06 September 2011


AHHHHH, the heat continues, water levels are low and the trout are finicky!! Lots of new patterns in the shop for those troublesome fish! Few stones sighted again, crow and oldman systems. Watch out for bears on the mid-upper crow..Winston is for rent, great bear dog!and not a bad guide.Yep it's B.W.O.time again!!all the best ,Susan crowsnest cafe and flyshop

05 August 2011


Hey all! We are in the middle of a heat wave down in crowsnest pass! While we all have been loving it on the river, in the cafe it has created for some long hot days! Thank god they have kokanee on tap during happy hour down the road haha!

The heat has done good things for the fishing after such a cold spring. The Crow, Oldman, and Castle have all dropped to normal summer time levels. Cold nights and hot days have made the fish very willing and the insects have started popping like crazy!

The usual suspect mayflies have turned up, caddis have been more numerous on a daily basis, and the stones are still kicking around. All in all providing a great smorgasbord of food for the trout! Pop into the shop for advice on specific bugs and pick up some of our new patterns at a good new price!
I am seeing more and more little hoppers bumming around on the banks, and the odd big guy too! Keep those fingers crossed for hoppers by the end of the month!

On a conservation note, there was a major bust on the Livingstone river in the last week. Apparently a very major number of trout were poached, luckily our Streamwatch Conservation officer busted the poachers and many tickets where handed out.
Keep those eyes open for poachers out there, report any illegal or suspicious behavior by calling 1-800-642-3800

That's all for now folks! Happy fishing out there I'm off to the river!

Cheers! John

07 July 2011

Oldman/Crowsnest rivers

Just a quick note to say the Oldman/Livingstone is fishing really well,most spots are crossable and fish are grabbin' up the dry flies!! Water viz is clear...Crow is almost at normal levels, running clean and the big boys are snappin' up the dry flies too. Lots of new patterns in the shop..open 8-5 everyday tight lines, Susan

25 June 2011


Waters are dropping fairly rapidly,upper oldman system fishing good..same as upper Castle..no bugs yet, except Al saw some Salmon flies when the mid-day heat stopped in...more sunshine..more bugs!!!Susan

17 June 2011

Opening Day Report

The cool weather has the rivers dropping and clearing up .. the Crowsnest had a few feet of clarity yesterday .. Our young guide John Bransfield has returned from New Zealand .. After closing the flyshop we went for a few hours of fishing on the Crows Nest River .. both with out a camera , so no picture of my first fish of the new season which was a beautiful 21 - 22 inch brown fat and an easy 4lbs .. caught on a salmonfly dry fly pattern off the shelf at our shop ..although the water temps are cold 40 - 50*F the sun is bound to shine and bring out some stones and salmon flies ..with this cool weather all I have seen is midges ,caddis and PMD,s this week ...fish were caught in the Oldman and Castle river drainages yesterday according to our scouts ..seek and ye shall find , brother.. Gotta go Al B.

31 May 2011


A rewarding morning on summit lake just on the B.C. side of the Pass...the trout truck pulled up with a cargo of 3,200 rainbows. Gerards and Fraser valley rainbows were stocked,size from 7-8"- 16"up to 2 lbs. A little volley ball game broke out between a newly formed school of 12"er's determined to bounce my fat albert around....just curious to see what they might do..hooked and landed another nice brookie...really good to see ,Susan

25 May 2011

Yes Summit lake has been hit hard by winter kill...see Al's last post,...but after seeing a fair number of sizable rises the other day Gary and I decided to check it out.8 degrees,strong east wind, choppy...Gary had some good hits, and I managed to land this nice 16" Brook trout....judging by the # of rising fish I'd say there's lots more action to be had at summit. Susan

