WINTER REPORT FOR AlBERNI INLET, BARKLEY SOUND, BAMFIELD AND WEST COAST VANCOUVER ISLAND (2020 PRE-SEASON)
Winter on the West Coast of British Columbia often seem especially long and uneventful for many avid salt water sport fisher persons who spend many wonderful and adventurous hours on the pristine waters of the Alberni Inlet, scenic Barkley Sound and Vancouver Island’s West Coast from March through September. Spring and Summer in Pacific Rim west coast areas however will arrive and when finally coming we can expect weather conditions to improve and allow for some early productive angling days on the water. The remaining memory for many from a fabulous 2019 sport fishing season was the Alberni Valley Labor Day Weekend Salmon Derby. This is always a magnificent angling weekend and for many closes out the salt water season. The eventful Derby had many anglers enjoy some fabulous salmon sport fishing. The winning fish netted a prize of fifteen thousand dollars to Qualicum Beach resident Jim Boorman who landed a thirty-two-pound four-ounce Chinook salmon in the China Creek area located in the Alberni Inlet. We now look forward to the 2020 sport fishing season which is “seemingly” and “looking” to provide good opportunity for fisher people in this area targeting Chinook, Coho and Sockeye salmon. Returning Chinook and Coho to this area should remain stable while Sockeye returns to the Somass River system should be much better than returns in 2019 and 2018.
Barkley Sound and the Alberni Inlet should be two favorable areas on Vancouver Island for salmon sport fishing in 2020. These two areas of the west coast like in 2019 should provide ongoing sport fishing with reasonable retention limits. Chinook numbers in 2020 should resemble the return of 2019 while we are hoping Coho returns to be slightly higher. The Sockeye sport angling season in the Alberni Inlet in 2018 and 2019 was limited and hindered by poorer than expected returns. Early season predictions are showing average returns for 2020 which should result in a good sport opportunity. More data will be provided in April of 2020 which will be a good indicator of Sockeye returns.
Winter Chinook fishing in Barkley Sound has been slow in early January but should improve dramatically as we get closer to the Herring spawn. The Bamfield Harbor mouth, Scotch Bay, Whistle Buoy, and Fleming Island close to Sanford are fantastic winter and early spring locations to salmon fish for feeder Chinook. The first weekend of March often triggers the beginning of the sport salt water fishing season with the Sproat Loggers Derby hosted out of Poett Nook located at the far end of the Bamfield Wall and Sarita Bay. This Derby has attracted well over four hundred entrants over the past few years. Most years the salmon that are weighed in range from eight to twenty pounds with fish up to twenty-five pounds winning the event. Most of the fish landed are hatchery clipped salmon and are found from sixty to one hundred and fifty feet deep into the water. Anchovy on the troll with a six -foot leader with a variety of glow teaser heads work very well. Small spoons in Irish Cream, TKO cookies and cream, the three-inch coyote sardine, and a variety of Skinny G spoons are effective. Hootchies in purple haze, green spatter-back, and many needlefish hootchies work extremely well. When there are lots of undersized salmon in any area it is best not to use anchovy. Excellent flasher choices are green and green glow, blue, or black glow.
The late winter months, March, April, and May there is some excellent Winter Chinook fishing just outside the Ucluelet Harbor. Beg Island, the red can, Sail Rock, Great Bear, Mara Rock, and Mayne Bay provide for some great fishing. By the end of May and/or early June the weather conditions do change and often people will begin sport fishing offshore if weather and water conditions are right and if the fishing regulations allow the opportunity. During the winter and spring anglers will fish very close to the bottom when fishing the Ucluelet area. A variety of coyote spoons, or spoons colors in Irish Cream, Cookies and Cream, blue or green nickel, in the three and three-and-a-half-inch size work very well. If using Anchovy the best teaser head colors are chartreuse, cop car, army truck glow, and green haze.
The sport season in Barkley Sound, Ucluelet and the many Islands nearby, and up to a mile offshore in late April, May, June and July often rely on the return of Chinook and Coho to the very large watersheds to the south. The big watersheds are the Columbia, Kalama, Willamette, and Sacramento River systems. Puget Sound over the past few years has had some excellent early summer run returns. The salmon migrate along the west coast of Vancouver Island as if travelling on a highway. The many sandy banks off the west coast and the waters of Beautiful Barkley Sound are full of rich resources of many bait fish. The salmon come into Barkley Sound and Gorge themselves and rest before continuing their long journey to their spawning grounds. In July there can be Chinook up to twenty-five and thirty pounds and Coho over Ten pounds. The sport fishing can be very eventful and provide for what can be termed “first class sport fishing”. Late July, August and September West Coast Vancouver Island Chinook and Coho begin to show and peak the last half of August and into September. Early forecasts are showing returns very much like 2019 which resulted in excellent sport fishing.
Trout Fishing on a variety of lakes in the area has been reasonable. The two lakes frequently fished are Sproat and Great Central Lakes. On Sproat Lake Dog Mountain on the Taylor Arm side and areas close to the ski club have had to date some minimal success. Great Central Lake has been better fishing from shore using power bait and worms. Fishing on the troll has been much better. The best fishing was during the fall. As we approach the spring months there should be improvement. Cut throat ad rainbow during the winter months range from two to four pounds. Good choices for lures on the troll are flat fish in darker patterns with a trailing dew worm. Gang Trolls can also be a great choice.
SEPTEMBER 1st 2019 DOUG LINDORES
2019 Alberni Valley Labor Day Salmon FESTIVAL
Labor Day weekend is upon us and that means it is Salmon Festival weekend in Port Alberni. The Derby takes place on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday with fishing beginning each day at 6 am. The derby will close on Labor Day Monday at 3 pm with final weigh-in at this time. Derby Headquarters for the 2019 Derby and the official weigh-in center will be at Tyee Landing which is very close to Harbor Quay and Fishermen’s Wharf.
