Photos: Golden Stones on Canada Day in British Columbia

Written by: Dave Brown, Dave Brown Outfitters

Gorgeous westslope cutthroats continued to fall for golden-stonefly imitations all day.
Photos by Dave Brown

Every year, I make my way north from Arizona to British Columbia and Alberta, where I spend the bulk of the summer and fall on some very amazing rivers. On the way, there is an extended stop on Montana’s Missouri River, where I get my head back into the trout game. Then it’s up to Fernie, B.C., and the very scenic Elk River. Lisa Filigenzi (a.k.a. My Better Half) and I plan our annual trip for her to escape the desert heat and get some fishing in before our guide season seriously kicks in.

Lisa hooks up again. . .

This year, Lisa’s northern Rockies fly-fishing trip coincides with Canada Day (July 1st) and the golden stonefly hatch on the Elk River. The fun for us is spending some quality time together in a very scenic setting. As usual, the fish are a bonus.

. . .and another beautiful trout comes to hand.

Having been born and raised in  Arizona, Lisa knew little about fly fishing until we met. Since then, her fly fishing experiences have revolved around largemouth bass fishing at home  and her yearly trip north for trout. Lisa loves the connection to nature that a fly-rod provides, loves to cast, and has figured out the double haul on her own.

Drifitng a fly along the seam between fast and slow water produced this strike.

With drift boat in tow, we headed up The Elk River and took on a short float where we could spend some time out of the boat working buckets, runs, and holding water. With the golden stonefly hatch in full swing, Lisa was soon in the game. Armed with a 5-weight Recon fly rod, she was casting nicely and getting some excellent drifts while covering the bankside and midriver holding water. She was soon into some fat westslope cutthroats, which where all over her Chernobyl Ant.

The Chernobyl Ant drew strikes from big cutties.

Today we are moving upriver again, as we chase the hatch in hopes of a repeat performance.Of course, we will also reflect on the fact that we are very fortunate to spend time together floating British Columbia’s Elk River on this Canada Day.

For a desert girl, this annual trip is a real escape and a way to stretch her fly-fishing muscles.

Dave Brown operates Dave Brown Outfitters, offering guided fly-fishing trips in Alberta and British Columbia, as well as guided bird hunts in Saskatchewan and Arizona.

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