Fishing Report for Week Ending November 4, 2012

Fishing Report for Week Ending November 4, 2012


OVERVIEW Fishing was FAIR TO GOOD over the last week. The main focus is now winter springs (feeder Chinooks). A few coho and chum are also being caught.

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Sooke Coho salmon fishing has been FAIR in the area. Anglers are still getting some coho up to 12 lbs, but not too many. The focus is shifting to winter springs. The best area has been just off the haror entrance and the towards the Sooke Bluffs.. Anchovies are catching the most springs, but since the winters are very active feeders, just about any gear will catch them. Bloody Nose and Purple Haze teaser heads are the most popular when fishing bait for winter springs.

Becher Bay – Fishing was GOOD for winter springs. They have now moved into the bay, just out from the flag pole. Most of the springs are around 8 lbs but there have been some caught as large as 12 lbs. Whirl Bay and the Bedfords have also been good spots for winter springs up to 9lbs. The majority of anglers fishing for springs are now using bait, with anchovies being most popular bait. The best teaser heads for anchovies were the Purple Haze and the Bloody Nose. Like usual, the fish are close to the bottom and glow in the dark flashers are a good choice. A few coho have also been caught recently, but nowhere near the numbers of fish as in the previous month.

Pedder Bay – Salmon fishing was SLOW but only 3 boats went out this past weekend, so there isn’t a lot of news. They did catch winter springs in the 5 to 7 lb size in Whirl Bay so there are fish around. Anchovies were the most productive bait. Bloody Nose and Purple Haze teaser heads have been the most popular when using bait and the best flashers have been the Silver Betsey and Purple Haze. Hootchies and squirts were good in Purple Haze, Army Truck and Clover leaf. There is still the odd coho in the area.

Victoria Waterfront – Salmon fishing was FAIR to GOOD this past week. Constance Bank had winter springs up to 9 lbs on it, with lots in the 4 to 6 lb size range. Action has been pretty good there, especially on Army Truck, Purple Haze and Glo Below squirts.  Many of the boats are having no trouble getting their limit of winter springs. Closer in, there has been some good action too. Mike Webber got his limit of two with springs weighing 15½ & 8½ lbs. Mike was fishing near the harbor entrance. Anchovies have been very effective recently with the best teaser head colors being Purple Haze and the Bloody Nose. Coho Kill spoons have also been effective with the UV Purple Haze patterns very popular. Good choices in plastic baits are the Army Truck, Purple Haze and the Glo Below. Good flashers have been the Green/Glow and Green/Silver Hot Spots. 

The Esquimalt Anglers’ Association hasjust added a real time web cam on their web site. I t refreshes every 15 seconds and shows what’s happening at the Fleming Beach ramp. Here is the link: Also, the December 8th Frost Bite Derby has been cancelled.

Oak Bay Salmon fishing has been SLOW on the Flats. Anglers were catching a few small winter springs while fishing close to the bottom. The best bet for springs is trolling right on bottom in 60 to 120 feet of water with squirts, Baitrix tiny strip, small anchovy or Coho Killer spoons. Good squirts were the Electric Chair, Pickle Green, J-79 and Jellyfish. 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 – Salmon fishing was GOOD in the Sidney Channel. There have been lots of undersize springs in the Sidney Channel as well as bigger ones up to 11 lbs. There has been some action off Moresby Island as well.. 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 Purple Haze, Glow Below and Electric Chair. Mongoose Coyote spoons have also been working well.

Notable Catches – Mike Webber got his limit of two with springs weighing 15½ & 8½ lbs. Mike was fishing near the harbor entrance. 

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



OVERVIEW – Trout fishing is FAIR on most lakes in the South Island area. Bass fishing is SLOWING WAY DOWN on most lakes.

Cowichan River – The water level on the Cowichan River is rising now, up to 1.4 meters near the lake and near Duncan.  Salmon are in the river now, so it’s a good time to start fly fishing egg patterns for trout hanging just below the salmon redds in the upper reaches of the Cowichan. The best flies for resident rainbow trout are usually nymphs, especially bead headed Prince and Gold Ribbed Hare’s Ear nymphs. If you want to target browns, fish with minnow imitating streamers, muddlers, zonkers or wooly buggers. Remember it is fly fishing only year round between the trestle at Greendale road and the 70.2 mile trestle. ALL wild trout must be released on all streams in region 1 as well. 