There is a total of $55,000 in prizes for those anglers participating in the Salmon Derby. The largest salmon landed is valued at $15,000. The largest salmon during the derby is $10,000. Daily prizes each day are $5,000 for first prize, $2,000 for second prize and $1,000 for third prize. All contending derby fish are to be weighed in at Tyee Landing. Other weigh in centers for qualifying hidden weight prizes are China Creek Marina and Mckay Bay Lodge in Bamfield. The cost per Rod this year is $50.00. From this $50 there is a donation of $10 given to local enhancement. The Derby for 2019 should be a great success. Returns for Chinook and Coho salmon are above average. Last year’s winning Chinook salmon landed by Chris Blace of Crofton B.C. weighed in at 38.9 pounds. Over the past few years the largest salmon landed was by Dan Weatherby in 2016 and weighed 53.2 pounds.
The Alberni Valley and all of Barkley Sound has experienced relatively warm weather conditions during the summer months. This past summer has had rain which has helped with some salmon migration. The Chinook and Coho will need fresh water before entering some of the smaller streams and creeks. There has been some migration of Chinook and Coho into the Somass system. Water on occasion has been released to help the migration for this year’s spawning fish. Fresh Chinook and Coho are moving into Barkley Sound daily. These salmon that have recently reached the waters of the Sound will migrate up into the Alberni Inlet or they will hold outside various streams and creeks in the Sound. The fresh Chinook and Coho will continue to be eager to bite the variety of lures put out by many anglers in the sound. There are currently plenty of Chinook and Coho Salmon in the system.
The best salmon fishing currently is in Barkley Sound. The Alberni Inlet over the last TEN DAYS has also had some very good days of sport salmon fishing. There has been some commercial fishing at the beginning of this current week which has slightly slowed the sport fishing opportunity. The Alberni Inlet should fill with fresh salmon in the coming days. Weather conditions are forecast to continue to be warm but there is a chance of a bit of rainfall. Warmer air is in the immediate forecast which will continue to slow the salmon migration. This will also be very true of the salmon down in Barkley Sound locations. The ample Chinook and Coho at Swale Rock, Harbor Entrance, Pill Point, and the Bamfield Wall should continue as new salmon come in from the ocean. The Bamfield Wall has been consistent for the last week. Pill Point, Swale Rock, Meares, Cree and Austin Island and Harbor Entrance have all had very consistent sport fishing over the past two or three weeks. The salmon in the sound have been feeding very hard around tide changes. The Chinook and Coho have also been active between tides. The same scenario has been true for those anglers sport fishing in the inlet. The salmon are in fairly shallow water in Barkley Sound and also the Alberni Inlet. Fishing between thirty and fifty feet has not been uncommon. The best lures in the Alberni Inlet are the O-2, 0-15, 0-16, spatter-back and AORL 12 hootchies. Anchovy in the Inlet is also working very well. In Barkley Sound anchovy in a variety of Teaser Heads seem ideal and for many is working the best. Cop Car, green haze, purple haze, army truck glow and bloody nose have all been working. Leader lengths from five and a half to six feet behind gold, green, or burgundy flashers with a gold or mirror face are working the best. The AORL 12 hootchie and the spatter back and purple haze hootchies with 38 to 42 inches of leader behind a burgundy and gold flasher or a kinetic flasher is ideal for Coho in Barkley Sound and the Alberni Inlet.
Entries for this year’s Salmon Festival Derby have been remarkably encouraging. There will be many boaters on the water. Safety precautions are always of importance.
For More information
Contact Doug Lindores
250 731 7389 (mobile)
1 866 214 2706
August 2nd 2019
1 888 214 7206 or 250 731 7389
Slivers Charters Salmon Sport Fishing
The summer months are quickly moving by and the salmon fishing in many areas of Vancouver Island just seems to be getting better as we move into the month of August. The salmon fishing in Barkley Sound and the West Coast out of Ucluelet and Bamfield for Chinook and Coho has been extremely good. Unfortunately the Alberni Inlet Sport Fishing for Sockeye during the second half of June and the month of July was uneventful as the returns to the Somass River were very low. The Chinook and Coho sport fishing on the surf line and all the way to Swale Rock and Pill Point has been absolutely fantastic. Many of the salmon during the month of July have been migratory salmon moving to the big watersheds well to the south. Some of the early West Coast Vancouver Island Chinook have been showing up during the last week of July on the outer edges of the sound and also in locations such as Kirby, Fleming, and Swale Rock. We are expecting the Chinook salmon returning to Pacific Rim rivers, streams, and creeks to appear in abundance over the next few weeks in many Barkley Sound locations before they make their way up into the Alberni Inlet. With the big returns of Chinook and Coho forecast to West Coast Vancouver Island a very strong sport fishing opportunity should be in order considering the continued migration of salmon to the southern watersheds. August and the early part of September should have fascinating sport fishing in most of Barkley Sound, and the Alberni Inlet. The Alberni Inlet is also expected to have a very large return of Chinook and Coho as these salmon migrate into the Somass River system. Usually by the 15th of August good numbers of these Chinook begin to show in Inlet areas close to China Creek and the Port Alberni Harbor.
Port Alberni Inlet
The sport fishing in the Port Alberni Inlet for Sockeye salmon was completely closed in early July. The Chinook return to the Somass system should begin with salmon showing in good numbers in Inlet areas by the 10th of August. Pre-season forecasts are showing well above average returns of Chinook returning to the terminal area of the Inlet. Most of these fish will be returning to the Robertson Creek Hatchery. The age class of this year’s return is predominately in the forecast issued four and five-year old salmon. With this in mind there should be a good number of Chinook in the twenty to twenty-five pound class and some weighing over thirty pounds. Coho numbers are expected to be above average. Coho returns to the Pacific Rim and the many creeks and stream tributaries of the Somass system through conservation have become very strong over the past years. We should see Somass-Stamp River Coho begin to show in Barkley Sound close to the middle of August and peak during the second week of September before moving into the inlet and the Somass River.
Parts of Barkley Sound have experienced some fantastic fishing through June and July. July was a fabulous month in Barkley Sound as there were plenty of Chinook and Coho coming into the sound and feeding heavily before continuing their long journey to their Natal streams and rivers. Meares, Austin Island, Cree, and especially Swale Rock have been very good and have provided the most consistent sport fishing to date with good Chinook and Coho fishing. The salmon have been out in the deep water on the low tide and often on the flood move in towards the rocks and feed on the huge quantities of rich resourced bait fish. Chinook have been in 50 to 100 feet of water and have been averaging from the mid-teens to a few in the mid-twenties in terms of weight. The Coho have been in twenty-five to eighty feet of water and are gorging themselves putting on a pound a week and are currently averaging a whopping eight to ten pounds. Most of the salmon continue to be migratory fish moving to watersheds to the south. Recently there has been a few West Coast Vancouver Island salmon landed. We are expecting the local salmon to begin to show in higher numbers in early August and peak during the last ten days of the month. This is not to say that some Somass Chinook and Coho have not already arrived as there have been some fairly early returns to the Somass system over the past ten days. When sport fishing out in Barkley Sound it is ideal if sport fishermen have anchovy on board. To this date anchovy has not been essential as the salmon have been hitting various coyote spoons, Coho killers, and hootchies behind glow and kinetic flashers. In Coyote spoons, silver glow, lime green, green and blue nickel, watermelon, and cop car have all been working. In Coho Killers the Herring Aid, Cookies and Cream and Kitchen Sink have all been good. Hootchies and cuttlefish however in white and green have been by far the best lure. The bait in the area has ranged from squid, anchovy, mature herring and as of late newly hatched herring. If using anchovy have at least a six-foot leader using teaser heads in army truck glow, purple haze, green haze and cop car. We are expecting Barkley Sound to have fabulous sport fishing as returns of Chinook salmon to West Coast Vancouver Island are forecast to be between eighty to one hundred and ten thousand. With the late summer run of migratory salmon and local salmon returning to their natural streams and creeks there should be some “First Class” sport salmon fishing right into mid-September in all of Barkley Sound.
The Alberni Inlet should experience some excellent sport fishing in August. Usually the best salmon fishing opportunity begins mid-August but with big returns expected to the Somass River system the sport fishing may very well get underway well before August 15th. Many areas in China Creek and the Alberni Harbor will be heavily fished by many anglers world-wide. The larger O-15, O-16, and O-2 red and pink colored hootchies are very popular lures. Also the dark green spatter back, AORL 12, white glow and army truck are very popular. Bait is often a sure bet especially at the beginning of the season.
The Alberni Inlet and much of Barkley Sound will be very busy at the end of August and the first few days of September as the Port Alberni Salmon Festival will take place on August 31st and September 1 and 2. Tyee Landing will once again hosting the big event.
The saltwater sport fishing in 2019 has been fabulous from the surf line into various Barkley Sound locations. We are expecting the inshore areas of Barkley Sound as well as the Alberni Inlet to pick up even more by mid-August. If you are thinking of a fishing trip there is still time to organize. August and the early part of September is a great time to travel to the Alberni Valley area.
The Stamp River September and October salmon fishing should be unbelievable again this fall. Coho returns are looking extremely good and Chinook returns are expected to be well above average. For those that enjoy fly fishing the 10th of October right through until mid-November is often the best time. Space for guided trips in the river during the fall is very limited so organize early so there are no disappointments.
For more information
Fishing Report Doug Lindores Slivers Charters.
Fishing Report: Port Alberni Inlet, Barkley Sound,
West Coast Vancouver Island
July is a wonderful month for sport fishing in the Alberni Inlet and Barkley Sound. The area begins to fill with travelers and various eager and keen anglers world-wide. West Coast Vancouver Island and the Pacific Rim is a wonderful place to visit and one of the world’s majestic and scenic areas. The Alberni Inlet was to be an area where perhaps during July there would some great Sockeye sport fishing opportunity. Sockeye Salmon numbers returning to the Somass River are currently forecast to be at three hundred thousand. This is definitely a much lower number than what was previously forecast. The Sockeye headed to the Somass system are not schooling out in the inlet and are moving to the river system very quickly. If the air temperature rises to daily temperatures in the thirties the water will warm and this may slow the migration down. This very well could lead to a few weeks of Sockeye sport fishing. The current retention limit is two and will likely hold there through the month.
Barkley Sound has had some fairly good Chinook fishing in May and especially the last two weeks of June. The “early” and mid- summer run of migratory Chinook headed to the big watersheds to the south have been relatively decent. Barkley Sound has had ample amounts of rich nutrient bait fish which are bringing the salmon in from offshore waters to feed. The surf line areas and inshore areas along the Bamfield Wall, Austin, and Cree Island and Swale Rock are excellent locations for some of those chrome Chinook which are making their long journey to their natal rivers and streams. There have also been a good number of Coho up to seven pounds in many of the areas.
Port Alberni Inlet
Anglers have the best opportunity to land Sockeye when they school in big numbers. This historically occurs when the water temperature in the Somass River and Alberni Inlet hits eighteen degrees Celsius. The Sockeye school from Cous Creek out to the Nahmint Franklin area. With the projected outlook for Sockeye returns to be relatively low, as mentioned, the fishing for sport to date has been very slow.
