Fishing Reports 2016

Sept 6, 2018

Hi All

The frenzy that the last week of August sets upon us has also seen us through the first week of September. There are still solid returns of chinook and the first of the bigger coho are starting to show more consistently.
I finished up last Monday with the Suter Home group from Whistler. We had four days together with my Grady and Paul Suter’s 30 foot Sea Ray.
We started the trip over at Swale and Gibraltar on Friday afternoon. We fished anchovies in bloody nose and glow green teaser heads behind white  and green glow flashers at 35 to 45 feet. Both boats hit some good fish during the tide change bite and it seemed to stay on long after the water shifted. In a matter of 3 or 4 hours we put 11 springs and 3 coho in the box between the two boats. A great way to start the trip off!
Saturday was a designated off shore day. Both boats headed out to 12 mile on a hali hunt. I anchored up at 198 feet and put down three rods tipped with salmon bellies. Paul anchored up a mile and a half northeast of me and also put down salmon bellies. He was anchored in 190 feet of water.
We hit two beaut hali fairly early after we got the gear down. Unfortunately both were over size and we cut them lose. A bit frustrating for sure but it’s still very cool to watch those big breeder halibut swim away.
Paul’s boat got hot early and limited out on their 4 hali in a couple of hours.
We picked the anchor and moved to Paul’s boat and hooked up a nice fat 25lber right away. Our last fish was an under at about 15 lbs. We picked up the anchor and headed back inside to fish springs. Things had slowed down some over at Swale and Gibraltar. We had 3 nice hook ups but only managed one 18lber to the box.
Sunday morning saw both boats head up to Whittlestone and Little Beale.
I dropped the gear at Whittlestone and lost a nice fish early. I found the boat traffic a bit much so I trolled my way up from Whittlestone towards Spike Rock at Little Beale. We were rolling anchovies again with a bloody nose teaser head and a glow green no bananas teaser. We dragged them at 27 and 30 feet behind a glow green and glow white flasher. We hooked up a number of nice springs and a couple of gorgeous coho. The latter part of the day we fished Brady’s Beach. We spotted a number of active bait balls and immediately were into two nice chinook. Turned out to be a very productive day on the water. Good fish, good guys and good times overall.
Our last morning out we fished Whittlestone tight to the rocks in the bay. We dragged our gear between 25 and 33 feet. There was a solid bite very tight to the rocks in the big surf. It wasn’t an easy troll but Paul’s boat just lit it up. We saw them play double header after double header. I wasn’t as fortunate. We hooked up but could not put a fish in the box! It was still a whole ton of fun though!
I’ve had to make my way back to Vancouver to start my teaching job. Its has been such a good season. Solid fishing from Canada Day weekend on.
I have one more trip out. I am bringing 40 grade ten students out to Harbourside from my school. We spend four days hiking, fishing and whale watching. Its such a tremendous trip. There is nothing like watching the wide eyed stares of kids seeing their first whale up close or catching their first ever fish. I think its a fun for me as it is for them. Very cool indeed!
Just a heads up to all of you that if you are thinking of coming up to Harbourside next summer, book now! We are already filling up. Most people think late August is prime time and it many ways it is, but late June and July fishing has been fantastic in and around the Sound. Better weather, more daylight and plenty of fish. Aussie John is the guy to call to book. Don’t leave it too long! Email john@harboursidelodge.com for your enquiries.
I’ll write one more report after I get back next week.
Coach…..

