South Vancouver Island BC Saltwater Fishing Report
By Tom Vaida, Island Outfitters Sportfishing Centre | Last updated: December 15th, 2014
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OVERVIEWS – Winter chinook fishing has been GOOD and fish up to 16 lbs were caught this past weekend. Halibut fishing was GOOD this past week.
SOOKE – The fishing for winter springs was SLOWER BUT GOOD this past weekend. Some boats reported getting limits of springs up to 10 lbs in size. The boats were fishing from the harbour entrance and over by the Sooke Bluffs. Choice of lures has stayed very similar to last week; Anchovies are working well with Green and Bloody Nose teaser heads being good colors choices. G-Force spoons in Irish Cream and No Bananas have been catching their fair number of fish. The most popular flashers recently have been the Gibbs Madi, the Outfitter and the Jellyfish UV. Halibut fishing was excellent and fish up to 45 lbs were seen on the docks.
BECHER BAY – Salmon fishing was GOOD in East Sooke. Over the weekend, chinooks as large as 14 lb spring brought in at Cheanuh marina. Most of the fish were caught either in Whirl Bay or from inside Becher Bay. Most anglers are having their best results fishing anchovies trolled just off the bottom. The most productive teaser heads for anchovies were the UV Green and the Bloody Nose. For flashers the Madi and the Purple Onion have been very good lately. Spoons such as G-Force in the smaller sizes have been working as well, both in Cop Car or Glow/Green.
PEDDER BAY – Spring salmon fishing was GOOD in Whirl Bay and near the Can Buoy at the entrance to the bay. Anchovies were productive for springs with UV Green and Bloody Nose teaser heads being top choices in teaser heads. Anglers are getting coho while trolling 3" to 3.5" spoons. Coho Killers and G-force spoons with both glow and green have been working the best. Squirts are working too with Yellow, Purple Haze and Gray Ghost the best patterns. The best flashers have been the Purple Onion, Green/Silver Hot Spot and Jellyfish UV.
Halibut – Halibut fishing was GOOD over the weekend. 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 a large spoon fished off a spreader bar, Mudraker or Lucky Jigs or other large Jigs if you want to stay away from the dogfish.
VICTORIA – Fishing for winter springs was VERY GOOD off Victoria. The Frostbite Derby was held at Esquimalt Anglers and it was quite successful with $1,600 raised for salmon enhancement.. There were 43 chinooks weighed in and all but 7 were hatchery fish. 105 tickets were sold and approximately 50 boats were on the water. The winning fish was a 16 lb spring caught by Rick Carson who won the $500 first place prize. Second place went to John Mace with a 15.5 lb spring. Third place went to Frank Badder for a 12 lb spring. The fishing boundary was Albert head to Trial Island and the winning fish was caught near the harbour. There were a lot of fish that were caught and not weighed in and most boats had good action. Fish were caught at mid water depths as well as close to the bottom. Anchovies have been working well in green and UV Chart/Flash colors outside the harbour. Good choices in plastic baits are the Cloverleaf, Purple Haze and the Glo Below. Gibbs Coho Killer, Kingfisher and Coyote spoons in green and glow colours have been very effective.
Halibut – Halibut fishing was GOOD this past week out at Constance Bank and off Albert Head when it wasn't too windy. Anglers are using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait with octopus being the most productive bait this past weekend. Berkley Gulp and Powerbait soft plastics also work very well. You can also use a large spoon fished off a spreader bar, Mudraker or Lucky Jigs or other large Jigs if you want to stay away from the dogfish.
OAK BAY – Salmon fishing was FAIR for those trolling out on the Flats and in the Gap. Some winter springs are being caught but not many big ones. Anglers were using squirts, spoons, or tiny strip. The fish that were being caught trolling were caught on Coho Killer spoons and 3" to 4" G-Force & Gypsy spoons. Good squirts were the Pickle Green, J-79 and Jellyfish. Good flashers have been the Purple Onion, Green/silver or Green Jellyfish.
Halibut – Halibut fishing was EXCELLENT this past week. There were a few places where one could get out of the wind and they produced fish. Anglers are using extra large herring, salmon bellies and/or octopus for bait with octopus. Berkley Gulp and Powerbait soft plastics also work very well. You can also use a large spoon fished off a spreader bar, Mudraker or Lucky Jigs or other large Jigs if you want to stay away from the dogfish.
SIDNEY – Salmon fishing was GOOD near Sidney this past week. The middle section of the Sidney Channel was the hot spot this past week. There has also been some action happening near Moresby Island. Most of the winters are just over or under the minimum size for retention but fish as large as 10 lbs have been caught this past week. Many anglers are fishing using anchovies in UV Green teaser heads. Squirts have been out producing hootchies recently and the hot patterns for springs now are Purple Haze, J-79 and Electric Chair. Coho Killer spoons have also been working well, especially in double glow and 50/50 colors. Halibut fishing has been good near the Darcy Island shoals.
Notable Catches – The Frostbite Derby was held at Esquimalt Anglers and it was quite successful with $1,600 raised for salmon enhancement. The winning fish was a 16 lb spring caught by Rick Carson, who won the $500 first place prize. Second place went to John Mace with a 15.5 lb spring. Third place went to Frank Badder for a 12 lb spring.
OVERVIEW – Fishing is FAIR on most lakes in the South Island area because of the recent stockings. Remember that ALL wild trout must be released on all streams in Region 1. Wild rainbows and cutthroats over 50 cm must be released in Cowichan Lake. Only single barb less hooks are allowed for all fishing on island streams and rivers.
COWICHAN RIVER – Torrential rains this midweek caused flooding and the river to blow out. The water level has been dropping since then and is at 2. 5 meters by the lake and downstream near Duncan it is 2 meters. It's still too high for most fishing. The river is open for both coho and chum salmon retention until December 31st. You're now allowed to keep two chums per day. The daily limit for coho is one. Fishing has been good for both species of salmon. The Bible Camp has been closed to fishing. There are some steelhead in the river now as the winter run is just starting to come into the river. The trout fishing in the mid and upper river is excellent. There are rainbows, cutthroats and resident brown trout that are actively feeding on salmon eggs. Egg patterns are the way to go now, and they are very effective when drifted behind a salmon redd.
TROUT – Trout fishing was FAIR on most lakes in the South Island area this past week.
Bank anglers are catching trout on Powerbait, Gulp Eggs, or worms while fishing from shore and right on the bottom. Yellow and Bubblegum have been good colours recently for Powerbait. Fly anglers are fishing Pumpkinheads, Wooly Buggers, Leeches and Micro Leech patterns on full sink fly lines. Trollers have been doing well with a variety of lures. 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, Black with Silver Flake or Rainbow Pattern. Smaller Rapalas in Rainbow Trout or Brown Trout patterns also work well; the jointed Rapalas have also been great for larger fish. Larger Willow Leaf Lake trolls with a size 6 hook tipped with a small 1-2″ piece of worm always produce fish. The biggest trout usually come from Langford Lake and Elk Lake.
BASS – Bass fishing is SLOW. Soft plastics rigged "Carolina Style "is a good choice when fishing drop offs and docks, and have been most productive in 4" Yum bait colors 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.
CARP – Carp fishing is SLOW at Elk Lake. Corn and carp Boilies have been the best bait recently.
Fish Tip of the Week
Forget about using your flasher if you're using spoons, anchovies or herring as bait for winter springs. The water clarity is so good in the winter that the fish can spot your bait from much greater distances than in the other times of the year. If you want the attraction of a flasher, use a dummy flasher below your bait near the downrigger ball. Besides, it is so much more fun to play a fish without any flasher on the line.