Haida Gwaii is known for its fishing. With many fishing lodges lining
the rugged West Coast and the vast number of fishing charters
operating in season, everyone has a chance to catch some of those 70lb
salmon hiding in the water!
Some friends and I recently went out to the West Coast via Skidegate Channel. It took about 2 hours to get to the West Coast, and they stayed near the Rennell Sound area while they fished! The waves out there are not always forgiving, so be sure to check the weather forecast and do not attempt to go there in high winds if you're on a small personal boat.
If you have your own boat and wish to get to the West Coast, you can skip boating through the channel and can tow your boat to the Rennell Sound boat launch. Be aware that you will be driving through backroads to get there and that nearing the Sound, there is a very steep hill that requires cautious driving. Logging is occurring on Queen Charlotte Main logging road this summer, so call the Ministry of Natural Resources & Operations for updates on logging areas or stop by the Visitor Centre in Queen Charlotte City prior to your departure for more information! Better safe than sorry!
When you go out fishing, you never know what you'll catch...or what you'll see! My friends have reported seeing whales and sea lions while fishing, saying that humpbacks will breach almost adjacent to your boat. It's as if they're putting on a show!
Salmon, halibut, red snapper and more are a common catch here! Every so often you might catch yourself a wolf eel too...they are not as pretty as wolves may seem I warn you! It's difficult to find a place to buy a fishing license in Queen Charlotte City, so I advise you to purchase one online. I've done it many times and all you need is a credit card and personal information. And if you lose your license at any time, you can go back onto your account and reprint it! Very handy for the forgetful fisherman (we all have our moments!).
Here's the link! www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/fm-gp/rec/licence-permis/index-eng.htm
We saw whales, we caught some salmon, and had a great day on the water. Whether you go out with guides from the fishing lodges, with a local charter, or with family/friends on your own personal boat, the experience is always memorable.