Aug 14, 2018

The first waves of Somass springs have arrived in Barkley Sound. Grady’s , Ocean Sports and or 14′ car toppers all can have a real shot at landing a 30 lb Tyee. That’s the beauty of Bamfield. No matter the weather, everyone can find a spot on the water and get their gear on front of some serious spring salmon.
This past week I fished with Don and son Brock along with good friend Randy for three days then Marcus and his wife Raquel later in the week.
Earlier in the week we started out at Little Beale. We fished the early morning bite into the high tide change at 11 am. We trolled anchovies at 33 feet and an Irish cream skinny g at 28′. We hooked up a beauty and Randy played it like a pro. Unfortunately when all was said and done the Beale Seal lead 1-0. Very frustrating to work so hard at getting hooked up just to lose your fish and your gear.
That was our only bite. We packed in at 11:30 am and departed for 7 mile. The water was flat and we were looking for some fish for the box. With the gear at 80 and 90′ we worked our butts off for the next two hours. It was fish after fish. Nothing big but really nice hatchery coho and some 10 to 12 lb springs. The boys had a blast and some great eats to take home.
The next day we fished over towards the Broken Group. My good buddy Mike form Vernon radioed me and called me over to this avocado like hump just south of Gibraltar. We fished from 65′ to 140′ around the pinnacle. We picked up a nice spring in the teens and some amazing coho to 13 lbs. turned out to be a productive day. We fished bait and skinny gs . Skinny gs still ruled the day for us.
Marcus and Raquel are returning guests. Their first experience salmon and halibut fishing was last summer. We also started out at Little Beale. We fished anchovies at 33′ and continued with Irish Cream skinny gs at 28′. For some reason I just can’t hook up on bait but the skinny gs keep producing. We managed two nice fish, a 22 lber and a teenager.
We decided to take a run offshore for a halibut hunt. When we arrived at 13 mile, Mother Nature was putting on an incredible show. There were humpback whales everywhere. Tail slapping, breaching, pec fins slapping the water. Salmon were cruising the surface tailing everywhere you looked. We set the anchor and put down the gear. I rigged two salmon rods with MacDeep jigs and within seconds we had fish on. Coho after coho, spring salmon one after the other. Nothing huge but what a blast. At one point I heard the commotion of rippling water behind me. Thinking it was tidal current I continued tending the gear. When I looked towards the bow I was dumbfounded. There was a mass of surface feeding salmon approaching the boat. All I could see was the backs of salmon on the surface. At one point they were actually bumping the boat. It really was one of the most amazing sights I have ever seen. If I had jumped off the boat I would have put myself at risk of concussion by landing on fish! Unbelievable. It’s so gratifying and wonderful to see nature still asserting herself. If we can only just give her half a chance.
I’ll be fishing this week with Drew, Dean and David. Great guys and great cooks. It’s going to be a fun week of fishing along with some fabulous meals.
The tackle shop is well stocked. We only gear up with what our guides use. Leave the tackle shopping till you get here. We have everything your need right here. Come by for a coffee, fuel, ice, bait and everything else you need for a great stay on the west coast.
Till next time…
Coach…(aka Jonathan)

