Fishing Report for Week Ending March 20, 2016
EARLY BIRD TICKET NIGHT for the The 20th Annual Just for the Halibut Derby will be Tuesday, March 22nd at the 6 Mile Pub. Lots of prizes and give-a-ways! Festivities start at 6:00 PM. See you there!
OVERVIEW – Halibut fishing was EXCELLENT! Salmon fishing was GOOD when it wasn’t too windy.
Subject: FN0110-Recreational – Salmon – Chinook – Areas 19 and 20: Fishery Management Actions in effect to 23:59 hours Friday, June 17, 2016 Waters: Subareas 19-1 to 19-4 and Subarea 20-5 (those waters near Victoria between Cadboro Pt to Sheringham Pt.). Management measure: You may retain two (2) chinook salmon per day. These chinooks may be either- Wild or hatchery marked between 45 cm and 67 cm; or- Hatchery marked greater than 67 cm in length. – The minimum size limit in these waters is 45 cm in length. Management actions after June 17 will be announced in a second fishery notice. For the latest details on recreational fishery openings and closures in your area: A) Call 1-866-431-FISH or 604-666-2828 (24-hour phone line); or B) Visit our web page http://notices.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/fns-sap/index-eng.cfm to find applicable fishery notices; or C) Follow our sport fishing Twitter account https://twitter.com/sportfishingbc Visit our facebook page to see reports, news and videos by our guides and staff from their most recent trips.
SOOKE – The salmon fishing was GOOD for winter springs this past week. We’ve hear of fin clipped chinooks as large as 20 lbs coming from near the Sooke Bluffs. Adam Orser got a nice double header at the Bluffs with the two chinooks weighing 15 & 12 lbs. Adam was bottom bouncing a Kingfisher Kitchen Sink spoon off the bottom in 92 feet of water when he hooked the pair. We also know of another boat that landed 20 16, 10 & 6 lb springs while trolling anchovies at 120 feet in 150 foot depths. Anchovies have been the top bait recently, especially with Cop Car and Purple Haze teaser heads. The 3”-4” Kingfisher, Gypsy and G-Force spoons, as well as hoochies, are also top choices for Sooke anglers. Good colors have been Kitchen Sink, Irish Cream and No Bananas. Hoochies in White Glow, Army Truck and Tiger Prawn have been catching their fair number of fish. The most popular flashers recently have been ones with Moon Jelly patterns such as the Madi and the Lemon Lime.
Adam Orser with his double header from the Sooke Bluffs
BECHER BAY – Salmon fishing was FAIR for anglers in East Sooke. Anglers were still catching springs in the bay, but Whirl Bay produced larger fish. A 20 lb hatchery fish from Whirl Bay was the biggest salmon at the marina this past week. There have also been reports of springs caught by the Trap Shack and in Whirl Bay, but those were smaller fish. Anglers have been successful with all types of gear. Anchovies in glow teaser heads have been very effective. Spoons, such as the G-Force and Skinny G, in Cop Car, Bon Chovy or Irish Cream colours were also effective. For flashers, the Madi, Lemon Lime and Purple Onion have been good. Some halibut up to 50 lbs were also brought back to the marina. There were also a few halibut brought into Cheanuh Marina from Race Rocks and points east.
PEDDER BAY –Salmon fishing was GOOD this past week. There were springs at the entrance to the bay but most of the larger fish, up to 20 lbs, came from Whirl Bay. The anglers are fishing close to the bottom and often bouncing the downrigger balls on the bottom, in 120-150 feet of water. There is still a lot of bait right inside the bay. Small spoons, such as the G-Force, Coyote and Gypsy, in the glow and/or any bright colours were very effective. Hootchies and squirts also produced well. Flashers that remain popular include Glow green, Lemon-Lime and Purple Onion. And you can’t go wrong fishing anchovies in a Bloody Nose teaser.
Mike Boyd brought in this nice 60 lb halibut from Race Rocks.
HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was EXCELLENT this past weekend week with lots of boats out and lots of limits caught. Mike Boyd brought in a nice 60 lb halibut from Race Rocks. Best areas were Race Rocks, William Head, 27 Fathom reef and Constance Bank. Anglers that were fishing were using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait. Berkley Gulp and Powerbait soft plastics also work very well. You can also use Mudraker, Lucky or other large Jigs if you want to stay away from the dogfish.
VICTORIA – Fishing for salmon was FAIR off Victoria. The fish were some salmon near Constance Bank and Albert Head (on the pinnacles). Most of the salmon are still not very large in size, mostly “charter specials”. Brotchie Ledge to Ross Bay has also produced some fish, but not too many. Spoons and squirts were successful in getting hook ups. Bloody Nose and Purple Haze have been the most popular colors for teaser heads. Good choices in plastic baits are the Electric Chair, Purple Haze and White Glow. Coho Killers, AP Needlefish, G Force and Coyote spoons in Green Splatterback, Moon Glow and Cop Car colours have also been good. The Purple Onion, Lemon Lime and Madi have been effective lately.
HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was EXCELLENT this past weekend, the best weekend of the year so far. The best areas have been Constance Bank, Border Bank and Albert Head. Anglers that were fishing were using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait. Berkley Gulp and Powerbait soft plastics also work very well. You can also use Mudraker, Lucky or other large Jigs if you want to stay away from the dogfish.
OAK BAY – Salmon fishing was FAIR this past week but few people were fishing salmon in this area. The Flats have been holding some nice fish recently for those trolling close to the bottom. It’s been best in 100-140 depths. Good lures have been Green Splatterback Coho Killers, Skinny G spoons and APT Needlefish spoons.
Walker Grant (left), Hayley Gilbert (middle) and Chris Row (right) with two nice halibut
HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was EXCELLENT this past weekend. Bruce Cook weighed in a 63.2 lb halibut at the store yesterday. Chris Row from Brockville, Ontario caught a 129cm fish that weighed in at 63 lbs. Walker Grant caught a 126cm Halibut that weighed in at 54 lbs. Anglers that were fishing were using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait. Berkley Gulp and Powerbait soft plastics also work very well. You can also use Mudraker, Lucky or other large Jigs if you want to stay away from the dogfish.
SIDNEY– Salmon fishing was GOOD near Sidney. Moresby Island has produced the most keepable salmon, but that’s not the only spot where keepers were caught. Coal Island and the Red Can near Sidney Spit also gave up some decent size fish this past week. The majority of the winter springs caught recently have been short of the minimum size for retention though. There have also been a number of boats fishing in the north end of Saanich Inlet. Most anglers are fishing using anchovies in Bloody Nose and UV Green teaser heads. Coho Killer spoons have also been working well, especially in double glow and Gold Nugget.
Notable Catches – Adam Orser got a nice double header at the Sooke Bluffs with the two chinooks weighing 15 & 12 lbs. Mike Boyd brought in a nice 60 lb halibut from Race Rocks. Bruce Cook weighed in a 63.2 lb halibut from Oak Bay at the store yesterday. Chris Row from Brockville, Ontario caught a 129 cm fish that weighed in at 63 lbs. Walker Grant caught a 126 cm halibut that weighed in at 54 lbs.
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OVERVIEW – Fishing is PICKING UP in most lakes for both trout and bass. Wild rainbows and cutthroats over 50 cm must be released in Cowichan Lake, where the fishing has been good for these large trout. Steelheading has been good in most Island rivers.
COWICHAN RIVER – The water has been dropping for a week and is 1.85 meters at the lake today and 1.55 meters near Duncan. The water clarity has been good. There is a dangerous sweeper above the Skutz Fall pull out and another one above the Bible Camp.. Anglers have been catching steelhead and the occasional brown trout, mostly from drift boats. For steelhead, good lures to fish are Spin ‘n Glo’s, Beads and yarn, Gooey Bobs and the always reliable Pink Worm. Spoons can also be a great lure in these conditions. We’ve also heard of fly anglers hooking up with steelhead too. Fly fishing at the top end of the river for trout and steelhead has been good.
TROUT – Trout fishing was PICKING UP on most lakes in the South Island area. Most lakes have received the first stocking of catchable rainbow trout by now so there are more fish to be caught. Shore anglers are catching trout on Powerbait, Gulp Eggs, or worms while fishing close to the bottom. Orange Garlic and Pink Garlic have been good choices recently for Powerbait. Fly anglers are fishing Pumpkinheads, Wooly Buggers, Leeches and Micro Leech patterns on full sink fly lines. Trollers are catching trout with Gibbs Gang Trolls and Gibbs Wedding Bands. Other good trolling lures are the Apex Trout Killers in rainbow, green or black and white patterns. Flatfish and/or Kwikfish have also been effective in sizes 5 to 7 in Frog, Black with Silver Flake or Rainbow Pattern.
The Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC has started their spring releases of catchable rainbow trout from the Vancouver Island Trout Hatchery. On March 17th, Kemp, Matheson and Spectacle lakes received 500 trout each with an average size of 250 grams. On March16th, Durrance Lake received 187 brood stock trout with an average size of 675 grams and 1,255 trout with an average size of 242grams. On March 8th, Lookout Lake received 175 trout and Ida Anne Lake received 75 trout with an average size of 225 grams. On March 3rd, Elk Lake received 2,000 trout and Shawnigan Lake received 1,950 trout with an average size of 232 grams. On February 29th, Prospect Lake received 2,000 trout, Thetis Lake received 1,000 trout and Glen Lake received 500 trout with an average size of 222 grams. On March 3rd, Elk Lake received 2,000 catchable rainbows and Shawnigan Lake received 1,950 trout averaging 232 grams.
BASS – Bass fishing is PICKING UP. Soft plastics rigged “Carolina Style “are also a good choice when fishing the bottom, drop offs and reefs, and have been most productive in 4” Smoke or Pumpkinseed Yum baits. Langford Lake, Shawnigan Lake, Prospect Lake and Elk and Beaver Lakes are the best local bass lakes. St. Mary’s Lake on Salt Spring Island is also a great lake for bass fishing.
Notable Catches – Please send photos (in jpeg format) and descriptions of your notable catch to our email firstname.lastname@example.org