BC Salmon and Halibut Fishing Charters on Vancouver Island
Our Tofino B.C. area Saltwater Fishing Excursions for Salmon and Halibut are the most popular charter that we offer. You can choose from Half or Full Day private charters, as well as multi Day Fishing and Accommodation packages for groups of all sizes. We also strive to connect single anglers with others, creating an opportunity to share a fishing charter, and the great experience.
Since 1996, Clayoquot Ventures has hosted over 38,000 guests for safe and memorable Sport Fishing experiences, with many returning each year for the consistently strong Fishing for Chinook salmon, Coho salmon and Halibut, our extremely clean and well maintained vessels and Top Quality Personal Service we aim to provide. Our commitment to meeting our guests' expectations is why we are Tofino's Most Recommended Full Service Fishing Outfitter!
For a memorable adventure while staying in the Tofino and Ucluelet areas, head out with your private party aboard one of Clayoquot Venture’s fully equipped and professionally guided 22-26 ft certified offshore vessels. Chrome bright Chinook and Coho Salmon, as well as powerful Halibut and Bottom fish make up the bounty of these unforgettable excursions.Your private charter allows you to choose what species you want to fish for, as well as your comfort levels based on current conditions.
The Tofino and Ucluelet areas are situated on the migration path of most major Salmon runs, along with a vast underwater shelf that provides ample baitfish and habitat for Halibut and Bottom fish. The offshore fishing area a short distance from Tofino has provided the most consistent action on the B.C. coast for the past three seasons.
A fishing excursion with Clayoquot Ventures is an excellent way to promote employee and corporate relations and can also be fun for the whole family. We are eager to host anglers of all experience levels, whether it is your 1st time or your 40th, we strive to make it the most memorable trip you can have.
Trolling for Salmon is the most common approach in the Tofino-Ucluelet area. We use Scotty Downriggers to get our gear down to the right depth, rigged with a release clip mechanism to fight the fish on the rod and reel, completely free of the Downrigger.
Most often, we troll for Salmon with a 10.5 ft rods made by G.Loomis or Shimano, and single action-direct drive reels made by Islander Reels right here on Vancouver Island. These smooth reels are normally loaded with 30 lb. test main line in the early part of the season, and uploaded to 40 lb. test main line for the largest Salmon of the year in August and early September. We will occasionally troll some extra gear in the right conditions, and sometimes utilize similar single action reels made by Shimano as well. Flashers are common as an attractor, with Spoons, Plugs and Hoochies common imitators. Baits such as Anchovy, Herring and Sardines are used as often as any type of lure for our Salmon Fishing. A similar approach is used for Salmon fishing on Offshore as well as Inshore waters of the Tofino/Clayoquot Sound area, with the main difference is that Offshore we will fish as deep as 200 feet for salmon, while inshore Salmon fishing often sees a maximum depth of 70 feet. We do have high quality Penn International and Abu level wind reels ready to go for those of you that are “all thumbs” and prefer to not fish Salmon with single action style reels. Upon your request, we are also able to jig fish for Salmon with fair to good success, so if this is your preferred approach, we can plan for this type of salmon fishery as well.
Tofino BC Halibut Fishing - With an average size of 18-45 lbs. and many fish larger, we approach our Halibut fishery with gear that is light enough for a great experience, but strong enough to ensure that you are on the winning end of the battle. We use one piece rods made by Shimano and Penn, paired with level wind reels made by either Shimano or Penn. These reels are loaded with 80-100 lb test braided Dacron line that does not allow any stretch, especially when setting the hook on a Halibut that is 140-180 ft. under the boat.
Monofilament leaders in the 100-150 lb. range rigged with tandem 8/0 Octopus style hooks are common to fish fresh baits for Halibut. Fighting belts are always ready for those that need the extra support, especially when involved in lengthy battles with a “Barn door” like the 170 lb. Halibut that took Jay and guests over 2 hours. Our vessels are equipped to deal with all sizes of Halibut, with necessary gaff hooks, Harpoons and Ropes.
For the 2017 season that opens April 1st, retention limits allow for 1 Halibut with maximum size of 133 cm (approx. 65-70 lbs) per day with a maximum possession limit of 2. The second halibut in your possession must be under 83cm.
It is not uncommon that posted regulations by Fisheries and Oceans Canada are hard to decipher, so we are always just a phone call way to help you understand what you need to know. The Clayoquot Ventures Tofino Fishing Guide Team will know, and abide by all of the rules set out by DFO
Vancouver Island Salmon & Halibut Fishing
in the Tofino and Ucluelet areas
The fishing outlook for the 2017 Salmon and Halibut fishing season in the Tofino-Clayoquot Sound area, on Vancouver Island’s west coast, anglers can expect great Salmon fishing opportunities again this season. Some of Vancouver Island’s best early season fishing action for Chinook Salmon, Coho Salmon and Halibut takes place among the baitfish rich banks offshore from Tofino B.C., with numerous Chinook Salmon in the 18- 35 lb. class, and Halibut averaging 20-60 lbs. Coho Salmon start off early as 3-5 lb. “Bluebacks” and rapidly grow into tackle testing 8-18 lb. salmon by mid. September.