Sept 8, 2017

Hi All
It’s amazing how it seems that we are so right in the middle of it all. Our mornings are still early, there are boats to fuel, bait and tackle to sell, we are on the water all day, fish to clean and package, suppers to make and dishes to clear, and then… it feels like in one fell swoop, it ends…
The lodge was full to the brim on the September long weekend. It was hustle and bustle with excited fisherfolks just as it has been all summer. I fished Monday morning till 11ish then back to the lodge, showered, packed my bag and off on a Pacific Seaplanes Beechcraft floatplane. By 1:30 pm Monday afternoon I was having lunch in Vancouver and just like that, my season ends… The lodge is still up and running this week and will be through next week but now it’s more catching up on paper work and getting things ready to close up. And just like that we start the process of dreaming of next year….
As for the few ardent fishers who will still be making the trek to Barkley Sound? We can still offer some last minute advice as to where to go and what to drag behind the boat.
The Derby weekend, in all honesty, I found difficult. I expected to deal with much more boat pressure than usual but that teamed up with some marginal fishing results made things a tough grind.
I fished with returning guest Carmen and his lovely wife Rene. They were at Harbourside with the Pace Processing Group. (Thanks so much to our friend Sean Darrah for organizing such a great crew and great food for all of us on the long weekend!) We fished hard Friday starting at Little Beale and Whittlestone and finishing at Edward King and Kirby. We ran a skinny g at 37 feet on one rigger and a chovey at 33 feet on the other. After 4 hours we returned to the lodge without a sniff. There were 5 other Harbourside boats out with the Pace Processing group Friday afternoon and some boats did well on running bait. Al, Joe, Tom, Sean and Duncan all came back to the dock with 2 or more nice fish. Coach? nope we were skunked…
The next day dawned with renewed hope. We trolled Kirby first light then tried the Wall all the way to Danvers. Again, not even a hit. We ran bait at 33 and 37 feet. Once we arrived near Danvers we ran a bit deeper at 39 and 45 feet. No results but very clean gear. Ahhh… Frustration indeed setting in. This is prime time after all!
We pulled up our gear and set off for Flemming. Running bait in a bloody nose teaser head and green uv flasher at 29 feet and then a purple haze teaser head and purple flasher we finally had some action. The bloody nose hit not 5 minutes after we dropped the gear but didn’t stick. Then my old fav purple took over. We managed two nice springs and a gorgeous coho to the boat expertly played by Rene and Carmen. Not a great day as far as full fish boxes were concerned but it felt like we made some progress and we all had a great time on the water.
Th next day was an offshore day for a hali hunt. Neither Carmen nor Rene had tagged into a hali before so we had high expectations. We hit our hali spot early, 14 miles off Cape Beale on a hump that comes up to 197 feet. The idea was to anchor up setting our gear in around 205 feet or so. We were teamed up with Tom’s boat Aqualady.
My first anchor drop was miscalculated and we did not drift into where I though the best hali fishing would be. I pulled up and tried again. Once again I was off on my expected drift. I was not comfortable with our spot. We pulled up one more time.
Now it was stick and stay and make it pay time. Tom’s boat, Aqualady were into 2 nice hali before we dropped a third time. Not long after we settled our first hali hit. Salmon bellies on spreader bars were once again what these flatties were after.
In the next four hours we had 11 large hali hit and peel line. Only one stuck. It was another frustrating afternoon to say the least. 100 meters to our west Aqualady boated four beauties including a 130cm 65lb fish. We came home with a lovely 37lb hali but were very disappointed at what could have been. Such is fishing….It ain’t catching after all..
So if you are making one last trip out to Bamfield I’d suggest the following. Little Beale, Whittlestone, Brady’s Beach and the Wall all the way down to Danvers will be fishable and produce. We were starting to see some beautiful northern coho show and there will still be the odd spring around. Choveys, glow white hootchies and and small spoons, (skinny gs will be killer in glow green and white) will give you a solid shot at hooking up. 25 to 40 feet on the riggers. Kirby and Flemming will also be productive. I love the tack in tight at Flemming with less than 40 feet of water under your boat.
So we are almost done. I do have one more trip and it’s a biggie. Officially I am done my personal business and I am now back at my real job. I am the Athletic Director at St. John’s School here in Vancouver. Hence my moniker as “Coach”. Every fall during the 2nd week of September I take 44 grade 10 students out to Bamfield and Harbourside Lodge for 4 days. It is an awesome experience. Showcasing 44 teenagers the amazing west coast of the Island and the treasures of Barley Sound is a real joy for me. We hike, we fish, we whale watch. The kids cook and clean and really get into life on the west coast. It’s my favourite trip of the season. Watching the kids eyes light up as they feel their first tug on the line, see a breaching humpback or 1500 lbs of steller sea lion lazing on the rocks likely does more for me than it does for them. Sharing this with our young people indeed goes along way to keeping you young too. Can’t wait…
Until then… as per usual, Aussie John and Franny are keeping the lodge, gas bar and tackle shop up and running. We will be selling bait and fuel all through next week. I’ll have a final run through of the last part of the season and some thoughts on the summer as a whole. In the mean time and in between time,
Tight lines and full boxes…
Coach…

