from some of the BEST PLACES TO FISH !
19th November, 2013: FISHING REPORT: Port Alberni
Inlet, Barkley Sound, Ucluelet (West Coast), Somas-Stamp River System.
by Doug Lindores of
Salmon Sport Fishing
Toll Free Number: 1-
888 214 7206
is mid-November and rather than thinking about the past summer of fishing and
the many great days all sport anglers had on local bodies of water we are now
preparing for the summer of 2014. The Fall Salmon Season is now over but fishing
and the returns of Chinook were very good in spite of all the poor forecasts.
Pre seasonal 2014 forecasts for local West Coast Vancouver Island Sockeye,
Chinook, Coho, and also the salmon runs migrating to the big southerly
watersheds look rather promising. There will be more information about these
2014 summer salmon runs in the early part of the New Year.
November has been the usual month
of wind and rain but in truth there have been some great sunny and rather warm
days on the Coast of Vancouver Island and British Columbia. This is not to say
that there has not been the odd heavy rain. The Stamp River has had quite low
water conditions through much of the fall but at the moment is at an average
level. There have been times that fishing the Stamp for Fall-Summer Steelhead
has been difficult because of the very low water conditions but it is hoped that
a bit of rain will stir the sedentary Fall Steelhead into a feeding frenzy on
the dropped naturally spawned river eggs. Some rain and continued average Stamp
River water levels will allow for some great Steelhead fishing for the last half
of November and into early December.
returns to the Somass system were better than what was forecast especially for
Chinook this fall. The West Coast Vancouver Island Chinook forecasts were very
dismal for 2013 but returns to most rivers were more than double. The Somas
River Chinook were over twenty-eight thousand pieces. The Somass system is a key
stream for Sockeye, Chinook, and Coho. In 2013 the summer Somass River Sockeye
returns were well relatively low with just over three hundred thousand
returning. Chinook were at approximately twenty-eight thousand. Coho returns
through the Stamp Falls fish way and the Sproat Falls fish way were abundant
with well over sixty thousand returning. The Chinook numbers in terms of return
still allowed for the necessary 57 million egg count at Robertson Creek
Hatchery. Fisheries and Oceans Canada in partnership with Hupacasath First
Nations facilitate a counting operation from late May to early November. The
fish way is open daily and the salmon are counted by video and computer and
trained observers. The salmon migration in the River system as mentioned is
videotaped and counts are better than 95% accurate.
levels in the Stamp are currently at an average level for mid-November. The
Summer-Fall Steelhead fishing for the past few weeks could be described in two
words as “mediocre” or slow. There have been some better than average days but
most guide boats are averaging four to six hookups in terms of Steelhead and
five to six trout hookups per day. With the current average water levels and a
little rain we could expect some better fishing over the next few weeks. The
Chinook and Coho wild spawn has thinned out but there are plenty of eggs in the
river system. The best fishing is in the Upper River and the only boat pressure
which has been low is on weekends being in fishing areas below or above the
hatchery. Weekdays in terms of fishing pressure has been quite low. Fishing
above the Ash has been very good. The Lower River has seen little fishing lately
but expectations are that in the next few weeks that some late fall and Winter
Steelhead will begin to show and pick up the Stamp River fishing.
With the Coho spawn being very
strong with the very high Coho returns anglers are using or mimicking what the
Steelhead are feeding on. A bait ban been in effect from “the bucket” so fish
egg imitations are a must. Guides are using single egg imitations. Jensen eggs
are the most popular. Also gorkies, and spin-n-glows are doing well. Most
individuals are float fishing and only a few are bouncing off the river bottom.
When the fishing in the Lower
River picks up in the Lower River especially below the bucket sport fisher
people should use gooey-bobs, pink worms, and spin-n-glows in bc orange and
regular orange colors. We are expecting the Stamp River which is British
Columbia’s premiere fishing destination river to have some terrific Steelhead
fishing right through March of 2014.
Port Alberni Inlet
/ Barkley Sound
prawn fishing will have openings in the Alberni Inlet. It is important to check
with the regulations and check with the DFO for winter openings. The openings
are often for 15 days. Again it is important to check all DFO regulations and
openings. Most individuals at this time of year will prawn close to China Creek,
the narrows and Cous Creek. Currently salmon fishing is Nil but often Winter
Chinook will travel up as far as China Creek if there is bait in the area. We
are expecting a healthy return of Sockeye salmon in June, July and early August
of 2014. Some of the preseason indicators are showing over one million Sockeye
salmon returning to the Somass River system. Of course all fisher people are
hoping that returns next summer will be in high numbers. Sockeye usually begin
schooling in large schools by mid June as the water in the Somass River begins
to warm up. Those individuals who have summer plans to come to Port Alberni and
are planning on using a guide should arrange their trip fairly soon as boats and
guides may very well be sparse.
Barkley Sound is one area on the
west coast that is protected on the east and west shorelines. It is an area that
can often be comfortable for winter fishing. Winter or Feeder Chinook fishing
usually picks up in December and carries on well into early April. The rule is
often where one finds the bait the salmon will be there. The Chinook are usually
in deep water from 115 to 140 feet. Good areas of the Sound to fish are areas
close to Poett Nook and Sarita Bay. Vernon Bay, Swale Rock, Mayne Bay, and the
back end of Canoe Pass can also be excellent areas to fish. Often hootchies in
blue, green, various whites and blue-green colors are the best lures. Of course
there are days when the fish will touch nothing but anchovy. Winter Chinook
trips also include some prawn and crab fishing.
Ucluelet (West Coast)
has already experienced some good Feeder Chinook fishing. The Inner and Outer
South Bank have allowed sport fishermen to have success on salmon up to 17 and
18 pounds. This is unusual for this time of year but great weather conditions
has permitted a few keen anglers to get out a few miles offshore. Earlier in the
fall the T-Rex hootchie was good but recently those fishing offshore, on good
days and those fishing close to the Ucluelet Harbor at the “red can” Mara Rock,
and The Lighthouse Bank have been using white hootchies and also a green
needlefish hootchie. A four inch cop car and a four inch nasty boy coyote spoon
have also been good lures all fished behind a green or red hotspot flasher.
During the winter Ucluelet offers some of the west coasts best prawn and crab
fishing. The Bottom fishing is also very good. We have a great Seafood Safari in
the spring. One must remember that the Pacific Ocean during the winter can have
some magnificent storms but also there are superb days for fishing as the ocean
can be completely flat. Winter fishing is often very close to the harbour.
Safety of course is always a priority. Ucluelet will once again be a fisherman’s
paradise in the summer of 2014 as preseason predictions are showing a very
healthy return of four year old migratory salmon swimming the coast and destined
to watersheds to the south. These fish swim as early, mid, and late summer fish.
If things remain true to past years the best fishing is from the second week of
June through to mid August.
For more information
Slivers Charters Salmon Sport Fishing
+1 250 724 2502 (h)
+1 250 731 7389 ©
Toll Free Number: 1-
888 214 7206