Fishing Report, July 22 2023

Hi Everyone

It’s become a tough grind here in Barkley and the surrounding area. I know, I know… It’s not what you want to hear but you can count on getting the real facts at least.

Here is what we can report: the Sound itself is pretty much empty, which has really been the case much of the season to start. There are fish still hanging around the periphery of the Sound but they have been in dribs and drabs the past 3 or 4 days.

I’ve managed to scrape up a few including a gorgeous 26 lber yesterday morning but it’s been hard work to say the least. Even one of our go to spots out at the Big Bank’s Rat’s Nose has been so so.

Is there any good news? I went up to Ucluelet yesterday and talked to a few guides. Fish seem to be hanging around Wya Point. Saw some good fish coming in from there. One can only assume those same fish will be moving south very soon. At least I am hanging my hat on it, so to speak.

If you are going to be Bamfield way in the next few days what should your course of action be? Hmmm…. Here is the best I can tell you. Keep plugging the outer reaches of the Sound. Beale, Sail Rock, Cree Island, Keeha, Pachena Point. No need to fish bait just yet, Skinny Gs, white hoochies, and various small spoons are still your best bets. We are still pounding the kelp beds where we see bait.

If you find needle fish and or small immature herring? stay on them, more often than not that is where the bite will be when it comes on. Irish cream and Bon Chovy Skinny Gs are still my first choice. I drag them 6 plus feet behind green flashers.

Coho are also pretty scarce. Seems the herd has traveled down the inside and have inundated the Georgia and Juan de Fuca Straights. Not much love for us on the west side. Best bet for coho seems to be over in the Broken Group towards Swale Rock.

Halibut fishing has been productive. You can’t go wrong with salmon bellies on spreader bars. Find a hump that comes up to 200 feet or so on the Bank and anchor up. Drifting does work but is not nearly as effective as sitting on the hook. 

It’s always so great to see old friends up here. A big shout out to Don and his boat Lure Of The Sea. Grandpa and Gramma fishing with their grandkids is what summers on the West Coast should be all about. I just love that kind of thing.

Also a shout out to the Kunos who toughed out three days of slow fishing on Charley Girl. We did get them their halis and Jan was lucky enough to land a beauty 26 lb spring on Friday morning (see picture above).

In the meantime and in between time, here’s hoping fishing picks up very soon. That said, it’s such a special place to be regardless of the fishing…

Harbourside is here for all your tackle needs, ice and bait. Stop in and say hi.

Oh and…it’s gonna get better, and maybe it’ll be today.

Can’t wait…

Coach, aka Jonathan…