July 22, 2017

Hi All
Fishing continues to be solid here in Barkley Sound. That said you are still going to have to put the time in and work for them. Perserverance goes a long way to success.
Ok here is an update as to where I have been fishing and what I have been using.
I fished with Marcus and Raquel last weekend. We went around the corner of Beale to Seabird Rocks. Once again we trolled Irish Cream and Bon Chovy skinny gs. We fished tight to the reefs and kelp beds keeping our gear at 29′ and 27′. We had a very successful morning with 4 lovely springs to 18 lbs. Seabird is a technical troll. Many times my gear was was running at 29′ with 28′ feet of water under the boat. I really like that kind of fishing but don’t feel that you need to do the same. I saw boats fishing in safer water nearby and they also did quite well.
On Monday this past week I had the opportunity to fish with my partner Makiko.   The sun was out and the water flat calm. We returned to Seabird and decided to keep the downriggers in the boat and do some old fashioned jigging. We tied on 70 gram MacDeeps and fished amongst the reefs and kelp beds, way in tight. What a blast!
We were fishing 20′ of water and in less than two hours we fought 8 springs and a couple of pinks. We put 4 in the box for us for the winter, all between 15 and 19 pounds.  If you think the only way to catch salmon is trolling off the downrigger then explore the jigging option.  Albeit the conditions have to be almost perfect but man is it ever worth the payoff! Can’t wait to try it again!
I also fished Beale a couple of mornings and found it to be well worth the time. The only issue was the Beale Seal! I lost four springs in a row to the seals on Thursday morning last week! It was a bit frustrating to say the least. That said I am not one to advocate the seal cull. Seals and sea lions are smart and learn quickly. It’s an easier way to catch dinner for them by waiting for us to do it for them. If it’s a problem just get up and move.
Offshore fishing has been picking up. I did a trip out to Big Bank and the Rat’s Nose this past week. It was steady and nice to see some bigger fish. We had Jason, Francis and their Uncle Jimmy out and it didn’t take long to limit out on springs and coho. I can’t give up my skinny g just yet so we ran a Bon Chovy at 120′ and my standard go to on the bank, a large glow white hootchie at 135′. It was a very productive day!
Halibut fishing is still going strong although I did get skunked the other day, well sort of. I was out at 12 mile and anchored up in 205 feet. After battling through 3 large pacific octopus that all three did a twirl around the boat and tangled all three lines, we finally hooked up a hali. The rod was bent down to the water and the line was screaming of the reel. As excited as I was I knew this fish was too good to be true. Indeed it was. Once again I was fishing with Jason, Francis and their Uncle Jimmy.
Uncle Jimmy was on the rod and was in the battle of his life. We managed to get the fish to the boat and it was plainly obvious that she was well over the 133 cm limit. I placed my harpoon next to her and she was equally of length or more. Pushing 165 cm would have been close. We were lucky enough to get some great pictures and video before cutting her lose and watching her ease her way back to the deep.
Sad to see her go in some ways and yet what a feeling to release such a beautiful fish to continue the gene pool.
We are fast approaching the middle of the season. It’s flying by! We would love to help you out if you are in the area. Gas and diesel are in plenty of supply at the dock. The shop is stocked and the coffee is on. Please feel free to come by and quiz us as to what’s hot and where to go. We are happy to share. August is coming and so are our local big fish. We have some rooms available at the lodge and some open charter dates as well. Don’t miss out! Call us for bookings!
Till then,
Tight lines and full boxes…
Coach, Aussie John, Tom, Joe and Brett

Sept 1, 2016

Hi All

It’s almost sad as we are nearing the end of our season. That said the last part of August and early September are as good as it get’s here in Barkley Sound
Let’s get to it then!
All of the local hot spots are now producing. From Beale down to Yankee Bay has all been good. Flemming and Kirby have had their “going off ” moments. Go to where you feel confident, drop your gear and wait for mayhem!
For that to happen though you have to present the right gear at the right depths and the right speed. First I would roll anchovies in purple haze or bloody nose teaser heads 6′ behind your favourite flashers. I like to match my flashers with my teaser heads but I am a bit of a fashion guru when it comes to that. Hootchies, especially in white are still taking springs and the coho luv ‘em! Trolling some plastic keeps gear in the water as the coho especially have been notorious for slamming gear but not hooking up. Hootchies allow you to keep your gear in the water when that happens, and that’s a good thing. Spoons have still been effective too, especially in the 3.5 inch range.
Depths are still shallow. At Beale (and their have been some very big fish hooked there but the Beale Seal has stolen many a tyee lately!) I’ve been trolling at 38′ and 33′. Flemming and the Wall I’ve been running my gear at 27′ and 33′. Down towards Danvers and Poet Nook I run a little bit deeper at 45′ and 50′.
Keep a relatively quick troll at 2.6 to 2.8 even 3 miles per hour speed over ground. Troll with the tide as much as you can as the fish usually have the snouts pointing into the current and are more apt to see your gear coming at them.
Off shore is still a good bet for numbers but big fish are more likely to be in the sound. Big Bank, the Nose, 12 mile are all producing at times, that is if the seas are calm enough to get out. We haven’t been offshore much for salmon but are still having our best season ever with halibut. Captain Tom has been out 4 times in the last week and limited on halis each time including a gorgeous 6′ blue shark he caught and released on Sunday the 28th. 12 miles to 14 miles from Beale on humps that come up to 200 feet have so very productive. Extra large herring and salmon bellies fished on spreader bars will put you on the flat fish.
The long weekend is almost upon us and that means the Port Alberni Salmon Fest starts Saturday the 3rd and runs till 4:00 pm on Labour Day Monday. First prize for largest salmon is 15k with 5k going to daily winners. 2nd and 3rd place daily winners are taking home 2k and 1k. At only $40 per rod entry it’s a fun deal. You never know with each hit if this could be a derby winning fish. Someone is going to be a winner, might as well be you (hopefully me though!)!
We still have some moorage and a few spots for accommodations left this weekend and into early September. Call now and book as you have to get in on the most exciting fishing time of the year. It will all be over way too soon!
Stop and say hi. Coffee is on. The tackle store is stocked with gear and bait and we will be around for the best weekend of the year!
Coach (aka Jonathan) Aussie John and Tom…

