Fishing Report for Week Ending February 12, 2012

Fishing Report for Week Ending February 12, 2012


OVERVIEW Salmon fishing was PICKING UP for winter springs in most areas. If you can find some bait and stay near it, you’ll do better than most. Seals are still a problem for anglers fishing off ofVictoria. The seals do not appear to be a problem either west or north ofVictoria.




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Sooke Salmon fishing was GOOD for winter springs up to 10 lbs this past week. Most of the salmon are still smaller fish though. The fish are deep, from 120 to 160 feet on the downrigger, in 100 to 180 feet of water. Much of the action is coming from along the Bluffs to the trailer Park, off the harbor entrance and SecretaryIsland. The fish are not very selective and being caught on all types of gear. Anchovies have been working best in Bloody Nose and Army Truck teaser heads. Hootchies and squirts are good in Purple Haze, Cloverleaf and Glo Below. The best flasher has been the Silver Betsey and Silver Fever Hot Spot. Cop Car or Green/Silver Coyote spoons have also been good for springs.

Becher Bay – The fishing was PICKING UP for winter springs. Anglers were reporting salmon up to 14 lbs fromWhirlBay and theBedfordIslands. Inside the bay, the action has been fairly consistent for springs from 7 to 10 lbs. It’s also been good from Beechey Head toIronMineBay for fish up to 14 lbs..  Fishing close to the bottom is the key to success in all areas. The springs have shone a preference for bait over artificial lures this past week. Anchovies are the most productive bait now. The best teaser heads for anchovies were the Purple Haze and the Bloody Nose. The best flashers have been the Green/Silver Hot Spots and Oki’s. Hootchies and squirts were good in White/Silver, Glo Below and Mint Tulip. Cop Car, Glow/Green or Green/Silver spoons have also been good for springs.

Pedder Bay – Salmon fishing was EXCELLENT, especially inWhirlBay.  Every boat reported catching salmon and many had limits. If a boat did not bring any springs to the dock, it was because they were releasing the ones they were catching. The springs went up to 14 lbs in size. Some anglers fished in the bay near the yellow Can Buoy or the Deep Hole and were doing fairly well on springs up to 11 lbs. The fishing was slow on the William Head side of the bay and inParryBay. The springs have shone a preference for bait over artificial lures this past week. Anchovies are the most productive bait now. The best teaser heads for anchovies were the Purple Haze and the Bloody Nose. and the best flashers have been the Silver Betsey and Purple Haze. Hootchies and squirts were good in Glo Below, Mint Tulip and Purple Haze. Coho Killer spoons in Green/White and Green/Silver Coyote spoons have also worked very well for the springs.

Victoria Waterfront – Salmon fishing was VERY GOOD out at Constance Bank and SPOTTY along the waterfront this past weekend. At the bank anglers were catching fish up to 12 lbs and releasing smaller 3 to 5 lb, but legal, springs, that is if the seals did not get them first. The bank was best for those anglers bottom bouncing in 120’ to 150’ of water. The seals were a big problem for some anglers on the bank. Closre in, anglers were getting fish up to 18 lbs while fishing between Albert Head and Clover Point. However, there was not nearly as much action along the waterfront as there was offshore. Over half boats fishing along the waterfront were skunked. The springs have shone a preference for bait over artificial lures this past week. Anchovies are the most productive bait now and  have been working best in Bloody Nose teaser heads. Coho Killers, Green/Glow and Army Truck spoons are working well for winter springs. Hootchies and squirts are good in Electric Chair, Cloverleaf and Glo Below. Good flashers have been the Green/Glow and Green/Silver Hot Spots.

Wayne Zaccarelli had great success off of the waterfront on Saturday. Waynehad three fish on in 20 minutes of fishing. He started with a double header almost as soon as he had his lines in the water. After about a minute, it took off like a train and was taking line like a wild thing. It surfaced and he figured a seal had it. Wayneput the rod in the rod holder and grabbed the other rod which had tripped at about the same time. When he reeled that line inn the fish was gone. He then went back to other rod and the fish was still there. Waynemanaged to get it up to boat and it was no seal - only an 18 pound chinook. Waynereset his lines and 5 minutes later one rod tripped again. This time it was an 8 lb hatchery chinook. Waynewas finished at 9:30 AM and had his limit. The big one was 32 inches, wild, male and with red meat. The smaller one was 25-3/4 inches, hatchery, male and with red meat. He caught both on glow white anchovy special and glow white O'Ki flasher. He lost his other fish was on UV jellyfish anchovy special and UV jellyfish flasher.

Oak Bay Salmon fishing was PICKING UP on the Flats for winter springs up to 10 lbs. Anglers are catching the fish while trolling in the Gap and on the Flats. The best bet is trolling right on bottom in 100 to 150 feet of water with squirts, Baitrix tiny strip, small anchovy or Coho Killer spoons. Good squirts are the Cloverleaf, J-79 and Electric Chair. With spoons, 3½” or 4” Gypsy, Titans, and Coyotes in Cop Car or Silver/Green colors and the Gold Star Coho Killer. Glow in the dark flashers would be the best choice for springs now.

Sidney – We have nothing new to report here. Salmon fishing has been SPOTTY aroundSidney. We’ve only heard of one 8 lb spring from Moresby and none from the south end of the Sidney Channel. There had been lots of fish around the minimum size length but a few bigger ones too. Many anglers have been fishing for springs using anchovies in Bloody Nose, Purple Haze and UV Green teaser heads. Squirts have been out producing hootchies recently and the hot patterns for springs now are the J-79, Glow Below and Electric Chair. Mongoose Coyote spoons have also been working well. Homemade Tiny Strip is also working very well.

