Fishing the Best of Bella Coola
The Ultimate Fishing Holiday.
The Bella Coola Valley is rightfully famous for its river fishing and has been attracting fishermen from all over the world since the Tweedsmuir Park Lodge was originally built in 1929. There is the Atnarko River, which flows past the lodge, as well as the Talchako and the Bella Coola River, and many rivers only accessible by helicopter. In addition to the bountiful rivers, Bella Coola is also the terminus of the most extensive fjord system in the Americas with excellent salt water fishing, as well as crabbing and prawning. These rich local fisheries have sustained the local Nuxalk First Nations and their vibrant culture for many millennia.
- Excellent fishing holes are only steps from your private chalet
- Drift and fish the scenic Atnarko River in a Mckenzie drift boat
- Visit remote, pristine watersheds by helicopter
- Opportunities for crabbing, prawning and ocean fishing on the fjord
- Local and experienced fishing guides show you the spots
- Luxury accommodation at the historic Tweedsmuir Park Lodge
Rivers in the Bella Coola valley host annual Salmon returns during the summer months (June to late September) as well as healthy resident trout populations. There is no motorized traffic on these rivers insuring a serene fishing as well as wildlife viewing experience.
One of the best is the Atnarko River which flows through Tweedsmuir Provincial Park and past our lodge. Some fantastic fishing holes are only steps away and many clients are on the river well before breakfast. Additional fishing is accessed by drifting down the rivers in McKenzie river boats. These boats offer a relaxing way to see and fish the valley, with opportunities to cast from the boat, as well as to stop along the way and fish from shore or gravel bars.
We also recommend spending a day out on the fjord. The bottom fishing, prawning and crabbing is excellent and the scenery is amazing. It's also a great way to see local wildlife: dolphins, seals, otters, and in the spring, Grizzly Bears on the estuaries. Along the way a quick stop at the natural hot springs overlooking the fjord is always enjoyable and a dip in the ocean is invigorating. For lunch its a fresh sea food feast.
For many people the highlight of the trip is the helicopter fishing day. This allows us to fly to very remote and pristine rivers and lakes that experience virtually no human traffic. Please note that the heli day is optional as there is an extra cost, but it is well worth it.
All the fishing adventures are led by experienced and professional local fishing guides. They will supply gear, provide fishing tips, show you the good spots, and generally help out every step of the way.
If you are coming to fish for Salmon, then preparation of fish for shipping is available locally. This can be by freezing the fish or smoking them.
Species in our Rivers and their Seasons
Each season sees a return of all five Pacific Salmon species, as well as the seasonal movements of resident species throughout the river system. A rough guide is as follows:
- Apr - May Sea run Cutthroat Trout
- May - July Spring / King Salmon:
- July - Aug Pink Salmon
- July - Aug Sockeye Salmon:
- Aug - Oct Chum Salmon
- Sept - Oct Coho / Silver Salmon
- Year Round Resident Rainbow, Cutthroat and Bull Trout
Get More Information
We recommend booking either our 3, 4 or 5 night itineraries. These programs are designed to introduce you to the best fishing in the Bella Coola valley. However, it is also possible to design a custom program if you can only stay two nights or want to stay longer.
Rates & Dates
June 1 to June 27, 2013 - Early Season and Sept 27 to Oct 15, 2013 – Late Season
- 3 Night Fishing Excursion – Price Per Person C$1,680
- 4 Night Fishing Excursion – Price Per Person C$2,380
- 5 Night Fishing Excursion – Price Per Person C$3,080
June 28 – Sept 26 - High Season
- 3 Night Fishing Excursion – Price Per Person C$1,980
- 4 Night Fishing Excursion – Price Per Person C$2,680
- 5 Night Fishing Excursion – Price Per Person C$3,380
*Note: All prices are in Canadian dollars (CAD). Tax rates are 2.5% for International guests & 5% for Canadian residents.
Cost is an additional $3,500 (CAD) for the helicopter. Includes lunch, certified guide, and there is space for up to 4 people.
Single Occupancy is available on request and is $115 CAD per night.
Please contact us for group rates and the various tour options available to you and your group.
In regards to our rates, children are 11 years old and under.
If you are flying to Bella Coola and would like us to book your flights, the rate is approximately $600 CAD on Pacific Coastal Airlines. It is worth checking their website as they often have seat sales (www.pacific-coastal.com).
- Luxury accommodation at Tweedsmuir Park Lodge / Double Occupancy
- All meals: Hot Buffet & Continental Breakfast, Lunch in the Lodge or Packed Lunch out in the field, 3 Course Dinner, plus Afternoon Snacks and unlimited soda, coffee and tea!
- All activities described in the itinerary
- Experienced guides
- Entrance fees to parks
- All ground transportation, including airport or ferry pick-up and drop-off!
- Fishing licences
- Fishing gear (we provide light spin and fly fishing gear, including Salmon rods, reels, and tackle, as well as chest waders and wading boots)
*Note: we do not supply fly fishing equipment suitable for Salmon. If you want to challenge yourself and catch a big fish on the fly, you will need to bring your own equipment.
What to Bring
Below are a list of items that are recommended on our Fishing the Best of Bella Coola adventure.
- If you have a favorite fishing rod and set up you can bring it (we provide fishing gear for your convenience)
- Good, worn-in, low or medium cut hiking shoes are suitable for most hikes
- Small backpack for lunch, snacks, fluids and personal gear
- Comfortable pants
- Shirt, fleece or sweater
- Fleece or knitted hat, baseball cap or sun hat
- Thin gloves
- Change of socks
- Wind jacket and pants or thin rain gear
- 1 litre water bottle
- Sunscreen and lip balm
- Camera with a large memory card for all those great shots
- Personal medication if applicable
Physical Requirements (Easy/Flexible )
This adventure travel opportunity does not require a high degree of physical fitness although some short walks may be required should you wish to participate in every activity.