Location: British Columbia
Why we chose it
In 2012, ranked #38 in all-time hot spots
We once described this 134-hectare lake, nestled in a provincial park just 40 kilometres southeast of Kamloops, as a “pint-sized paradise.” Fly anglers flock to Roche for its large, acrobatic rainbows, but hardware chuckers also do well with spinners and small spoons. A true rainbow hot spot, it’s been chosen for our annual ranking by five different experts over the years, including a fishing TV celebrity, a tackle industry insider, a champion fly fisherman and two of our own field editors.
In 2010, Rainbow trout; Large, hard fighting fish known for their aerobatics
When to fish: May and June.
Where to fish: Key in on weedbeds, drop-offs and shoals.
Tip: Chironomids, scuds, leeches and damsel- and dragonfly nymphs are all productive.
—Todd Oishi, national competition and sponsorship chairman of Fly Fishing Canada
In 2009, Rainbow trout; Good access, camping and medium to large fish
When to fish: Spring and fall are best.
Where to fish: Watch for bird and fish activity near any of the numerous bays and shoals.
Tip: Fling chironomids, scuds, dragons, damsels, caddis and leeches.
—Barry Stokes, manager at Islander Reels
In 2008, Rainbow trout; Large fish in crystal-clear water
When to fish: June and October.
Where to fish: All the large marl shoals.
Tip: Use chironomids, mayfly nymphs or leeches on indicators or clear, intermediate sink lines.
—Don Freschi, host of Sport Fishing: On the Fly