Halibut fishing in and around Victoria, when weather permits, is going strong
Latest News from Reel Obsession Fishing Lodge and Charters
Fall Fish Report and News LetterBy Adrian O'Connor,
Fall Fish Report and News Letter
To say the 2015 charter season was a good one would be an understatement. We experienced some of the best salmon fishing consistently throughout the entire summer. Day in and day out the halibut fishing was excellent, not to mention we were able to get out for more tuna trips than any previous fishing season.
Warm weather and lots of fish was how we started the fishing in early June. From the first day, Esperanza and the west coast of Vancouver Island lived up to its reputation of being a world class fishing destination. Early on, majority of our salmon fishing was enjoyed at 8 mile, off the south side of the reef. Just off the edge held large amounts of bait (herring) and an abundant amount of Chinook salmon. Trolling at depths from 100-150 feet produced the most fish. Hoochies and spoons were very productive when the fish were actively feeding. The no bananas G-force spoon worked exceptionally well. Anchovies and herring trolled behind a purple glow/silver, or glow green flashers worked great once the bite had slowed down. In the same location, halibut fishing on either of the twin peaks generated limits for all boats as well. There are not too many places you can obtain limits of spring salmon and halibut right in the same spot. I am reminded by clients every year on how special a fishery we have here.
For a short time the weather cooled off in July, the winds calmed down and the fish just kept coming. A few Coho started showing in the mix but the spring fishing was nonstop. Limits by most boats were being taken in an hour or two all month. Catala Island, Ferrer point, 8 mile and the T were all productive. Anchovies and small herring trolled behind flashers in shore was your best bet. Lots of double headers, and some mornings that was all you would get with 2 lines wet. I had one morning at Catala that filled the cooler in one hour with 5 double headers in a row. Some of our best salmon fishing of the year was enjoyed 15 minutes from the lodge in the calm protected waters of the sound. Off shore the fish moved out slightly by mid-month, but the extra 4 mile run was so worth it. Once again Halibut fishing in the same spot produced limits for the charter boats and good catches of ling cod and bottom fish filled up coolers as well. We were able to make the first big run off shore for tuna the last week of the month. This was seasonally early as we usually start our tuna trips around the 3rd week of August.
As August came upon us we had sent many happy guests home with filled limits for their freezers. At this point we are now over half way through the season and the fishing has been some of the best I have experienced in my 15 years of guiding the coast. The Salmon had been thick all through the inlet over the last couple weeks and it would stay this way most of the month. Fishing at depths from 25-60 feet produced most fish. Anchovies and herring trolled in a teaser worked best. Betsey, bloody nose and glow green were some of the best colours. Offshore the Chinook were thick. Most of our fishing was done about 12 miles out; on the south side of the T. Fishing at depths from 120-220 feet saw most of the action. White and purple haze terds, along with the clover leaf cuttlefish, and large spoons were getting smashed liked the salmon had no other food around. But they did, large schools of mature herring held these fish here the entire season. Halibut and bottom fishing remained excellent all summer. Salmon bellies and maceral were the top baits.
Our fairly new, action packed exciting tuna fishery has taken off with all our late season trips fully booked. There are no guarantees the weather and water temperature will cooperate, but when it does this exhilarating fishery can make you feel like you're off the coast of Hawaii or Mexico for the day. Trolling at high speeds with 5-7 lines in the water and having a quadruple header go off creates some organized chaos. If you have never experienced this or want to get back in the action let me know early, these trips book up fast.
I want to say a big thank you to my amazing staff. Without their hard work and dedication this whole process is not possible. I try to provide a west coast fishing adventure that anyone and everyone will enjoy and leave saying "I'll be back". This was my 15th season guiding out of Esperanza/Nootka sound. I hope I get another 15 or more. The 2016 calendar has filled up with many rebooking's and a lot of new ones already. Please come and join us for a world class fishing trip in 2016. I hope everyone has a great fall and I will look forward to seeing you next season.