Fishing Report for Week Ending February 28, 2016
OVERVIEW – Salmon fishing was GOOD this past week when it wasn’t too windy. Most of the salmon are still on the small size, however, there were some larger salmon into the low 20’s caught this past week. Halibut fishing was GOOD early in the week.
Subject: FN0110-Recreational - Salmon - Chinook - Areas 19 and 20: Fishery Management Actions Effective March 1, 2016 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.
The Esquimalt Anglers’ boat ramp will be closed for repairs all day on Thursday and Friday, March 3 & 4.
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. There are lots of small springs off Sooke right now but there is the occasional larger fish. Anchovies have been the top bait recently, especially with glow teaser heads. The 3”-4” Coyote, Gypsy and G-Force spoons, as well as hoochies, are also top choices for Sooke anglers in the winter months. Good colors have been Outfitters, 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 the Purple Onion, the Gibbs Outfitter and the Lemon Lime.
BECHER BAY – Salmon fishing was GOOD for anglers in East Sooke. Anglers were catching springs as large as the mid teens in the bay. It has been best between the Cheanuh Marina breakwater and Fraser Island. There have also been reports of nice springs caught by the Trap Shack and in Whirl Bay. 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.
PEDDER BAY –Salmon fishing was GOOD, just like last week. There were lots of springs at the entrance to the bay. John McHale caught the biggest salmon of the week, a 16¾ lb spring hooked in 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.
HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was GOOD early in the week. Best areas were Race Rocks, William Head 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 GOOD off Victoria. The fish were plentiful near Albert Head (on the pinnacles) and near Esquimalt, but still not very large. The inside of the harbour has also produced some nice springs. Constance Bank has been good and Brotchie Ledge to Ross Bay has also produced some fish. 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.
The 1St Annual WTF Derby was held on Sunday, Feb 28th. Weigh in was at the Lido Restaurant in the Inner Harbour. The derby winning fish was a 21.65 lb spring caught inside the Victoria breakwater by Keith Shearer. It won the top cash prize of $4,450. Second place went to Geoff Golding for a 13.1 lb spring. Third place went to Bruce Miller for a 12.65 lb spring. There were18 fish weighed in and $3000 was raised from derby proceeds for the Sooke Salmon Enhancement Society.
HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was GOOD over the weekend. There were quite a few halibut taken at Constance Bank and near 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 GOOD this past week. 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.
HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was GOOD early in the week. 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 FAIR near Sidney. Coal Island was the hot spot this past week. The nicest catch there was an 18.7 lb spring caught by Brenna Boyle from Prince Rupert. The majority of the winter springs caught recently have been short of the minimum size for retention and most areas have some fish. 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 – The 1St Annual Winter Trotac Fishing Derby was held on Sunday, Feb 28th. The derby winning fish was a 21.65 lb spring caught inside the Victoria Inner Harbour breakwater by Keith Shearer. It won the top cash prize of $4450. Second place went to Geoff Golding for a 13.1 lb spring. Third place went to Bruce Miller for a 12.65 lb spring. There were18 fish weighed in and $3000 was raised from derby proceeds for the Sooke Salmon Enhancement Society. John McHale caught a 16¾ lb spring in Whirl Bay. Brenna Boyle, from Prince Rupert, caught an 18.7 lb spring by Coal Island.
Please send photos (in jpeg format) and descriptions of your notable catch to our email email@example.com
OVERVIEW – Fishing is FAIR in most lakes. 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 River has been dropping recently, as have trees across the river. There is a dangerous sweeper above the Skutz Fall pull out and another one above the Bible Camp. One boat was lost this week, but fortunately no lives were lost. The water level at the lake today was at 1.65 meters and near Duncan at 1.4 meters. The water clarity has been good. Anglers have been catching both steelhead and brown trout in the Riverbottom area, 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 some fly anglers hooking up with steelhead too. Fly fishing at the top end of the river has been good.
TROUT – Trout fishing was FAIR on most lakes in the South Island area this past week. Cowichan Lake has produced some large cutthroat trout for those trolling 3” plugs, but that is strictly a catch and release fishery for large trout. Shore anglers at local lakes are catching trout on Powerbait, Gulp Eggs, or worms while fishing from shore and 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.
BASS - Bass fishing is VERY SLOW. Fishing drop shot style is your best bet now. 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
FISH TIP OF THE WEEK
Save your salmon heads! Besides making great bait for crab and prawn traps, salmon heads, with a piece of backbone attached, make a good halibut bait. In fact, in parts of Alaska, this is the favorite bait for big halibut.
2016 Island Outfitters Leader Board
We are now waiting for the first salmon of the year to be weighed in at the store. So, bring your next big salmon in for the contest!
1) 68.4 lbs – Wayne Boyd – Constance Bank - February 7th
2) 62.6 lbs – Tara Bardal – Oak Bay – Salmon Belly – February 11th
3) 58.5 lbs – Alexander Janssen – Salmon Head - Constance Bank - February 7th
We are now waiting for the first trout of the year to be weighed in at the store. So, bring your next big trout in for the contest!
Island Outfitters starts and ends the year with the free for fun and prizes Salmon, Trout and Halibut Leader Boards. Simply weigh your catch in at Island Outfitters and the top five fish in each category on December 31st wins a special prize.
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