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My wife and I were thinking of taking a road trip this August for our anniversary up to Vancouver Island. My thought was to head up to Victoria and spend the first night there and then drive around the island for a few days fishing and staying in B&B's.

I am primarily interested in doing some serious fly fishing for trout on any of the streams and rivers. (Maybe a lake if we can rent a boat.)

I have never been up there and any suggestions on rivers, towns, etc to visit and fish would be greatly appreciated. :wink:
 

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Drive up the East side of the island and stay at least a couple days in Campbell River. It is a really neat place, and can offer some really good fishing in August. From Campbell River head West across the island to Gold River, again some really great fishing. Along the way is a huge Provincal Park (don't recall name) that has a huge lake that is just beautiful, and probably the home to some nice Kamloops Rainbows. Have Fun!! :grin:
 

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Lured In,

Vancouver Island is almost three different worlds. There's the Victoria area with the Princess Hotel, Parliment Building, Provincial Museum, and Buchart Gardens. All beautifull and worth the visit. In fact, just park your rig somewhere and walk everywhere you go. That way you don't miss any of the little shops and out-of-the-way places.

Further up-island, you get into what I call the "DisneyLand" part. Nanaimo and Parksville are two places that come to mind, having lots of "tourist attractions." Lots for kids to do, but pretty civilized. That's also the area where you can go across the island to Port Alberni, the big sportfishing area that opens out into Barkley Sound.

Another few hours up the island is Campbell River, which used to be the spot for great salmon fishing. It's primarily a boat show, but you can even rent small boats or hire a guide. I don't think the fishing has been all that great in the last few years, but you'd probably want to check that out with someone who can give you more information than I can.

Finally, there's the North Island, Ports McNeil and Hardy. Both are neat places with a little slower pace and more rustic feel - from the communities and from the people who live there. It's where I've been going for the last 13 years, so I'm a little biased. :smile:

One thing to remember is there are two licenses up there, one for fresh water and one for salt. You can buy a one, two, or even ten-day license and not have to pay much extra for it (based on a year-long license).

I can tell you lots more about the North Island if you're interested, and another Ifisher, Jean Carufo, is an absolute wealth of information. It's a fun place to go, so I suspect you'll have a good time wherever you end up.

Skein

[ 04-17-2003, 07:43 PM: Message edited by: skein ]
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Bump...

Skein and Drachir...thank you! :cheers: :grin:

Any other thoughts out there in ifish land? :wink:
 

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My recommendation for a place to spend an anniversary would be Tofino on the west side of the Island for sure. (my wife would love it if I surprised her with another trip up there for our anniversary) It's absolutely beautiful, and it's right next to Pacific Rim National Park. Just head up the east side of the island until you get to the turn off to Port Alberni. Go through Port Alberni and just keep going until you hit the west side of the island.

Tofino is a small town, but because of it's beauty the hotels get booked up pretty early. If you're interested, do some searches on Tofino, and you should find plenty of info. You should also be able to find lots of info on Pacific Rim National Park.

Fishing in Tofino and nearby Uclulet is pretty much guided and charter fishing. But there is plenty of other things to do if you enjoy the outdoors (kayaking, hiking, golfing, sightseeing, wildlife watching, walking on the beach in Pacific Rim park).

Here's a picture of Tofino:

 

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I agree with Skein, the northern half of Vancouver Island (north of Campbell River)has an unique charm all it own. Port Hardy has campgrounds,motels and couple B&B, but you want to make reservations well in advance. You will past serveral lakes and rivers on your way to Port Hardy. The lakes look the easiest to fish if you have a float tube. Since I primarily salmon fish, I am not sure how good the trout fishing in August. I have had some excellent pink and coho fly fishing at Port Hardy, especially by trolling salmon flies right next to the kelp beds off of Duval Point.

