Like clockwork, it happens every year. The excitement of summer and early fall mesh to create a season of its own. A season where dedicated anglers gather at the mouth of the Campbell River, in the legendary Tyee pools.
Tyee rowing at Painter's Lodge is not like any other BC salmon fishing. It’s as pure as fishing gets. The only sounds you’ll hear are the screaming reels and shouts of encouragement. No motors are allowed, just classic rowboats. If it’s over 30 lbs., it’s a Tyee, but it isn’t easy. Some say the rewards aren’t worth it; but it’s much sweeter because the challenge is greater. And the pride of catching a Tyee using these classic methods is never ending. You’ll earn your membership in to the exclusive club and be a part of its great tradition. It’s been that way since the club was created in 1925.
What is a Tyee?
The word Tyee comes from the coastal Indian language and means “The Chief” or “Great Leader.” The term is used to describe Chinook or Spring salmon that weigh 30 lbs. or more. Campbell River is known as the salmon and Tyee capital of the world and it is here that the Tyee Club was born to celebrate BC salmon fishing.
The Birth Of The Tyee Club
Painter's Lodge Tyee salmon fishing
In 1924, three men were socializing in the local hotel. They decided that the Tyee salmon was just as great as the California Tuna and therefore deserved a club to celebrate, honour and protect the legendary species. The Tyee Club was officially created in 1925 with the formation of a set of rules. It has evolved to include the following objectives:
Tyee Fishing at Painter's Lodge
Painter’s Lodge offers traditional tyee fishing from classic rowboats in the Tyee Pools. Anglers who catch a Tyee become members of the Tyee Club of British Columbia. It is open to any anglers who want to test their skill at sport fishing. The rower will slip the boat into the currents and eddies of the pool, allowing the angler to stay focused on the action of the lure. Any change in the beat of the rod tip will signify a strike. It is then up to the angler to set the hook and battle the powerful Chinook to the boat - single-handedly. If the fish is successfully boated and weighs over 30 lbs., the catch is recorded and the angler has earned a membership in the Tyee Club.
Tyee Rowing happens every year from July 15 to September 15 at Painter's Lodge. Trips are available at sunrise and sunset. Contact one of our reservation coordinators or register with the Painter’s Lodge Marine Centre to try your hand at Tyee fishing this season, and experience salmon fishing as pure as it gets.