Halibut fishing off the West Coast of Vancouver Island offer anglers of every ability the opportunity to catch Pacific Halibut, with an option to target either Chickens, 15-35lb Halibut or invest in some trophy Halibut fishing time set up on the anchor chasing an elusive barn door. Located in Ucluelet, the heart of the pacific rim, Salmon and Halibut Sportfishing (S.H.S.) specializes in Multi day Halibut Fishing and Salmon Fishing adventures.
Halibut Fishing Trips from Ucluelet depart at the same time as our Salmon fishing trips, between 5:30 am and 6:00 am. We have many options as we run to some of the most productive Halibut fishing grounds off the West Coast of Vancouver Island. Many of our Halibut fishing days are spent bottom bouncing with fresh bait or power grubs scented with a batch of your skippers special blend of Squid juices, Herring oils and stinky dies at locations such as Long Beach Bank, the Wreck, the Big Bank ("La Perouse" Bank), and the Rats Nose. During different times of the year we can be equally succsessful trolling up Halibut from the depths along the West edge of Lighthouse bank and the South edge of the South Bank (I don't come up with the names of these spots, trust me, who would ever want to fish at a place called the Wreck?) Average depths when we are bottom bouncing for Halibut are about 180 to 240 ft, so its a little bit of a workout but not nearly as bad as Halibut fishing in Alaska where you can be reeling up some heavy lead from 300-400 ft or more.
When its time to drop the anchor and look for that trophy class barn door, our average depth is only about 140 ft with some of the Skippers most productive spots only 90 ft deep. It is a rush like no other hooking up a 100 lb plus Halibut in 90 ft of water!
June and July are the two most productive months for Halibut Fishing, with the avearage size of Halibut being landed in the 15-35lb range. If you are interested in bigger halibut, a day spent on the anchor is the way to go. Fishing for giant Halibut takes patience, the right sea conditions, the right guide, and the right attitude, these giants of the Pacific don't jump in the boat every day but when they do, it makes it all worth it. Salmon and Halibut Sportfishing guides have set the bar high for these style of Halibut fishing trips in our region. Often looked to for advice and guidance from other highly succsessful guides in the area.
Contact Skipper Dave to start planning your next Halibut fishing adventure, and be sure and check out our rates and specials page for the latest in-season fishing packages and specials.
Halibut Fishing Tips and Techniques, Anchoring for Halibut.
So some of you are probably wondering what "Anchoring" for Halibut is all about. Here is the bones of what it is we are doing. During most halibut fishing trips we are drift fishing for Halibut and presenting a lure, or bait, along the sea floor. As we drift we hope that our bait or lure presents itself in front of a hungry Halibut along the bottom. It is a fishing style that capitalizes on opportunity.
When we drop the "Anchor" we are doing just the opposite, instead of drifting towards the halibut, we are putting the boat in a stationary position and letting the current take our baits and scent and making the halibut come to us, similar to shark fishing on the eastern seaboard where you utilize a "chum slick" to encourage sharks to be "chummed" in. Anchoring for Halibut utilizes these same principles and has been very succsessful in targeting larger fish.
You can't just pick any spot and anchor, the majority of the spots we anchor are around structure with the correct bottom surface that encourages big halibut to hang around. The lee side of a sea mound with a sandy or gravel bottom is ideal, but the lee side of the structure changes with the tide depending on a flood tide or ebb tide. This is where things start to get a little complicated, a spot that is awsome on a flood tide can be a complete dud on an ebb tide and vice versa. This is where having the right guide and all the right conditions come into play. It takes a little bit of patience, but when it all comes together the results can be mind blowing. Its a pretty awsome feeling when you get to walk up the dock with one big fish per tote, and it takes two guys to handle it!
Targeting the Pacific Halibut, the giant of the deep? The best time to catch the Halibut, whether you go for the smaller Halibut or the "chickens," or the big barn doors, are the months of June, July and August. And the most common way to fish for this Pacific Giant is jigging, with spreader bars used with 1-2 lb leads drift fishing the bottom at various locations and trolling the Halibut up with 6 and 7 inch Tomic Plugs and Spoons. These methods are the most practiced along the BC coast and assure you productivity, landing the average size Halibut at 15-30 lbs and the odd Halibut from 50-75 lbs.
