Hopper Stone Outfitters

The Bow River

The Bow River

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Fish Species of the Bow River
Alberta’s Bow River originates from the Bow Glacier which in turn creates Bow Lake. The Bow River flows from Bow Lake though Lake Louise and Banff National Park, which is one of the most famous and most visited nature reserves in the world!
From Banff National Park the Bow River then flows south towards the city of Calgary, where it becomes one of the worlds best Trout fisheries. The Bow is known for world-class fly fishing.
  • The Bow River is 623 km in length
  • Provides life-giving moisture to millions of hectares of prairie farmland
  • Endless excitement for fly fishers, hikers, campers canoeists, kayakers and birdwatchers
  • Three main tributaries of the bow: Kananaskis River, Elbow River, Highwood River
Did you know? The brown trout that thrive in the Bow River, attract fly fishers from all over the world. But they got there by accident in 1925, when a truck full of brown trout fry broke down at the Carrot Creek bridge. They were forced to dump the fry into the bow river, and Brown Trout have inhabited the river ever since!
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Rainbow Trout
Rainbow Trout spawn in the spring, some in river, majority up a tributary called the Highwood River/Sheep River and in the upper city area called Bearspaw.
  • 100% wild fish, average size is 18-20”
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Brown Trout
Brown trout spawn in the fall, many in the main river and side channels and in a tributary called the Elbow River.
  • 100% wild fish, average size is 18-20”, but often grow into the 24” range.
Other Bow River Fish Species
  • Bull Trout
  • Cutthroat Trout,
  • Cut-Bow Trout ( a hybrid mix of rainbow and cutthroat, spawn same time in the same trib. Highwood)
  • Rocky Mountain White fish
  • Pike
  • Sturgeon
  • Long nose sucker
  • Burbot
Bow River Fly Fishing Hatch Chart
DATES
HATCHES
SIZE
PATTERNS
April 1-May 15
BLUE WING
OLIVES
( B.W.O )
#16-18
-Parachute Adams
-B.W.O.
-CDC B.W.O.
May 15-June 15
MARCH
BROWNS
#14-16
-March Brown Imitations
May 20-Sept 1
CADDIS
#14-18
-Elk Hair Caddis
-Slick Water Caddis
-Hi-Vis Caddis
-Hot Wire Caddis Nymph
June 15-July 30
PALE
MORNING DUN
( P.M.D.)
#14-18
-Parachute PMD
-CDC PMD
-Light Cahill
-CDC emerger
June 20-July15
YELLOW SALLY
#14-16
-Yellow Sallys
-Stimulators
June 20-Aug10
GOLDEN
STONEFLY
# 4-8
-Barrett Stone
-Foam Imitations
-Turks Tarantula
-Golden Stone Nymphs
-Morrish Hopper
Aug 1-Sept 20
GRASSHOPPERS
# 6-12
-Dave’s Hopper
-Chernobyl Ants
-Terminators
Aug 15-Sept 20
ANTS
&
BEETLES
#10-18
-Hi-Vis Ant
-Parachute Ant
-Black Parachute Adams
-Foam Beetle
Aug 20-Sept 30
TRICOS
#16-20
-Trico Spinner
-Hi-Vis Trico
-H&L Variant
-Black Parachute Adams
Sept 1- Oct 1
OCTOBER
CADDIS
#8-12
-Orange Stimulators
-Orange bodied Barretts
-Orange Elk Hair Caddis
-October Caddis Nymphs
Sept 1- Oct 15
BLUE WING
OLIVES
# 14-18
-Parachute Adams
-B.W.O
-CDC B.W.O
-Hi-Vis B.W.O
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