Vancouver Fishing Charter Report-Late May 2018

For the most part, local anglers and charter guests have been spoiled by some excellent chinook fishing over the last month.   Things have slowed in local waters over the last week, but the Gulf Island’s have continued to produce very well.  With a mellower tide set coming up this week, local fishing hopefully perk back up.

For the most part, the most consistent activity locally over the last couple weeks has been from Cowan Point up to Cape Roger Curtis along the South End of Bowen Island.  Most boats are concentrating their efforts in 200 to 400 feet of water doing long tacks back and forth.   There has been lots of bait showing and it seems to be a mixture of medium sized herring and anchovies.   Most fish have been coming reasonably deep between 80 and 150 feet on the downrigger.   Bigger 4.0 spoons have been working best for us recently with the Silver Horde Homeland Security, Herring Aide, Irish Cream and the G Force Bon Chovy, Trailhead and Outfitter being our favourites.

The Gulf Island’s have been excellent on most days in recent weeks.  We have spent most of our time off the Eastern shoreline of Gabriola Island, but good reports have been coming from Galiano Island up to Nanaimo.  The fish on the far side of the Strait have been a little deeper and productive depths have been from 90 to 200 feet on the downriggers.   Hootchies  seem to the best bet over there for most boats.  Our favourite Gulf Island hootchie is the Yamashita Green or Chartreuse Spackleback.  This hootchie paired up with a Gibbs Delta Lemon Lime or Bon Chovy Flasher is a deadly combo over there.

As we progress into late May and June we are anticipating that the fishing will continue to be productive along the surfline from Passage Island up to Gibsons.   Over the last couple years, the fishing has remained productive for chinook in Vancouver area waters well into June,  we are hoping for a repeat performance.  We like to recommend the longer 8 and 10 hour trips in May and June.  We often run a little further this time of year and the longer days often pay off.    We often cross to the Gulf Island’s on our 10 hour trips in May, June and July if the weather and fishing reports are favourable.

We have stopped prawning as of early May now that the commercial season has started.   This past winter and spring was the best prawning we have seen in quite a few years.  We are hoping that next winter and spring are just as good!   Crabbing has been ok in Vancouver Harbour and we will be dropping traps for another few weeks until the commercial season opens up.

—————–SANDY COVE NET PEN PROJECT—————

It is that time of year again!  Our Sandy Cove Chinook sea pen project is up and running.  There are 1110,000 hatchery chinook salmon in the for the next 3 weeks.  They will be there to acclimatize to the ocean environment under safe and stable conditions.  The beauty of this project is the survival rates are substantially higher than conventional in river releases.  These chinook are of Harrison River origin and are a very important food source to the Southern Resident Killer Whales.  These chinook also support first nation, commercial and recreational fisheries.  As local fisherman and charter operators we have been succesfully catching these net pen chinook in our winter, spring, summer and fall fisheries!  This project has been made posssible by years of dedication by the Vancouver Sport Fishing Guides Association under the leadership of Phil Grassi.  We have had lots of help and support from the Capilano Hatchery and its wonderful stagg.  We are excited to feed and watch these little guys grow over the next few weeks!  They will then be released into English Bay and return to Capilano River.  We look forward to catching a few along the way!  It is projects like this that are having big impacts on local chinook populations!

Fishing in Vancouver – Mid March Report

We have been out on the water quite a bit in recent weeks! Overall fishing has been good in the Gulf Island’s and more hit or miss than it was than earlier this winter in Howe Sound.  We have had some very good charters, but we have also had a few tough trips in Howe Sound.  Crabbing and Prawning have been very productive on most of our trips.  .  Looking forward to April and May this is when we typically have some of the most consistent chinook fishing of the year in our offshore waters near Bowen Island, the Hump, the Gulf Island’s, QA Marker and the Bell Buoy.  Last year we had our best chinook fishing of the year in the last two weeks of April and the first few weeks of May.  This was primarily  on our full day trips to the Gulf Island’s and further out in Georgia Strait.   It will be interesting to see where the early biomass of Chinook salmon lands this spring!