When you go Halibut fishing, especially on 3-day and 4-day fishing tours, and targeting the Halibut in the 40-100 plus range, you have to consider setting the pick. Your fishing guide will also give you information on all important safety regulations. You are now ready for your Halibut fishing adventure.
Halibut fishing also requires an early start, with you meeting your Halibut fishing tour guide at about 5:30 in the morning at the top of the ramp at Ucluelet's Inner Boat Basin. He briefs you on the plans for the day, including the options on what type of Halibut to target, the "Chicken" Halibut which ranges from 15-35 lbs and is in abundance and often fished in Ucluelet, or the bigger Halibut, the big barn door which can weigh up to 100 lbs.
When you arrive at the targeted fishing spot, the guide sets up the boat on the first drift or the anchor is deployed. Your fishing guide rigs all the spreaders and baits and sends your gear down into the depths while you sit back and relax. Hard work begins when you are hooked up. Chicken Halibut isn't much trouble but reeling up a barn door or the big Halibut requires a lot of hard work and sure is a big battle between man and beast. The Halibut is immediately bled and iced when they come aboard, the bigger ones of course saved for picture taking back at the dock, then taken home fresh or sent to the local processor for vacuum sealing or flash freezing or you can have your guide fillet your halibut for you.
Sure is an outrageous fight between man and beast when catching the big Halibut but the bragging rights, as well as the photo opportunities back at the dock surely make the fight with these Pacific Giants worth it.
Halibut fishing in the small fishing village of Ucluelet in the West Coast of Vancouver Island, BC, Canada, an area becoming famous for its prize-catch Salmon and Halibut fishing opportunities, lets you enjoy the thrill and pride of an excellent fishing adventure! Ucluelet and the West Coast, which is slowly getting the attention of the media and is featured on fishing television shows, offer vast resources, with its nutrient rich inshore and offshore waters which are perfect fishing grounds for both the Pacific Halibut and the Pacific Salmon, not to mention the fact that the area is in the middle of the Pacific Halibut's migratory range for breeding, feeding and spawning which places it as one of the best fishing areas in the world!
Your Halibut fishing adventure takes off with an early start. 5:30 early morning sees you meeting your fishing tour guide at the top of the ramp at Ucluelet's Inner Boat Basin. After the necessary introductions and briefing you on all important safety regulations regarding Halibut fishing, as well as on what type of Halibut to target, the guide then escorts you to your fishing vessel for the day.
Fishing in Ucluelet, an area famous for its abundance of "chicken" Halibut which ranges from 13-35 lbs, lets you fish the chicken ranch or the big bank, catching limits of Halibut on a regular basis. Or you can go for the larger Halibut, especially when you go on three-four day fishing adventures, setting the pick for the Halibut in the 40-100 plus range. Once you've made up your mind on what type of Halibut to target, the guide briefs you on all important safety regulations. You are now ready to set for your Halibut fishing at the appropriate fishing destination.
The boat is set on its first drift once you arrive at the targeted fishing spot, with your guide rigging all the spreader bars and baits which include Pilchard, Herring, Salmon belly's or grubs and sending your gear into the depths. Take your time, sit back and relax because once you're hooked, this is where the hard work begins. Not a lot of work when you're reeling in the chicken or the smaller Halibut but if it's a barn door, get ready to do battle with the beast because reeling in a big Halibut really is a ton of work. Beating the beast though is AWESOME! Definitely, worth all the trouble, the hard work and fight!
Bled and iced once they come aboard, the Halibut are now ready for the exciting picture taking that waits back at the dock. After which, the catch is iced to be taken home fresh or you can send it to the local processor for vacuum sealing and flash freezing or you may have your fishing guide fillet the Halibut for you.
The bragging rights, the photo opportunities back at the dock; yes, nothing beats the excitement of showing off your prize catch to everyone. You sure are coming back for another Halibut fishing adventure!
Halibut fishing in Ucluelet takes you to a small fishing village in the West Coast of Vancouver Island, BC, Canada; an area where Japanese fishermen pioneered Salmon fishing with Ucluelet as their destination of choice. Ucluelet relatively remained unnoticed for years but the place is gaining fame, its excellent Salmon and Halibut fishing attracting fishers from all over, and the media with Ucluelet getting featured on television fishing shows.
When you go on your three day Halibut fishing, it starts with you meeting your fishing tour guide at 5:30 AM at the top of the ramp at Ucluelet's Inner Boat Basin. Introductions, a rundown on the fishing trip's plans as well as the options on what type of Halibut to target and catch - with all these discussed, you are now set to sail for your three day halibut fishing tour.
