from some of the BEST PLACES TO FISH !
31st January 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
again a New Year and many sport fishermen are beginning to think and dream about
the many sport fishing opportunities that await them in 2013. The 2012 season
was somewhat a memorable year on the scenic West Coast of Vancouver Island.
Chinook fishing for migratory salmon headed to distant southern watersheds began
in late April and continued through the spring and summer. The best salmon
fishing on the surfline of Barkley Sound and offshore waters from Barkley Sound
which is located on Vancouver Islands West Coast and Tofino-Ucluelet was in June
and July. A warm water current that hit Vancouver Islands West Coast seemed to
play some havoc with much of the August offshore fishing as the big migratory
Chinook and Coho moved down the coastline well away from the warm water current.
Many felt the salmon moved out to the fifty fathom mark and curled back towards
the west coast when out of the warm current. Salmon returning to local streams
and rivers arrived in August and continued in relatively good numbers until
September. In the Alberni Inlet Sockeye returns to the Somass River system were
a very healthy 860,000 pieces. Chinook returns were approximately 40,000 pieces
The 2013 sport fishing season which begins on the west coast in the late spring
and continues into the summer and early fall months looks to be much better than
Sockeye season in the Alberni Inlet will again be good for those sport fisher
people that take time and opportunity to fish the Alberni Inlets quiet and
pristine waters. Sockeye sport fishing most years gets underway by the fifteenth
of June. The Sockeye school in good numbers when the Somass River and the Port
Alberni Inelt water reach eighteen degrees celsius. When this happens the
Sockeye sport fishing really picks up for the sporties.
Vancouver Island is a destination
on both coastlines for all five salmon species (Chinook, Coho, Sockeye, Pink,
and Chum). This gives all avid sport fisher persons an opportunity to sport fish
a choice of salmon he/she might enjoy to target. These different salmon species
do arrive in the West or East waters of Vancouver Island at certain times of the
summer or fall and each species also peak at specific times. This often means
that fisher persons can fish the inlets, sounds and offshore waters for Chinook
and Coho and also Sockeye and have opportunity to fish river mouths and various
Vancouver Island beaches for Pinks and Coho.
Winter fishing for Winter
Steelhead in the Stamp River has been relatively slow todate as the Stamp River
has had low water with lack of any rainfall during the month of January. Winter
(feeder) Chinook fishing in Barkley Sound and around the quiet hamlet of
Bamfield and also the Ucluelet Harbor has been off and on with some reasonable
fishing opportunities on those days that the winter season offers. Their have
been some remarkable sunny and warm days during January this year. The Stamp
River had excellent returns in terms of the summer-fall run of Steelhead which
are currently still found in the Upper Stamp River which is very close to Port
Port Alberni Inlet | Barkley Sound
times during the winter months a few schools of Winter Chinook will make their
way up into the inlet and feed on bait fish in the Bells Bay and Nahmint-Franklin
areas. This happens periodically but the Alberni Inlet has the best sport
fishing from mid June to mid September. The Somass River Sockeye begin to return
to the river in May and usually begin to school around the 15th of June. When
the Sockeye school in big numbers, the action for the number one tasting salmon,
really heats up and is a lot of fun for all fisher persons young and old.
Sockeye fishing most years can continue into the first ten days of August. It is
then that the first few Chinook salmon appear in the Inlet. Chinook fishing is
followed by Coho with the peak of the Chinook season often occurring around the
Labor Day Weekend when the Port Alberni three day fishing derby takes place. The
Port Alberni Inlet is a wonderful and very easy area to fish. Many people worry
about rough water but the Inlet waters for the most part are calm and pristine.
The best fishing is often in the morning hours and the last two hours before
dark. Sockeye salmon do seem to bite at any time of the day which makes this
sport fishery a very popular opportunity for everyone.
For those individuals that enjoy
prawn sport fishing the season in the Port Alberni Inlet is on and off.
Individuals are encouraged to check all DFO regulations and when the prawn
season is open.
Barkley Sound waters are very
much like the Port Alberni Inlet. The Sound is protected on both the east and
west coastlines. Salmon Fishing in the Sound can occur every month of the year
without fear of experiencing the bigger waters often found offshore in the
winter and even during the summer months. Winter Chinook fishing has been off
and on during December and January. The Christmas season had a few good days as
the weather co-operated just prior to Christmas and also after the beginning of
the New Year. The early days of 2013 has had some good weather patterns and a
few productive fishing days. To date the best fishing areas have been the
Bamfield Harbor mouth and the Bamfield Wall as well as Swale Rock, Vernon Bay,
and the Canoe Pass outside entry points. Pill Point, Sarita Bay and the Nook are
also other areas worthwhile to fish in February and March. Last winter the
largest recorded Winter Chinook salmon was landed during the Sproat Lake Loggers
Derby which annually takes place during the first weekend of March. We are
expecting that some nice salmon in the teens up to the mid twenties will be
lurking in the mix again this year.
