Fishing Report for Week Ending April 23, 2017

SALTWATER

OVERVIEW – Halibut fishing was FAIR due to big tides in most areas. Fishing was GOOD for winter springs when the  weather wasn’t too windy. Because of the weather, not that many anglers have been out fishing.  

For the latest details on recreational fishery openings and closures in your area:

  1. A) Call 1-866-431-FISH or 604-666-2828 (24-hour phone line);
  2. B) Visit our web page http://notices.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/fns-sap/index-eng.cfm to find applicable fishery notices; or
  3. 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. 

Trevor Skakun and Marina with the derby winning halibut

 The 21st Annual Just for the Halibut Derby is now in the history books. Congratulations to Trevor Skakun for winning $7500 with his 72.1lb Halibut! Chris Hansen came in second and won $2,500 with his 68.6 lb halibut. These two top winning fish were caught in Oak Bay waters. Third place and $1,000 went to Al Lacharity for a 64.6 lb halibut from Constance Bank. Thank you to everyone who joined us this weekend and to all of our sponsors! We hope to see you next year! Visit our facebook page to see the full leader board and pictures of all the halibut entered in the derby.

Chris Hansen and crew with the second place halibut

SOOKE – The salmon fishing has been GOOD for springs. Most of the hatchery fish are running from 6 to 10 lbs in size. There have been a few larger unclipped fish that have been caught and released. The best fishing remains in 110 to 130 feet of water with the salmon close to the bottom looking for needlefish. Good areas have been near Otter Point, the Bluffs, and Tugwell Creek. Most of the anglers are using artificial lures and the Skinny G needlefish spoon in the Outfitters color scheme has been the most effective spoon. The top spoons for Sooke anglers have lots of glow, red or Moon Jelly as the primary color. Good choices for teaser head colors are UV Green, Chartreuse, Bloody Nose and Purple Haze. For flashers, you can’t go wrong with a Super Betsey, Madi or Bon Chovi Flasher. Hootchies in White, Glow/Green and Purple Haze have been effective recently. Halibut fishing has been slower west of Sooke.

BECHER BAYSalmon fishing was GOOD this past week. The best fishing has been near Beechey Head and Aldridge Point. There were hatchery springs up to 21 lbs caught as well as the more common smaller 6-12 lb hatchery springs. The best depths for trolling has been 100 – 110 feet on the downrigger. Some large wild springs were caught and released inside the bay near Lamb Island. More anglers are using bait now and are finding anchovies in glow teaser heads have been working best. Spoons, especially G-Force and Skinny G spoons, in No Bananas or Outfitters’ colours have been very effective. For flashers, the Red Glow Hot Spot, Lemon Lime and Green/Glow Hot Spot.

PEDDER BAY – Pedder Bay Marina reports GOOD salmon fishing for hatchery springs from 6 to 12 lbs in size. The fishing was best by the Can Buoy at the mouth of the bay and in Whirl Bay. There are lots of needlefish in the area and salmon are targeting them. Most anglers are using artificial lures and trolling close to the bottom, but anchovies are also producing well. The fish haven’t been too picky about what they will strike. Spoons, especially G-Force, Skinny G and AP Tackle works spoons in Outfitters’, Bon Chovy or No Bananas colours, have been very effective. Hootchies and squirts with a green and glow color combination have been good plastic baits to use. Anchovies were still working this past week. Good choices for teaser head colors are UV Green, Chartreuse, Bloody Nose and Purple Haze. Flashers that are popular include the Hot Spot Red/Glow, Lemon-Lime and Madi.

HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was FAIR TO GOOD this past weekend. Eight of the top 24 halibut were caught in the Race Rocks area. Most anglers that were fishing for halibut are using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait. Also working well was the 8” Powerbait Grubs and Delta Hali Hawgs.

VICTORIA – Fishing for salmon was FAIR this past week. Constance Bank was where the most consistent action occurred and springs caught there weighed up to 12 lbs. Closer in along the waterfront the fishing has definitely been slower than on the bank but hatchery springs up to 13 lbs were caught. Best areas have been Brotchie Ledge and Clover Point. Your lure should be close to the bottom when trolling off fro springs this time of year. Spoons have been very successful in getting hook ups. Green Spatter Back UV Coho Killers, 3.5” Cop Car spoons or AP Tackleworks needlefish spoons have brought some hookups. Like elsewhere, needlefish are the predominant feed right now.

HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was FAIR this past week. Constance Bank was the best location to fish on the weekend and four of the top prize winning halibut came from there. The halibut have been fairly deep with depths of over 250 feet the most productive. Most anglers that were fishing for halibut are using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait. Also working well was the 8” Powerbait Grubs and Delta Hali Hawgs.

OAK BAY – Salmon fishing was GOOD recently. There are hatchery springs into the teens near Brodie Rock and on the Flats. The salmon are feeding on needlefish and have been at depths from 65 to 145 feet, depending on where the feed are located. All of the anglers have been either bottom bouncing or jigging close to the bottom. Good trolling lures have been Coho Killers, Bon Chovi or Outfitters Skinny G spoons or AP Tackleworks needlefish spoons. Sandlance lures and squirts (needle fish) are best in pearl, white & green, or white glow. Good jigging lures have been Point Wilson Darts and the Delta Mac Fish.

HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was GOOD with the first, second and sixth place fish in the derby coming from Oak Bay. There were a lot of small fish from this area as well. The halibut were taking salmon heads or bellies, large herring and octopus. Be sure to get setup about an hour and a half before the slack to catch the tide swing and to be able to stay on the bottom. Most anglers that were fishing for halibut are using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait. Also working well was the 8” Powerbait Grubs and Delta Hali Hawgs.

SIDNEY– Salmon fishing was GOOD this past week. Salmon up to 19 lbs have been caught in and most areas around Sidney have produced keeper springs. Right now, Sidney is probably the best area to fish if you are looking for a large salmon, especially with no size restrictions in place here. Good areas were Hamley, Coal Island, Saanichton Spit, Fairfax and Pender Island. There are still a lot of undersize fish around too providing frequent action.  Anglers using spoons found silver Coho Killers, Gibbs Needle G and AP Tackleworks needlefish spoons the most successful spoons this past weekend. Anchovies and Tiny Strip were also good producers of fish. Tickets are still available for the 7th annual Sidney Salmon derby.

Notable Catches The 21st Annual Just for the Halibut Derby is now in the history books. Congratulations to Trevor Skakun for winning $7500 with his 72.1lb Halibut! Chris Hansen came in second and won $2,500 with his 68.6 lb halibut. These two top winning fish were caught in Oak Bay waters. Third place and $1,000 went to Al Lacharity for a 64. 6 lb halibut from Constance Bank.

Please send photos (in jpeg format) and descriptions of your notable catch to our email info@fishingvictoria.com  

 

FRESHWATER 

The 2017-2019 Freshwater fishing regulation synopsis is now available.

Major regulation changes for 2017-2019 include the removal of the April 15-June 15 prohibition on bass retention as well as new trophy angling regulations for Flora, Regan and Lizard Lakes. 

OVERVIEW – Fishing was PICKING UP in most lakes for trout and bass as water temperatures are rising. Winter run steelhead fishing is over in most rivers on both sides of the Island.

The Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC has started their stocking of spring catchable rainbow trout into Vancouver Island lakes. On March 29th, Lookout Lake received 200 catchable trout and Ida Anne Lake 50 catchable trout averaging 247.19 grams.  On March 28th, Elk Lake received 1,750 catchable trout averaging 226.75 grams. On March 22nd, Shawnigan Lake received another 500 catchable trout averaging g 240.6 grams. On March 14th, Shawnigan Lake received 1,750 catchable trout averaging 242.6 grams. On March 10th, Thetis Lake received 1,500 trout and Colwood Lake 250 trout averaging 236.54 grams.  On March 6th, Durrance Lake received 1,000 trout and Glen, Kemp and Matheson Lakes received 500 trout averaging 231.7 grams. On March 2nd, Elk Lake and Prospect Lake were each stocked with 1,750 trout weighing 238.82 grams each. To find out about stockings all over the Island and the province, as well as the different strains being released, click on the link http://www.gofishbc.com/Stocked-Fish.aspx

COWICHAN RIVER – The Cowichan River’s water level is still too high for decent wading. The water level is now at 1.8meters near the lake and 1.53 meters near Duncan. There has been a slide at the Clay Bank pool and the river is discolored with low visibility downstream of the slide. Fishing for trout in the fly only area has been good, especially if you are in a drift boat. Bead head nymphs have been working well and some March Browns have been hatching during the day.