Aug 23, 2016

Hi Again

Fishing finally continues to be solid here in Barkley Sound. For those of us that have been grinding it out all summer it is a refreshing change to have some multiple fish days with good sized springs and coho, and to boot it’s all been close to home.
Different guides and fisherman may share completely different info but here is the skinny as I have seen it.
The fish are running somewhat deeper than I normally fish. Typically at this time of year I am 25′ to 35′ on the down rigger. The past week I have been 40′ to 50′. Anchovies in uv purple haze and bloody nose heads have been effective for springs if you like to roll bait. However, glow white hootchies behind green flashers have also been very effective for springs and killer for coho. I have been running bait one side and a hootchie on the other.
All the usual spots have had good fish days. Swale is still producing and Kirby and Flemming have been good at times. Sandford and Satellite Channel have had some great coho days with the odd spring thrown in. Yankee Bay and Danvers down toward Poet Nook have also been very solid for springs and coho. The Wall always produces at times and is never a waste of time.
Speaking of coho, they been such quality fish this year. Many in the teens and all seem to averaging over 10 lbs. We will often just troll out of the Bamfield Harbour across Trevor Channel towards Wizard and Satellite Channel running white hootchies and 45′ and 50 ‘. When they hit they just smack it so hard. It is awesome! Try it first thing in the morning and fill your box then hit the tide changes for your springs.
Hali fishing is still very productive. Unfortunately the seas have been very big and we have had limited windows in which to target them. I last got out on Friday the 19th and we managed two nice flatties before the wind blew up and chased us home. Same old same old if you get a chance to get out there. Fish the humps between 12 and 14 mile. Spreader bars with salmon bellies and or extra large herring have been our “go tos”.
As per usual the store on the float is well stocked with gear, bait, snacks and such. Aussie John is managing the gas docks serving up both diesel and boat gas.
Coffee is always on so we hope you stop in and say hi.
Till then.
Coach, (Jonathan), Aussie John and Tom…

Aug 16, 2016

Hi All
This is it! We are now in prime time and Barkley Sound is showing us her finest! Fishing has been very solid. We just finished up 4 days with the Ludemann group. 8 guys and three boats. We started last Friday at Beale where things had been hot. It wasn’t. We had a tough day Friday, guides Tom and and Joe managed some quality fish but I was 0 for. Yikes! My purple uv spoon was no longer popping off (sigh…). We changed things up a bit and fished the rest of the three days at Swale Rock and Harbour Entrance. We found fish running a bit deeper than we usually fish, 35′ to 55′ on the down rigger. White hootchies fished behind green flashers were the order of the day. Joe knocked them dead with anchovies in bloody nose teaser heads. We got into some very nice quality springs but added bonus has been the coho fishing. Gorgeous fish between and 10 and 14 lbs just smacked the gear. Tom limited his group out Sunday with 10 coho for five guests all over 10 lbs!
We are still waiting for Kirby and Flemming to go off. They have had moments but not anything really consistent. There has been great coho action off of Sandford. Again pretty much same depths, 35′ to 50 ‘. The Wall is producing as she should. It’s never a waste of time there and such an easy troll.
Offshore has been difficult as the seas, once again, have been high. They are up over 2 meters today and they are calling for 3 meters and more as the week progresses. Hopefully it begins to settle down as hali hunts have had to wait and they might have to wait more yet. It’s such a shame as the hali fishing continues to be great. Once again for us it’s all been about sitting on the humps that come up on the bank between 12 and 14 miles out from Beale. Anchoring out is such an effective way to fish as most often the fish eventually they come to you. If you do not have an effective anchoring system, drifting can still produce. Pick your tides so you can effectively drift with your gear as straight up and down as possible. Salmon bellies and extra large herring are still our best set ups. Fish them off spreader bars. Dog fish are around but usually we only have to wade through a few before the halibut come knocking.
It’s certainly getting busier here at Harbourside. Please call re: moorage, accommodations  and charters as we will do our best to fit you in. As per usual the gas dock is a busy place. Lots of ” dock talk” about the best fishing hot spots and gear that’s working great. Coffee is always on at the shop and we are well stocked with tackle and such. Hope to see you soon!
Coach ( Jonathan), Aussie John and Tom…