An area famous for producing abundant quantities of "chicken" Halibut which range from 15-35 lbs, fishing along the BC Coast lets you fish the big bank or the "chicken ranch." The area also offers a few different options so one thing to consider when you go Halibut fishing, especially on three-four day fishing adventures is targeting the larger Halibut and setting the pick for the Halibut in the 40-100 range. When you've made up your mind on what type of Halibut you are looking for, the guide briefs you on the necessary safety regulations.
Off you go to the appropriate fishing destination. Once you arrive at the specific fishing spot, the boat is set on its first drift or the anchor is deployed. You can sit back and relax while your guide rigs all the spreader bars and baits (Pilchard, Herring, Salmon belly's or grubs) and sends your gear down into the depths. Get ready to do battle because once you're hooked, the hard work begins. If what you're reeling is a chicken, it wouldn't be much trouble, in fact, chickens are lots of fun to catch, but if it's a barn door, the battle begins because a real big Halibut will really put up a good fight.
When the Halibut hits the deck, it is bled and iced, the bigger ones saved for photos at the dock, after which they are iced to be taken home fresh or arranged to be sent to the local processor for vacuum sealing and flash freezing or you can have your fishing guide fillet your Halibut for you.
Fishing sure does require a lot of hard work especially when you go for the giant of the deep, the Pacific Halibut. Tons of work. Can't be traded though for the photo opportunities and the bragging rights, all yours when you go back to the docks.
So you are going on a 4 day Salmon fishing adventure. Lets you join the many anglers who make the Chinook Salmon their fish of choice. Why not? Aside from the fact that Salmon are a lot of fun to catch, just think about the BBQ. Makes you drool. Not to mention the bragging and the picture taking with your friends when you catch a trophy Chinook Salmon! And one of the best Salmon yielding waters (the best place to catch your prized Salmon) is the productive fishing waters off the West Coast of Vancouver Island. Fishing in Ucluelet lets you join the area's lucky bunch enjoy the yield of Ucluelet's nutrient rich waters which make it the ideal breeding and feeding ground for many species, including all BC Salmon.
Salmon fishing in Ucluelet is fishing like nowhere else on the BC Coast, the fishing trip starting early with you meeting your fishing guide at the top of the ramp at Ucluelet's Inner Boat Basin at 5:30 AM. Once the guide makes all the necessary introductions and briefs you on all safety regulations and summarizes all plans for the four day fishing trip, including recommended items to bring such as fishing license, food, camera, change of clothes, wet weather gear, in case, and a big cooler, you're ready to go. The ten-minute cruise to the harbor mouth letting you take pleasure at the sight of wildlife so abundant in the place, a delightful start to an exciting four-day Salmon fishing adventure.
The West Coast offers the best Salmon fishing grounds during the months of June, July and August. And with the best Salmon fishing spots as little as four miles from the harbor, it takes just about 15 minutes to maximum of just over an hour, at generally 20-25 knots or 30 knots on calm sunny days, which gives you more time fishing time. Sit back and relax as your guide sets and rigs all the gear. With you fishing one of the best Salmon fishing grounds, you're sure to be reeling Salmon after Salmon, working and learning from the experienced fishing tour guide who lets you give a hand if you want to be more hands-on. Why, the guide is even ready to share with you his fishing knowledge and expertise.
The best productive method for big Chinook Salmon fishing on the West Coast is trolling. Big spoons and plugs in July and August that best match the pilchard and herring that the Salmon feed on and the smaller spoons and hootchies earlier in the season that mimic the needlefish that the Salmon feed on then. To put up a good fight with the aggressive Chinook Salmon which averages at 15-35 lbs with some even reaching the 50 lb range, single action Islander reels that go best with 10'6" Shimano rods, are used.
With the catch immediately bled, packed on ice and cleaned at sea, that is if time and sea conditions allow, you can surely find more time to enjoy the rest of the fishing trip.
You can travel with your Salmon with fresh salt ice provided to keep your catch fresh for the travel home. A local fish processor (you have two to choose from) located about two blocks of the docks will smoke, can, vacuum pack or ship your catch home. Additional questions you may have as you get ready for your next Ucluelet Salmon fishing adventure, feel free to contact Skipper Dave at 250-735-3474.