TROUT – Trout fishing is FAIR TO GOOD on most lakes in the South Island. Shore anglers are catching trout on Powerbait, Gulp Eggs, or worms while fishing close to the bottom. Pink, Chartreuse and Fluorescent Yellow have been good choices recently for Powerbait. Fly anglers are fishing Wooly Buggers, Leeches and Micro Leech patterns on full sink fly lines. Trollers are catching trout with Gibbs Gang Trolls and Gibbs Wedding Bands. 2” Tomic Plugs have also been working well for Trout.

BASS – Bass fishing is GOOD as the bass move into shallower water and approach spawning season. There have been many reports of good catches. Soft plastics rigged and crank baits are working well. The most productive colors in 4” Yum baits are Smoke or Pumpkinseed. 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. As noted above, there is no longer a closed season for bass retention on the island.

Notable Catches Please send photos (in jpeg format) and descriptions of your notable catch to our email info@fishingvictoria.com

 

FISH TIP OF THE WEEK 

Its transition time again for Chinook anglers. While there are still deep running winter fish around, returning migratory springs are also starting to show up.  These fish are found much higher in the water column, and anglers who want to catch them should keep at least one line off of the bottom and at middle water depths.

 

2017 Island Outfitters Leader Boards

 

Halibut

1) 72.1 lbs – Trevor Skakun – Oak Bay – April 22nd

2) 68.9 lbs – Duane Sapelak – Discovery – Herring – March 24th

3) 68.6 lbs – Chris Hansen – Oak Bay – April 22nd

4) 64.6 lbs – Albert Lacharity – Constance Bank – April 23rd

5) 64.2 lbs – Kevin McKenna – Jordan River – April 23rd

 

Trout

1) 3 lbs 1 oz – Jeremy Herron – Elk Lake– April 8th

2) 2 lbs 15 oz – Marcel Mayhew – Elk Lake– April 8th

3) 2 lbs 14 oz – Peter Grant – Langford Lake– April 8th

4) 2 lbs 11 oz– Duane Mousseua – Elk Lake– April 8th

5) 2 lbs 10oz – Felix Viens – Langford Lake– April 8th 

Salmon

We are waiting for the first large salmon to be weighed in at the store.

 

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 win a special prize.

Derby Tickets are on sale NOW for the 7th annual Sidney Anglers Association Salmon Derby and sales will END at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, May 5th or when tickets are SOLD OUT!

Starting Feb 1st there will be 300 entry tickets available at $150 per ticket offering cash prizes of $15,000 plus merchandise prizes. Tickets are available online or at one of the following locations: Home Hardware (Sidney), Island Outfitters or Alpine Marine.  Extra dinner tickets for Friday and Saturday will also be available online or at the door with a $5 surcharge on a cash only basis. We also have a Kicker Outboard Draw. Only 150 draw tickets are available at $30 each or 4 for $100. Purchase tickets online.

See our event pages for details on upcoming events at http://fishingvictoria.com/events/

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Michael Peakman

Michael was born and raised on Vancouver island, and has been fishing since he was 3 years old.  He is well versed in all aspects of fishing and is a long time fly fisherman as well as an avid angler.  In the past, he has worked in the Charlotte’s and now guides for Island Outfitters in Port Renfrew.

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Keenan Pinchin

Keenan was born and raised on Vancouver Island. He is a Commercial and Recreational Fisher.  Keenan has been guiding in Port Renfrew with Island Outfitters since 2015.

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Zane Hyrsko

Zane has been guiding for us since 2014 in both Victoria and Port Renfrew.  He guides for both fresh and salt water charters.

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Ian White

Ian’s our store manager at Island Outfitters. He’s guided since 2004. Born and raised on Vancouver Island, he enjoys hunting and fishing throughout BC.

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Dan Findlow

Dan is our first guide on the water in Port Renfrew and has been guiding since 2006.  He has been fishing since he was four years old and decided he was going to be a fishing guide by eight years old.  Dan’s favourite lure is the Gold Nugget Coho Killer when fishing for Salmon.

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Rob Rippin

Rob started out fishing for Pike as a kid in Manitoba but has loved trolling for salmon since he has moved to Victoria.  He has been guiding with Island Outfitters, out of Victoria, for the last 16 years.  When he is out on the water, he loves trolling an Irish Cream Coho Killer behind a Madi Flasher.

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Ward Bond

Ward is co-owner and operator of Island Outfitters, and has been since its inception in 1994. Hunting and fishing are his passion. He’s our Head Guide and holds our freshwater guiding license.

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Darren Wright

Darren is the co-owner and operator of Island Outfitters since it all began in 1994. He’s been guiding professionally since 1995

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