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Nootka Sound & Esperanza inlet 2015 Season in Review & 2016 Outlook (Area 25)

By Westview Marina & Lodge, 🕔Sun, Oct 18th, 2015


  


2015 was the BEST Fishing/Catching season in years. The weather was
certainly helpful with mild temperatures and mostly wind free days from
Mid-April through nearly the end of August. It was also exciting to see
that after many years of effort on behalf of Salmon Enhancement by several
local and reginal organizations, and individuals Labour and Fund Raising
efforts, were producing results. In 2015 over 100,000 Chinook and 45,000 Coho
returned to local rivers and streams. These large returns are in part
directly related to the Salmon Enhancement efforts of hundreds of
volunteers, companies and Department of Fishery and Ocean (DFO) working
together for the common goal.

"IT'S ALL ABOUT THE FISH".

Catching was all about being in the right place doing the right things. The
right places in April and May were Beano Creek, Maquinna Pt & Wash Rock in
Nootka and Ferrer Pt., Pin Rocks & Outer Black Rock in Esperanza. As June,
July and August moved in it was decision time for the fishers. The Highway
was on fire but, so was the inside water as thousands of salmon moved
in. Trolling is the unanimous winner for catching these salmon and
Anchovy is the # 1 bait from the mouth of the Inlet/Sound all the way
inside. Anchovies were followed closely by Ever Glo Flash Flies, White Glow
Turds & King Kandy candle fish glow. On the Highway running false flashers
and using 6 in. lures such as Titan, Coyote, Tomic with glow, Image Green & Blue
ruling the day.



Because of the abundance of local West Coast Vancouver Island Coho on the
1st of July all of the inside waters of Area 25 went from 2 Coho per day
retention to 4 Coho per day/ 8 possession. Both hatchery clipped and 
non clipped salmon could be retained.

A typical day of fishing in the Esperanza and Nootka area usually
means catching multiple species. Depending on wind and tide conditions, it
is not uncommon to return to the dock with limits of Chinook or Coho and a variety
of ground fish. Halibut are at the top of the list followed by Ling Cod and
Yellow Eye cod. Halibut run in the 25-65 lb and Ling in the 15-40 lb. Most
of these ground fish are caught using a spreader bar baited with an
extra-large herring or salmon belly using a 24-36 oz. weight, depending on
the tide. Anchoring up in 150-300 ft. of water is gaining on the drifting
method over gravel areas 150-250 ft. The fun and interesting part about
ground fishing is you never know what will hookup until you get to the
surface. Stories of 6ft long Wolf Eels, huge Cabazon and Greenling are every
day events.

"You may be able to catch larger fish in some other places but Esperanza
Inlet & Nootka Sound offer more variety and volume of fish in protected
waters than anywhere on the WCVI."



Albacore Tuna- Approx. 5 year ago a few WCVI fishers started pursuing these
magnificent fish. Tuna fishing is the most exciting, fast paced fishery out
there. We are very fortunate here in Esperanza & Nootka because these tuna
are often found within 25 nautical miles or less off the shore. That is
much closer than other places on Vancouver Island Washington, Oregon or
California.

2016 Outlook-  Early Projections from DFO indicate that the Chinook runs
should be larger in number 100,000+ and the number of age class 4, 5 & 6
year old fish will be much higher next season than this season. That means
lots more Tyees will be hitting the cleaning tables! Coho abundance will be
slightly down but most likely there will not be any regulation changes.
Halibut, Ling and other ground fish will continue with robust harvest.
Bottom line is 2016 is looking to be bigger and better for Chinook with
everything else the same great stuff as last year.

If you have any specific Questions on Fishing/Catching in Esperanza
Inlet/Nootka Sound email us. john@westviewmarina.com



Fish On   John

 John & Cathy Falavolito  250 934 7672


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