Salmon fishing & fly tying on the Miramichi...

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Sinclair Crown Reserve (part 1)

It's been a while since I've posted any updates.. mostly due to slow fishing and depressingly low salmon returns across the entire Atlantic Canadian region... The last time I was out seriously fishing was in early July when I hooked 3 and landed 1 within an hour... talk about getting your hopes up! Sadly, we just managed to pull off one of those right place, right time deals where we managed to catch a pod of passing fish. I did get to spend a few minutes of quality time with this beauty though and she was safely returned to the river to continue her mission to pass along her genes to the next generation..

Sorry for the aside, now back to the Sinclair trip!

This would have been my first time to this stretch and I made a promise to myself it won't be the last! It's yet another beautiful salmon river (North Pole) located in the rugged wilderness a long way away from pavement. The bonus --- no cell signal --- !

Bill, Paul, Steph and I packed our stuff and headed to the woods - I have to say, even though this year has been such a depressing salmon fishing season, I was extremely excited to be going on a crown reserve trip with close friends. Crown reserve is special, if you haven't been on one and you're a resident of NB do yourself a favor and book a trip. Even if there aren't many fish around the scenery makes it all worth while.

The view from the camp:


We didn't waste any time after arriving and soon decided on a plan - we'd all head to the upper pools closest to the camp. Bill and I to one and Paul & Steph to the other. 

Things were fairly uneventful at our first stop. We didn't see any fish so we headed down river to the next pool. It wasn't long before I raised a fish on the old faithful blue bomber.. I wasn't 100% sure it was a grilse or trout as it took in fairly quick water .. I kept at it and managed to hook up solid to a nice grilse! It was a good scrap with quite a few jumps and I probably shouldn't have landed the fish but we managed to somehow:

(safely released)

There was a pretty decent rain shower and we managed to get soaked so we headed back down to the camp.

We finished up the rest of the evening uneventfully.

I just can't get over this view from the camp... what a place!

We woke up the next morning to some chilly temps, in fact we had ice formed on the vehicles both nights... Fall is definitely in the air!

0.0 degrees Celsius!

Our plan for our full day (day 2) involved heading up river ... the logging that goes on up there is depressing... why can't we protect the headwaters of our salmon rivers?

Apparently they don't want fords across this bridge... thank goodness we weren't driving one!

I think I'll leave off here for now... Part 2 to follow in the coming days!

Saturday, 14 June 2014

The end of an era..

I was recently talking to my buddy, John Alward, who said he had some time booked at Noreen Hennessy’s for fishing in June and July. He told me that Noreen hasn’t been in the best of health lately and as a result, her daughter was cancelling all bookings and the Hennessy cabins would no longer be available for rental. I think we all knew deep down that this day was coming but now that it’s here it’s tough to believe..
I think back about all the good times we’ve had in those humble cabins and most notably the ‘Chalet Noir’ which we rented for two Julys during back to back years. From our first trip salmon fishing I knew we all really liked it, but at Noreen’s we all fell in love with it… Most of our crew caught our first fish there on that bar as people from both banks cheered us on… ‘moon walking’ to shore with a fish-on while the Miramichi flowed at 1.2 metres was tricky and we will never forget those days.
It’s impossible to say what the future holds for the Hennessy property… I’m thankful for having had the opportunity to spend some quality time there and I know many more NB’ers are as well.
Thank-you Noreen.     

Billy's first grilse:

Hangin' out watching the river go by:


Sunday, 8 June 2014

A productive weekend..

Dad, Billy and I headed to the camp on Thursday evening, we had originally planned to take a rip around the horseshoe until the weather changed to a  monsoon.. We instead decided to get some work done at the camp. We had more pine to nail on so we went at that for a couple days.

Dad also had arranged for a little site work in the yard by a local contractor so we had to cut down a few trees to accommodate this - and of course, the rain didn't let up so we looked like a bunch of drowned rats by the time we were done.. One bonus was that it kept the bugs to a dull roar... 'Tis skeeter season up on the rivah!

These pictures are actually from Saturday when it was dry enough for the dozer:


After the tree cutting was over we went back at the pine - it was a long day as we also had to wire the panel, outlets, etc. it took a couple hours before we even got to start nailing but at the end of the day we had the another side wall complete. 

The next day, we set a goal of getting the large ladders and planks out of the camp once and for all... The only way to achieve this was to carry the ceiling pine over to the mezzanine where we could later work off short ladders.. It was an aggressive schedule but one in which we were determined to achieve. Thankfully, John Alward showed up to give us a hand for the day - he did a mighty fine job running the saw on the ground support crew with Billy! Thanks again John, we couldn't have got to the mezzanine without your help! (At least not by our goal) 

Dad was the key player of the day, once again, with his high flying abilities on top of our wobbly staging. We'd have been staring at insulation behind vapour barrier for a long time if I was the guy up there..  

A few pictures of one our toughest days building yet:

As Rod would say, the Blackville gymnastics or parkour team:

The high wire act:

You can finally start to get a feeling of the scale of inside of the camp through pictures now (or at least I think so):

Exhausted after a job well done:

We said it wasn't going to be a late night but we still managed to stay up past midnight after having a few celebratory sodas.. It was a hell of a weekend, we're all tired and sore but have a great sense of satisfaction after getting so much accomplished. 

Friday, 30 May 2014

Puttin' the pine to 'er..

Dad and I escaped civilization this morning so we could get up to the camp to do a bit of work while the fishing's slow... What do we have, about another week until things pick up?

Bill is on his way and Brad'll be here in the AM - that should make things go a bit quicker. 

A couple pics of our progress: