Salmon Fishing in Campbell River, Vancouver Island, BC
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Pacific Salmon Species
Chinook salmon are the most-sought-after salmon of sport fisherman. They reside in the deep ocean for 4 to 7 years before returning to their birth river. Down-riggers are almost essential to assist in getting the fishing lures down to their depths. A Tyee is a Chinook salmon greater than 30 pounds (14 kilograms). They are mighty and can take run after run emptying your reel each time. The size range is 5-30+ pounds with mid-twenties being common June through August. The meat is most often red but can be white. Large Chinooks are best smoked while smaller ones are perfect for the BBQ.
The Coho start arriving in July and are such a great salmon to fish. They are hard-hitting acrobats that dance along the surface and can empty your reel of line several times before you land them. They range in size from 5-20+ pounds. Coho's are excellent for table fare, steaks, canning or smoking.
Sockeye spawn in lakes and small feeder streams. Their young live in lakes for a year or more before making their way to the open ocean and are mostly plankton feeders. Sockeye are prized for their bright red flesh and are commercially the most valuable Pacific salmon. They range in size from 5-12 pounds and can occasionally exceed 15 pounds.
The Pink Salmon arrive in large numbers and on even-numbered years (eg. 2010 or 2012) they migrate in the millions. They are the smallest Pacific salmon, averaging 3.5 pounds (1.6 kilograms) to 4 pounds (1.8 kilograms) and on even-numbered years can reach 12+ pounds. They are fiesty and put up a strong fight for their size. They are perfect fish for beginners or youngsters to reel in and fit nicely on the barbeque. They are also excellent canned or smoked.
This is the second largest and the latest salmon to arrive in Campbell River. They are usually start showing up in August and their numbers peak throughout October, showing up in large schools making for great action. Chum are powerful salmon and will put you and your tackle to the test. Pound for pound they are probably the toughest fighting salmon and they average 8-20 pounds. They are great salmon for smoking and the best for Candy Smoked, a local West Coast favorite. They are a great way to finish off the prime salmon fishing season in Campbell River.