Kootenay Lake is a fisherman’s paradise. But it wasn’t always so. When the Duncan Dam was built, it reduced the amount of nutrient flow into our lake, and drastically reduced the lifecycle of our fish by affecting the growth of phytoplankton that serves as the base of the food circle in our waters.
Once this was discovered as the root cause of the fish population decline, the Nutrient Restoration Program, a joint program through the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program and the Ministry of Environment was launched in 1992. Twice a year, a barge will dispense a quantity of nutrient fertilizer that helps replace the missing nutrients and augments the integral growth of phytoplankton. The results of increased fish count and increased sizes of the fish were noticeable almost immediately. Intensive water-monitoring takes place to ensure the safety of water that is consumed by all who inhabit the shores of this beautiful lake.
There are over 20 different species of fish, from rainbow trout to the huge Gerrad Rainbow Trout, to the Kokanee (our land-locked salmon), there is a fish for everyone to try to catch!
For specific, indispensable local tips, go in and talk to Randy at the Gill & Gift at the ferry. He’s also got all the reels, bait and licenses you’ll need. He can also tell you about fishing charters. And about the one that got away.