Fishing Report Sponsored by Whatcom Counties Fishing PRO Shop.
April 19, 2012
By Ken Shagren, Fishing Pro Staff, Dave’s Sports Shop
“Remember to check the official WDFW regulations before going out!”
Welcome to the Dave’s Sports Shop fishing report page. Check in with us as we attempt to keep you informed on where the fish are biting and what is working to catch them. We will try to keep the information current so that we can help you decide where the best opportunity for success will be located.
It’s time to gear up for the general lake opener on Saturday, April 28. Most Whatcom County lakes have already been stocked by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife in anticipation of the season opener. Below is a list of catchable trout planted in Whatcom County lakes.
Lake Date Planted Species Number of FishHatchery
LK PADDEN (WHAT)
Whatcom County – Region 4 Apr 10, 2012 Rainbow 9,830 Kendall Cr
LK PADDEN (WHAT)
Whatcom County – Region 4 Apr 05, 2012 Rainbow 10,180 Kendall Cr
SILVER LK (WHAT) 01
Whatcom County – Region 4 Mar 28, 2012 Rainbow 14,020 Kendall Cr
TOAD LK (WHAT)
Whatcom County – Region 4 Apr 11, 2012 Rainbow 2,030 Kendall Cr
TOAD LK (WHAT)
Whatcom County – Region 4 Apr 10, 2012 Rainbow 2,980 Kendall Cr
Whatcom County- Region 4 April Rainbow 9,000 Kendall Cr
Triploid Trout Plants
Lake Acres April May Total
Squalicum Lake 33 0 178 178
Toad Lake 30 250 0 250
Terrell Lake 438 569 267 836
Shore bound anglers should try floating Power Bait or similar dough baits off of bottom to get hatchery fish to bite. Pink, orange, rainbow, green, or white are some of the more popular colors. Night crawlers floated with a marshmallow or injected with air are another solid choice. Remember to use leaders long enough to get baits above weeds. Leaders two feet in length may be good enough early in the season, but they will have to be increased in length as the water warms and weeds start to grow.
Fishermen who have access to a boat can use trolling methods to trick the trout. Lead core line is commonly used to get various spoons such as Dick Nites or Triple Teasers down to the fish, but expect the fish to be quite shallow during the early part of the season. Sinking fly line is another versatile way of getting flies or small lures down to the fish. Split shot and other forms of lead sinkers also work to get spinner and bait combinations such as a wedding band spinner and worm down to the action. Wherever you go, be sure to dress for inclement weather and please observe all boater safety rules.
Dave’s Sports Shop has received good reports for winter black mouth fishing as it winds down to a close on April 30.Thatcher Pass on the outgoing tide and the Eagle Bluff area at the north end of Cypress Island on an incoming tide has been fishing well. The fish that are at Thatcher Pass on the outgoing tide will be off Cypress Island on the incoming tide. Other outgoing tide fishing holes include Tide Point, Point Lawrence, and Obstruction Pass.
The north end of Orcas Island can be productive at Point Thompson, Point Doughty and Parker Reef. Also tryLopez Pass,Spring Pass, Waldron Island or Point Migley off of Lummi Island.
The most common rigs have been herring or Irish Cream or Cookies and Cream Silver Horde Tailwagger spoons along with a flasher. Flashers seem to be an individual choice, but the most popular are some combination of green with silver, gold, white, or red florescent UV tape.
Be sure to circle the calendar for the scheduled Puget Sound San Juan Spot Shrimp and Ling Cod opening. Area 7 south opens on May 5 at 7 am for spot shrimp. The other openings are May 11, 12, 17, 18, and 19.Meanwhile the Puget Sound Ling Cod season opens May1.
Halibut season opens in Area 7 on May 3. There is a one fish daily limit and no minimum size restriction. However, only two fish may be in possession in any form. From May 3-19 the fishery will be open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. From May 24-28 halibut fishing will be open Thursday through Monday during Memorial Day weekend. From May 31- June 2 the fishery will be open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Herring, Squid, and octopus are good baits for halibut if you aren’t being bothered by dog fish (sand sharks). If dog fish are present then use an 8 or 9 inch plastic squid or twin tail scampi with plenty of scent to do the trick. It’s also a good idea to use a spreader bar to help keep bottom debris from fouling your terminal gear. A spreader bar is rigged by simply attaching lead to the short end (12-24 ounces depending on depth and strength of tide) and your leader (18-24 inches) to the long end.
BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA
Steelhead fishing on the Chilliwack/Vedder has been excellent in April. Multiple fish days are not uncommon.Spoons andColorado spinners have become more effective as the water temperature has risen, but float fishing steelhead eggs or shrimp is still the most popular choice. The locals are also using roe sacks, jigs, yarn tufts (wool), rubber egg imitations and wool combinations, and dyed prawn tails. As for fly fishermen, the local shops are recommending egg sucking leaches, glow bugs, prawn patterns, or black marabou and steelie blue flash intruders. May is fly fishing only from Vedder Crossing to the mouth. This spring has seen one of the best steelhead returns on record and May should offer fabulous fly fishing.
The Fraser River is starting to see large sturgeon be more active with the rise in water temperature and multiple food sources. Cutthroat fishing has also been good in the back channels. Spinners, trout beads, and bait are solid choices. Fly fishermen are going with flesh flies, glow bugs, small minnow patterns, and micro leaches.
Interior lakes are just beginning ice off. We should be getting more information in a couple of weeks.
The draft forecast from Fisheries and Oceans Canada predicts a return of 2.1 million sockeye to the Fraser River. The below average return forecast is attributed to the well below average 2008 brood year escapements of Early Summer and Late Run stocks. If this prediction holds, a recreational sockeye fishery could be questionable.
A quick check on the west side of Vancouver Island shows some decent black mouth fishing at Bamfield Harbor and along the Bamfield Wall to Wittlestone and Cape Beale. Needlefish hoochies and small spoons in the 3 to 3.5 inch size behind a dodger at depths of 60 to 70 feet have been the ticket for feeder chinook in the 6 to 12 pound range. Green glow, chartreuse, nasty boy, green nickel, and knight rider are the best spoon color choices. There have been a few halibut in the area as well with the largest being just over 100 lbs. caught near Cape Beale. Area guides expect to see the big migration of Chinook salmon to the Columbia River and other large watersheds to the south begin to materialize in late April or early May. The Columbia River is expecting a return that is a ten year high and other southern rivers are expecting returns four to five times higher than past years as ocean survival conditions have been excellent.
This Fishing Report is Sponsored by Dave’s Sports Shop in Lynden. Check them out for all of your fishing and hunting needs. www.DavesSports.com