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Sparkplug

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Everything posted by Sparkplug

  1. Thanks Fishpro. One of the lakes in the drone footage near the middle of the film is unmistakably a lake in Banff Park, indeed. Trouble is that it looks like this was all spliced together over a variety of locations, and thus tough (perhaps) to say conclusively that the fishing violations occurred at that specific lake in Banff. Hopefully Parks Canada can/will investigate and if definitive, take action. The intelligence of filming (and identifying) oneself committing such acts is a whole other topic...
  2. Probably not recommended as a take-out point.
  3. Thanks Rudedawg...interesting to see an injured bird, likely doomed otherwise, turn it around by chowing down on carp over the winter in a rare open/warm water spot. Nature is amazing. I always thought Frank Lake couldn't support fish populations. Clearly the carp disagree. Anyone know if Frank has ever been looked at for trout? Obviously the carp being there isn't exactly an auspicious start... Here's hoping that this pelican's buddies come back this spring and help him out with the carp feed.
  4. Alberta's recent coal blunders in the news again today, this time on Alberta sitting on coal mine contamination data. I wonder when the topic of methane emissions from coal mining will come up. Huge amounts of methane are being quietly vented to the atmosphere every day in every one of the province's coal mines, methane being a very potent greenhouse gas (far more so than CO2). I wonder if these methane emissions are at all quantified/estimated, and if the coal companies doing the mining/venting have to account for this (e.g., as a large final emitter in the provincial TIER GHG regulation). In December, Justin announced that the federal regulated price of CO2 is going to $170/tonne by 2030. It wouldn't surprise me to learn that the methane emissions from coal mining in Alberta are in the megatonne/year scale (on a CO2 tonnage equivalent basis). Megatonne-scale CO2 emitters certainly attract a lot of regulatory attention, both provincially and federally. I haven't been through the Grassy Lake or any other proposed coal mine regulatory application information, but I wonder if all this GHG accounting for methane emissions is included in the information. IMHO, methane-GHG emissions could be a major regulatory issue for these coal mines, both existing and proposed. I suspect the GHG numbers may be shocking in size.
  5. Would certainly second that re Brian, he guided me on a below-Carseland float a few years back and was excellent (as was the fishing).
  6. Thanks SD for posting, that is an informative video. Last couple of seasons I've been experimenting with a BS - WB tandem rig, with the #14 WB on the point about 24" behind the #10 BS pattern (go big, or go home). Based on previous experience, I figured the fish would show a preference for the WB, but the results on the tandem rig were split rather evenly. Either one, the fish seem to really hammer them, so stout tippet is usually in order. BS/WB seem to be much more of a fall thing to me, than early spring. What has been others' experiences with BS/WB?
  7. Do we not have any pure strains (of either species) in some of our lakes? Thinking about Job for the WS's, maybe Rawson...and aren't there lakes in Banff that have Yellowstones in them (how "pure", I do not know...)
  8. The proximity of this stretch of the river to the Bearspaw Dam makes me wonder whether there are any river temp effects driven by the dam operation. I believe Bearspaw is a bottom-draw dam, so when dam discharges are high, this would be relatively cold water. If dam discharge rates are adjusted significantly over a short time period (as we saw last week?) does this introduce any sort of a thermal shock to the river, particularly just downstream from the dam as a localized effect? Of course some dead fish in the Bowness stretch could be due to a wide range of factors, but given the proximity to the dam, one has to ponder.
  9. Ginger, I see no harm whatsoever in voicing objection to the recent policy change. IMHO it is unlikely that this gov't will reverse it, but raising an objection to it now might make them think twice in the future before making such changes without appropriate consultation or notice. Or not. One angle you may want to explore is whether this policy change stands to impact First Nations. A big part of the fuss/delays/uncertainty over the TransMountain expansion was driven by inadequate consultation with FN's. The good ol' Official Opposition may be another place to go to raise a stink over the policy change (particularly if through FN's or other stakeholders inadequate consultation can be clearly illustrated). I don't recall hearing much (if anything) from Rachel and crew on the policy change, at least thus far. Rachel is now on about the parks eliminations, so maybe there's some common ground there with them. While taking a run at the policy change is fine, efforts should in parallel be made to organize effective opposition/intervention into the regulatory approval process of this particular mine, should the company proceed with making such an application.
  10. Agree wholeheartedly on proactively getting regulations put in place. On many stillwaters in the province we have speed restrictions, as well as fuel/motor-type restrictions. Seems to me like a 10 km/h, electric motors only restriction on moving waters should do the trick. To a non-jet boat/power boat guy like me, if a person wanted to take this sort of a jet boat out to rip around in, why not go to one of AB's numerous large lakes to do so? Seems a great deal safer to me.
  11. AER regulates coal mining in respect of the Coal Conservation Act, which is primarily with respect to responsible/efficient coal resource recovery. An environmental approval under EPEA must still be obtained. For this mine (and any open pit mine over 45,000 tonnes/year production), it is mandatory that a provincial environmental impact assessment under EPEA be conducted. The project will also have to be assessed under the federal Impact Assessment Act. All these regulatory agencies (AB Environment, AER, federal Impact Assessment Agency) coordinate to ensure no overlap. In the past when both federal and provincial assessments are called for (as would be the case here), a joint review panel has often been struck with one of the agencies leading the review on behalf of the others. Not sure how it will work now under the new federal IAA, as there haven't really been any projects put forth subject to that yet, but will probably be in line with this historical joint review process. Bottom line is that a proposal like this will be subject to a full environmental impact assessment with both federal and provincial agencies involved. An EIA involves, from the getgo, stakeholder consultation and input as to the terms of reference for the EIA/joint review panel. That would be the ideal time to ensure that fisheries related matters are prominent and baked into the terms of reference for the EIA.