The Sockeye in the Alberni Inlet are currently sitting in the top thirty-five feet of water and are migrating right to the Somass River. As the water in the Alberni Inlet warms they will swim down into deeper and cooler water. Sockeye hit short leader lengths from eighteen to twenty-five inches in length behind a variety of hotspot flashers. The mp2, mp15, pink and blue, pink and black, and the pink with either the green or white head hootchies all seem to work very well for most sport anglers. Sockeye are attracted to the boat by color. Many sport fishermen will often have eight flashers behind their boat. Four are often dummy flashers and the other four with hootchies of choice. The Sockeye will average four to eight pounds. Sockeye are the number one commercial salmon. They are wonderful for summer barbeques and when vacuum packed properly last the winter for those special occasions.
Barkley Sound and Ucluelet
The salmon fishing in Barkley Sound and close to Ucluelet over the past week has been very good. The best fishing has been out on surf line areas and up coast from the Ucluelet Harbor. Fishermen have had opportunity to fish up to one mile offshore and have a retention of two Chinook and Two Coho. The islands close to the Ucluelet Harbor Mouth, Meares, Austin, Cree Island, Kirby Point, Edward King and the Bamfield Wall To Cape Beale have all had times during the past few weeks with some hot Chinook and Coho sport fishing. Areas close to the Ucluelet Harbor that have had a few fantastic fishing days are Florencia, Great Bear and Sail Rock. The salmon in the Sound or inside waters have been hitting anchovy in green glow, army truck, and green haze Teaser Heads. Needle fish hootchies and hootchies in green (spatterback), blue and white have worked well. The cuttlefish in Pistachio, various whites, and even for some anglers army truck have been fabulous. A variety of Skinny G’s, Big Eye and coyote spoons in the three and four-inch sizes have been working very well. Herring Aide, sardine, no bananas, and cookies and cream have all been excellent choices. The fish in Barkley Sound have been from sixty-five to one hundred feet. We are looking forward to some great sport fishing opportunities during the full month of July and August in Barkley Sound, the Alberni Inlet and offshore. Offshore fishing opens on the 15th of July 2019. The numbers of transient Chinook and Coho headed to the big watersheds to the south are forecast to be average which should provide some very excellent sport salmon fishing. In August returns of Chinook and Coho to West Vancouver Island river systems and hatcheries are forecast to be one of the highest yearly returns in decades.
For more information
Call Doug on cell 250 731 7389
Or toll free 888 214 7206
Alberni Inlet, Barkley Sound and Ucluelet
AREA REPORT June 2019 Written by Doug Lindores
Vancouver Island is a majestic geographical area of tall coniferous forests and breath-taking scenic views of rugged terrain and coastlines battered by winter storms. There is not only a continuous display of rugged coastlines but there are also wonderful exquisite and secluded beaches with pristine calm water in Barkley Sound and the Alberni Inlet. Not only does the West Coast of British Columbia have these unbelievable landscapes but the salmon fishing in many areas is nothing but “World Class”. This is one of British Columbia’s only areas that anglers have an opportunity of landing a twenty pound salmon twelve months of the year. Fishing is just like the weather and in June it really does start to heat up. The Salmon fishing for Chinook salmon and also some early Coho in Barkley Sound can be very consistent during June. In June large schools of salmon, mostly Chinook, will hang around Barkley Sound and feed on the rich quantities of bait fish before continuing their long journey to the large watersheds to the south. Lots of quality salmon linger around the surf line and anglers have excellent opportunities of landing some nice sized salmon at a variety of hotspots like Cree Island, Austin, Meares, Sail Rock, Edward King and Beale.
June is also a wonderful month for sport fishing in the Alberni Inlet. The many areas to fish can still be relatively quiet and peaceful in respect to the number of anglers on the water during July and August. The Alberni Inlet historically offers Sockeye salmon fishing in June. Predictions for 2019 are showing rather low numbers of Sockeye returning back to the Somass River system. With 350,000 to 500,000 Sockeye forecast to return to the Somass system retention for sport in June will be two sockeye per day with a two-day retention limit of four per person. With the current environmental conditions Sockeye Salmon fishing for sport should get underway by Fathers-Day Weekend. When the Inlet water warms up the Sockeye begin to School in good numbers. The Salmon usually school from Cous Creek out to Nahmint and Franklin River. The Sockeye in the Alberni Inlet in June will predominately sit in forty-five to sixty feet of water. As the water warms the salmon will swim to deeper water. Sockeye hit shorter leader lengths from eighteen to twenty-four inches behind a variety of flashers. The best lures are mp 15’s, the pink and blue, and pink and black small hootchies. To date approximately 4,000 plus Sockeye salmon have escaped into the Sproat and Great Central Lakes. The greatest percentage of these fish have gone into the Sproat.
Barkley Sound fishing during the first seven to ten days of June has been extremely good. Most areas of the Sound have been producing Chinook salmon averaging eight to thirteen pounds. However there have been several Chinook in the high teens up to the mid twenty-pound range. The largest Chinook to date was landed on the Bamfield Wall and came in at a whopping Thirty-eight pounds. Coyote, Coho Killer, and Gold Star Spoons and a variety of hootchies have been working the best behind green and blue flashers. Some Kinetic flashers have also been working well. Green and blue Nickel, Herring Aid, Cookies and Cream, and Maverick have been some of the favorite spoons in the three and a half to four-inch size. White and green colors in hootchies have currently been by far the best when using plastic lures. Some individuals have been using blacks and blues in terms of colors and have had some great success. Leader lengths when using hootchies are best at forty-two inches fishing at depths of eighty to one hundred and twenty feet deep.
The trout fishing in June is often extremely good. The sockeye smolts as example leave Sproat and Great Central Lakes and travel out through the Somass River. This smolt migration wakes the trout up and using flat fish and Kwikfish that resemble smolts in the frog and rainbow patterns work really well when trolling. If fishing from the various banks use power bait fish.