Like usual in the winter months, most of the fish that are being caught have been very close to bottom in Howe Sound and the Gulf Island’s.  This pattern will slowly start to change in the coming weeks as the days get longer and warmer and triggers the first plankton blooms of the year and the spring freshet.   We did notice some minor blooms earlier this week with the warm weather.  When we start to notice more consistent plankton blooms, this will trigger our offshore fishery to begin.  Depending on the year, this usually starts in the first or second week of April.  We have already seen some fish start to congregate and suspend in the outer reaches of Vancouver Harbour, so it will be not too long now..   Areas that we will look to focus on as we move into April include the  Freighter Anchorages in English Bay, the Bell Buoy, QA Marker, Cowan Point and the offshore waters off the South End of Bowen Island and the Gulf Islands.  These fish will start to suspend more and more and soon it will be worth running some shallower lines.

We have been running primarily Skinny Gs and smaller 3.0 and 3.5 G Force and Silver Horde Spoons in recent weeks.  Hootchies don’t seem to be as productive as they were earlier in the winter fishery, but always worth a shot.   In the Skinny G’s and G Force Spoons we have had our best luck on the Outfitter, Bon Chovy and Killy Mcgee patterns.  In Silver Horde we have been having our best luck on Irish Cream and Kitchen Sink patterns.  As we move into our springtime fishery in Vancouver Harbour and the outer reaches of Howe Sound, we will start to run a little more anchovy.   We often find when the waters dirty up in early April because of the plankton bloom and the snow melt, it is time to run an anchovy or two.

Give us a call to book your spring fishing trip!  Our offshore chinook fishery should start to really get going in the second to third week of April.  Until then, we will likely continue with our standard winter tactics in Howe Sound, the Gulf Island’s and Vancouver Harbour.  Our winter special is still happening until the end of March.  Check out this link, it has all the details on this great deal!

bonchovy.com/site/fishingreports/1515701062.html

Vancouver Winter Chinook Special – 2018

Winter chinook salmon season is here and so is our “Winter Chinook Charter Special”. Like we do every year,we are offering fully guided winter fishing charters at a great rate from January 15th to March 31st! This year, we are offering full day trips (8 hours) for a great price. This winter chinook season has been a productive one so far and we are hoping and anticipating that things will keep rolling right into spring!
In the past, we have done a half day special as well, but we feel the full day trip offers the best experience in the winter months. A full day trip allows us to fish where we want, work the tides, move around a bit, and have the gear in the water longer to increase the number of hook ups! Have a look at this video we shot last winter chinook season, this is what we are targeting and the area we typically fish in the winter. The scenery is worth the trip alone!

The beauty of the winter is the lack of crowds, stunning scenery and some of the best eating salmon of the year. On our charters no previous saltwater fishing experience is required and we supply all the fishing equipment. Our boats are rigged to perfection with new Mercury and Yamaha Outboards, Islander Reels, Scotty Downriggers and all the hot gear from Gibbs Delta Tackle! In addition to trolling for winter chinook salmon, crab traps will be dropped for Dungeness crabs on the way to the fishing grounds. If weather and fishing locations permit, we can also drop traps for spot prawns!

Special Rates Winter Rates (8 hour trips):

1 -2 people: $749.00 3-4 people: $849.00 5-6 people: $999.00

If you are looking to make a weekend of it, we can combine 2 days of fishing and a night at a seaside cabin at the Union Steamship Marina on Bowen Island. A 2 day package with a night on Bowen Island starts at $569.00 per person. Makes for a great quick fishing getaway for a great price. Please get in touch with us for more charter and accommodation info!

Vancouver Winter Chinook Update , December 21st/17

The last few weeks have provided local anglers with good weather and consistent winter chinook salmon fishing. There has only been the odd tough fishing and weather day so far this month. Hopefully things continue into the New Year!

