Located in the greater Terrace region on the banks of the lower Skeena, Skeena River Lodge is a hardcore fly fishing operation dedicated to the pursuit of BC’s strongest sea-run steelhead and salmon. Head guide Jeroen Wohe, originally from Holland, is a highly skilled, passionate professional who has spent years fishing and guiding the waters of BC as well as the trophy Atlantic salmon rivers of Russia’s Kola peninsula.
His main lodge, located 15 minutes upstream of Terrace, caters to four to six anglers depending on the week and represents a great value for serious anglers. During September and October he runs four anglers at the main lodge focusing on the Copper, Skeena and Kalum as well as running four additional anglers out of the Nass Base Camp on the Bell Irving.
Location: Skeena River Lodge is located upstream of the town of Terrace near the Skeena River. Their remote camp is located considerably north of the Cassiar Highway on the Bell Irving, a tributary of the Nass.
Fishing Program: You will have long days fishing for the elusive steelhead and salmon with head guide, Jeroen Wohe, and his assistant guide, Derek Barber. They have many years of fly fishing experience and can provide you with spey/single handed casting instruction as well as share their knowledge about fly selection, sink tip usage, line control and presentation methods. They use both 14 ft Aire rafts and open jet boats to access water. All fishing is done while wading and all fish are released unharmed.
Seasons: In late March the spring run of steelhead start migrating up river entering the Kitimat and lower Skeena and countless remote coastal rivers. These areas are fished until the middle of May.
After the spring run steelhead, the mighty kings (Spring/Tyhee) start to migrate up river on their way to natural streams. These are big fish arriving with the high tides, fresh out of the ocean. They are the hardest fighting, toughest salmon and steelhead in the world. Generally the best time for summer steelhead is from the middle of June until the end of July.
When July starts all five species of Pacific salmon (king, chum, sockeye, pink and coho) are present in the rivers. There are countless rivers in the area to pursue any or all of these species.
Come August, the steelhead migration comes into full swing. In mid-September the Nass Base Camp will open. The Nass Base Camp program will be headed by veteran guide Derek Barber. Anglers will fish both the Bell Irving and the Meziadin rivers, typically alternating between the two.
Skeena River - The Skeena River is perhaps the most famous anadromous waterway in the world! All five species of Pacific salmon and the elusive steelhead migrate up the Skeena River on their way to their natal rivers to spawn. Most salmon and steelhead world records are made or broken in the Skeena River and its tributaries.
Beginning in March the spring run steelhead start to arrive on the way to their spawning grounds, followed by the early Chinooks. By June the Skeena is not suited to the fly fisher as high elevation snow melt causes the river to become turbid. But when the river drops in July and August it will be perfect to fly fish. At this time the river becomes a salmon and steelhead highway with literally millions of fish making their upstream migration. All 5 species of Pacific salmon are present in great numbers. Accompanying the salmon are large summer run steelhead destined for the Kispiox, Babine and Sustut Rivers as well as many other Skeena tributaries. They are aggressive to a fly, chrome and once hooked you will know it! Jumping cart wheeling and ripping hundreds of yards of backing.
Kitimat River - The Kitimat River is a favorite river because of its size, shape and geographic position. The highlight of the Kitimat is that it has an incredible spring steelhead run, followed by an impressive chinook, chum and pink run in the summer. A short but robust coho run follows.
From early April until the middle of May, the spring run steelhead begin their upriver migration to their spawning grounds. They spend an extra winter in the ocean feeding and preparing to head upriver in April to spawn and return to the Ocean as soon as possible. These fish are fat, chrome, strong and well conditioned. Once hooked they go ballistic! In the cold oxygen rich water they fight like no other. These are the strongest and hottest steelhead around.
When you are chasing the mighty chinook (spring/king) salmon you want to fish the Kitimat river in June or July. This is the time of the year the big boys are migrating upriver. They can be seduced with a well-presented fly. These big fish are chrome and covered in sea lice. Once you hook a fresh chrome chinook you understand why this is so addictive. They are the strongest salmon on the planet, and it will take all your skills to land one of these giants! A single mistake or flaw will result in breaking lines or rods and losing your fish. But once you land a Chinook, it is a real fish of a lifetime.
The chum (dog) salmon join the chinooks in mid-July. Chum are always coming in big numbers and are an underestimated game fish on the spey or fly rod. The chum is a very aggressive and powerful fish. You can expect multiple hooked fish daily. Don’t underestimate the chum! Every second year there is a massive pink (humpy) run in the Kitimat River. The salmon begin to enter the Kitimat in July. The pink salmon is the smallest of the five Pacific salmon species which allows you to gear down to a six weight and a dry fly. Catching pinks on such lightweight equipment is an absolute blast! The pink salmon is very aggressive and abundant. This will result in many hooked fish every day. This is a great opportunity for the novice angler to get familiar with the single-handed, or spey rod but is also exciting for the seasoned angler as well. The surface takes are very visual and exciting.
In August the coho (silver) salmon begin to arrive. They are the last ones in the Kitimat River and the run extends into September. The coho is a great salmon to catch on a fly. Swing it with the spey rod or retrieve it with a single handed rod, it doesn’t matter. When you have selected the right fly you are in for a great time.
Copper River - The Copper is a highly prized classified system that fishes well for steelhead from early August through late October. It is also one of the most famous dry fly systems. It is also a great king salmon river, especially in July. Most anglers will raft this system.
Kalum River - The Kalum is a remarkable mid-sized river with a long steelhead and king salmon season. It is actually one the best year-round rivers in the province and it is typically fished by jet boat.
The Bell Irving River - The Bell Irving is a tributary of the Nass River. Anglers fish there from the middle of September until the end of October. There is little known about the Bell Irving. It is a remote and challenging river that is visited by very few anglers each year. Following a long drive from civilization, transportation in this rugged terrain is limited to good jet boats and helicopters. Although access is limited, this pristine environment holds a special race of steelhead that will make your fly fishing dreams come true!
Accommodations and Meals: Skeena River Lodge offers accommodations at two different sites:
Skeena River Lodge: This is a modest home-style lodge where guests enjoy simple double occupancy rooms with a bathroom shared between two rooms. Meals are served in the main dining room. Breakfasts are simple self-serve continental.
Nass Base Camp: The Nass Base Camp is a simple, no frills 1600 square foot cabin on the shore of Meziadin Lake. It has two double occupancy bedrooms as well as a loft in the event there is a snorer. Guests share one bathroom. The lodge has full-time cook and hearty meals will be served in the main dining room.
Day 1: Arrive at the lodge and settle in for the week.
Days 2-7: Six full days of guided fishing.
Day 8: Depart lodge in the morning.
2020 Rates: $4,000-$4,600 plus tax per person for a 7 night/6 day package
Included: Accommodations and meals at the lodge, guided fishing, transfers between Terrace airport and the lodge, BC taxes.
Not Included: Airfare to/from Terrace, staff and guide gratuities, alcohol, fishing licenses.
Species: All five species of Pacific salmon; summer, winter and spring steelhead
Capacity: 4-6 anglers
Map: Terrace, BC
Time: British Columbia time is the same as U.S. Pacific Time Zone.