Following a mildly productive spring season of fishing in the Tofino area, June brings far more consistent action and opportunity for Saltwater and Freshwater anglers. With changes to recreational Halibut regulations this spring, June 1st marks the start of the daily Halibut limit back to two per person/day, which will also be the new multi day possession limit for the remainder of the 2008 season. Good numbers of Halibut were caught through the month of May, when anglers were limited to 1 Halibut per day. Many of these strong fish were released back to the depths to feed and grow, hopefully ready to return and battle another day.
Anglers can expect very good Chinook salmon and Halibut fishing in the offshore banks from Tofino during June, with the first five days of the month providing a great start. Masses of Needlefish and Herring provide the main source of food for the waves of transient Chinook migrating southward. Matching this bait with green glow Needlefish Hoochies, small to medium thin blade spoons or ever popular Anchovies trolled behind a flasher has helped us connect with these great early season Chinook Salmon. To date, we have not landed a Chinook Salmon over 30 lbs, but this past week has seen many fish pushing that mark.
For Halibut fishing in the Tofino area, bottom bouncing fresh baits such as Octopus, Sardines, Herring and Salmon bellies are all tickets to success. Don’t overlook the option of standby artificial lures and jigs tipped with some fresh bait, as well as the great variety of soft baits now on the market. The newer Berkley Gulp soft baits are ultra effective, and worth the price, specifically when Mud sharks are plaguing our fresh bait offerings.
Chinook Salmon during this time prefer Anchovies trolled with a tight roll, as well as a variety of Spoons or Needlefish hoochies. Trolling near the bottom a short distance offshore has provided ample action for Chinook in the 16-30 lb range, along with many bonus Halibut.
Saltwater Fly fisherman have been catching numerous “Blueback” Coho readily taking small Shrimp, Clouser Minnows in pink or orange, and various small streamer patterns. These 4-7 lb. Coho Salmon feed aggressively and grow fast throughout the remainder of the season. Coho Salmon and Cutthroat Trout are great fun on the fly, but various bottom-fish species will also test your skills with fly tackle, often showing in abundant numbers and non-stop action.
Freshwater options are hot during this time, with prime timing for the last downstream migration of Salmon fry, attracting hungry Sea-Run Cutthroat to the lower rivers and estuary areas of local watersheds. Bead head and Kiwi Muddlers have both been best bets for the local rivers and estuaries.
Small spoons and spinners work great as light tackle, though there are more and more anglers learning to cast and catch on fly gear.
For more info on these great spring time opportunities, along with some of the finest guided fishing options in the area, check out our updated site at www.tofinofishing.com