It doesn’t seem like there is a real hot spot right now, it seems like all the usual winter chinook spots are holding fish depending on the day. If you don’t find bait or fish in one spot, you can always make a move, or just stick it out and wait for fish to move in. There has been fish in Vancouver, Howe Sound and the Gulf Island’s. We typically try and go where conditions are the nicest! Calm water is the best water! The nice thing about the winter months is that when the Squamish winds are blowing in Howe Sound, it is usually calm in Vancouver Harbour. If it is blowing in Georgia Strait and Vancouver Harbour, it is usually calm in Howe Sound.

As usual a variety of different lures will catch winter chinook. We usually stick to smaller G Force, Skinny G and Silver Horde Spoons with green/white/chartreuse type colour combinations. We have also had good success on hootchies so far this winter. Plain white glow and green and chartreuse spacklebacks have been our favourites. We been running our spoons behind Gibbs Delta Guide Series STS, Lemon Lime, Bon Chovy and Madi Flashers like usual. Our charter and tackle shop on Granville Island has all the right gear for winter fishing in Vancouver.

Over the last few years, our winter and spring chinook fishery in local waters has really improved. The reason for this is pretty simple…..food!! A couple key things have happened in recent years. Let’s hope things continue!

1. The local herring population in Howe Sound has increased dramatically in recent years. Herring is a staple for immature chinook and now that the local biomass is increasing, the salmon, whales, birds and marine mammals are loving it. This herring revival so to speak, is not by fluke, it is due to the hard work by the Squamish Streamkeepers. Have a look at this link, it shows what this hardworking group has been up to in recent years. www.squamishstreamkeepers.net/streamkeepers/Herring.html Hopefully in years to come our government will realize and act upon the vital importance of herring in our waters. The Squamish Streamkeepers deserve a massive thank you for their hard work. Hopefully the DFO can follow their strong lead and help in rehabilitating and protecting herring habitat, they are so important! When the herring got wiped out by industry in Howe Sound years ago, nothing was done by government to bring them back, glad to see that a bit of luck and hard work by volunteers has made a big difference!

2. Anchovies have also established themselves in Howe Sound…..big time! Over the last few years, a significant portion of the local chinook diet is being made up of anchovies. This additional food source has been present in Howe Sound in volume since 2015 and has significantly helped and attracted fish, birds and mammals in Howe Sound. Check out this fantastic film by Bob Turner documenting the anchovies in Howe Sound.

We are pretty busy with charters between Christmas and New Years, but have a few days available if you would like to get out on the water. We will be announcing the details of our WINTER CHARTER SPECIAL early in the New Year. We have been running our Winter Special from January 15th to March 31st for over 10 years and it is one of our most popular charters of the year.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone! We are hoping for a fishy 2018!

Vancouver Winter Salmon Fishing Update Mid November 2017

It looks like we are going to have another productive winter chinook salmon season. Like last year, we have had another encouraging start to our winter fishery in Vancouver Harbour, Howe Sound and the Gulf Island’s. There seems to be decent numbers of fish in most of the normal winter haunts. We have spent quite a few days on the water over the last few weeks, including and highlighted by an excellent 4 day Bowen Island Trip with a great couple (JT and Shannon)!

Over the last few weeks, we have had our fair share of varied weather conditions. We have enjoyed summer like sunshine and battled through Arctic winds and even a few snow flurries. As we move into December, the weather will likely be a little more consistent as winter sets in for a few months. We have covered lots of water in recent weeks and found quite a few undersized and some nice legal fish into the mid teens. Interestingly enough, the ratio for legals to undersized was actually higher in October than in November. The last couple weeks has provided better action, but some days you have to weed through the undersized to get a legal.

We have spent most of our time in Howe Sound, but we did take advantage of some calm weather to head to the Gulf Islands and further up the Sunshine Coast last week. We found pretty good action in both areas, with good numbers of undersized and a few legals. As usual, we are fishing smaller spoons and hootchies fairly close to the bottom. Look for bait and there will be fish around it at some point.