Bill K
 

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Thank you skein for the complement. I concur with everything you had to say. We too love the Island and have been going up there every summer to fish and play for the last 13 years. Ucluelit in June, Port Alberni in July, and either Port McNeill or Port Renfrew in August. You will find it stunningly beautiful (wheresmybobber's beautiful picture is a great example), very laid back, lots of friendly people, and a great value for your money.
If Barb and I ever made time to do something other than fish, I think we would stay in B&Bs starting in the South and working our way North by taking the BC Ferry from Twassen to Victoria (staying on the Saanich Peninsula with Goldstream Park and Portage Inlet) and experiencing Victoria for at least a day or two. It's a beautiful old tyme 'English' city and the parks and Natural History Museum rival the best in the world.
Then North an hour to Cowichan to stay and fish the Cowichan river and Lake. Famous First Nation Sweaters, hats and other woolen stuff and big Cutts and Rainbows.
Then to Nanaimo and inland about an hour through Cathedral Grove Old Growth Forest to Port Alberni. That's the home of Sproat Lake and the Water Bombers, Somas River, Stamp River and Falls and Great Central Lake. Both the Robertson Creek on the Somas and Stamp River Hatcheries have more than two million fish returning yearly. Over 375,000 to 1,000,000 Sockeye in July and early August alone. With the salmon, you'll find fantastic Cutts and a great Summer Steelhead run that no one fishes because they're too busy fishing the Alberni Inlet. Many days you'll have 20+ miles of river to yourselves.
Off North to Cambell River, Cambell Lake and inland an hour to Strathcona Provincial Park (that's the Provincial Park Drachir mentioned). I'm not sure just how large the lake is, but you parallel it for almost an hour on your way from Cambell River to Gold River and Nootka Sound. There is a great lodge right on the lake about half way. By the way, there is also a canoe trail outside Cambell River through 12 lakes, I think. Lots of exploring and opportunity there.
On North through Woss and Schoen Lake Park, Woss Lake Park, and Marbie River Park to North Island and Port McNeill and Port Hardy. All the mentioned lakes by the way, have inlet and outlet streams/rivers that hold fish. As everyone has said, Port McNeill and Port Hardy are small quaint fishing towns basically in the forest. In McNeill you'll find Nimpkish River and Lake and in the Port Hardy area, Coal Harbor and Quatsino Harbor and Sound. The beauty of the area will take your breath away.
Then there's the West Coast of the Island with Sooke and Port Renfrew. But that's another story. The Island is probably about 500 miles North to South so, depending on the amount of time you have, just pick a portion, go explore and enjoy. You will be back. The best part of the Island is that it's only 5 hours from Portland and it's there to go back to.
As far as local fishing information while you are on the Island; find a small local store of any kind, walk in and tell them you are on 'Holiday' and ask them where they would suggest for you to go. We've had people close up and take us to their favorite local zipperlip places right then. They love to share the beauty of the Island with visitors and will remember you and welcome you back when they see you again. Hope this helps. Email if you'd like, we have lot's more.
Jean

[ 04-15-2003, 11:45 PM: Message edited by: jcarufo ]
 

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My wife and I went to Dolphins Resort in Campbell River year before last in Aug. We were treated royally and had a glorious time.

In Campbell R. there is a teriffic tackle shop (the name escapes me but ask anyone) with some real good salmon etc. fishing just out the back door in Campbell River itself. They will be able to hook you up with good fishing.

On the way to the west side of the island from CR there are several large fishing lakes or you can continue North to several small towns and more than you can doo in a week or two.

If I were going I would base out of Campbell R and explore. There are lots of artist types incl. Native art. I would definately, at that time of year, join the Tyee Club for $10 and fish a tide or two. Having a Tyee pin is a cool deal. :dance:
 

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We have enjoyed several stays in the Campbell River area, specifically Salmon Pt. Resort, which is just south of CR on Hwy 19.

There is plenty to do in the area and trips both north and east open up some great trout/steelhead fishing adventures on a number of different rivers and lakes.

There are countless guides for both the inland waterways and the lakes/rivers, as well as museums, sightseeing float and plane trips, etc...