Notable Catches – Wayne Zaccarelli caught two springs weighing 18 & 8 lbs off theVictoria waterfront.

Please send photos and descriptions of your notable catch to our email



OVERVIEW – Fishing is SLOW on the local lakes for both trout and bass in this cold, winter weather. In fact many lakes had ice over them.  Steelhead fishing is going strong in the rivers.

Cowichan River – The water level on theCowichanRiver since last Wednesday and is over 1.5 meters at the lake and nearDuncan. Water clarity has been good and anglers are getting some nice steelhead. The Riverbottom and Bible Camp areas have been the best area to fish and drift boaters. Some of the bank anglers had been catching fish. For steelhead, good lures to fish are Spin ‘n Glo’s, Corkies, Gooey Bobs and the always reliable Pink Worm. Although many anglers are successful catching winter runs on flies, most anglers chose to use floats and gear.

Local LakesTrout fishing is SLOW on most lakes in theSouth Island area, especially since many of the lakes had ice this past week. That said, some “lunkers” have been caought this past week at Dougan andLangfordLakes. Bob Sieben caught a 3.7 pound rainbow trout on the afternoon of January 29th, 2012 atDouganLake with power bait off the bottom. Bob went to collect the rod and check the line and as he twitched the line the big fish struck.

Many anglers are catching trout on both Powerbait, Gulp! Eggs, or worms. Fly anglers are mostly using Wooly Buggers or leech patterns. Trollers have been doing OK with a variety of lures but we’ve heard tat the Orange Hot Shot has been good. Chris Jones sent us pictures of 22” and 18” rainbows from fullerLakethat he caught on the Orange Hot Shot. The Rhys Davis Baitrix Trout lures and UV Mini Strip Teasers work well for larger fish too. Other good trolling lures are the Apex Trout Killers with the police car one of the best and the black with silver glitter spots taking second place. Flatfish and/or Kwikfish have also been effective in sizes 5 to 7 in Frog, Yellow with Red Spots or Blue/Silver. Smaller Rapalas in Rainbow Trout or Brown Trout patterns also work well. Lastly,WillowLeafLaketrolls with a worm-tipped GIBBS Wedding Band will almost always catch some fish. The biggest trout continue to be caught atElkLakewithLangfordLakebeing your next best bet to hook into a real “lunker”.  By the way, all wild rainbows and cutthroats over 50 cm must be released inCowichanLake.

Bass Fishing - Bass fishing is SLOW. Slower presentations such as soft plastics work as the water cools. As winter approaches, look for the fish to move into deeper water and suspend. They might become less active and take a little more “coaxing” to bite.  Langford Lake,ShawniganLake, Prospect Lake and Elk and Beaver Lakes are the best local bass lakes. St. Mary’s Lake onSaltSpringIsland is also a great lake for bass fishing.

Notable Catches - Please send photos and descriptions of your notable catch to our email


Steelheading is really tough on your hooks. Constant bouncing off of rocks quickly dulls your hook’s point, making it harder to set the hook when you get one of those rare strikes. You should check your hook for sharpness after every few casts and use a good file or hone to maintain a sharp point.

Island Outfitters Leader Board – 2011


We are now waiting for the season to open and the first “barn doors” of to be weighed in at the store.


 We are now waiting for the first big springs of the year to be weighed in at the store. Maybe you will be bringing in the biggest one this year!


Island Outfitters starts and ends the year with the free for fun and prizes Salmon and Halibut Leader Board. Simply weigh your catch in at Island Outfitters and the top five fish in each category on December 31st wins a special prize. Everybody who enters a fish gets a prize! Maybe it will be you bringing in the big one!  Please let us know as early as possible about your up coming events in 2012!

See our event pages for upcoming events!

February 18th: the Pacific Salmon Foundation Fundraising Dinner and Auction with live and silent auctions as well as raffles will be held at the University of Victoria, Commons Block, at 38700 Finnerty Road in Victoria. Limited seating is available. Tickets are $85 and can be purchased at Island Outfitters. Visit for more details.

February 24th to 26th: The 20th Annual Boat, Fishing and Outdoor Sale will be held at the Pearkes Recreation Centre at the Tillicum Mall. This is the Island's largest boating, fishing and outdoor show and sale. There will be lots of displays, manufacturer representatives and boats on view. Visit for more details.

April 6th and 7th:  Island Outfitters 18th Anniversary Sale: Our storewide annual sale with LOTS of great deals and bargains.

April 14th.  The 5th Annual Elk Lake Take a Kid Fishing Derby. Tickets are Adults - $25, Children under 16 - $10. All ticket holders are entered into the draw for a new boat and motor package. First place prizes of $1,000 for the largest tout and the largest bass. This derby has live release weigh boats and weigh-station located strategically on the lake. For more info contact us at 350-475-4969.

April 28th: The Sidney Salmon Derby. Rod Tickets are only $100.00 each! Banquet Tickets are $22.00 (including HST). Scales close at 4:00pm.- Banquet Dinner at Tulista Park starts after 4:00pm. Prizes to be won! 1st Place; $5,000 2nd Place; $3,000 3rd Place; $2,000:  Plus Draw Prizes and 50/50 Tickets! All proceeds go to Salmon Enhancement Tickets available at Island Outfitters

May 12th and 13th: The 16th Annual Just for the Halibut Derby. First prize is $7,500 cash, 2nd prize is $2,500, and 3rd prize is $1,000 cash. A hidden weight “Bonus” prize is sponsored by SG Power. Tickets are available at Island Outfitters, Pedder Bay Marina or Cheanuh Marina. Call 250-475-4969 for more information.