In the winter months, we don’t change things up all that much in terms of our fishing gear. Over the years we have found a handful of set ups that work exceptionally well in our Vancouver winter salmon fishery. Here is a list of our go to spoons/hootchies/flashers in the winter:

Gibbs Delta- G Force: Bon Chovy and Trailhead (3.0 or 3.5) Gibbs Delta – Skinny Gs: Outfitter and Bon Chovy
Silver Horde Kingfisher: Irish Cream, Herring Aide and Homeland Security Silver Horde Coho Killer: Irish Cream
Yamashita Hootchies: Green and Chartreuse Spackleback and plain glow
Gibbs Delta Guide Series Flashers: Madi, STS, Lemon Lime and Bon Chovy

Winter is truly a spectacular time to fish in the Vancouver area. It is not just the consistent fishing, it is also about where we travel to get to the fishing grounds and what we see while trolling and traveling to the fishing grounds. We are often spoiled with a post card like backdrop and frequent wild life sightings!

Give us a call to set up a winter chinook charter! Better yet, check out our Bowen Island winter fishing packages! Great accommodation, amazing scenery and consistent salmon fishing, crabbing and prawning!

http://bonchovy.com/site/fishing-packages/bowen-island-winter-chinook-salmon-package.html

We are looking forward to winter and winter fishing salmon fishing in Vancouver, BC. Check out our latest video below!

Late September Fishing Report for Vancouver

September was a pretty good month for fishing in Vancouver. We enjoyed fairly consistent waves of big chinook salmon and over the last week we have seen improved numbers of coho salmon. We have roughly one more month left to target migrating salmon before we shift our focus to winter chinook salmon in late October.

Over the last month we have spent the majority of our time off the Fraser RIver Mouth and near Capilano RIver Mouth. As usual, these fish are coming in waves as they prepare to enter the river. We have had some days where we have hooked over a dozen big fish on a charter and some days where we have to work for a hook up or two. For the most part, most trips did well with some decent fish averaging in the 10 to 20 pound range!

Looking forward to the next month we will focus on two local fisheries. The Capilano Mouth fishery should be productive for chinook salmon in the 10 to 30 pound range until the fall rains slow things down around the 15th of October. There will also be some coho around as well. The Mouth of the Fraser should heat up for coho and chum salmon in October and we should have some good fishing up until the last week of October. Last year we had pretty good action for chum and coho until October 27th or so. A longer 6 or 8 hour charter on the flood tide is a good bet in October. If you can line up a good long flood tide and a calm day in October the Fraser Mouth can be a very good bet.

We have been running a mixture of anchovies and herring while targeting our late run chinook and coho salmon. We have been very successfully running Gibbs Delta Madi, Lemon Lime, Slurpee and Bon Chovy Flashers recently. As we progress into October we will likely start to run a few more Skinny G’s, glow hootchies, and G Force Spoons for returning coho to the Fraser River.

Last year we had our winter chinook salmon start very early and we enjoyed some very active fishing by late October/early Novermber in Howe Sound. With the abundance of bait in local waters, we are optimistic that we will be in for another strong early start. Our winter chinook fishery seems to be getting year by year as local ocean conditions seem to be improving.

Sturgeon fishing has been quite good in the Fraser River and will continue for the next couple months. As more and more salmon pour into the Fraser River fishing sturgeon fishing should continue to be productive for the next couple months!

Give us a call or an email if you would like to get out on the water!

Late August Vancouver Fishing Report

Right on schedule our first major pulse of chinook salmon arrived in local waters in the middle of August. We have seen some very good waves of chinook salmon in the 10 to 30 pound range roll into local waters over the last couple weeks. These fish are coming in with the tides and some pulses have been more significant than others resulting in the odd slow tide. Overall, fishing has been quite good for some excellent quality chinook salmon. A significant improved from a slower than normal July!!!

We have been having our success all along the Fraser RIver mouth. Depending on the day, tides and weather there have been fish from the Mile Markers all the way down the shelf to Sandheads. Mixed in with the adult chinook have been some pinks, the odd coho and quite a few jack chinook. We are expecting continued pulses of Fraser bound chinook for the the next 4 weeks. The majority of the chinook we are landing are red chinook, but this will change in the next 10 to 15 days as the big white chinook enter local waters. September is typically the month that the biggest chinook of the year are in local waters! We are looking forward to big September bites! In addition to the chinook, we should see a mixed fishery for pinks, hatchery coho and chum in September.

