Did you ever have one of those days when it seems everything you do you’re just one step behind? Sort of like the old ” a day late and a dollar short”. Last week I was living that whole scenario almost ” ground hog day” like.
I’d started with a crew at Little Beale. Things were dead there for the early morning bite but I wanted to stick it out for the tide change. Nada, zippo, lots of zeros on the score sheet. I get word that the bite is on at Swale. We pull up and head north to Swale. We see at least 5 boats with fish on. We drop the gear and bingo, a huge take and a pin popper. Fish doesn’t stick. Ok that’s fine, at least we are in the money now.. Here we go! And then? Nothing. The bite ends and all is quiet on the western front. We pound it at Swale and manage 2 teens over the next 4 hours. Late in the day we get a soft take. Thinking we have a shaker I violently yank the rod off the rigger and reel hard and as to shake it off. I pass the rod to tend to the rigger and then all hell breaks loose as line goes peeling out and apparently we are on to a decent fish. The decent fish gets to the boat and I go “oh my” as I stare down at an absolute hog head thrashing below the boat. I scoop into the net before it’s next run and just like that we have a tyee on board. 11 hours of fishing and I boat 2 lovely fish and a 30 plus. Not exactly a bust but darn that was a lot of work.
Next morning I head back to Swale thinking I’ll be there for the morning bite. Again… nothing, zippo, nada! Sure enough I get word it’s going off at Kirby. I pull up the gear and head over. Drop the gear and wham! we get hit, but it doesn’t stick. Once again I am thinking ok, here we go! We troll Kirby for the next 4 hours and we wind up dry. No hits, no takes, no fish…The bite is over and we missed it. Luckily Little Beale has an afternoon bite and we manage 4 springs to the box to sort of save the day.
Is there a moral to be learned here? A lesson perhaps? Not really sure. It happens to everyone at some time. Monday I fished from 6 am to 2 pm without a fish in the box. at about 2:30 pm we got into a solid afternoon bite and boxed 4 gorgeous springs to 25 lbs. Saved the day yet again.
Perseverance pays off. Keep your gear in the water, especially through the tides. If you are dragging the right gear at the right depth in the right spots, it will pay off.
So let’s talk about the whats, the wheres and the whens to fishing Barkley Sound in mid August.
Fishing is actually outstanding here right now. There are lots of fish and lots of places to find them. Good to try spots lately would be Sandford, Kirby, Flemming, Swale. Yesterday right out front of the harbour turned on. The Wall all the way down to Danvers produced. And yes I think Little Beale is still a good go. Anchovies are lighting it up. Fish them at least 6′ behind your fav flasher. 35′ to 45′ on the riggers. Beale, Kirby, and Swale it seems that 40′ to 44′ on the riggers have been the money depths. I’d suggest a little shallower at Flemming, 30′ to 35′ would likely work best there.
Offshore has seem limited days as north westerlies continue to blow making to very difficult to get outside. When you can get out the salmon fishing has been very good. 7 mile to 12 mile has seen consistent action for springs and coho. 90′ to 140′ on the downriggers has been best. No need to fish bait here. Try glow white hootchies, spoons or plugs. Fishing at Big Bank and the Rat’s Nose has been very good for springs, coho and halis.
Hali fishing is still spectacular. Smaller fish this year though, but being able to take two under 90 cms makes it very worthwhile. Salmon bellies are a must if you are anchored or drifting. That said, we have been jigging one of Lighthouse’s paddle tail jigs while anchored and it’s just been hammering the halis! As per usual, find the humps and fish in and around them, 210 to 220 feet of water seems to work best for us.
This is prime time here in Bamfield. You’ll regret not being here! Grab some anchovies and make it happen.
And please…stop by Harbourside and say hi. I am quite easily persuaded to talk a little fishing when encountered!
In the meantime and in between time…
Coach, aka Jonathan….