Best known for its mighty tyee—30-pound-plus chinook—Vancouver Island’s Campbell River and its saltwater estuaries hold all five salmon species. The four-season angler can chase chinook year-round, though summer is the best bet for connecting with a tyee. The summer also brings coho, sockeye and pinks, while the fall serves up 10- to 25-pound chum. Small wonder these waters inspired legendary angler and conservationist Roderick Haig-Brown to write A River Never Sleeps.
In 2008, Pink salmon; All ages and skill levels can expect success When to fish: The latter part of July to September. Where to fish: Focus on short rivers, pristine estuaries, miles of beachfront and healthy kelp beds. Tip: Whether lure or fly, for saltwater or freshwater, the colour choice is simple—pink.
Chinook; Fishing for 25- to 40-pound chinook among killer whales and bald eagles is amazing When to fish: All season. Where to fish: The “Lighthouse” run east of the area’s lodges. Tip: Troll mooching gear with green or camo-coloured hootchies about 25 to 40 feet down.