There are an abundance of clear water lakes with white marl bottoms in the BC interior that translate to the ability to site fishing the flats. Rainbow trout are the preferred and most abundant game fish that cruise the shoals in search of their favorite food. The biggest challenge is to be able to offer your fly without spooking them.
As noted in a previous article there are a few techniques used to site fish the flats successfully. Now, here is a list of some of the very best lakes for site fishing in the Kamloops area lakes (in no particular order).
1) Roche Lake - one of the most heavily fished of the Interior lakes, Roche Lake has marl shoals surrounding the lake but they are particularly massive at both the north and south ends and the east side of the lake. Large rainbow trout (5lb+) frequent these flats throughout the year but are particularly productive in the spring and fall using hyalella shrimp, chironomid, bloodworm and micro-leech patterns. Traveler sedges are particularly fun on the surface in June, July and into August.
2) Black Lake – adjacent to Roche, this lake has healthy rainbows to 5 lbs+ and some of the most beautiful bottom structure to be found anywhere. Fish are very fussy and best fished on the shoals in the spring and fall.
3) Ernest Lake – Also part of the Roche Lake group, Ernest is difficult to access and is prone to winter kill. However, getting in and staying a few days can make you or break you. Again, beautiful shoals surrounding the lake that can be really fun in late June and July on caddis fly.
4) Community Lake – This higher elevation lake is located 50k northwest of Kamloops and has some very large shoals where medium to large rainbow trout cruise. Chironomids, shrimp patterns, dragonfly, damsel and caddis nymphs are all effective but the late June, July, caddis hatch can be particularly spectacular.
5) Duffy Lake – A smaller lake with magnificent shoals on the east side and south end of the lake. Located only about 30 km from Kamloops, this lake sees other pressure (dirt bikes, quaders and high school grad parties) that keep many fishermen away. Best fished on a week day when traffic is down.
6) White Lake – Located out in the Shuswap area about a 1 hour drive from Kamloops. White Lake has some of the clearest water with visibility over 25 ft. This is a bit larger lake by local fly fishing standards but the marl shoals surround the lake. Lots of trollers. Best fished in the early-mid spring and late summer/early fall.
7) Peter Hope Lake – 60 km S of Kamloops, Peter Hope has large shoals all around the lake with rising submerged islands in the middle. This beautiful lake has been known to produce large rainbow in the 10lb+ range. Chironomids and micro-leech are successful. There is a strong caddis fly hatch in late June and July for the dry fly fishermen. Limited public day access and high traffic with campers and trollers.
8) Heffley Lake – Another fairly large lake, the flats on the south side near the east end and the flats near the narrows towards the west end are the most productive. Less than 50 km from Kamloops, this lake is on the road to Sun Peaks Ski Resort, north and east of Kamloops.
9) Sheridan Lake – this large lake is about a 2 hour drive north and west of Kamloops (highway 24 – Little Fort to 100 Mile House) and may have the most extensive marl shoals for site fishing the flats in BC. This is a very busy lake that fishes in streaks. Sheridan is known for holding large rainbow to 15lbs+. The caddis hatch in late June and early July is phenomenal and it can either be very productive or drive you insane from watching the fish ignore your offering. Chironomid fishing the flats is also very popular and productive at times.
10) Island Lake – this lovely lake is tucked in behind the Highland Valley Mine, west of Logan Lake. A totally catch and release lake, the caddis hatches and leech population bring the big fish up on the shoals. Tough to find with a rough campground, there are substantial shallows to site fish the flats surrounding the lake and around the sunken island in the middle of the lake. Approximately a 1.5 to 2 hour commute from Kamloops, depending on road conditions.
There you have it, there are a lot more lakes like these within 100 km (60 mile) radius of Kamloops, the trout fishing capital of BC. Come and visit the area and find out for yourself what site fishing the flats in our productive lakes has to offer.
For more information, check out the BigFishSmallHook.com site, blog and now, a new mobile app for your traveling convenience.