We have been running primarily anchovies while targeting these Fraser bound chinook. Having said that there are days where Skinny Gs and Glow Hootchies have been very productive. With the often silty Fraser River mouth water, we rely on flashers with UV blades as they kick up a lot of light down in the water. Our favourites are the Gibbs Delta Guide Series STS, Lemon LIme, Madi, Bon Chovy, Slurpee, and T 10 flashers. You can’t go wrong with a selection of these flashers in local waters. Our favourite teaser heads have been anything with green, glow and chartreuse. Stop by our charter and tackle shop on Granville Island, we have all the right tackle and bait for local waters.

We made a great addition to our fleet this month!!!! We added “Bob Dolphin” to our charter roster. The boat is a 25 Foot Grady White Dolphin. The boat has one of the best fishing layouts that we have found with lots of deck space. The boat is decked out with all the goodies needed for a first class charter boat! We got a fresh re-power and got taken care by River City Marine with an impressive set of twin 200 Mercury Verados and a 9.9hp Trolling Motor. This boat moves in comfort and style! Looking forward to some fishy seasons to come! Check out the video below!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qh9z0Y7YQZI.

Sturgeon fishing has also been decent in the Fraser River. Putting your time in has resulted in some great fish being landed. The next few months are typically solid months to target sturgeon in the Fraser.

Give us a call or an email if you would like to get out on the water, September is typically provides good weather and good salmon opportunity in local waters!!

Vancouver Fishing Update, June 29th 2017

Over the last week, our best fishing has been on the far side of Georgia Strait. We have had some productive full day charters to the eastern shoreline of Gabriola Island when the winds have cooperated. Locally, the fishing has been scratchy with the odd legal and a few undersized fish being hooked on our half day trips. This should change very soon though as our West Vancouver fishery for coho, pink and chinook salmon will perk up any day and provide good opportunity on our half day trips.

Our best success on our full day trips to the Gulf Island’s have been fishing close to the bottom in 140 to 200 feet of water. We have been focusing our efforts near the entrance to Silva Bay and up the Bluffs towards Entrance Island. The fish seem to be keying in on small herring so we have been running hootchies, smaller G Force and Silver Horde spoons and Skinny G’s. The Gulf Island’s will continue to produce chinook depending on the day for the next couple months. Gulf Island trips require a 10 hour charter and good weather.

In local Vancouver waters, there is the odd fish coming out of Vancouver Harbour, Cowan Point, Cape Roger Curtis and Hole in the Wall. Most days you really have to work for them, but there has been some nice fish around.

20170627_1746121

As we progress into this next week, we anticipate some better numbers of coho to be caught off the West Vancouver Shoreline. We should also start to see some early pink salmon start to show, likely in second of week July. These pink salmon that will show along the West Vancouver shoreline in July and August are bound for the Indian, Seymour, Capilano and Squamish Rivers. The Fraser River pinks return later and will be in local waters in late August and September. Chinook salmon numbers will also start to increase along the West Vancouver shoreline in July. It is quite common to hook chinook in the 15 to 30 pound range while targeting coho and pink salmon in Vancouver Harbour. We find running a mixture of anchovies, spoons and hootchies is an effective way to target all 3 species of salmon along the West Vancouver shoreline. A white yamashita hootchie can be deadly behind a Guide Series Flasher with a UV Blade. (Bon Chovy, STS, Madi, Slurpee)

Check out “Pinky and the Whale” ! A short film by www.coribiefieldwalker.com where we spent the day casting Gibbs Delta Minnows and Blizzards for pink salmon in early August 2015!

The Fraser River is now starting to recede and we have had a couple successful sturgeon fishing trips this week. As the river continues to drop, fishing should only get better!

Give us a call to get out on the water.. Summer is finally here!

Vancouver Saltwater Fishing Update, Mid June

After a good week of local and Gulf Fishing in the first part of June, things have tapered off over the last week. We are still hooking some nice chinook and even some early hatchery coho, but we have had to work for them this week. Things should hopefully rebound this week we some very good tides coming up and some nice calm weather forecasted.

