Grizzly Bear viewing on the Atnarko river
Small Group Wildlife Viewing

What is catch and release?

Great fishing in Tweedsmuir Park
Big salmon in Bella Coola
Heli Fly Fishing Bella Coola
Fly-Fishing for Spring Salmon in Bella Coola at Tweedsmuir Park Lodge

"Catch and release" is a way of fishing that combines enjoyment of this amazing recreational activity with environmental conservation. Angling is a practice that allows us to spend time with nature and also be part of nature. All levels of fitness and all ages can take up this sport. Just closing your eyes and picturing a lone fisherman casting his line evokes feelings of peace and calm. However, there is also the fact that once you take the fish from the river, you will be taking this animal's life. It may be your goal but there is also the option of returning the fish to his habitat by releasing it alive. Now this fish will be able to reproduce, or even get caught by another fisheman and cause more joy and excitement for somebody else.

The principles of catch and release angling are: play the fish fast, use barbless hooks, handle the fish quickly, use an appropriate net and finally keep the fish in the water. You may be surprised to learn that sometimes it is better to cut the line and leave a deeply embedded hook in place rather than causing further injury.

All fish released do not survive the process so if you have questions on techniques to use to best ensure the animal's survival, ask one of our fishing guides or visit the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC website for a biologist's point of view.