Effective immediately until 23:59 hours November 15, 2012, the Cowichan River will re-open to fly-fishing for only downstream of the weir at Cowichan Lake to 66 Mile Trestle. The daily limit for coho is one per day, maximum size 35cm. There have been complaints of spin fishermen in the fly only section of river. Keep an eye out and report any possible poachers.

The Vancouver Island Trout Hatchery has started fall releases of catchable-size rainbow trout.  On October Shawnigan Lake received 2,701 catchable rainbows, Thetis Lake 1,000 catchable rainbows and Langford Lake 750 catchable rainbows. On October 3rd, both Elk Lake and Prospect Lake received 2,000 catchable rainbows. On October 4th, Langford Lake received another 1,598 catchable Rainbows. On October 11th, Shawningan Lake received 1,000 catchable rainbows, Long Lake received 2,000 catchable rainbows and Fuller Lake received 1,470 catchable rainbows. On October 13th, Fuller Lake received another 100 catchable rainbows. On October 18, Lookout Lake received 250 catchable rain bows. On October 24th, Kemp lake received 1,500 catchable rainbows, Matheson Lake received 1,000 catchable rainbows, and Colwood Lake 250 catchable rainbows. On October 25th, Durrance and Kissinger Lakes received 1,000 catchable rainbows and Spectacle and Lizard Lakes received 500 catchable rainbows. On October 26th, Prospect Lake received 2,000 catchable rainbows and Dougan Lake received 1,500 catchable rainbows. On October 30th, Glen and Thetis lakes received 1,000 catchable rainbows, Langford Lake received 550 catchable rainbows, Prior Lake received 500 catchable rainbows and Ida Anne and Lookout Lakes received 250 catchable rainbows each. Also, 50 reconditioned Fraser Valley Rainbow brood stock were released into Fuller Lake on Friday November 2nd. These fish were about 2.5 kilograms each, so they should supply some fun for anglers. This brings the total amount of catchable rainbows released this past year to 46,669 catchable rainbows. 

Anglers are catching trout on both Powerbait, Gulp! eggs, or worms, especially while fishing from shore. Fly anglers are doing well using Pumpkinheads, Wooly Buggers, Leeches or Micro Leech patterns when fishing deep. Trollers have been doing OK with a variety of lures but we’ve heard tat the Orange Hot Shot has been good. 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, Willow Leaf Lake trolls with a worm-tipped GIBBS Wedding Band will almost always catch some fish. The biggest trout continue to be caught at Elk Lake, with Langford Lake being your next best bet to hook into a real “lunker”. By the way, all wild rainbows and cutthroats over 50 cm must be released in Cowichan Lake. 

Bass Fishing - At this time of year the Bass move to deeper drop offs and are harder to find. During the day, soft plastics rigged Carolina style work well and crank baits can work well too. 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 and descriptions of your notable catch to our email


Now is the time to go deep for Chinook salmon. The migrating fish have almost totally disappeared and the winter or feeder springs are starting to provide most of the action. So start bouncing your downrigger balls off of the bottom if you want to be in the strike zone.

Island Outfitters Leader Board – 2012 


1) 182.8 lbs – Jeff Saponja – Port Renfrew – Mackerel – August 11th

2) 162.3 lbs – Des Hatchard – Port Renfrew – Herring - April 15th

3) 145.6 lbs – Ken Emms – Oak Bay – Herring - April 15th

4) 144.5.4 lbs – Trevor MacDougall – Oak Bay – Herring - May 12th

5) 142.6 lbs – Andrew Stawicki – Haro Strait – Octopus - May 13th



1) 39.4 lbs – Curtis Petres – Trap Shack – Anchovy – July 2nd

2) 34.8 lbs – Jason Whittaker – Beechey Head – Anchovy – June 23rd

3) 30.0 lbs – Debbie Campbell – Beechey Head – Anchovy - June 27th

4) 28.6 lbs – Duane Bertrand – Trap Shack – Anchovy - June 20th

5) 28.5 lbs – Falon Lancey – Sherringham Point – Anchovy - May 25th



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 and like us on facebook!