James, a friend, who happens among other activities, to own a small business making fishing tackle, right here in Sechelt. Sure Bet Tackle. He suggested that we try early spring fishing for trout in Klein Lake, a small lake in a regional park in Egmont.
I am not hard to convince for a day fishing, an old vise man said: ” A day fishing is an extra day in your total days on earth”. And he was right, it was a beautiful day and evening to come. About an hours drive from Sechelt, past Pender Harbour, towards Egmont, turn off at North Lake, and follow the good gravel road to the Klein Lake Park. No 4×4 needed, any car will make it. Some images.
About 20 campsites around the lake, all with camp toilets, concrete picnic tables, heavy steel fire pits, prepared tent sites, all this for $ 12. The site we picked had some evening sun, a long float into the lake, and a fair amount of firewood beside the pit. Perfect.
It was a race to get the rods and reels ready to get the first fish. I tried alternately a small fly rod with a small dry-fly, and a small spinning rod with four samples of Sure Bet Tackle tempting lures and spinners, all custom hand-made here in Sechelt. You can purhase the on the net by contacting Sure Bet Tackle. Here is just a sample, copying the minnows that are plentiful in the lake. Remember the fishing rules, use a pliers to pry away the barb on the hook, and even more important, get a new annual fishing licence, valid from April 1 st.
A duck greeted us, and a loon swam by, lots of other birds, squirrels, woodpeckers, a large owl, and on the way home, the first grouse I have seen in a long time. That sight made James’s day.
James was more relaxed about the whole adventure, but we had a competition going.
We lucked out. The reason said one old-timer, “the Lake was turning”.
“Completing the cycle, with spring warming the ice melts and cold surface waters warm until they reach the temperatures of the bottom waters, again producing a fairly uniform temperature distribution throughout the lake. When this occurs, winds blowing over the lake again set up a full circulation system, this mixing known as spring turnover. As the warming continues, the three water layers again become established, and our cycle has been completed. ”
I had not heard of this. The lake was muddy, spring run off caused old sediment to “turn over” I will be happy to try again when the lake is finished turning. Something was indeed happening, large old logs, were drifting around on a perfect quiet day, no wind, no currents.
“Most freshwater lakes have zones of temperature according to depth, known asstratification. Have you ever noticed how when you wade into a lake or dive down you encounter a layer of water that is much colder? This is stratification. Fresh water is densest, or heaviest, when it is 39 degrees Fahrenheit.
During late summer the air cools the surface water till it begins to sink, forcing lighter less dense and warmer water to the surface. If at some point all the water in the lake gets to 39 degrees, this temperature-induced mixing will stop, but wind can still force the water to mix.
This mixing action by wind and cooling is called turnover.
During spring, the process reverses itself. Ice melts at the surface. When ice is on the surface of a lake the coldest water is often just under the ice. As this water warms up and becomes the same density and temperature as the deeper water it takes very little wind energy to cause the water to mix, or turnover. As the surface water warms even more, it becomes less dense than the deeper water and forms a stratified layer. After this stratification forms it will remain stratified.”
With stratification in place in a “deep” lake, we can define three major layers within the lake.
- Epilimnion, an upper layer of circulating warm water, usually no more than 6 m (20 ft) deep, where dissolved oxygen concentrations are moderate to high.
- Thermocline, a layer of rapid temperature and oxygen decrease with depth, often quite thin, separating the upper and lower layers.
- Hypolimnion, a cold, deep-water, non-circulating layer in which oxygen is low or absent.
Do not expect good fishing during the lake turnover, it might be hard for a trout even to see your lure. After the turnover all the eggs of insect hatch, you will get a tremendous activity of insects, and the fish will bite,
match your flies to the hatching insect, and your spinners or lures to the local bait. Sure bet Tackle can help you to find the right ones.
These Lazer Minnows are true copy of the real minnows the fish feed on. Size on picture is approximately correct.
I had brought a tent, James rigged up a bed in the truck canopy. After a nice and warm evening camp fire, some good stories, and the right wine to go with that, I had picked white instead of red, my mistake, we turned in, to get a good night and an early morning start.
The dog at the neighbour campsite started barking at about 4 AM. Sounded to me like he held off a bear. My imagination lasted about an hour. You don’t sleep much with only a tentcloth between you and a black bear. I had a flashlight, even with red flashing light, may be that would scare him, or I could hit him on the nose with the flashlight, that would hurt, may be not stop a bear. I got some sleep from 5 to 7 AM.
Next time I will bring the bearspray, it works fine they say, at close range, like in a zippered tent opening. Bears are just looking for food, not peaceful sleeping people. We had the food in the pickup. First trip this year, and yes, it was nice.