Tidal water fishing in 2019 for Chinook salmon and Coho should be very good. Pre season forecasts for these two species returning to West Coast Vancouver Island are extremely good. The migratory Chinook number are expected to be well above average and hatchery Chinook forecasts termed West Coast Vancouver Island are forecast also to be well above average. This has been recently termed as a year with the highest return of salmon in many years.
For more information
Call Doug cell 250 731 7389
toll free 1 888 214 7206
MAY 2019 DOUG SLIVERS CHARTERS SALMON SPORT FISHING
We are approaching a new Saltwater Sport Fishing season. With the many changes that are occurring in British Columbia and in regard to sport fishing regulations for anglers it seems that the Alberni Inlet and Barkley Sound will be two of the areas that sport fishing will continue as it historically has in past. Chinook and Coho fishing in Barkley Sound right to the surf line will continue, at this time, throughout the 2019 summer months with limits of two Chinook and two Coho salmon. The West Coast Vancouver Island returns of Chinook and Coho salmon in 2019 are expected to be historically “very high”. This is very good news for anglers and for the community of Port Alberni. Sockeye fishing in the Alberni Inlet is not quite as prolific as it was looking just a few short months ago. The early season forecasts are predicting that Sockeye returns to the Somass River system will be from Four Hundred Thousand to Four hundred and thirty thousand pieces. With the current environmental conditions Sockeye Fishing for sport anglers should get underway by Fathers-Day Weekend in the Alberni Inlet. Possession limits if all goes well to the fishery plan will be possession limits of two sockeye salmon per day. Usually Sport Sockeye fishing continues through July followed in early August by Chinook and Coho fishing. The Chinook and Coho opportunities in the Alberni Inlet and Barkley Sound in August and early September should be spectacular.
With improved weather conditions and the change in winds, it’s also when offshore halibut fishing opportunities intensify. In May we will concentrate on Halibut fishing which will intensify as these fish migrate to the sandy bottoms of the close by banks out on the offshore areas.
May is the month that most sport fishermen prepare their boats and gear for the anticipated sport fishing season. It is also the month that most get out on the water and enjoy their first sport fishing opportunities in saltwater locations. In May, the migrating “early summer Chinook” head toward the big watersheds to the south swim down the coast close to the beach. Barkley Sound (Area 23) is one of those areas along the rugged coast line of British Columbia that has water which is very well protected and sport fisher people have opportunity to fish pretty much 12 months of the year.
Barkley Sound is full of bait fish which range from needle fish, herring, and anchovy. With these sources of food in “Area 23” waters good-sized schools of salmon swim into the area and feed heavily on these rich nutrient sources. Sometimes, the salmon will rest and gorge themselves for days before continuing the journey to their natal rivers and streams. Often May and early June will see good-sized schools of salmon lingering inside the surf line areas like Cree Island, Austin Island, and Meares. Edward King Island and Kirby Point are two other great sport fishing locations. Depending on the bait sources these migratory salmon can come right to Swale Rock and as far as Pill Point to feed on the bait fish before heading back to the open ocean. Early-season salmon are usually in water ranging from 80 to 130 feet. A variety of spoons in chrome and favorites like cookies and cream, Irish cream, and a few of the 3-inch needlefish spoons and the chartreuse and white glow will work very well.
Anglers normally have the best success around the Ucluelet Harbor Islands and in Barkley Sound using anchovy in chartreuse, green glow, green haze, and purple haze Rhys Davis teaser heads behind either green, blue, or purple hotspot flashers. Four-inch and three-and-a-half-inch spoons in Irish cream and cookies and cream, gold and silver gold star spoons, and needlefish, especially the b-149, are all excellent choices on the troll.
Trout fishing (rainbow & cutthroat) in the two big lakes—Sproat and Great Central—are very productive in the spring months. Gear fishermen in the spring often use Flatfish wiggling plugs while fly fishers will cast, or troll the dark purple carrie fly, the black woolly bugger, or the crystal hair black leach.
Tight lines and Good Fishing
Slivers Charters Salmon Sport fishing 1 888 214 7206
250 731 7389
1 888 214 7206 or 250 731 7389 PORT ALBERNI AND AREA
It has been a relatively long and very wet winter season in Central and West Coast Vancouver Island. Some big winter storms with wind have battered the coast in inland areas especially in December and January. Spring and Summer are just around the corner and we can hopefully expect weather conditions to improve and allow for some productive fishing days out on the water. 2019 looks to provide good opportunity for sport fisher people targeting Chinook, Coho, Sockeye, and it being an odd year, pink salmon. The Chinook numbers should remain stable with some of our area streams and rivers improving in returns. The Coho mortality rates are down and they are increasing in return numbers to local water systems in late August and September. Sockeye returns to the Somass River system should be average and much better than what occurred in 2018.
It is a new year and hopefully some new and wonderful sport fishing opportunities will fall upon us in 2019. As previously remarked the Spring, summer and fall of 2019 are looking very favorable for Chinook, Coho, and Sockeye Fishing in the Alberni Inlet and Barkley Sound. These two areas of the West Coast will provide for ongoing sport fishing with reasonable retention limits. Chinook and Coho numbers in 2019 returning to West Coast Vancouver Island Rivers and Streams should resemble the fantastic returns that we witnessed in 2017 and 2018. Sockeye salmon returns to the Somass River should be average or perhaps just a little better than average. Approximately 200,000 Sockeye returned to the Somass River system in 2018. This was a very low return of what is termed the “Number 1” salmon of the five salmon species. This did not provide for much of a sport fishery. The early season forecast for Sockeye is not yet established. More data will be provided as we get closer to late April.
