Nanaimo to Sooke has been excellent for winter chinook fishing. Try trolling just off the bottom with glow flasher, glow anchovy head and anchovy. Bold Bluff out of Cowichan Bay has also been excellent with fish ranging from 8 to 12 lbs.
Cowichan Lake fishing is going strong. Try trolling creek mouth and paralleling the shoreline staying within 30 feet. Keep your line back from the boat by at least 150 feet. Top lures of choice are three-inch tomic, best colours are the iridescent inserts. We have over 440 four-inch plugs in stock with over 80 different patterns.
Also working well are the ever popular gang troll and flat fish. As of April 16 until Nov. 14, bait, barbs and trebles are allowed in the lake. Fishing the creek mouths with bait (single eggs, roe, paste) and a corky rig can produce large numbers of fish including the odd lunker.
Kissinger and Lizard lakes to the west, food rainbow trout dishing, try corky and single egg rig off the docks and beaches. Try trolling with small spratley’s leeches, woolly bugger, flatfish and small spoons.
Fuller Lake, Chemainus Lake, Dougan Lake, Quamichan Lake and Somenos Lake are also producing well. These seven lakes have been recently stocked.
Cowichan River Trout Fishing:
Mid-river there are resident rainbow and brown trout. Try single egg copies/stonflies and mudler minnows. From Skutz Falls to Greendale Trestle is excellent for browns and rainbows. Use single egg copies and minnow or rolled mudler flies. The largest browns in the river are found in this section. Flies of choice: single egg patterns, rolled muddlers, prince nymphs, hairs ear nymphs, pheasant tail nymphs. Stick to the bead heads and weighted flies. Over 30,000 flies in stock at the store!
Also remember that all cutthroat trout in streams and rivers must be released from Oct. 1 to May 31 to protect our brood stock. All wild trout must be released all year.
April and the start of May: steelheading is still excellent on the Cowichan mainly for mended kelts. These fish have to feed aggressively after spawning, making them the easiest steelhead to target. A great month to catch your first steelhead! Lures of choice: blades, single egg copies or small pink worms.
Flies of choice: large and black or the ever popular egg fly.
Nitinat, San Juan, Harris Creek:
All excellent rivers for early summer runs and winter steelhead. Best fished when coming off of high water.
“May your rod bend to the butt and your smile go from ear to ear.”
Gord March is the owner of Gord’s Fly Box & Goodies, 170C Cowichan Lake Rd., Box 1742, Lake Cowichan, B.C., V0R 2G0. Call: 250-932-9309 or email firstname.lastname@example.org