Most of the early season Salmon and Halibut Fishing in the Tofino B.C. area occurs a short distance off the Vancouver Island coastline at Portland or Raphael pts (4-6 miles), as well as the Hiesen bank (8-10 miles) in 145-200 ft. of water. Pacific Halibut are consistently found along these same banks, attracted by the vast schools of Needlefish, Herring and Sardines that have helped slow the Chinook salmon and Coho Salmon from their migration down the coast of Vancouver Island. The early season of April and May usually finds us fishing for Halibut closer to the coastline (approx 2 - 4 miles) than the average of 6 - 10 miles later in the season.
As the 2017 fishing season progresses to early summer, the Tofino B.C. area will once again see a very strong return of Chinook and Coho Salmon to both inshore, and open offshore waters along the Vancouver Island coastline. This time of the fishing season often provides very reliable Bottom fishing, as well as inshore Salmon Fly fishing and light tackle fishing opportunities that continue through late September. The Tofino-Clayoquot Sound area has been labeled as Vancouver Island’s premier local for the exciting growth fishery of saltwater fly fishing for Salmon. We most often use a fast action 8 wt. Fly Rod and an anodized large arbour Fly Reel loaded with 300-600 gr. Sink tips to fly fish for Chinook and Coho Salmon, as well as various Bottom fish species in the Tofino B.C. area.
The diverse habitat of Clayoquot Sound, with a myriad of Reefs, Kelp beds and Islands offers the ideal setting to cast or Bucktail (surface skip fly) flies for Chinook and Coho Salmon, and various species of Rockfish. Having been involved with this fishery since it's inception some 20 years ago, we use our custom designed fly patterns to ensure the best chance for success.
The last stretch of the summer fishing season on Vancouver Island’s west coast most often provides the best fishing opportunities for Chinook Salmon in the “Tyee” class, with the 2017 outlook for hatchery origin Chinook Salmon forecast to be fairly good for the 4 year old Chinook that make up over 60% of the annual return. The many islands and reefs that scatter along Vancouver Island’s outer coastline between Tofino and Ucluelet are the traveling and feeding corridors for maturing Chinook and Coho Salmon. Consider fishing the Tofino area Hot Spots like Wilf Rock, Blundan Island or Tree Island. During the past few years, the offshore areas along the Vancouver Island coastline have consistently produced the “Tyees” as well during this time.
Like many other areas along the Vancouver Island coastline, Anchovies or Medium Herring trolled 6-7 ft. behind a flasher will often be the gear of choice for fishing Chinook and Coho Salmon. Many anglers have also been relying on 7 inch Tomic plugs, and spoons like Oki’s Titan, or Gibb’s Gator in glow patterns, many of which we have helped develop over the years. When trolling near or on the bottom, this same method and gear is extremely effective for Halibut fishing in the Tofino B.C. area, as well as further south near Ucluelet.
The late fishing season months of mid September through late October on the west coast of Vancouver Island deserves strong consideration, as there are great fishing opportunities for the largest Coho Salmon of the season both inshore and offshore, as well as some late offshore runs of very large Chinook Salmon. Vancouver Island anglers visiting the Tofino area to experience our popular near shore fishery do not require a large boat or to travel great distances. The late season runs of abundant offshore Chinook require a larger vessel, at least 22 ft in length, equipped with all necessary safety and navigation equipment. Though we never push the limits of safety, Clayoquot Ventures fleet is extremely well equipped to host fishing charter guests for all types of excursions in the Tofino area waters. Along with the strong runs of late season mature Chinook and Coho Salmon, this time of the year also provides great fishing for “Feeder” Chinook Salmon that can also push past the 20 lb. range. These juvenile Chinook Salmon will continue to feed in the offshore waters from Tofino and Ucluelet over the next 10 to 12 months, gaining size and strength through this peak stretch of their amazing life cycle. For anglers who choose to retain any salmon while fishing with Clayoquot Ventures, these juvenile Chinook Salmon are the finest tasting salmon you will find, and are very rich in Omega 3 oils. The late season still offers strong fishing opportunities for Halibut and Bottom-fish, with excellent fishing for Ling Cod until the end of October.
For local Salmon, Steelhead and Halibut fishing information, fishing charters and the appropriate gear required, stop by and see us at Tofino’s main fishing resource at Tofino Fly and Tackle. For the various fishing packages that we offer for Chinook Salmon, Coho Salmon, Halibut and Steelhead fishing, please refer to our fishing packages page on this site.
We always welcome your questions and inquiries regarding our services, seasons or whatever else we can do to help you, in showing you why Clayoquot Ventures is the most recommended Fishing Outfitter in Tofino and Ucluelet area.