Campbell River anglers gear up for fishing Kelsey Bay dock in November. Don Daniels photo

Fishing activity extended at Kelsey Bay

By Don Daniels

Last Friday, I was in Sayward and my first stop would be at the junction gas station and that is where the socializing begins.

If you want to know the latest fishing news, just wait and talk with the locals. My weekly drive to Sayward from Campbell River takes about 40 minutes and sometimes longer as I stop in at Roberts Lake.

Weather conditions were wet and windy and one of the comments from a campground owner was The Pineapple Express is coming. Campbell River had the wind and rain and Roberts Lake had the mist but as I got closer to Sayward, the weather was ideal – the sun was out and the wind had died down.

I made my way to the dock area at Kelsey Bay and I noticed a few guys from Campbell River gearing up. They were going to be fishing and spending the day throwing out lures and maybe even set up a crab pot and check it a few hours later. I mentioned to the anglers that if they were spending time on the dock, get to the lower deck and search for sea perch and fish under the dock around the kelp. Fishing the dock was ideal. There was no wind, the water was calm and there was plenty of room to get out and do some fishing.

The point is a short walk away and you can grab your gear make the short walk and fish from shore and, yes, salmon can be caught. On the dock, the washroom and gift shop is closed for the winter but when the weather is favorable for fishing, there is lots of room to fish and spend a few hours. A bonus is seeing whales and dolphins. A fishing net, bonker and a cleaning table is there to use. During prime time fishing during the summer months, wearing a life jacket is mandatory for children and the dock is dog friendly.

One of the very fishable rivers near Sayward is the Salmon River and the golf course is going through some changes with new owners. The golf course is just off Highway 19 and is a great place to park and get to the Salmon River without parking on the highway and bushwhacking to the river. Check in with Wayne at the food truck and get a day’s parking pass and walk to the river and fish the nearby pools for catch-and-release cutthroat trout and steelhead. The Salmon River is high at the moment but very fishable after the recent rainfall. Those who drift the river can come across log jams and, at times, may have to portage around clogged-off areas

Each year, a number of the local contractors get together for an invite-only fun trout derby at Buttle Lake and this year the event had prizes awarded. The guys get together for camping, fishing and many laughs and some interesting fishing stories are told. A couple of trout came in at 4.3 pounds.

As air temperatures drop and the wind dies down the lake fishing can go well into winter and trout will be in the shallows looking for scuds and crayfish. If the weather holds, I will try to get out to Cumberland and fish Comox Lake that has good fishing in November through January.

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