  12. Environmental approval of the development, and administration/enforcement of the operating license (if granted), is with Alberta Environment. This project would require both an Alberta Environment provincial approval (under the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act), as well as a federal assessment under the new Impact Assessment Act.
  13. So...apart from participation the regulatory review process, how do you propose "to kill this abomination" otherwise?
  14. The rescission of the coal policy means that Category 2 lands are now available for coal leasing, and only that - leasing. There are a great number of coal leases in this province that have been in effect for decades, that have seen absolutely no development activity on them at all. Coal rights leasing is different in AB from O&G in that regard, in that in O&G, you have to undertake certain activities (e.g., drilling) to continue to hold licenses/leases. With coal, as long as you pay your annual rental fees, you can sit on a coal lease indefinitely. Should this company wish to actually advance this development, they still have to go through the Alberta Environment approval process, and, for a mine of this size, now the new Federal Impact Assessment Act (yes, the infamous "Bill C-69" that has ruffled so many Alberta feathers on other fronts of late). Thus, likely a joint review panel process. The first step in this review process is stakeholder consultation to define the terms of reference for the impact assessment. To my mind, the angling/outdoors community is much more likely to have a meaningful say/effect by providing input into that review process, when/if the time comes, rather than try to get the current government to do anything with respect to this coal policy rescission. This looks like an Australian penny stock mining company, whose value trades on news with respect to their "projects" - that sword cuts both ways, i.e., negative news (e.g., tough going on environmental approvals, due to credible stakeholder opposition) has a way of causing these sorts of things to go away...
  15. Higa's SOS has worked well for me
  16. Scott Radian is a cannon. Can get the 4 wt in either 8' 6", 9' or 10'.
  17. Would like to think that fishermen/women are model social distancers...
  18. Beauvais Lake is a nice spot, with a decent campground, and trails around the lake with opportunities to fish from shore.
  19. Nice ties, Wayne. My kids used to just slay the walleye and pike on a Rapala X-Rap in the "Purple Ghost" finish - pearl white belly, yellow sides, and purple on the top/back. So I tried tying up some Clousers and other flies (e.g., big Zonkers) with the same color pattern...and they worked very well, surprise, surprise. Don't know what it is about that purple and yellow combination, but the fish sure do seem to like it.
  20. Fishteck, good note. There is no suggestion that the total amount of "hydro power generation", i.e., MWh of electricity generated, will increase upon PPA expiry. Rather, once the PPA's expire and the units are more fully under TransAlta's operational/commercial control, it is expected that volatility in flows will increase - i.e., more jacking around with the operation of these units in response to the hourly power pool price,which means more short-term volatility in flows (i.e., daily, or over several days). Your point about the available water supply is correct, in terms of capping total electricity generated. But there's plenty of room for TransAlta to screw with flows to control when that electricity is generated (and just as importantly, when it is not). On the comment about conversion to "run-of-river" for some or all of these hydro units, I don't buy that in the least. There is no technical reason why the dams could not be operated simply for flood protection and downstream water management reasons only - and as a result of this operating regime, whatever water is flowed through each dam on any day (with those operating parameters) generates power, to whatever amount and whenever that may be. The Oldman dam operates in that matter - AEP controls the flows for water management reasons, and Atco simply generate whatever power they can from those flows as they are available. No reason why the Bow/Kananaskis hydro units couldn't be operated in exactly the same way.
  21. Fishteck, while I agree with and like your thoughts about numerous factors possibly contributing to flow/level changes, the fact remains that with more wind generation being added to the Alberta electric system, Power Pool price volatility will increase, which will increase the financial incentive for TransAlta to use these hydro units to respond to that price volatility. This will in turn translate into more flow/level fluctuations. The fact that certain Bow system hydro PPA's are expiring in 2020 (giving TransAlta more latitude in terms of using these generators more aggressively to respond to Pool Price, for their own account/profit) won't help either.
  22. My dog-eared fishing diary and collection of fishin' tidbits from all over the place says Venice, Louisiana for big bull redfish in Nov. Muskies in the St. Lawrence. Sea-run cutthroats in the lower Fraser system.
  23. Plenty of interesting comments/observations in this thread. I don't fish the Bow much at all, but I might add a few questions/comments to the discussion: When comparing the Bow to how it was "x" years ago, one thing that doesn't seem to be discussed much is the fact that Calgary has grown so much over those past "x" years, to now a city of well over 1 million. As the city has grown, how has water quality been affected - more concrete/pavement (and runoff from same, washing in who knows what), more treated sewage water volume, more developments along the riverbanks, altering the banks and sedimentation, etc. Also, it seems to me that when we talk about the health of the fishery, we focus primarily on the trout (for obvious reasons) - but isn't it the entire riverine ecosystem that we should be examining? Maybe we are - but what about the health of invertebrates in the river (trout food), and other fish species like whitefish, suckers (competitors for trout food)?
  24. Figured that suggestion was inevitably going to be made sooner or later in this thread... Been seeing a lot of adults in past week in Calgary (damsels that is), not going to speculate as to male or female, almost all of them blue. I would guess that regardless of adult coloration, the nymphs are all in that light green - dark olive/brown color?
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