RALPH SHAW LANDED this prime 14-inch trout on a recent outing.

RALPH SHAW LANDED this prime 14-inch trout on a recent outing.

Islanders enjoy both marine and freshwater fishing

Recreational fishing is important economic generator for the Comox Valley

Vancouver Island residents are doubly blessed when it comes to recreational fishing because we enjoy both marine and freshwater fishing close to home. During the past two weeks I have enjoyed successful fishing on both sides of the line.

Recreational fishing is an important economic generator for Comox Valley businesses. When you factor in the costs of tackle, bait and transportation it would be safe to estimate that local fishing trips cost in the area of $75 to $100 per day for each participant. My guess is it is about the same as a round of golf. The difference is that golf balls make poor soup, while the proceeds of our fishing trips can add substantially to the family food budget.

Two weeks ago my column was about freshwater fishing, in particular trolling wet flies through the water as a method of fly fishing. It is a bit of a stretch because what I did was try to get people new to lake at fishing to try a simple technique to catch trout with fly hooks instead of lures or worms.

On April 25 I decided to do do just that. I fished with two sinking lines, long leaders and rowed slowly along the shore of the lake in about 20 feet of water.

I started by changing patterns until I had a strike – in this case it was a black leech. About noon I caught and netted a nice 14-inch trout.

The photograph of that fish appears in this column, although it looks similar to the fish in the April 25 column that was taken in the same location a year ago. After fishing for three hours, and with three prime, one-meal fish to the net, it was time to head home.

On May 1 I did a column on the virtues of fishing local marine waters. For starters we knew we would spend about $80 to $90 burning gasoline to reach the fishing grounds.

Add to this the costs of new and lost tackle. Fishing with jigs that cost about $10 each can be an expensive hobby around rock piles that are home territories to lingcod.

After three hours of jigging over rocky bottoms and donating a couple of jigs we netted our second lingcod and it was time to try salmon trolling. The trolling didn’t produce any legal salmon but it did give us two prime rockfish.

One major difference about marine fishing and freshwater fishing is that the food factor is much greater when you are dealing with large fish such as chinook salmon, lingcod and halibut as opposed to singe-meal fish as in trout.

Nevertheless the economic contribution of the marine fishery is probably greater because of the investment in large boats, big motors and specialized navigation devices.

Before we get carried away with the economic or food implications of recreational fishing it is important to keep the perspective that it is a source of great pleasure and mental challenge that can lead to a lifetime of activity. In the case of the Comox Valley and associated fishing opportunities it is an important resource.

Ralph Shaw is a master fly fisherman who was awarded the Order of Canada in 1984 for his conservation efforts. In 20 years of writing a column in the Comox Valley Record it has won several awards.

 

 

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Dasher is back home with mom Christine Girvin thanks to some help from BC Ferries staff. Photo supplied
The cat came back, with help from Comox ferry staff

After Dasher made a dash, ferry staff found her and got her home safe

A rendering of the Denman Green plans for the Kirk Road site. Image, DHA/Ronan Design
Denman Green finds new site for housing

Facing COVID delays, the project reached expiration date on initial site

A fawn stands in a field. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)
MARS hoping to build fawn complex for rehab

Their goal is to raise $20,000 in a relatively short period of time.

Aspen Park in Comox is the latest school reporting a COVID-19 exposure. Screenshot, Google Maps
Fifth Comox Valley school reports COVID-19 exposure

Exposure at Aspen Park in Comox was reported for Feb. 22

Cumberland Brewery is looking to expand its patio space temporarily for the summer. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Cumberland Brewery looks for temporary patio expansion

Move would allow business to spread customers outside in summer months

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Tuesday December 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s compromise on in-person worship at three churches called ‘absolutely unacceptable’

Would allow outdoor services of 25 or less by Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack churches

Photo: Lt. Sandy Pridmore, MARS Darlene Banerd, MARS, Warren Warttig and Captain Rob Stevens show the new automatic external defibrillator (AED) that will be located at the MARS facilities located at 1331 William Beach Road, Black Creek. Photo supplied
Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society adds AED to Williams Beach Road location

Submitted Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society (MARS) has collaborated with the Comox Firefighters… Continue reading

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Jasmine’s story: Stigma can be the hardest hurdle for those overcoming addiction

Recovering B.C. addict says welcome, connection and community key for rebuilding after drug habit

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

BC Ferries experienced heavy traffic on Feb. 27 following cancellations the day before due to strong winds and adverse weather. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries sailings fill up quickly after Friday cancellations due to high winds

Waits expected on Swartz Bay-Tsawwassen route, Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay route

1957 photo shows Six Mile House-sponsored #4 1932 Ford stock car with Frank Morris (from left), Ted Mackenzie, Bill Sim and driver Gerry Sylvester. (Bud Glover/Victoria Auto Racing Hall of Fame)
Memories race as Western Speedway approaches its finish line

‘It was life to us:’ Vancouver Island racers, crew will never forget what the track gave them

Most Read