Archive for August, 2009

After enduring more than three weeks of cool, overcast, rainy weather, the long term forecast for Crowsnest Pass looks awesome. It appears we’ll be receiving some summer weather after all! Stream conditions are returning to normal and the fishing is excellent. Water levels are great and the trout are happy. Anglers are happy, too, now that the sun is shining and most of the rivers and streams are running clear once again. If you’re planning on heading out fishing, don’t forget the sunscreen!

Crowsnest Pass Weather

What better way to enjoy the sunshine than spending a day fly-fishing for cutthroat trout. That’s exactly what Linder and David did yesterday on the Elk River. While both fellows have fished quite a bit this summer already, it was the first time these two friends have been able to “hook-up” this season. I was glad to have been able to be there, too. 

Linder and David, with a beautiful cutthroat trout. Photo courtesy of David Richardson.

Linder (on right) and David, with a beautiful cutthroat trout. Photo courtesy of David Richardson.

Crowsnest Pass received yet another thunderstorm last night. It appears most of the rainfall occurred west of Blairmore and Coleman. By morning, visibility on the Crowsnest River had been reduced to less than six inches. Lately, it seems water clarity on the Crow is being effected more easily by these isolated weather events than in the past, particularly when the rainfall occurs in the Allison Creek Watershed. Allison Creek, located a few miles west of Coleman, is a tributary to the Crowsnest River.  Some Crowsnest River anglers are beginning to question whether the discoloured water conditions are a result of the clear-cut logging that occurred last winter along the Atlas Road and Crowsnest Mountain, adjacent to Allison Creek. This morning, while other nearby tributaries were flowing clear, Allison Creek was “chalk-coloured,” once again. This is at least the third time in the past two weeks the Crowsnest River has become blown out after localized rains. Each time it has been Allison Creek that has been the main culprit. 

Numerous complaints and letters of concern were filed with the municipal and provincial government last year by concerned individuals and groups against the proposed logging, but to no avail. It’s “clear-cut” that certain companies have a lot of clout, when it comes to decision-making time by those in power. More logging activity is scheduled to occur in this drainage in the coming months.

Allison Creek, earlier in the week ... flowing "chalk-like" in colour.

Allison Creek, earlier in the week ... flowing "chalk-like" in colour.

Crowsnest Pass received some rain again last night – a  half-inch, to be precise. For the past two weeks or so, we’ve really been getting some strange weather around here. It seems every couple of days we’re getting hit by intense thunderstorms. The storms have been occurring mainly at night. Some of the accompanying lighting displays have been incredible, rivaling those of last month’s “Thunder in the Valley Fireworks Display” in Blairmore.

 The thunderstorm activity has been taking place throughout southwest Alberta, not only in the Pass. One night it’s Crowsnest Pass that gets it, the next it’s the Oldman or the Castle Drainage’s turn. Areas further to the south, near Waterton Park, have also been getting large downpours. The strangest thing, though, is that while one river receives copious amounts of rain, enough to blow it out for a day or two, another stream a mile or two away, doesn’t receive any – or at least not enough to adversely effect water conditions. This makes it difficult to know where to fish one day to the next.  About all one can do is go for a drive in the morning. If your stream of choice is flowing high and discoloured, simply head over to the next stream or drainage. Chances are you’ll find something that’s clear and fishable. There’s good news in the forecast … rain to end by the weekend. Sunny skies, and more good fishing, lie ahead!