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Forgotten fishing lures

By Don Daniels
An assortment of fishing lures used in Discovery Passage. Don Daniels photo

By Don Daniels

Over the years, the sport fishing industry has manufactured a number of lures to catch salmon around Campbell River and Vancouver Island.

Downriggers did not come into play at first, so those who got in a boat would hook up their rods and reels with various lures, including the Buzz Bomb, and find salmon using plugs, spoons and buck tails. Then there was jigging and mooching that are still done today by the senior anglers who simply enjoy getting out fishing.

Today, the majority of fishing activity is done using downriggers and lowering a cannonball in a specific area, which hopefully will have bait. Already in the past few weeks, a number of winter springs have been caught between 15 and 18 pounds and bait can be found close to the Lighthouse or Red and Green cans.

A number of fishing lodges will soon be hiring staff for the month of May. Until then, some are vacationing in Mexico and coming back to Vancouver in late March, before heading to fishing areas for employment in all areas of the province.

In the 2021/2022 license year, Campbell River saw a total of 6,039 fresh water fishing licenses issued. This includes 5,215 issued online, 798 issued through Service BC in Campbell River and 26 issued through Front Counter BC, Campbell River. At this time, there are no active fishing license vendors in Campbell River.

Checking with the locals in Sayward, there has been an increase in fly-fishing activity at various lakes and rivers. Also, more fly fishers have taken up fishing between Courtenay and Qualicum Beach.

Fly-tying sessions for beginners will be back at the Seniors Centre at Ironwood Mall this Friday, Feb. 3, beginning at 1 p.m. and continuing to 3 p.m. Sessions at the Campbell River Library are set for Sunday, Feb. 26, March 26 and April 30 with times 1 to 3 p.m. Sessions are strictly for beginners who will learn how to set up a fly vise and materials are provided free of charge.

Beginners who have started with me in the past will advance to smaller fly patterns which are designed to catch fish in lakes and rivers here in Campbell River and around the Island.

Anyone is invited to attend and those who show up will be entered for a draw of donated fishing books that are a great source of information to help you improve your fishing and get tips from the authors.

Some of the better fishing comes when you see the skunk cabbage coming up from the creeks and wet areas close to local rivers.

There are a number of recreational camping sites which are heavily used during the summer months and, at times, are fully booked up. For fishing information I can be reached at 250-895-1691 or email

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