Fly Tying at GS Lakie

Andrew and Josh joined Vanessa Valgardson's ELL class for a fly tying lesson. Vanessa has done a lot to make her classroom fishy and to instill in her students a deep appreciation for wild trout and the places they live. For the last couple of years, for example, Vanessa and her students have participated in the Fish in Schools (FinS) program, raising rainbow trout in a classroom aquarium.

This year, Vanessa has a group of students, relatively new to Canada, from Syria and Nepal. The Chapter aided in the purchase of six introductory tying kits, which these kids quickly put to good use - each student tied a pretty nice wooly bugger.

We'll be at Lakie a few times over the school year, casting and tying, getting these kids ready for their first trout on a fly come spring. Thanks to Vanessa and GS Lakie for having us in and to Mike Gifford at Country Pleasures Fly Fishing in Calgary, who has helped us purchase both the tying kits and some fly rods for the Chapter.

Fly Tying at GS Lakie

Fly Tying at GS Lakie

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Hidden Creek Progress

One of our directors, Murray Dueck, along with his son Byron and Elliot Lindsay from Trout Unlimited Canada, hiked into Hidden Creek a few weeks ago to check on the state of our 2015 bioengineering project. It's looking good, but there is still some work to do. His report and a handful of photos below.

Elliot, Byron & myself hiked up Hidden Creek on Aug 30th to the stream bank rehabilitation site just up stream from the falls. 

The road in had recent quad activity on it which surprised me given that the area has been closed to OHV's since late July. There was a lot of loose dry soil on the road typically which is a concern given that large sections of the road end up draining into Hidden.

The stream was flowing clear and there was enough water for the BLTR to spawn as there are redds visible. I don't know what the normal flow rate is for Hidden at this time of year, but given that everything on the east slope is well below normal, it is likely that Hidden is also well below the average flow rate for this rime of year. The water temperature was just below 9 degrees Celsius. Elliot [Lindsay, from Trout Unlimited Canada] brought his wet suit and snorkel and surveyed about 100 m of stream to observe how many BLTR were present. He counted about 12 BLTR & 30 WSCT in that 100 m stretch.  We didn't do a redd count, but there were some redds that had been flagged, so it looked like some one had been up to survey the stream.

The planting site specifically was in relatively good condition with most of the plantings leafed out and alive. Higher up on the bank the plantings weren't doing as well (see photo) and a lower section has slumped close to the surface of the stream. It is still intact but may wash out next spring depending on how high the flows are. The "new" road around the planting site may be a small improvement, but the road should be removed. Having the road right next to the stream is definitely a problem as there are low points in the road that collect water and sediment that wash into the creek when it rains. Byron's drone footage also shows that there is a wet land above the planting site which may be the source of the springs & seasonal streams that are washing across the road lower down (between the planting site & falls). In some sections the road has captured the seasonal streams and is washing loose soil into the creek.

 

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