from Lodge Owner/Operator Barbara Kelly …
As many of you know, we made the decision not to open the fishing lodge in 2020 due to the pandemic - everyone involved was very disappointed. However, we are very grateful to our guests who transferred their deposits & payments to the 2021 season & this has given us a 'head start' on the next summer.
It's never too early to make plans for an exciting fishing adventure to the Sportsman's Club. For some of you this has been an annual fishing trip for more than 30 years & we all certainly missed being up at the fishing lodge.
When you book now, you'll get the best choice of availability. Simply choose a date, we will send you an invoice, & all we need from you is a $1,000/trip deposit to reserve the space. The only thing left to is to plan your transportation from home to Vancouver & make hotel reservations.
Here are some hotels near the Vancouver International Airport which offer special rates to our guests
Contact us today & make your fishing dreams come true in the wide-open spaces of rugged & remote Rivers Inlet in Beautiful British Columbia.
Best Regards, Barbara Kelly.
www.riversinet.com 800-663-2644 firstname.lastname@example.org
A Message Lodge Managers Simon & Stephanie …
Not opening the Sportsman's Club for the 2020 season due to the pandemic, my wife Stephanie & I were happy to see this past summer come to close. After spending the past 35+ fishing seasons in Rivers Inlet, it was just odd to not be up at the lodge & out on the water during our July/August season. This “seasonal specific experience” is so ingrained in my subconscious that I constantly felt like I should be at the lodge making the wake-up calls with my bugle at 5:15 AM. I had no idea that my internal clock was so accurate or that I actually even had one? At least we got to see a whole bunch more of our 4 kids. The cooler temps & the cleansing rains that are typical of the Fall in the coastal rainforests of Pacific NW, have renewed our optimism & anticipation for the 2021 fishing season. Book your trip today during our July/August season to get our updated availability. After all, the expectation & planning of the trip is half the fun & it will be Summer 2021 before you know it! Tight Lines, Simon & Stephanie.
Hatchery History & Report - October 2020
By all reports, fishing for Chinook/King salmon in Rivers Inlet this past summer was the best anyone has seen in many years. There was even a report of a 105lb. Rivers Inlet monster caught! Fishing biology is an inexact science at best but we have to think that this has something to do with our private hatchery at the head of Rivers Inlet. Salmon hatcheries have been around since the late 1800’s in Washington State. The goal was to provide salmon for harvest, mostly commercial back in the day & to compensate for fish losses caused by human activities such as the destruction of fish habitat & the construction of dams. This has been done by the multitude of fish hatcheries that dot the West Coast to this day to great success.
We have had a long history of salmon enhancement in Rivers Inlet. Over 35 years ago we decided that we needed to take things into our own hands & enhance the salmon runs in our area using our own initiative. We formed an association of lodges on the central B.C. coast with the sole purpose of using our own resources to start a private hatchery program. The Rivers Inlet North Coast Salmon Enhancement Association (RINCSEA) was formed. We worked in conjunction with the Department of Fisheries & Oceans (DFO) & First Nations to enhance the Chinook/King stocks in our watershed.
This was a complicated endeavor, off the grid in the middle of the wilderness, but as a “team” we were up for the challenge. Once we had all the equipment & crew in place, the first stage in the process involved the actual collection of the eggs & milk by fishing for the brood stock of salmon in the rivers. Our primary enhancement focus at the time was the early-season June/July Chinook run. These fish show up in the rivers at the head of Rivers Inlet in August so we would send a team up then to fish the banks of the river to catch these brood-stock fish. We would then hold them in perforated tubes in the river to keep them alive for a week or so. When we had the right number of “ripe” males & females we would extract the female eggs & mix them with the male milk & start the fertilization process. We would simply do this in a 5-gallon bucket as we tried to emulate a male clouding a females egg nest (a “Redd”) in the gravel of the riverbed.