Aug 10, 2016

Hi All
I just finished up three days with Mike from Vernon and his buddy Cory from Langley, both ardent and talented anglers. We fished the inside reaches of Cape Beale (Little Beale to the locals). Running our gear at 27 and 33 feet was the magic depths for us. We ran anchovies fished in uv purple haze bullet roll heads behind uv purple flashers on one side and continued running our uv purple haze 3.5 inch spoons behind matching flashers on the other side. Both combos were very successful. I continue to be amazed at the success I am still having with this small purple spoon. Cory bagged a beautiful 33 lb tyee on Monday afternoon on the spoon at 27 feet. We were fishing tight to structure. Most of our hits came at the eastern edge of Little Beale directly across from Spike Rock. It’s an easy landmark to get one’s bearings as it rises like a spike or dagger 20 feet off the shore. It has been a crowded fishery especially in the mornings but afternoon tide changes saw a small handful of boats making for a much less stressful troll. We also spent a day offshore hali hunting and once again were rewarded with some beautiful flatties. It took a while for the bite to turn on but the humps between and 12 and 14 miles out continued to deliver. We picked up 3 halis, 40, 28 and 20. Two on extra large herring and the larger fish on salmon bellies. All fished off spreader bars. What a great summer it has been for hali fishing!
I spent yesterday on dock duty, which I actually enjoy. It’s great getting to chat with fisherman and hearing what’s happening on the water. This is the first week I have really felt that our fishery is back to normal. Yesterday, Tuesday August 9, fish were coming in from Flemming, Edward King, Beale and of course the local standby , the Wall. We saw some great springs but also some lovely coho in the 10 to 12 lb range.
Offshore salmon fishing still has it’s mediocre days. Fish tend to be somewhat smaller out there though it seems boats are getting their limits now. Fish deeper than inshore. Start at 90 and maybe 130 feet then go from there. Boats are also fishing right on the bottom and doing well. Glow white hootchies and spoons that light up down deep are the order of the day. Pulling plugs is working well now too. I like the tomic 602′s and 530′s in 6 inches. Fish them way back off your ball, 50 pulls (yeah I know but I’m not kidding!). Troll quick at 3.5 miles per hour. The plugs will cover tons of water whipping back and forth. Wait for the hit and hang on, the springs like to smash them hard. It’s such a blast to fish this way without flashers.
We are receiving a new order of fishing gear tomorrow so we will be well stocked for the mid August run. If you haven’t tried them yet come by and pick up one of the uv purple haze King Fisher spoons by Silver Horde. You’ll be glad you did!
Lots of bait in stock, salt ice, drink ice and of course fuel both gas and diesel.
It’s happening now folks, this is the time of year we dream about come late January. Don’t miss out on the fun.
Get out here soon. We’ll leave the light on for you…
Coach (aka Jonathan, Aussie John and Tom…

