Published on Friday, May 4th, 2012
The weather has not been exactly very predictable lately. Sunny forecast often turned into heavy rain at times in the last minute, making our fishing plan rather difficult. Yesterday morning, Jason at Bon Chovy Fishing Charters and us decided to head out for a last-minute short trip in the morning. He phoned the night before and urged us to come out. Being fair-weather fishermen, we hesitated a bit but were glad that we went after all. It turned out to be a pretty productive day!
Bon Chovy Fishing Charters offers saltwater guiding services from Downtown Vancouver and Granville Island. Their trips happen year-round and primarily focus on the salmon fisheries in Vancouver Harbour, Howe Sound, Fraser River Mouth and Gulf Islands. Depending on the season, there is always a fishery available without having to travel too far.
We dropped the crab traps off as we ventured out from Granville Island. Our first stop was the southern end of Bowen Island, where fish have a tendency to hold and feed during the outgoing tide. The target species is chinook salmon. Jason set the rods up on the downrigger, and suddenly one fish hit before the second rod was even in the holder! It was an undersized fish, but that certainly made it an exciting start. We trolled around for an hour after that without much success, so it was time for a move.
Jason decided to try the area closer to home, as it can be good at times during the incoming tide. Baitfish are pushed inshore by the current, luring salmon in at the same time. Again, the second rod went off before all the rods were in the holders! This time it was a much larger fish. Being a rookie as I was, I had trouble yanking the line out of the downrigger release clip. It took a few tries before the line was released and thankfully the fish was still on the line. With three other rods still in the water, it made the battle that much more interesting. The fish had full control on which way it wanted to go and I was doing my best to avoid the other lines. After several minutes, it surfaced and approached the boat. Jason reached the landing net out and scooped up our first keeper of the day, a beautiful feeding chinook weighing roughly around 13lb.
We managed to pick up one other keeper and lost another before the day ended. On our way back, we picked up the crab traps and also found a few keepers to go with our salmon. Crabbing is another highlight when saltwater fishing in BC. Each licenced angler is allowed to keep four per day, as long as they are males and their carapace is wider than 6.5 inches.
Overall it was a fantastic trip for our first saltwater experience from Downtown Vancouver. Jason made it seem so effortless, most likely due to his years of saltwater guiding experience. His charters currently take clients to the same fisheries as well as Gulf Islands, which have been very productive in the past week. If you are interested, please visit Bon Chovy Fishing Charters’ website or phone 604-763-5460. Our video feature for this trip is now available!