May 20, 2021 Fishing Report from Nootka Marine Adventures
“The bait fish are in!”
Moutcha Bay Resort kicked off the 2021 season a couple of weeks ago with plenty of beautiful weather and new as well as returning staff excited for the season. Over the past couple of weeks, our pro guide crew had been hearing that the 2021 spring is setting up for a banner year, but they wanted to test the waters themselves to get an accurate May report.
Our guide crew headed out bright and early last week in some of our new guide boats with our new Marine Operations Manager in tow. They were greeted with sunny blue skies that felt like summer had already arrived in Nootka Sound. This was the first opportunity for the entire guide team to spend a bit of time together this season, so everyone was looking forward to a full day of just fishing.
Our guide team fished mainly Maquinna and Wash Rock looking for early run Chinook. Right away, they noticed tons of bait on the screens and were surprised with two keeper ling cod! They confirmed that the fish had been feeding on needlefish; shortly after they reeled in two keeper Chinook. It was a quick start to a day that ended up being very productive.
The team fished typical salmon depths between 30-60ft range using small spoons and white hoochies. The tide change produced a bite at both tides, although the large amount of bait hung around for the entire tide cycle.
The Chinook and Coho regulations remain the status quo in our angling areas 25 and 125 with 2 Chinook per day and 4 in possession in our inshore fishery, with the outermost limits at the one-mile surf-line until July 15th. Check current DFO regulations for the most up-to-date limits for Chinook and Coho.
Networking between the three boats, the guides spread out and headed into deeper water. Instead of pulling their gear and making the switch to bottom fishing gear, they dropped their favourite salmon rod set ups to bottom and ended up hooking into some halibut! All three of our boats ended up limiting out. Bottom fishing was excellent with consistent halibut, ling cod and rock fish. The guides used spoons and bait with success at typical depths. Average sizes were 15-22lbs, with larger fish mixed in.
There is big news this year for anglers who love halibut fishing, the retention for halibut has been upped so anglers can retain 2 under-90cm chickens in one day. Check current DFO regulations for the most up-to-date limits for bottom fish.
Crabbing and prawning opportunities are steady, but with the commercial fishery recently opening these chances will be diminished swiftly, and anglers will need to move further out for better success.
We expect the local fish to begin showing up within the next week or two, which will provide consistent fishing throughout the spring and summer, especially with the coming squid spawn. We are very pleased to provide you with this firsthand report of an excellent spring fishery in Nootka Sound. May is typically good fishing in our area, but our recent experience was awesome! We are all looking forward to some fresh salmon for dinner tonight, and we cannot wait to guide our guests on the water this spring. We hope to see you soon!
Don’t forget about our upcoming Salmon Enhancement Derby on June 26 & 27 at Moutcha Bay Resort. We still have some accommodation available. Call Guest Services to register for this annual family-friendly event.
Nootka Marine Adventures
Pro Guide Team