This place - Fly Fishing Forum
Pacific Northwest Sea Run Forum No such thing as rainbow trout, only landlocked steelhead

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Old 09-19-2002, 01:19 AM
Scott K Scott K is offline
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Vedder, Gold, Squamish
Posts: 216
This place

What is it about this place that attracts us?

It's the hellhole of all hellholes. Routed maybe in the history of Native folklore due to a slide in 1905 that was the responsible for some deathes. Or maybe in the history of the some of the first traintracks that transversed Canada from the East coast to the West coast. But otherwise it isn't a special place to the laypersons or tourists standards. Running through this village, is a Large River. Unattractive when compared to the likes of other rivers, but attractive in it's own right. A highway on one side of the River which cars seem to endlessly drive by you. Traintracks on one side of the river which humm, screech, and whistle, with the vibrations of the next locomotive carrying goods from who knows where accross BC, accross Canada.

This place is a meeting place. It is a meeting place for two rivers. One large river, and one small river.
It is a meeting place for frigid November morning air which your chap lips encounter as you leave your warm hotel en route to your destination a few 100 metres, or a few Km's drive away. It is a meeting for the whites of your eyes as you lay your fly line out on what seems to be a river that you can never cover to your satisfaction. The villages main social venue, a pub, serves as a meeting place for tradition which has survived for decades. It is a place to cap off the day with a beer, to recant memories of the olden days, and the days still to come, shoot some pool, and to warm up your hands which are still frost bitten from your long day on the river, even though you changed out of your waders an hour ago.

The pictures of Steelhead and this river's history line the hallway on your way to the bathroom. Somehow you can hold it another 15 minutes while you somehow know how to read the pictures, and the history, with your eyes but there are no words. Only Fish. People. Events. When you get into the bathroom eventually, you notice the writing on the bathroom walls. No, no profanity here. More like memories. You chuckle when you read things like "Sometimes it takes a Cowichan River Steelheader to show 'em how it's done," and then under that someone has written "Sometimes, but not very often."

This Rivers Steelhead have evolved into a symbol of what this river is. A Big Powerful River that seldom lets up in it's course towards the Pacific Ocean. And so it's Steelhead are the most powerful, most determined, and amongst the largest fish on the planet. Only in this village do they rest, for the river seems to slow down here. And so do you rest too in your uncomforatable bed at night waiting for just enough light to get up.

The likes of the most Hardcore Steelheaders have graced these waters. They still do every year. People who are legends. Somehow when fishing beside a graveyard, you feel as though you are haunted. But not by the ghosts of the people that lay in this graveyard, but by memories had. By the likes of Steelheading legends who have graced these waters. You somehow reason that the very place you are standing in has probably heard the sound of a screaming reel. And it has.

But these aren't just any kind of Steelheaders. These are the best of the best. Guys who can defy the 6 days for every fly caught Steelhead according to statistics. Words that come to mind: Perseverence. Character. Determination. Words that describe men (mostly) who defy the often very cold weather, the wind, the size of the river, the small numbers of fish, and the many other factors which make every Steelhead caught here the fish of a lifetime.

This is the birthplace of the true Steelheader.
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Old 09-19-2002, 02:13 PM
Jeff Jeff is offline
Active Member
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: North Umpqua and The Sky
Posts: 110
I hope you are happy now. My evening have been shot the last couple of nights reading about this place. Now I look at the picture of the fish I landed there that is on my work BB (whichi is the only fish picture I have up). Now the rest of my day is totally shot.

Thanks I needed that.

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Old 09-19-2002, 09:51 PM
flytyer flytyer is offline
Pullin' Thread
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: NW Washington
Posts: 3,346
Scott K,

Wonderful writing and description of a river I have come to love. If a person has not been there, he would not really understand what you are describingl. If on ehas been there, it makes you want to chuck work and go to this river. Ah, what sweet memories is conjurs. Thank you.
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Old 09-22-2002, 05:56 PM
Moonlight Moonlight is offline
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: North West
Posts: 884
I was there yesterday!!

Stopped of on my way home from the flooded North Country and witnessed a near brawl amongst over twenty native youths, must have been the full moon rising across from the Moutain where the land silde was.. Strangest thing was watching Laurie tune the sattelitte to a WWF SmackDown to get the brawl cooled down. I left and went to the nearest campsite for the Night. I do remember when that part of the scene was more tranquil.
The moon was beautiful reflecting off the waters of the mighty river as it surged on course through its canyon.
I had a campfire and watched the trains and Semi's snaking there way through the gorge and listened to the rivers heavy breathing as it had its way with the rocks.
I arose before daylight and found the Full Moon still hanging over the peaks of the western rim of the canyon. I drove down stream in the early morning light of moon and sun knowing that I will be back soon for yet another reason and time.
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