Chinook fishing has been very good the past few days and we are seeing some great signs for the 2015 season. Humpback whales are back along with good amounts of baitfish the past week. On thursday we fished South Bank and hooked 8 Chinook (Kings) salmon and released them. Saturday and Sunday we caught our limit of Chinook and Lingcod around Great Bear and on Sunday we had time to go get some oysters as well since fishing was very fast. The Chinook are coming in between 7-20lbs mostly. The fishing is already better than last year at this time and this is a great sign for things to come for the rest of April, May and June. July – Sept should be good as always. We are getting busy for early season as well, so please don't wait till the last minute to book your trip! Happy fishing!
Salmon fishing for Chinook has been decent in Barkley Sound though you may have to travel around a bit to find your hot spot. Salmon are mostly going in the 6-12lb range with a few larger fish being taken. The two largest fish taken on the weekend derby were 23 and 21lbs. Great Bear, Beg, Sail Rock, Swaile, Kirby and Vernon are the general hotspots to try. If you come on a fishing trip with us in the early season you can do some prawning and crabbing, so if you are looking to get a nice display of seafood, this is the time of year to come up.
A few halibut are also being taken inside around Sail Rock and Great Bear as well as a few spots offshore.
Call us if you would like some early season fishing packages! 877-777-4344.
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This past summer had people all excited with expectations of a record returns of Chinook headed through Ucluelet for the Columbia River. While the Columbia River did get a record return a little just over last years numbers, we didn't see all these fish pass in front of us as expected. There was a big silver lining to the season however. July was one of the most fun months I have had as a fishing guide with the whole month spent fishing within 15 minutes from the harbour in a semi protected/protected bay. We started the month trolling as we normally do but ended up fishing live squid near the end. Not only did we get protection from the weather, but we got what I think is the most sporty way to catch a salmon. While downriggers are efficient ways to catch salmon, many people are would rather have a more hands-on way to start the battle of the scrappy Chinook.
The Good news is that I think squid fishing is here to stay. We hadn't done it in years previous and learned a ton about it this past summer. If squid numbers stay up as they are expected to, than we very well could have a repeat of last season. There is just one for thing to say about the fishery here during July: I must say our guides did an incredible job figuring out what the salmon were feeding on and our success during July was not what most guide here experienced. We ended up getting an average larger weight size per day than in 2012 and 13.
So what happened in May, June, August and September?
As not all of you came in July, we had some good fishing in all of these months. June was not quite as good as it was in 2013, but we still managed to get some good fish. I would say the larger runs of Chinook were a little late coming through and it didn't really pick up until the last few days of June. During August the hotspots changed almost daily and we had to be ready to pick up and move or else get really good at guessing.
The Chinook moved in close to shore near the end of the month and we mostly fished Little Beach near the end with just a couple runs to Big Bank. The inshore fishing in 2014 was much better, however it did keep us moving quite often as the fish didn't stay long in each spot. We did have some good days at Big Bank but only ran out there a handful of times when fishing in close went slow.
Halibut Fishing 2014
Halibut fishing seemed to be on and off. One day we would get lots and the next it would be slow or two days hot and two days cold. We did get them consistently through out the summer starting in late May right up to mid September. We mostly bottom bounced for them in July about 2 miles from our salmon fishing spot and trolled for them in August when fishing 5-10 miles offshore.
Coho Fishing 2014
The Coho mostly stayed way offshore, however we did get some good days with Coho during late June to early September. Our best coho days were in early September and we also go a few Chinook in the mix as well. Since we were fishing in close to shore in early September, if we caught a Chinook while Coho fishing it usually was a nice one.
Check our fishing packages for an action packed fishing trip. Below are a few pics from the summers fishing!
Check our fishing packages for an action packed fishing trip!
The sportiest way to catch salmon in my opinion is fishing live bait. On the west coast there is generally two common ways to catch salmon. Troll with downriggers or cut plug herring.
But there is another way most people don't know about and that is to catch Chinook salmon in shallow water with live squid. And what is significant about shallow water? By instinct most Chinook like to dive deep when hooked, so when you get a Chinook on the line in shallow water they often give you a good really good run. Also, because the fish is closer to you, you will feel more of the action and will be more involved in reeling the fish in.
So when can you fish live squid? The best time to do live squid fishing here for the returning Chinook is late June/early July. (Last year we had good squid fishing right up to the end of July). There really isn't anything like it. First you have fun catching the squid early in the morning and then you get to use your own caught bait while holding the rod to hook a Chinook salmon. For all those of you who are looking for interactive fishing, this one is for you.
There is a short video below showing a couple double headers from one of our guides Fred Perron. If you haven't done it before, you need to try it. It is one of those things that should be on every bucket list. When you decide that you just have to do it, plan on coming in late June or July. One thing to note is these Chinook were a little smaller than what we normally get here during July.
I hope you enjoy the video!
The Chinook fishing was pretty consistent in the first week of September near Little Beach. The only thing that kept changing was the bait. The fish switched from small spoons, to anchovies to needle fish hutchies. Most of the Chinook were in the 15-20lb range with a few going bigger. The halibut seemed to move around a bit as well. The good news is that we still found some and we had some happy customers. Below are a few pictures from the past few weeks.