FISHING CORNER: School is out, tourists are arriving and this is prime time for fishing

By Don Daniels

The pages on my fishing calendar are flying by pretty fast and already plans are being made for the month of July and August to get out fishing locally and then venture north to check out a few lakes and rivers north of Sayward.

We have a few people getting together and looking at the Eve River to spend a day or two there then later on investigate and fish around Port Alice.

School is out and more people have headed to the west coast with their boats for a change of scenery and fish Nootka Sound. I call this rock and roll fishing as the wind can blow you around and be a challenge when it comes to salmon fishing. Already there have been some rough days on the water but when things calm down, it’s a real thrill of a lifetime to fish in that area.

Even if you don’t plan to fish it is well worth the drive to Gold River and enjoy the scenic route, see what is there and plan to go back at a later date. Around Gold River there are a number of lakes to fish for trout in the months to come.

Here in Campbell River, the boating traffic has been down in Area 13 for a number of reasons. Because of catch and release regulations on the springs, many anglers are waiting it out until July 15 but the fishing has been steady recently for both springs and coho.

Keep in mind, also, with the price of gas, those getting out are making shorter trips to the fishing zone or simply getting out to their fishing spots and jigging for salmon or bottom fish using Point Wilson Darts. Those targeting coho salmon are using coho killer or coyote spoons.

In this area we have great fishing and if you compare what is happening south of us between Nanaimo and Victoria, our fish are bigger. In the south, keeper size to 20 pounds is good but the size range for salmon around Campbell River is around 14 to 26 pound fish.

For those using the Big Rock boat launch remember there is no parking in the gas station property across the street.

The run of pink salmon will be arriving in a few weeks and already a few catches have been made trolling and for those people who want to get started in salmon fishing, the pinks offer great fun on light tackle.

Kelsey Bay Is a great spot to spend the afternoon fishing for pinks and there is someone always eager and willing to help you land a pink. Last year it was just after the July 1 weekend that pinks were being caught right off the dock and when that happens, word spreads like wildfire. Life jackets are mandatory to wear for the kids and they are free at the gift shop tourist office on the wharf.

Locally, there have been good insect hatches and trout fishing has been good on various lakes and keep in mind the larger lakes will be better this time for fishing in the warmer weather. Getting down deep is the key.

River levels are low and rain is needed.There are a few local rivers I plan to get out my 4 weight fly rod and throw out some dry flies for catch and release trout.

During the warm weather get on a good pair of wading boots and even if you don’t wear waders, I just have a good pair of short pants and go waist deep in water and fly fish.

I hope you have a good Canada weekend. Get out fishing and enjoy.

Don Daniels is the Campbell River Mirror’s fishing columnist.