Chinook are often found in deep water. It is not uncommon to find them in many
areas of the Sound from 100 to 145 feet. Coyote Spoons in the three and a half
to four inch size in cop car, glow cop car, nasty boy, Green glow, and green and
blue nickel are good choices for fisher persons to have in the tackle box.
Hootchies are popular but it is recommended to use a shorter leader length than
in the summer. Leader lengths from 34 to 38 inches behind a glow green or glow
red hotspot flasher are a good choice. The Purple Haze hootchie and also the
green spatterback as well as various whites and greens are excellent choices.
Anchovy is also something all sport fisher persons should have on board. There
are days when the salmon will touch nothing else but anchovy. Anchovy in
chartreuse or a green glow Rhys Davis Teaser Head is a good choice. The first
salmon fishing derby of the year occurs in the sound based out of Poett Nook.
The Sproat Loggers Derby will take place the first Saturday and Sunday of March.
The Derby is very popular and offers some great prizes and often some great
weather and fishing. One of the largest Chinook landed in this particular derby
was two years ago and weighed in at twenty-eight pounds. The key about winter
Chinook fishing in the Barkley Sound area is finding bait fish. Where one finds
bait fish there is often a good number of feeder Chinook swimming and feeding
heavily on tide changes.
Summer fishing in the Sound
especially on the surf line most years occurs from late May to early August and
is expected to be this year very good due to the migratory movement of salmon
along the west coast. Good numbers of Chinook, Coho and Pink Salmon will be
moving to watersheds to the South. The migratory flow of Chinook should
predominately be 4 year olds. The vast amounts of rich resources of bait fish in
the Barkley Sound area during the summer months often bring the salmon into feed
and rest before they continue their journey. Some world class fishing usually
occurs at Meares, Cree, Edward King, Beale and as far in as Kirby Point and
Swale Rock. We are really excited about the great sport salmon fishing
opportunity we should have this summer in both the Sound and the Port Alberni
Ucluelet (West Coast)
is fairly difficult to go to far offshore during the winter months. There have
however been some reasonably nice days on the water where the swell and water
lump has been low. The best winter Chinook fishing is often fairly close to the
Ucluelet Harbor. This year has been no different. Beg Island, Mara Rock and Big
Bear have had a few good results. Needle fish, white hootchies, and various
green hootchies, anchovy, and nasty boy, cop car, green glow, and silver glow
coyote spoons have been the best bets to attract the feeder Chinook. In February
the feeder Chinook fishing really picks up and gets much better as the herring
spawn gets close and these bait fish move toward the beach. In the early spring
we will feature our Seafood Safari. This is a great trip on the open Pacific
where guests can be treated to some excellent winter Chinook fishing, bottom
fishing, prawn and crab fishing. There might even be opportunity to find some
oysters along some of the magnificent beaches of the west coast. The end of the
day often has guests preparing a wonderful gourmet seafood dinner at a local
resort or bed and breakfast. There are spots where restaurant chefs and owners
will prepare seafood meals for our guests.
Summer sport salmon fishing out
of Ucluelet looks again very promising. Year after year Ucluelet has some of
British Columbia’s best and most wonderful fishing opportunities. The outlook
for Chinook and Coho migrations look similar to past years. We expect late May
into mid August to have some of the best salmon fishing. For those that enjoy
Pink Salmon fishing the odd year is back and returns of Pinks to various rivers
along the west coast should be very good.
Stamp to date has provided some very slow winter Steelhead fishing. The
Steelhead sport fishing has been “non consistent”. The few winter fish that have
come into the system are really spread out and can be found in the upper and
lower river. The best fishing with guides aboard jet boats is still in the Upper
River. Guided trips on average have been hooking into on a few Steelhead or
trout per trip. The mix of hatchery Steelhead compared to wild have been almost
50-50 on a percentage basis. For those on foot the most popular area is the
falls pool which over the past few weeks has not been very congested with sport
anglers because of the lack of Steelhead. The Sproat has also had some reports
of traffic with poor results. Those individuals on guided and non-guided trips
fishing with a float and below “the bucket” have had a little success using
natural bait in roe, roe bags, and shrimp. Spin’n’glows, corkies, rubber eggs
and various jigs have also been working. One sport angler fishing close to the
confluence was using a pink jig which works best in the Upper River. This fisher
person had an unbelievably successful day during the past week by hooking into
five or six Steelhead. The River as of right now is very low. Rain is forecast
for mid week with clearing skies arriving for the first few days of February.
We are expecting the February and
March Stamp River winter Steelhead fishing to improve. The Stamp River needs to
fill with some water and hopefully there will be some peak days in February.
For more information
Slivers Charters Salmon Sport Fishing
+1 250 724 2502 (h)
+1 250 731 7389 ©
Toll Free Number: 1-
888 214 7206