Moving to Alaska – Day 8.

We woke up in Telkwa and packed up the tent. We weren’t sure where we would end up, but thought we would ask around in Smithers. When we got to Smithers, we were in heaven. It is like a small german town with delicious pastries at the bottom of a ski hill. We got some advice at a fly shop on a great place to catch trout. The only problem is that it was 2 hours back the way we just came from. Still, this trip was an adventure, so we decided to do it. We drove back past Telkwa, past the largest fly rod in the world in Houston, and turned left at Topley. We saw our first bear on the way to Topley Landing. There is an enormous hatchery in Topley Landing and spawning beds that are over 4 kilometers long. The spawning beds are perfectly constructed for salmon. They are the right depth, the right water speed, the right water temperature, and they are enormous. The entire thing is a place for salmon to spawn. The rocks are all the perfect size and the fish lay millions of eggs. Needless to say, the bears also love it there. Unfortunately, we were a couple months too early to see all of it occur.

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We found the perfect fishing spot that we were told about in Smithers. It was under construction. There was a big backhoe beside the river. The road was closed to vehicles. We weren’t allowed to be there. In order to get all of the water for the salmon spawning channels, the hatchery does stream maintenance on the creek to ensure that they have water when spawning season begins. The one day we couldn’t fish was the day we were there. Not to be deterred, we headed to the town of Granisle to see what we could see. The short answer, nothing. When asked about hiking, we were met with blank stares. Granisle is a retirement community. It used to be a mining town. When the mines shut down, people stopped working. Most people left, but some stuck around doing whatever odd jobs they could find. Our campsite was near Babine Lake so we took the canoe out and fished for sockeye. Everyone else was using motorboats, down riggers, and giant flashers, we just had a good time.
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