20 May 2011

May long weekend fishing report /Summit lake

Well it,s going to be a typical cool May long weekend . no snow is forcasted .. The cool weather is keeping the river levels down and the Crowsnest River is fishable by my standards just don,t plan on wading into it , unless you know exactly what you are stepping into .. expect 1-2 foot visability and possibly some dry fly but definatly nymphing .. Oldman is running mud coming from the mountains ,, the clear cutting up there has been brutal the last few years The Oldman bellow the dam is running over 100 cm/s ... Beaver mines Lake is still frozen .with 2-4 feet of snow at the camping area ... Lee lake is fishing good .. Beauvais has produced some good browns recently ,unfortunatly the ones I heard of got bonked ! bummer . The gov. only stocks a few hundred browns each year and thousands of rainbows ? Crowsnest Lake is free of ice / please release the big old lake trout .. they may be 50+ years old . Summit Lake B.C. which is 10 minutes west of our shop has had a huge winter kill with 1-2 thousand dead trout of all sizes floating around .. but there is still lots of fish rising , bugs permitting .. The deal here is that the water is totally GROSS ! .. It has two foot visability and brown , with stringy white entrails of trout floating about and an oil sheen on top( Fish oil ) I had to power wash the oil off my raft . DId I fail to mention it stinks also ! Check it out if you want to veiw bald eagles and bears .we saw a black bear come down to feed and reports of a grizz and 3 cubs at the outflow end .. We will let you know when there is a change in Summit lake conditions ... Gotta Go Al B.

13 May 2011

Friday Report

I managed to get out of the shop to test the Crow ... Well it is fairly high and brown and about 1 foot visability .. After more than a week of speyfishing , flinging a fly on a #5 weight is at first an odd experience ... as if you have nothing of any weight in your hand ... I had to check to see if I had accidently taken a #2 weight from the truck .. Any how , despite the muddy water trucking along , I did catch two rainbows in the first hour of the two hours I fished .. In the second spot I actually saw 4 rises and a 3 small mayflys looking like a small slate wing or possibly a blue wing olive . Well the nymphs came off immediately and a emerger was tied on and that was a mistake , and I was not to see a bug or rise again .... I have fished worse looking water , but the river will most surely rise some more ( also had a couple of adult Skwalla stones crawl on me ) .. Crowsnest lake is pretty much clear of ice with some ice sheets floating around (midges were about ) .. Summit lake has maybe 5 feet of open water around it and nobody has seen any winter killed trout, which seems to be the big worry . Young Kale reports seeing a mother Grizz and three cubs at the outflow end , Be Alert ... Lee lake is fishing good this week ... I would think Beauvis Lake is worth a look .. the Oldman is dirty and rockin ... Pike season is On .. Will be in the Kooteny,s tommorow having some fun scoutting out some Lake fishing ... Suzy will be in the shop at 8:00 , it is best not too bug her until 8:15 .. Gotta go Al B.

07 May 2011

May 7 Crowsnest Report

Suzy and I got back to Alberta to find winter is still hangin on .but just two days ago the creek that flows into the Crowsnest in front of our house started flowing above ground , prompting us to plug in the sump pump and load our fly boxes with bigger flies . We have seen blue wing olives and big midges . The little black stones are still around as spring is late .. Skwallas are expected on nice days along with the odd golden and salmon fly .. The Crow is not huge yet but dirty, expect 2 foot visability... The first Crowsnest grizzly bear was spoted about a month ago .. be aware . Lee Lake is open at the north end and could be fully open this weekend .. Summit Lake on the Border is Still FROZEN... Pike fishing is on ! Gotta GO ! Al B.

18 April 2011

Fish of the Day

April 15th ... winter just dosn,t want to leave ... three years ago I thought April was the best month of the year on the Crow .. two years ago .. not quite so hot .. and this year it,s been cold and alot of nymph fishing has been going on .. my dry fly only freinds have gone into deep depression .. me, I fish anything and everything .. Dave O and I went out in blizzard planing on a short fish ... it turned out to be beautiful, peacefull and big fluffy snow flakes added to the silence on the water .. Fish were caught , dogs swam... The snow was 4 inches deeper when Dave and I plodded back to the truck.. this is the longest coldest , whitest winter I have seen down south here in the Pass. If the weather stays the same count on little Black stones and midges ... Suzy and I are OUT of HERE ! ..West coast steelhead are calling us .. hope we get there before the blossoms fall off the fruit trees ..G##*&!!!-W*#!!&!!-M?!!-- Global Warming..the Crowsnest Cafe' and Fly Shop is CLOSED for the WEEK .... AL B.

15 April 2011

Too exhausted from snow shoveling to write...but now the slow melt is on,small black stones are out,(as well as a rare golden)the Crow remains low ,and clear.Yes spring is here. Still lots of snow in the mountains ,so we must hope for a long and consistent run-off....Skwallas should be on show on the Oldman soon...So don't forget to renew your licence and check out below highway 22 on the oldman...Crow is open for fishing from downstream of East Hillcrest bridge to the top of Lundbrek Falls,and downstream of highway 3. Lots of new patterns at the shop...all the best to everyone.Susan