In local waters, we have continued to focus most of our effort in the deep water from Cowan Point all the way up towards Gibsons. For the most part we have been trolling in the deep water in 200 to 400 feet of water. Looking for tide lines has seemed to help to locate the feeding fish. The fish have been reasonably shallow with 40 to 120 being a pretty good depth range while trolling in offshore waters.

The Gulf Island’s have been slow over the last week. Could be a result of the big tides and the recent full moon. We should see the Gulf Island’s rebound this week with the mellow tides coming up. June is usually a good month to fish for chinook over there. One very encouraging sign is the numbers of early coho being hooked. Everyday is different, but on some days we have hooked up to 10 coho while searching for chinook salmon. Hopefully a sign of things to come!

We have been sticking to spoons and hootchies over the last week. We have found that they have been producing better than anchovies. Some of our productive spoons have been the Gibbs Delta Outfitter and Bon Chovy Skinny G and the Silver Horde Irish Cream, Killy Mcgee, and Herring Aide. The green and chartreuse Yamashita Splatterback hootchies have also been good. If you are looking for the right gear for local waters, stop by our charter/tackle shop on Granville Island.

Sturgeon fishing has been slow on the Fraser River as a result of the high water. We should start to see the waters recede over the next few weeks and fishing will pick up. Sturgeon fishing is a great bet in the summer months.

Give us a call to get on the water! Summer is right around the corner! Tight lines!

Vancouver Salmon Fishing Update, Late May

We have enjoyed fantastic weather and consistent salmon fishing in local Vancouver waters and the Gulf Island’s over the last couple weeks. The fish have not been huge, but there is healthy numbers of feeding chinook in the 8 to 15 pound range. We are also very excited that the first coho have shown near Bowen , Gabriola and Galiano Island’s! A very encouraging sign for coming months.

In local waters, we have been spending most of our time fishing the deep waters searching for feeding chinook. Depending on the day, we have had good success off the QA Marker, the Hump, Cape Roger Curtis, Hole in the Wall and Cowan Point. The local chinook are chasing the schools of anchovy that seem to be one of their main food sources in the spring now. It is very interesting how the emergence of the anchovy schools has now changed our spring chinook fishery…..for the better!! Because of the abundance of anchovy, especially near Bowen Island, we have had really good success on Gibbs Delta Skinny G spoons. The normal productive patterns like the Outfitter, Bon Chovy and Irish cream seem to be working well as usual. Silver Horde Irish Cream, Killy Mcgee and Herring Aide Spoons also seems to be working very well. We have been running a bit of bait, but spoons have been just as good if not better.

The fishing in the Gulf Island’s has also been very good. Depending on the day anywhere from Active Pass up to Nanaimo has seen good numbers of chinook and increasing numbers of early coho salmon. The fish have been tight to structure and also in the deep water. Spoons, bait and hootchies have all been working. Some days they are as shallow as 50 feet down and other days we have had success dragging bottom in 150 to 200 feet.

Our local guides association, “The Vancouver Sport Fishing Guides”, with support from the Capilano Hatchery, has recently completed another successful chinook net pen project in Vancouver. Spearheaded by Phil Grassi, for the 10th year in a row, 100,000 chinook smolts have been released into the waters near Point Atkinson. The chinook smolts are transferred from the Capilano Hatchery to a net pen at the West Vancouver DFO labs. For a couple weeks our group of volunteers feed the young chinook daily to give them a bit of a jump start in life. Check out this video we put together with www.corbiefieldwalker.com, it shows the net pen in action and explains things in a little more detail.

Sturgeon fishing has been pretty tough on the Fraser River due to the high water. As we get into July, the water levels will improve and the sturgeon fishing will get better.

If you are looking to get out on the water, it is looking like we should have continued good fishing for chinook salmon. While there is often good opportunity on our 5 hour trips, our longer 8 hour and 10 hour trips are very good bets in June. It allows to run a little further and catch that extra tide change. On 10 hour trips, we can run over to the Gulf Island’s if the fishing and weather conditions permit. Give us a call or an email to get out on the water!

Tight lines!