Find out what’s working and what’s not when fishing in the Comox area on Central Vancouver Island. Tips, best practices, places and the go-to lures are just a sample of what you’ll find in our fishing report.
Comox Marine Map
Comox Marine Weather Forecast
Comox Fishing Report
September is an exciting fishing month—the fall runs arrive to the local rivers as do the southeast winds. You’ll need to pick your days on the ocean carefully, and watch the wind forecasts!
Based on what I’ve learned over the years of fishing Comox, I change my gear this month to pink hoochies or pink squirts towed behind purple and gold flasher combos. One of my favourite tie-ups is nicknamed the “Qualicum Special,” which is a Purple Haze cuttlefish with an MP2 squirt stuffed inside. It seems to entice the big springs. It’s always special to see everyone gather in September at the local haunts, trying for the big Puntledge River Chinook— the Canary Bouys, Red Bell, and Goose Spit to name a few. Fish slow and shallow and hang on! So much fun when they make the big initial run!
The coho are always fun and show up in decent numbers, usually off Little River or towards Kitty Coleman. They’re typically feeding off big herring, and I’ve found a white and blue Turd works for the big Northerns. Also, a naked spoon (no in-line flasher) and a dummy flasher can be super exciting for these acrobatic fish!
As we rounded into the end of September the past few years, the month brought some beautiful winter feeder Chinook early, also to Kitty Coleman. With a limit of 2 each, it’s definitely a good time to go stock up on a few nice red meat fish. It’s especially nice for us guides who don’t get much time off for our own recreational fishing.
We can’t forget about the Chum Derby in Brown’s Bay in October—plan your derby and your fishing partners and get there for this end-of-season farewell to fishing 2023 bash! It’s always exciting, the hosts do an amazing job year after year, and it’s for a great cause (Greenway Land Trust)! Tight lines everyone, and keep the rod tip up!
June and early July have brought “coho mania” to our area! I started fishing here in 2000 and remember hearing stories about the coho that used to be here in massive numbers. This season it’s happened again! We have been catching these feisty fish at depths of anywhere from 50′ to 250′. Last time I was out, 90′ to 100′ was the ticket. The Blue Meanie cuttlefish hoochie has been working well for me, and any 3″ green spoon towed behind a green flasher has been working great. I suggest a 3′ leader for the hoochie for a good whipping action, and a 6′ leader for the spoon, which doesn’t need action transmitted by the flasher.
Lingcod and rockfish fishing have continued to be steady. You’ll have to earn your spots, but swim baits either trolled or jigged near the bottom almost always work. Put your time in on a high slack tide and you’ll be rewarded with some of these tasty critters.
As always, Chinook fishing is lights out, as it has been since May. I like to run plugs near the bottom, but the hoochie and flasher combo in the morning seems to work better some days—try switching it up. Expect to be seeing 15- to 25-lb fish this month, and if you are lucky, a nice Tyee! Comox gives you the advantage of location: Kitty Coleman is a 30-minute boat ride, Coho Point on the mainland side is 30-minute run, and the South End of Hornby (Tribune Bay), is only 45 minutes away. All are holding fish right now!
While you are in the area, check out the Comox Municipal Marina. Enjoy the kids’ water park and the amazing food trucks at the Marina. Take some time to relax in the beautiful park—the boat launch is right there—or try the Blackfin Pub for a great meal on the deck overlooking the marina!
Tips up, and get your hand off the reel if they’re running! If you’d like any information about the area, please don’t hesitate to give me a call.
Fishing has been unreal coming into July in the Georgia Straight. Chinook in big numbers have been moving around with the bait. Favourite hangouts for the bait has been Kitty Coleman, Grants Reef, and Coho Pt. The South end of Hornby has been holding massive numbers of coho.
Fishing your favourite plugs off the bottom will produce good results as well as your favourite flasher/cuttlefish combination. Spoons also work well with 4 ft to 6 ft leaders. Time to up your leaders to at least 40 lb test as there’s big springs being caught every day. Look after these brood stock, stop your boat, and take your time reviving them before release. One key factor is to get their heads pointed into the current while reviving. Retention slot size is 62 cm to 80 cm anything under or over goes back so look these fish. Don’t net the undersized—just pop the hook out with pliers or your gaff.
There’s still loads of coho out there and I don’t suggest netting them either. Just grab the flasher and check to see if they’re wild alongside the boat. Haul them in if they are hatchery or release them if their adipose fin is intact. There are plenty so don’t worry about losing the odd one. We have been getting them on a green 3-inch spoons, or green cuttlefish hoochies. Troll faster and generally they’re around the 100 ft mark on your rigger. Current regs your allowed two hatchery coho in Area 14.
For bottom fish, we get cod trolling swim baits or while we are trolling for salmon. Find those pinnacles and reefs and look for bait. Rockfish and lingcod are still in good numbers. You will get the odd halibut trolling bottom, also so be ready. Plenty of Pacific cod are out there also especially Kitty Coleman—these fish are a tasty fish and chip dinner.
My last trip out to Kitty we were getting springs at all depths on the rigger lots of suspended bait!
When visiting the valley now is a great time to tube down Puntledge River. Plenty of hiking trails Nymph Falls, Barbers Hole enjoy swimming in the nice fresh water.
Tight lines and enjoy your experience safely and come home with some great eats!