Fresh salmon enter Gaspé rivers, including the Bonaventure, Grand Cascapédia, and Petite Cascapédia, beginning in late May and early June and continue on every tide throughout the season. Peak runs occur in early June to late July and again from mid August to the end of September. There are two prime time fishing periods: The first runs from June 10 to July 20 and the second from August 15 through September 30. Both periods provide excellent fishing but are very different and special in their own way. During June and July, anglers and guides travel the rivers in traditional 26-foot-long canoes and catch fish from the vessel and while wading. During the August and September period, the famous pools are full of salmon and it’s one of the best times for sight casting free-floating dry flies. Expect to wade extensively at this time as the river levels are typically lower than you might find earlier in the season. Both time periods offer bright fish but you are more likely to hook a “chrome” salmon in June and July.
No matter when you visit, expect a high-quality salmon fishing experience—these lodges carry a number of leases on various sections of these three rivers, which allows anglers to fish the water that is fishing best. The Bonaventure is very special and exciting with incredibly clear water offering plenty of sight-casting options. Dry fly fishing is simply the best here as anglers often watch salmon home in on the fly. The world-renowned Grand Cascapédia is North America’s big salmon river where fish in the 40-pound class are an attainable dream. The Petite Cascapédia, much like the Grand, produces some huge salmon and plenty of trophy brook trout.
Guests at The Club have the opportunity to fish the longest beat of private water on the Bonaventure, and this area contains some of the best holding pools on the entire river. Exclusive to The Club, its pools are well rested to create a sight-casters dream scenario.
A routine day at Salmon Lodge and Camp Bonaventure begins with hot breakfast at 6:30 a.m. Guides arrive at camp at 7:00 a.m. and guests depart when ready. You will spend the entire day on the river if you choose, and in that case lunch will be served on bank. Most guests return to camp anywhere between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. That routine is completely dependent on a guest’s request. An early morning departure or an afternoon return to the lodge can be accommodated.
The Club on the Bonaventure follows the same breakfast and departure schedule. Being located close to the water at The Club is a luxury—anglers can return from the river at any time for an in-house lunch or a nap, or they can take lunch on the river to maximize every moment. On hot July days some guests enjoy the lodge during the afternoon and return to fishing in the cool evening hours. Hors d’oeuvres and cocktails are served at 6:30 p.m., and supper is served at 7:30 p.m. in the dining room. Again, no routine is set in stone; The Club can shift schedules based on a guest’s preferences.
Boats and Equipment
During June and July, anglers and guides travel the rivers in traditional 26-foot-long river canoes. Late season fishing is mostly walk and wade.
Equipment Rental: All 3Camps lodges offer full rental packages from well-known brands that include Simms, Patagonia, and Orvis. Packages include Spey rods, reels, lines, and heads, plus waders and boots. The rental rate is just $25 per day.