Good luck! SD
 

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Oh, yeah, I forgot about the float-plane trips. Thanks for the reminder, Spoiled Daddy. If you do it right, it's pretty cheap. Here's the deal.

There are lots of little villages and fishing or logging camps that can only get serviced by air or boat, so every day the local air services haul people or goods out around the island. Go in and ask them where they're going today and if they have any seats available. You end up going as a ride-along, and it's lots cheaper than chartering a flight. Sure, you only go where they're going, but usually that's four or five stops and you get a good look at the channels and bays. It's a fun way to spend a day. I think it cost us about $60 Canadian, which is about $40 US.

Skein
 

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Lured- We spent our honeymoon up there in Aug, it's been a couple years! :grin: (23 1/2 actually). The inland fishing is pretty dead. We asked around and everybody thought I was nuts. Spring is the trout season apparently. We ended up taking a charter/guide out of the west side in one of hte inlets and caught some silvers.
It's still beautiful and we had the inland lakes/campgrounds and motels all to ourselves. :cheers:
 

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Port Alberni and Tofino are great, as is Pacific Rim National Park. I spent a week paddling Barkley Sound (broken group Islands)about 6 years ago. Absolutely one of the greatest outdoor pleasures I've had. If you like to kayak or canoe, check that out too sometime. You can almost live off what you catch and collect out there. There are also salmon/halibut charters available although I did'nt partake.
Have a great time in BC
 

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For trout fishing in August, concentrate on areas where inlet creeks flow into the lakes. For stream fishing, the outlet streams.

Small egg patterns are best as the trout are spawning this time of year. Cutthroats and Dolly Varden are the primary catch.

Don't ignore the saltchuck for Sea Run Cutts. Again, thin inlet creeks & streams.

Don't expect alot of local trout fishing info. Most locals are out salmon fishing.

 

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Vanvouver Island brings back many memories for me growing up.

My Dad started taking us to Campbell River when I was about 3 years old, approx 1970. We used to make the treck from San Fran every year for two weeks. My Dad would load my Mom, brother, sister, myself and the family dog, in the family truckster and head on up. Our Campbell River trips are some of my fondest memories. The first few years when money was tight, we'd rent a small boat and actually caught a good number of fish. I'm not sure if we changed the time of year we went, but it seemed that the smaller chinook and coho made way for the larger hogs. Possibly because later in the 70's and 80's we were going in August.

Hey, has anyone stayed at the Courtney Hotel in the past ten years? One memory when I was about 7, we got off the late ferry and my Dad couldn't stay awake to make it all the way to CR. So he rents a room at the Courtney Hotel. Calling it a fleabag back then was a compliment as the rooms had no bathroom or shower. Everyone in the hotel shared the one down the hall. My mom and sister were obviously very happy.

Anyhow, I digress, in the 80's we got our first boat, a nice Glas Ply. The fishing was OK, but pretty much became a hog fishery when we were there. We'd either catch 1-2 30lb plus fish or nothing. Our last year there 1987, we caught the two biggest fish we ever caught, a 45 and a 43lb. Also lost one about the same size when the spool locked on my Dad's newly bought reel. The line was too loose on the spool and got tangled. The freaking fish almost pulled him overboard before the 30lb test line broke.

No one believes me when I describe another fisherman holding up the head of a very large salmon which had its body bitten off by an Orca while the guy was reeling it in. I saw it.

We always stayed at the Discovery Inn. A nice place, however we always wanted to stay at Painters Lodge because of the history. Its a shame it burnt down, but I understand they did a good job when they rebuilt it.

I have not been since 1987, and considering I live so close, I need to go. Need to show my daughters this beautiful area. I have heard the fishery has not been great there lately. Can anyone shed some light on this.

Thx.
 

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Try Bamfield at the east end of the Broken Group Islands at Barkley Sound(Salmon and Halibut). Or Port Renfrew in San juan Harbor for the same. Port Alberni has sockeye in early July.
 
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