Club History

  • 2013
    Club member Doug Blessin wins 2 Gold Medals in shooting at the Canadian Nationals.A new record 2200 chum salmon return to the Brunette River to spawn.


    2012
    1500 chum salmon return to the Brunette River to spawn.


    2011 to 2012
    New off-channel salmon rearing pond is built on the Brunette River using compensation funds from the #1 Highway widening through Burnaby.

    A second off-channel tributary to the Brunette River is constructed to create more juvenile salmon habitat, again using the same compensation funding.


    2011
    Cindy Hamulas wins Gold Medal in air rifle at international shoot in Brazil.
    New concrete fishway is completed at the Cariboo Dam on the Brunette River, replacing the old wooden structure (see photo).


    2009
    Simon Fraser University spends 1 million dollars to protect the headwaters of Stoney Creek by moving its winter salt storage shed. Stoney Creek is the best salmon spawning stream in Burnaby and the salt is leaching into the stream and killing salmon eggs.


    2008
    Chris Trifonidis places 4th in air rifle – just missing a bronze medal – at the Beijing Paralympics.


    2007
    Junior member Chris Congram wins shooting Gold Medal at Canada Winter Games.
    Club constructs 150 meter long spawning bed for pink salmon in Brunette River (see photo).
    A rare and endangered fish species called Nooksack Dace is discovered in the Brunette River, qualifying the river for special protected status.


    2006 to 2008
    Club completes ambitious project to place 16 6000 pound boulders to act as log anchors, followed by 20 fifty foot logs to create protected habitat for salmon juveniles in Brunette River (see photo).


    2006
    Cindy Hamulas is the only woman to be “carded” (i.e. financially supported) as a member of the National Shooting Team.
    Cindy Hamulas wins Silver Medal in Ladies’ Pairs Air Rifle event at Commonwealth Games in Australia (see photo).


    2005
    Club member Cindy Hamulas wins a national award for the top score
    in combined sport rifle and air rifle (see photo).
    Chris Trifonidis wins Canadian National Wheelchair shooting competition with a record score.


    2003
    Club member Elmer Rudolph wins National Recreational Fisheries Award for his continuing efforts to enhance salmonids in the Brunette River system (see photo).
    Club member Chris Trifonidis wins an international paralympic air rifle competition and is named Athlete of the Year.


    2002
    We release record number of our hatchery-raised coho salmon fry into the Brunette River.


    2001
    The club begins fin clipping our hatchery salmon fry before release to aid in identifying adult spawners when they return.
    The club wins City of Burnaby Enviromental Award.


    2000
    Club wins the Minister’s Environmental Award for the Province of British Columbia in the Community or Non-Profit Organization Category for our long-standing work to restore salmon population to the Brunette River watershed since 1969 (see photo).
  • 1999
    The club finances construction of three rock weirs, under the direction of D.F.O., in the Brunette River to enhance spawning areas, increase summertime levels of oxygen in the river, and to provide protected backwaters for over wintering juvenile salmon.


    1998
    Coho returns to the Lower Mainland tributaries of the Fraser River drop dramatically. Fewer than 50 coho return to the Brunette River.
    The club receives court-awarded judgements totalling $95,000 against two Coquitlam companies that had polluted a Fraser River tributary over many years. The award will be used to rebuild parts of the Brunette River to recreate habitat that had been destroyed 50 years earlier.


    1997
    Craig Avenue hatchery begins to incubate coho salmon eggs. Toxic Chemicals released into a sanitary sewer back up into an apartment building near Lougheed Mail and find their way into a storm drain which flows into the Brunette River, killing virtually a11 aquatic life in a 3km. stretch of the river over a 12 hour period.
    This spill occurs only days after thousands of salmon fry and smolts had been released into Brunette River watershed.


    1996
    Construction begins on salmon holding facility and hatchery at 7681 Craig Avenue, Burnaby B.C.


    1992
    Club finances the installation of a new fishway over the Caribou Dam to enable spawners to return to favourable streams that are tributary to Burnaby and Deer Lakes. The money is awarded to us from legal judgements against convicted polluters and is directed to us rather than to the provincial treasury under the recommendation of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.
    Club campaign is successful in mobilizing public opinion against using chloramine in our drinking water. GVRD decides against its use.
    City of Burnaby agrees to provide a wooded lot to build a salmon and trout holding facility to enable us to better enhance fish populations in the entire Brunette system. This building will also be used to improve public education and awareness of environmentally sensitive areas like the Brunette River as well as Burnaby and Deer Lakes.


    1991
    Sapperton Fish and Game Club publicizes massive fish kills on Fergus Creek in South Surrey due to experimentation with chloramine in the drinking water by the Municipality of Surrey.
    Sapperton Club launches major 2 year campaign to prevent the GVRD from switching from chlorine to chloramine in the Lower Mainland water distribution system. Chloramine’s very long persistence, if it escapes into the natural environment, poses disastrous consequences for all streams in the Lower Mainland where hundreds of volunteers have spent thousands of hours rehabilitating salmon and trout populations.


  • 1989
    Vandalism on Burlington Northern railway track causes 3000 litters of diesel fuel to be dumped into Stoney Creek, the major spawning stream of the Brunette River system, killing thousands of juvenile fish. Sapperton Club, along with the Stoney Creek Community School, sponsors the first Great Salmon Sendoff to celebrate the return of salmon to this once “dead” Brunette River. Three thousand people attend.


    1987
    Successful efforts made by club members, in co-operation with Department of Fisheries and Oceans, to track down and eliminate pollution sources in the Brunette’s tributary creeks which may be killing significant numbers of returning salmon.


    1985 to 1988
    Numbers of returning salmon and trout continue to increase with club members taking eggs to reinforce the native stock.


    1985
    Major fish kill in Brunette River through dumping of 10 gallons of wood preservative in Lake City industrial site. No charges laid due to insufficient evidence.


    1984
    First return of coho salmon spawning in the Brunette in 30 years. Club members take eggs from spawners to begin the long process of re-establishing a native Brunette River coho salmon stock.


    1980 to 1983
    Fishermen begin to report catchable trout in the Brunette River. Club builds several concrete fishways throughout the Brunette system to help returning salmon get to good spawning habitat.
  • 1974 to 1979
    Continued lobbying by club members with the assistance of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans results in effective enforcement of bylaws to eliminate the worst pollution cases and improve the water quality to the point where juvenile salmon and trout can survive in the Brunette.


    1970 to 1973
    Club lobbies various levels of government for, assistance to curb pollution in the Brunette but meets with much apathy. Club members attempt on their own to clean up the worst debris on the river with the help of GVRD.
  • 1969
    Club decides to try to restore the Brunette River as a community project. Many of the club members remembered its good fishing in days past and were appalled at its sorry state.


    1962
    Sapperton Fish and Game Club is formed.