This mix would then be incubated in our local hatchery facility. Through the fall & winter the embryos develop. In the spring the eggs hatch & the alevins emerge. We would then keep our fry in tanks for up to another year & then release them into the river. Here the conditions of their natal stream (scent, chemical cues & angle of sunlight) would be imprinted on the fish so that one-day they will return to spawn. Eventually environmental cues cause the fry to begin their migration downstream towards the ocean. At this time they become smolts, scales grow & they turn silver. Due to a variety of circumstances the hatchery in Rivers Inlet closed in the mid-90’s. With no proper hatchery facility we had to then shift our program north to an existing facility, the Snootli Hatchery near Bella Coola. After 2 years when the fry were ready for release we would fly them back to Rivers Inlet via seaplane in tanks for release.
Chinook salmon spend 4-8 years in the ocean before journeying back to their birth river to spawn & continue their lifecycle. These giant trophy Chinook salmon that define Rivers Inlet as a world class fishing destination tend to live for 5-7 years. This is part of the reason why they grow so BIG! After 30 + years of enhancing these runs & some great success (& a few trials & tribulations) & even an attempt at enhancing the wiley coho salmon, the RINCSEA group throttled back our efforts. Fast-forward to today, a new regime was formed between some local fishing lodges, DFO, RINCSEA as well as First Nations. The ultimate goal was to get a new hatchery facility built in Rivers Inlet. This happened in 2016 with the completion of the $1 million dollar Percy Walkus Hatchery
This year the hatchery is on track to release 200,000 smolts. Last spring at our annual RINCSEA meeting our board approved another annual donation to the Rivers Inlet hatchery program. We are excited to be part of this endeavor & look forward to sustaining salmon stocks for future generations to enjoy. If you would like to donate to this worthy cause please contact us. Salmon for the future!
Recipe - Simple Pan Seared Halibut
"I can't remember the last time I bought fish? I think it was some sushi grade albacore tuna a few years back. That was until this week when I saw fresh caught halibut for sale at the local grocery store which reminded me of my empty freezer from no fishing trips this summer. The good news is that at this time of year fresh halibut should be available to all our readers so get out there & get some! Here is a very plain & simple recipe that will showcase that wonderful fresh halibut flavour.
Be very aware that you need to monitor the cooking precisely. Seconds count & if you don't watch very closely & keep an keen eye on the time you, instead of perfect white flakes you could end up with “halibut jerky”!
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- juice from 1 large lemon
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 1 tbsp for the pan
- sea salt & black pepper, to taste
- 1 lb halibu
- 1 tbsp butter
- lemon slices, for serving
- 4 sprigs of parsley
- In a large, shallow dish, combine garlic, lemon juice, wine & olive oil.
- Use a sharp knife to cut halibut into 4 portions. Place portions into the dish with the marinade, turning to coat. Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes.
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large cast iron or non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.
- Remove halibut from the marinade & season with salt & pepper. Place in the hot pan & cook until a golden crust forms on the bottom of the fish, depending of the thickness of the fish usually 2-3 minutes. Try not to move the fish around the pan a lot until the crust forms to decrease sticking. Watch very closely & keep an eye on the time as seconds count here between perfect white flakes & “halibut jerky”!
- Flip fish & cook in the other side until it is opaque in the middle & only half/3/4 cooked depending on your preference.
- Add butter to the pan & let it melt & then spoon it over the top of the fish.
- Serve halibut with lemon slices & parsley.
Hi Barbara & Crew …
My trip to Rivers inlet was nothing less than exceptional. Every need was attended to by your staff with urgency & finesse. Being tops on my bucket list, I have been wanting to take a trip to Canada in your area for many years. Your lodge & staff delivered so much more than my overactive imagination could conjure up as the ultimate fishing trip. Thank you for building a top-notch sport fishing destination. I can’t wait to get back there again soon!
George W – San Antonio TX
HISTORY OF THE PACIFIC SALMON FOUNDATION
The Pacific Salmon Foundation (PSF) was established in 1987 as an independent, nongovernmental, charitable organization to protect, conserve & restore wild Pacific salmon populations in British Columbia. Today, the Foundation galvanizes the breadth of vested stakeholders to support Pacific salmon from stream to estuary to ocean.