The 2016 Haa-Nee-Naa Lodge fishing season has officially begun! Staff were hard at work during the three weeks of start up: painting, repairing, cleaning, and just about everything you can think of in-between in preparation for opening day on May 20th.
I love this time of year! After so many months of anticipation in the off-season, it feels great to finally throw down some cut-plug herring. Nothing beats rolling into any one of our Dundas Island hot spots and having it all to ourselves.
The season got off to a great start on May 20th. We welcomed back past guests and new faces to kick off the season. It is always a treat for us guides to witness someone’s first Dundas Island Chinook – a truly memorable experience.
Patsy Cline faithfully woke us up on the first morning, getting everyone up out of bed and excited for the first full day on the water. Along with all the other guides I had trouble sleeping the night before, dreaming of Freshie’s and hungry Chinook salmon had us all jacked up for the 4:15am wake up call.
The first couple days of the trip yielded low Chinook salmon hook-ups for everyone. The herring were very scattered and tough to locate during our morning hunt. Thoselucky enough to find a bait ball of mature herring that were willing to bite their sabiki rigs had a definite leg up for the day.
By the third day of the trip the herring were showing up in big numbers and the salmon fishing got steadily stronger. Fishing stayed consistent through the latter part of the trip and everyone got to shake hands with at least a few Chinook. The first Tyee of the season was brought in by Robert, weighting exactly 30lbs. First time guest and first time salmon fisherman, John, also topped off his salmon card with a beautiful, well-earned 32 pounder. Congratulations guys!!
The average salmon weight for the trip was 16 pounds, with a couple of Tyee and a handful of fish in the 25-27 pound range.
Bottom fishing was excellent for all species. Lingcod and Halibut were plentiful along with the various types of rockfish. It is exciting to be the first rod to fish many of these humps, ledges and pinnacles that haven’t been fished since last season. The aggressive lingcod were hiding in their caves just waiting for a freshie to be sent down! Four halibut over 100 cms hit the dock with the largest being 127 cms.
All in all a great start to the 2016 season. Fishing continues to get better and better everyday, shaping up nicely for great early June Chinook fishing. Stay tuned for more updates throughout the season. We are looking forward to seeing all of you up here this summer and can’t wait to hit the water with you.
Don’t forget to get your fishing licences on-line before your visit this year. You can visit the licensing website here: Online Licencing to set up a profile for yourselves, purchase your fishing license and refresh your memories on catch limits.