July 6, 2020

Fishing Report - July 2020



Sockeye Salmon Sport Fishing Opens in The Alberni Inlet-----"BREAKING NEWS”

         July 2020 should provide excellent opportunities for many fishers.  The runs of migrating mature Chinook combined with decent schools of Coho travelling the Vancouver Island West Coast surf line to the large southerly watersheds should give endless opportunities to sport fishing enthusiasts fishing Barkley Sound and areas close to Ucluelet.  “Sockeye Sport Fishing” on July 1st opened in the Alberni Inlet.  This has come as a great surprise for many fishermen who appreciate fishing locally and close to Port Alberni.  Sockeye fishing is a great opportunity for everyone and is a very comfortable angling opportunity for people of all ages.  The run size was slightly increased and over a ten-day period in June the return into the Stamp and Sproat Rivers increased dramatically.  As of July 2nd the total escapement of Sockeye was close to 141,000.  The Stamp count was on this date was approximately 61,300 pieces and the Sproat 79,700.  The current regulations for sport retention is two Sockeye salmon per person daily with a two day possession limit of four.  If the run size is increased the retention limits “could possibly” be four sometime later in July.  The best fishing areas to date have been from Hocking Point to Lone Tree.  Underwood, the Narrows and Cous Creek have provided some excellent angling.

         Current sport fishing regulations provided by the DFO will allow sport fishing for Chinook salmon within one nautical mile of the coastline until the fifteenth of July.  After this date anglers will be permitted to fish offshore waters for Chinook salmon.  Pacific Rim areas are often a feeding station to these transient salmon.  The islands close to the Ucluelet Harbor mouth and up the coastline to Wya Point and Florencia and the many areas of Barkley Sound often hold vast quantities of bait fish in herring, anchovy, squid and needlefish.  To date Sail Rock, Great Bear, The Alley, which are all close to Ucluelet and Barkley Sound locations such as Cree Island, Meares, Kirby, Bamfield Wall, and Swale Rock have experienced tremendous sport fishing.  This trend will continue in July and will likely improve two-fold in late July and into early September when the West Coast Vancouver Island salmon begin returning to their natal streams and rivers.

        Historically the most common gear and consistent salmon producer when fishing Barkley Sound has been trolling with anchovy behind a variety of colored flashers.  However that trend has changed over the past couple of years with fish hitting various Herring Aid spoons as well as Skinny G’s, Coho Killer spoons, and a variety of octopus, cuttlefish, and needle fish hootchies.   Anchovy teaser head colors that work well are Green Haze, Glow Army Truck, Herring Aid, and Cop Car.  Flashers in blue, green glow, chartreuse, and even red with at least a six-foot leader are best.   Spoons behind a flasher can vary from forty-two inches to five feet.  Hootchie leader lengths behind a flasher are thirty-eight to forty-two inches.  Favorite hootchies are the AORL 12, J-79, Jack Smith, and Purple Haze.   The salmon have been feeding on small immature herring around Meares, Austin and Cree Island.  Smaller Spoons have been working very well.   In areas around Beale, Whittlestone and The Bamfield Wall there have been mature squid and Octopus hootchies and cuttle fish have been working very well.   The best cuttle fish have been tiger prawn UV, army truck and a variety of white cuttle fish.    

          Halibut fishing in July is in full swing.  Many sport-fisher people will either drift, jig or anchor.  Halibut will often prefer salmon bellies as well as large herring or octopus.  If jigging try a Gibbs Hali Hawg tipped with salmon belly.  Lingcod fishing is also relatively good.  How ever it is important that a good descending device is on board as any yellow-eye rockfish are to be released.

            Once again for the 2020 saltwater season Sockeye sport angling in the Alberni Inlet opened on the first of July.  The fish are in the top thirty to fifty feet of water and are hitting black-pink, blue-pink, bubble gum mp hootchies and black hooks.  Leader lengths can vary from sixteen to twenty-four inches.  Trolling with two dummy flashers on either side of the boat and spaced ten feet apart is a great idea as the Sockeye are attracted by color.  This is a fun fishery for everyone of all ability and age.

Tight lines and Good fishing

Doug Lindores

Slivers Charters Salmon Sport Fishing

1 888 214 7206

250 731 7389   (mobile)