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South Vancouver Island BC Fishing Report

By Tom Vaida, Island Outfitters Sportfishing Centre | Last updated: September 12th, 2016

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Chinook salmon fishing around Victoria BC

OVERVIEW – Salmon fishing was GOOD much of this past week. Coho are now the most commonly caught salmon, as the chinook run seems to be slowing down. The daily limit for coho is 2 per day, hatchery-marked only in Areas 14 to 20. Halibut fishing was GOOD this past weekend.

SOOKE – The salmon fishing was VERY GOOD during the week but slowed way down on the weekend. Otter Point, Possession Point and Secretary Island were the hotspots. The springs seem to be either at one or the other of these locations each day. The fish have been running shallower with 20-60 feet on the downrigger the best depths. The coho fishing has been very good and many of them are big. The hatchery fish were running from 8–14 lbs and some of the wild, unmarked coho were even heavier. The unclipped fish greatly outnumbered the clipped fish this past week. Anchovies are now the top choice for bait and good choices for teaser head colors are UV Green, Chartreuse, Bloody Nose and Purple Haze.The top spoons for Sooke anglers are the White Lightening and Irish Cream Coho Killers. For flashers, you can't go wrong with a Super Betsey, Madi or Bon Chovi Flasher. Hootchies in White, Cop Car and Army Truck have been effective recently.

BECHER BAY – Salmon fishing was FAIR this past week and spotty at times. Some nice springs are still coming in but not as many as in previous weeks. The Trap Shack, Beechey Head and Aldridge Point were the most productive locations to fish. The coho fishing has been steadily improving and anglers are catching 7-11 lb hatchery fish as well lots of wild coho. Those who targeted coho did quite well using spoons. Anglers using bait are finding anchovies in glow teaser heads have been working best. Also good are spoons, such as the G-Force and Skinny G, in Bon Chovy or Outfitters' colours. For flashers, the Betsey, Lemon Lime and Bon Chovi have been good.

PEDDER BAY – Salmon fishing was GOOD this past week. The best chinook fishing was in Pedder Bay and just off Bentick Island. The coho have also moved into the bay, so you don't necessarily have to go out to the shipping lanes to find them. Most of the hatchery coho have been from 8 to 14 lbs and even larger unclipped fish have been taken and released. The bite periods have been early in the morning, on the tide changes and late in the evening. Anglers targeting the coho have been quite successful trolling out in the deeper water. Anchovies were the top bait this past week. Good choices for teaser head colors are UV Green, Chartreuse, Bloody Nose and Purple Haze. Flashers that are popular include the Betsey, Lemon-Lime and Madi.

HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was GOOD this past week. The best areas were Race Rocks, William Head, 27 Fathom reef 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 9" Jumbo Squids if you want to stay away from the dogfish.

VICTORIA – Fishing for salmon was GOOD this past week. The week started out with lots of springs and coho off the harbour area but it slowed down by the weekend. The wild coho were as large the mid teens in size and hatchery coho up to 12 lbs were caught. There were good bites at times and other long periods were there was nothing happening. The best depths have been 40 to 75 feet on the downrigger. There were good bites at Macauley, the V21 buoy (green can), the breakwall, Brotchie Ledge and Clover Point. Most of the springs have been from 8 to 15 lbs in size but some big ones were caught. Thomas Brandwood landed a 34.5 lb spring off the waterfront on Monday and a 34.1 lb spring was seen on the ramp on Sunday. Anchovies have been a good bait to use (12 or 10 pack) and Bloody Nose, UV Green and Purple Haze have been the most popular colors for teaser heads. Spoons have been successful in getting hook ups as well. Green Spatter Back UV Coho Killers, 3.5" Cop Car spoons or AP Tackleworks needlefish spoons have also brought good results in Victoria.


HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was GOOD this past week with the best areas being Constance Bank, Border Bank and the Mud Hole. Anglers that were fishing were using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait. Also working well, and discouraging to dogfish, was the 9" Jumbo Squid in Green Glow.

OAK BAY – Salmon fishing was SLOW again this past week. There were some springs up to 10 lbs caught on the flats but not too many were taken. Most of the salmon anglers who fish Oak Bay have moved over to either Sooke or the waterfront. Good trolling lures have been Coho Killers, Bon Chovi or Outfitters Skinny G spoons or AP Tackleworks needlefish spoons. Anglers jigging have been using Needlefish Darts, Point Wilson Darts or Deep Stingers.

HALIBUT – Halibut fishing was GOOD this past week. However, most anglers that were fishing for halibut were using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait. Also working well was the 9" Jumbo Squid in Green Glow. Also working well, and discouraging to dogfish, was the 9" Jumbo Squid in Green Glow.

SIDNEY – Salmon fishing was BETTER this past week. The Pender Bluffs produced mostly coho as large as 11.5 lbs. The coho were suspended at 80-90 feet. There were some bigger fish off Hambley Point where 27 & 24 lb chinooks were caught. The fish off Hambley were in 130-140 feet of water. The springs are being caught on anchovies and the Bloody Nose teaser has been the best one. Anglers using spoons found Coho Killers, Gibbs Needle G and AP Tackleworks needlefish spoons the most successful spoons this past year. Anglers jigging have also been caught springs using Needlefish Darts and Deep Stingers. The Powder Wharf and Shag Rocks area are popular for jigging salmon.

Effective July 25, 2016 at 00:01 hours until October 14, 2016 at 23:59 hours, you may not retain Chinook salmon in the following waters: Subareas 18-6 to 18-8, 18-10.

Notable Catches – Thomas Brandwood landed a 34.5 lb spring off the waterfront on Monday.


OVERVIEW – Fishing is GOOD in most lakes for both trout and bass.

TROUT – Trout fishing is GOOD on most lakes in the South Island area. Shore anglers are catching trout on Powerbait, Gulp Eggs, or worms while fishing close to the bottom. Chartreuse and Fluorescent Yellow 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. 2" Tomic Plugs have also been working well for Trout.

BASS – Bass fishing is EXCELLENT. At this time of year most of the bass are in the shallows. During the day, soft plastics rigged Carolina style work well and crank baits can work well too. Soft plastics rigged "Carolina Style" are also a good choice when fishing drop offs and docks. 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.

Fish Tip of the Week

Lots of anglers are now targeting hatchery coho as the fish of choice. Be sure to increase your trolling speed, shorten your leaders and fish shallower if you want to get in on the coho action. Coho feed much closer to the surface and like a much faster moving lure than Chinook. And for some real excitement, try trolling bucktail flies right on the surface in the wake of the boat.