The horrific stormy winter weather on the West Coast and inland Vancouver Island has prevented a lot of winter Chinook fishing in Barkley Sound. The sport fishing during most of the winter in 2019 can be described as “slow”. Weather conditions will abruptly change in March and April and allow opportunity for some warmer air temperatures which should allow for some productive fishing days out on the water of the Sound and the various islands outside the Ucluelet Harbor mouth. March provides the first of many salmon fishing derby’s in this area. The first weekend of March in 2019 is the annual Sproat Loggers Derby. This Derby is hosted out of Poett Nook located at the bottom end of the Bamfield Wall in Sarita Bay. This early season derby has had Winter Chinook in the mid twenty-pound range weighed in as derby winners. The Sproat Lake Winter Chinook Derby has been attracting well over four hundred entrants over the last few years. This derby usually marks the beginning of the salt water angling season in this Vancouver Island area. The derby has many outstanding prizes for those many entrants that travel from afar to take part. There will be plenty of information online regarding the derby. Entrant tickets are usually available at the Gone Fishing store locations.
Winter Chinook fishing has been slow through the winter months. That being said the weather has not cooperated. Some local anglers in Bamfield and Ucluelet do get out on the water on a nice winter afternoon or morning. The feeder Chinook fishing should improve dramatically if the herring spawn is as fantastic as it has been over the last few years. For those sport angling people getting out on the water there have been a few afternoons where there are some feeders in deep water right in the Bamfield Harbor mouth, Scotch Bay, the Bamfield Wall, Whistle Buoy, and the stretch of water from Kirby to Edward King. The front side of Fleming Island and Sandford across from Bamfield has also provided some nice salmon up to ten and eleven pounds. The fish are in very deep water up to one hundred and fifty feet. March, April and the first half of May can provide excellent fishing for avid anglers outside the Ucluelet Harbor. Many will troll right alongside Beg Island and to the Red Can. Sail Rock, Great Bear, Mara Rock, right back to Mayne Bay and over to Swale Rock can also provide some great winter Chinook opportunities. In the early spring many anglers will fish very close to the bottom. Coyote spoons, or spoons in Irish Cream, Cookies and Cream, green and blue nickel and other various spoons and colors in the three and three-and-a-half inch size work very well. If there are not a lot of undersize Chinook in the various angling spots anchovy will often out fish spoons. Chartreuse, Cop Car, army truck, and green haze are often good anchovy teaser head colors. A six foot leader or better when trolling anchovy is a wise decision. Those who prefer trolling with hootchies purple haze, green spatterback, and various glow whites tend to work well behind green and blue flashers.
Early Season fishing in late April, May, June and July often will rely on returns of Chinook and Coho to the very large watersheds to the south. The biggest watersheds are the Columbia, the Kalama, Willamette and Sacramento. The Salmon often travel along West Coast Vancouver Island as if travelling on a hi-way. The sandy banks off the west coast out to twenty miles provide rich resources of bait fish. The salmon will stop and gorge themselves for days before moving on in large schools. Barkley Sound also has huge amounts of rich nutrient filled bait fish that these migrating salmon will come in and feed on. For anglers the fishing for Chinook up to thirty pounds can be very eventful and provide for what can be termed “first class sport fishing”. The West Vancouver Chinook and Coho will begin to show in early August and begin to peak later in the month and into September.
Trout fishing on the lakes has been up and down. Some Sproat Lake fresh water fisher people have fished Dog Mountain and also an area just up from the Ski Club but success rates have been minimal. Great Central Lake has had anglers have a little success fishing from shore using power bait and even worms. The best fishing has been on the troll. The fall fishing on Great Central was spectacular. The fishing during Christmas and the early part of January was a bit slower likely due to the heavy rains. Cut throat and rainbow during the winter months usually weigh two to four pounds. Flat fish in darker patterns with a trailing dew worm works very well. Gang trolls also are a good choice.
During the winter the Stamp River conditions can vary. Steelhead fishing will be rather poor when there is high water. When the water is low and clear anglers in the river will on average hit a few fish per day. Steelhead fishing has been okay in both the upper and lower river. There have been Winter and Fall Steelhead in the system. These fish will spawn in the spring. Hopefully when conditions warm up so will the Stamp River fishing.
Slivers Charters Salmon Sport Fishing
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We are very fortunate in this area of Vancouver Island to have the opportunity to fish year round. The Alberni Inlet and more importantly Barkley Sound have very protected water areas. The month of September is a fabulous time for anglers as the big Coho and Chinook approach their final destination of their longest life journey. The month of September also is a wonderful time of year for anglers as weather patterns create fabulous settings for many memorable sport fishing days. The days of course are shorter but the afternoons are warm and the salmon that are swimming along the Vancouver Island coast line and in the many Barkley Sound locations are feeding frantically before making their final destination to their natal streams and rivers.
September is not only a fabulous month for sport fishing but it is also the time of year when there are some terrific fishing derby opportunities. The city of Port Alberni hosts the three-day Labor Day Weekend Salmon Festival. The derby dates for 2018 are September 1st, 2nd and 3rd. The derby provides cash and prizes of over $60,000 with endless weekend entertainment. The 2018 festival should have some fantastic results as the returning Chinook to West Coast Vancouver Island is a mix of three, four and five year olds. The returns of Chinook are forecast to be at approximately eight-five thousand pieces to the Somass River system. This prediction should provide for fabulous world class salmon fishing in Barkley Sound and the Alberni Inlet in September.
Tuna fishing is also another opportunity that takes place in September. This fishery is still rather new to the area and requires some specialized gear and knowledge before heading out. In September the warm water currents bring the Tuna closer to the beach and make them more accessible in a sport boat of “Good Size”. The Tuna Shoot Out occurs in September, weather permitting. Anglers have to watch and be aware of the water current and look for the temperature break and fish the warmer side of the blue water. The tuna fishery is a lot of fun but safety is of essence. It is important that other people know where your boat is headed and that the weather is perfect. All safety equipment that is transport Canada approved is important on any sport fishing vessel. The tuna when landed must be put on ice immediately to preserve their quality. Having a larger sport fishing boat is a good idea as many will take up to five hundred pounds of ice or more.
