Article by Danièle Beaulieu
People always talk about fishing destinations in the United States like Colorado, Montana or the Adirondacks, but we have a secret place here in Quebec, Canada and it’s called Forêt Montmorency. It belongs to the University Laval and is the largest teaching and research forest in the world, totaling 412 square kilometers of pure fishing pleasure with 2 lakes and 3 rivers.
Before coming to the Forêt Montmorency, you will want to stop in the beautiful city of Quebec. You will be going back in time by visiting the majestic Chateau Frontenac followed by a walk in the streets of old Quebec. Then you will certainly stop to visit the Citadelle of Quebec and the Plains of Abraham. There are so many popular things to see and do in the city.
After falling in love with Quebec City, you will be heading out to the Forêt Montmorency for some quiet time and to fish in the wild. There too, you will fall in love, again.
The Forêt Montmorency started introducing tenkara fly fishing in their activities last summer and it was a success. They are repeating the same formula this year, but with some new rods made exactly for the kind of rivers they have.
Their program that teaches tenkara fly fishing is called ”Taste the Forest – Trout” organized on 4 individual Sundays during the month of July and August that include fishing with a guide and how to prepare your catch.
If you do not want to take part of the organized activities, you can also fish by yourself or with friends. You will want to stay for a few days for sure. For lodging, there are a few nice cottages to rent, or you can stay in there dormitory if you have a big gathering (like the Tenkara Summit!) and are looking for more rooms.
You will find small brook trout as the primary the species in the rivers. For the kebari (fly) size #14 is a good choice and dry fly fishing can be very effective, (I have success with the Ishigaki kebari). Be prepared to find a lot of active fish in the Montmorency River, where trout can be present at every cast you make. They are very difficult to catch because they are very quick to release the fly from their mouth. As such, my choice of line is a level line the length of the rod or shorter.
There are a lot of nice places that you can do the bow and arrow cast to get exactly between two rocks that possibly hold some bigger trout. There is a part of the river that has very big pools. You can fish without wading in the river if you do not have the equipment. There is very easy access by car, as the river follows the road almost all the way, so you can stop to a lot of places to fish.
The Forêt Montmorency are very active in the fishing world as they held last summer the Provincial Fly Fishing Competition, as featured in the Summer 2017 issue of Tenkara Angler.
The personnel of the Forêt Montmorency are currently working to make the other two rivers accessible to fish in the near future. They are small rivers that will be challenging for the angler, just my kind of river. Stay tuned!
If you don’t have a tenkara rod or forgot it, they also have some to rent. And don’t be intimidated by the language barriers, the staff will welcome you in English.
If this interests you, visit the YouTube video that I made to let you see what a beautiful place it is.
Danièle Beaulieu began fly fishing in 2000 and tenkara in 2014. She fishes rivers all across Canada & New England, and started a business selling tenkara rods and accessories called TenkaraCanada.net.
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2018 issue of Tenkara Angler magazine.
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