The Stave River is a short body of water, only about 3 miles long, draining into the Fraser River. It is located between Maple Ridge, BC and Mission BC, on Highway 7.
Its water supply is regulated by a hydro dam. Consequently, the water can rise and fall quite rapidly, so please use caution. The water is also affected by tides, making for best fishing on an in-coming tide, as that's when the fish tend to push into the Stave River from the Fraser. There is no fish ladder for the fish to get over the dam.
The Stave is quite easily accessible from both sides of the shoreline on both the Maple Ridge and the Mission side. Consequently, it can be quite busy when the fish are in. No one side is better than the other. Caution to boaters... It is possible to safely take a prop boat into the Stave River, about 1KM up from the highway bridge. Past that, the river becomes braided into smaller channels, and is quite shallow in most spots. Throw tides into the equation, and the Stave River is really not a safe place for boating. We don't recommend it.
This river is a great bet when the fishing gets tough on other rivers due to high and dirty water conditions, as it is always in great shape. It does not have the chance to pick up any dirt due to its short length and the dam. Some of the fishing opportunities include:
Coho Salmon - end of September/October - best fished with good roe, peeled shrimp or spoons/spinners in the slack waters
Chum Salmon - very plentiful all of October and the first part of November - best taken casting spoons or on wool or jigs under a float
Steelhead - small run of winter Steelhead
Cutthroat trout - both year round and migratory fish are available - best fished on the fly or casting lures
Chinook Salmon - a small run of fall (White) Chinook salmon is present during October
White fish - also present in the system
Article by Radek Hanus of Double Header Sport Fishing