Barkley Sound fishing at Pill Point, Diplock, Assets Island, and Swale Rock are wonderful hotspots where the salmon in in the first half of the month will hold if there are large quantities of rich resources of bait fish. The Bamfield Wall also provides unbelievable sport fishing. The fish that are headed to the Somass River, Sarita River and Nitnat will often hold from Whittlestone to Poett Nook gorging themselves on bait fish as they await fall rain before migrating to their final destination. Salmon also stretch along the opposite Barkley Sound coastline from Gilbraltor Island to the fish marker in Rainy Bay. The Chinook and Coho arrive in good numbers on a daily basis and as eager as they are to arrive to their spawning grounds they are still relatively eager to feast heavily. The fish are in shallower water in September. It is not uncommon for Coho in the early morning and late evening to be on the surface. Chinook are often in twenty to sixty feet of water. Anglers using anchovy usually have the best success. Anchovy in a glow army truck, purple haze, green haze, and cop car teaser head with six feet of leader behind purple-gold, green-gold or purple haze flasher should have some excellent success. The AORL 12, dark green spatter back, clown, purple haze, and army truck hootchies are fantastic standbys. Tomic Spoons and plugs in the six and seven inch size with no flasher also produce some great results when fishing in the many Barkley Sound locations.
The Alberni Inlet historically fills with Chinook salmon during the second half of August and continues into the first half of September. Coho follow the Chinook migration. In September both species are in a great mix migrating to the Somass River. Hotspots in the Inlet are Coulsons, Lone Tree, the China Creek Wall, Dunsmuir and Underwood. The fish are in twenty to fifty feet of water and are usually most aggressive in the early morning and on tide changes. Again the top producers in terms of lures are anchovy in various teaser heads behind a green glow or chartreuse glow hotspot flasher. The best hootchies are O-15, O-2 and O-16 which are all red and pink work extremely well. Also purple haze, green spatter back, and the mp2 and mp16 are also fantastic behind a hotspot flasher. The salmon when in the inlet are anxious to hit the river and when any rain occurs they bolt to the river mouth.
September is a wonderful month. The days are shorter with cool mornings and evenings. The late mornings and afternoons are warm with that cool fresh ocean breeze. The boat traffic is much less than July and August which makes for even a better sport fishing opportunity. Sport fishing will be world class as the salmon in Barkley Sound and the Alberni Inlet will be in good numbers and a good weight class.
Slivers Charters Salmon Sport fishing
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August 30th 2018 DOUG LINDORES
2018 Alberni Valley Labor Day Salmon FESTIVAL (Sept. 1st to Sept. 3rd 2018)
Labor Day weekend is upon us and that means it is Salmon Festival weekend in Port Alberni. The Derby takes place on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday with fishing beginning each day at 6 am. The derby will close on Labor Day Monday at 3 pm with final weigh-in at this time. Derby Headquarters for the 2018 Derby is at Tyee Landing. The official weigh-in center will also be at Tyee Landing which is very close to Harbor Quay and Fishermen’s Wharf. There is a total of over $55,000 in prizes for those anglers participating in the Salmon Derby. The largest salmon landed is valued at $15,000. Daily prizes each day are $5,000 for first prize, $2,000 for second prize and $1,000 for third prize. All contending derby fish are to be weighed in at Tyee Landing. Other weigh in centers for qualifying hidden weight prizes are China Creek Marina, Poet Nook, and Mckay Bay Lodge in Bamfield. The cost per Rod is the exact same as 2017 at $50.00 per rod fished. From this $50 there is a donation of $10 given to local enhancement. The Derby for 2018 should be a great success. Returns for Chinook and Coho salmon are above average. Chinook returns to the Somass River system for 2018 are approximately 85,000 pieces. Twenty percent of the run is five year old fish which means that there is the chance for some Chinook to come in at the forty pound mark.
The Alberni Valley and all of Barkley Sound has been experiencing very warm and dry weather conditions during the summer months. The Chinook and Coho will need fresh water before entering some of the smaller streams and creeks. There has been a very limited number of migrating Chinook and Coho into the Somass system. There has been some excellent fishing for anglers in Barkley Sound locations.These salmon that have recently reached the waters of the Sound will migrate up into the Alberni Inlet and will hold until there is ample rain to allow the salmon to continue their final journey to their spawning grounds. Some salmon will remain in Barkley Sound will hold outside the many streams and creeks located in the area. The Chinook and Coho in Barkley Sound will continue to feed heavily and will be eager to bite the variety of lures put out by the many anglers.
The best salmon fishing currently is in Barkley Sound. The Alberni Inlet has had some good days of fishing. There has been some commercial fishing at the beginning of this current week which has slowed the sport fishing opportunity. The Inlet will fill with fresh salmon in the coming days. Weather conditions are forecast to continue to be dry. The ample Chinook and Coho at Swale Rock, Harbor Entrance, Pill Point, and the Bamfield Wall should continue as new salmon come in from the ocean. The Bamfield Wall has become a little more consistent over the last week. Pill Point, Swale Rock, Meares, Cree and Austin Island and Harbor Entrance have all had very consistent sport fishing over the past two or three weeks. The salmon in the sound have been feeding very hard around tide changes. The Chinook and Coho have also been active between tides. The salmon are in fairly shallow water in Barkley Sound and also the Alberni Inlet. Fishing between thirty and fifty feet has not been uncommon. The best lures in the Alberni Inlet are the O-2, 0-15, 0-16, spatterback and AORL 12 hootchies. Anchovy in the Inlet is also working. In Barkley Sound anchovy in a variety of Teaser Heads seem ideal and for many is working the best. Cop Car, green haze, purple haze, army truck glow and bloody nose have all been working. Leader lengths from five and a half to six feet behind gold, green, or burgundy flashers with a gold or mirror face are working very well. The AORL 12 hootchie and the spatter back and Halloween hootchies with 38 to 42 inches of leader behind a burgundy and gold flasher or a kinetic flasher is ideal for Coho in Barkley Sound and the Alberni Inlet.