Aug 6, 2016

Well it seems the doom and gloom maybe lifting a bit. If, of course, we are talking fish reports.
Yes it has been a difficult season so far. My previous blogs certainly reflect that and it seems reports from other various coastal areas are eerily similar. Has it been an ecological disaster ( ok perhaps a but dramatic)? Here are what I suppose really are rumours. Based on some DFO reports apparently the big herd of Columbians ( of which many stop in an around Barkley Sound to fatten up for their continued journey south) are hanging out 50 miles off shore. Along with them are whales, dolphins and tuna after masses of pilchards ( sardines ). Pilchards are an amazing nutrient dense food source for all manner of sea life including, of course, spring salmon. So it seems the fish have not disappeared but have taken a detour that has left us in the lurch so to speak. As I stated earlier this is more rumour than confirmed fact. It does seem to make sense though. The good news is now we are into August, our fish, which have to travel though Barkley Sound, should be on the way.
Ok here’s the skinny as of Saturday August 6. Best bet at this point is fishing Cape Beale and the shoreline exposed to the offshore. Once again the depths on your downrigger haven’t changed, 25 to 35 feet is deep enough. We are continuing to have success with purple on purple. Anchovies in uv purple teaser heads fished 6 to 7 feet behind uv purple flashers has been our ” go to ” number. Many guys are using green teasers and flashers, bloody nose teasers and blue / white glow. Fish them at 2.5 to 3 miles per hour speed over ground and you will be in the hunt. Kingfisher by Silver Horde uv purple spoons in the 3.5 inch are still producing surprisingly well. Keep your gear in the water an hour or so before and after tide change. Only move after then. The bite comes on usually fast and furious and dies very quickly. Give yourself the best chance possible. Use the gear we have talked about at the depths mentioned above. If you aren’t hooking up it’s not your gear. Stay the course. You number will come up.
Offshore is still very sporadic. The usual fish guarantee at the Big Bank, Rat’s Nose and other  off shore locales has not been ” money ” by any means. We are starting to see a trend to more consistent catches though. It looks like we are going in the right direction.
Halibut fishing may have slowed some but since it had been on fire most of the summer it stands to reason that it would have to slow down at least a bit. That said, good gear, the right location and persistence leads to punching your hali card almost every time. The humps located between 12 mile and 14 mile have been very good and still are. Extra large herring and salmon bellies continue to be your best bet for bait. Our very own Captain Tom has limited out each and every time aboard Aqualady this summer. So if you are thinking about an upcoming hali charter, just sayin…
As per usual the store is pumping our a nice bubbly red that goes great with fishing boats. We have bait, ice, tackle and lots of laughs down at the store. By all means stop in for a coffee and a chinwag.
Till then,
Coach ( Jonathan ), Aussie John and Tom…

July 29, 2016

Hi All
It seems that any news to do with Barkley Sound fishing reports have been doom and gloom lately. In some ways that’s been understandable when considering some tough fishing combined with much larger than normal seas. All of that said, it looks like we are on the mend and the fish are on their way.
We have been finding fish starting to show at some more recognizable spots. Kirby, Flemming, the Wall and Austin and Cree are now starting to produce. We are kind of in flux as small spoons are still productive but we are now seeing more fish taken on anchovies and whole herring.
Keep to what works best out here during late July and August. Gear should be shallow and presented tight to structure. We suggest 24 to 36 feet on the down rigger. 27 has been the magic number for me. If the seas are cooperative fishing outside structure still seems to be where most if the fish are staging. Outside Cree, Beale, Keeha and Pachena have been quite productive though it looks like hardy stomachs might the order of the day for this August long weekend as big seas are forecast. Friday afternoon could produce 4 meter swells. Doesn’t the Wall sound like a nice afternoon troll. Yikes!
I’ll be dragging anchovies on one rigger and a 3.5 uv purple haze spoon on the other. 6 feet leaders are the order if the day. Glow white hootchies are very productive if fishing down Keeha and Pachena Bay.
Hali fishing continues to be so very productive. Last time out with guests Randy and Jim we managed a 30 and a 63 lber. Unfortunately hali fishing might be in the back burner this weekend if the swells turn out to be what’s forecasted.
This weekend is Bamfield’s Annual Fireman’s Derby. . It’s going to be so much fun. Can’t wait to see Harbouside guests Doug and crew from North Van, Orphan Dave and Mikey from Langley, Kelly Funk from Nanaimo and a host of others joining us for this great weekend of fun and fishing.
I am lucky enough to have the weekend off and get a chance to fish with my lovely Makiko and my brother Chris. Can’t wait to get out there.
Aussie John is handling things down at the dock. We have lots of salt ice, tackle and of of course fuel. Tom will be in for the weekend and I’ll be around for any fishing tips and advice on where to go. It will be sunny and warm. Just add some fish and the weekend could turn out epic!
Coach, ( aka Jonathan), Aussie John, Tom, and Joe.