Entries for this year’s Salmon Festival Derby have been very encouraging. There will be many boaters on the water. Safety precautions are always of importance.
For More information
Contact Doug Lindores
250 731 7389
SLIVERS CHARTERS SALMON SPORT FISHING
July 4th 2018 Doug Lindores Slivers Charters Salmon Sport Fishing
July is a wonderful month for sport fishing in the Alberni Inlet and Barkley sound. The area begins to fill with travelers and various anglers world-wide. The Alberni Inlet is an area during July where sport Sockeye fishing historically flourishes. Sockeye Salmon numbers returning to the Somass River are forecast to be from five hundred to six hundred thousand pieces. The current retention level for sport fisher persons is two per day. It is still unclear if this number will change on the first of July. The early results to date have been phenomenal with many anglers limiting. Over the next few days there will be a variety of test fishing which may indicate a new run size. With the current environmental conditions Sockeye Sport fishing could (if permitted) continue into late July. There is still plenty of snow in the mountains which has created a fairly steady flow of cool water which attracts the Sockeye to the River. How-ever the area did have peak air temperatures over thirty degrees Celsius for several days. These higher temperatures have helped the temperature of the river water and the inlet water rise substantially. The rise in water temperatures have slowed the Sockeye migration and the Sockeye are schooling out in the inlet.
Barkley Sound had terrific Chinook fishing during the month of May. The last couple of weeks during the month of June the Sound has had not only fantastic Chinook fishing but there have also been some great migrating Coho up to seven and eight pounds. The “early” and mid- summer run of migratory Chinook headed to the big watersheds to the south have been fantastic. Barkley Sound has had ample amounts of rich nutrient bait fish which are bringing the salmon in from offshore waters to feed. The surf line areas such as Austin and Cree Island and inshore areas along the Bamfield Wall, Swale Rock, Pill Point, Ecoole and Diplock have been excellent locations for some of those chrome Chinook and Coho making their long journey to their natal rivers and streams.
Port Alberni Inlet
Anglers have the best opportunity to land Sockeye when they school in big numbers. This historically occurs when the water temperature in the Somass River and Alberni Inlet hits seventeen and eighteen degrees Celsius. The Sockeye school from Cous Creek out to the Nahmint Franklin area. With the projected outlook for Sockeye returning to the Somass River being around five hundred and fifty thousand there should be a fantastic opportunity for some wonderful Sockeye fishing. On May 1st Sockeye fishing opened in the tidal waters of the inlet. The retention is currently at two Sockeye Salmon per person per day with a two-day limit of four per person.
The Sockeye in the Alberni Inlet are currently sitting in thirty to fifty feet of water and as the water warms they will swim down into deeper and cooler water. Sockeye hit short leader lengths from eighteen to twenty-five inches in length behind a variety of hotspot flashers. The mp2, mp15, pink and blue, pink and black, and “Black Hooks” with all seem to work very well for most sport anglers. Sockeye are attracted to the boat by color. Many sport fishermen will often have eight to ten flashers behind their boat. Four to six of these flashers are referred to as dummy flashers and the other four with hootchies or “Black Hooks” of choice. The Sockeye are currently averaging three to seven pounds. Sockeye are the number one commercial salmon. They are wonderful for summer barbeques and when vacuum packed properly last the winter for those special occasions.
Sockeye fishing is a wonderful fishing opportunity for the whole family. It is a fun fishery for young and old. Don’t miss out on this opportunity in the Alberni Inlet in late June and July of this 2018 sport fishing season.
Barkley Sound and Ucluelet
The salmon fishing in Barkley Sound has been just magnificent. The best fishing has been out on surf line areas. The islands close to the Ucluelet Harbor Mouth, Meares, Austin, Cree Island, Kirby Point, Edward King and the Bamfield Wall during the past few weeks have experienced some hot Chinook and Coho sport fishing. Areas close to the Ucluelet Harbor that have had a few fantastic fishing days are Great Bear and Sail Rock. The inner and outer South bank and Long Beach have had some of the transient salmon create some good sport salmon fishing opportunities. Florencia and Way Point have been two hotspots as of late. The salmon coming into Barkley Sound have been hitting small three- inch spoons. The herring aid, cookies and cream and Irish Cream as example have been hot behind a variety of flashers. Anchovy in green glow, army truck, and green haze Rhys Davis Teaser Heads have been working. There are a lot of undersized Chinook and Coho making it rather painful in terms of the amount of bait one can go through. The best advice is to fish with the spoons mentioned or ones of choice. Needle fish hootchies and hootchies in green (spatterback), blue and white have worked well. Small Coho Killer spoons in the cookies and cream and white pearl have been working very well. A few guides have done very well with the army truck glow hootchie and the cuttlefish J-79. The Sonora cuttlefish, Jack Smith, and Blue Meaney Hootchies have been very good out on the banks. We are looking forward to some great sport fishing opportunities during July and August in Barkley Sound, the Alberni Inlet and offshore. The numbers of transient Chinook and Coho headed to the big watersheds to the south are forecast to be average or just above average which should provide some very excellent sport salmon fishing.
For more information
Call Doug mobile 250 731 7389
Or 250 724 2502