Fishing at sunset (Picture BC photo)
Despite its remote location, anglers from around the world flock to Haida Gwaii (formerly known as the Queen Charlotte Islands) to fish the Pacific Ocean for salmon and halibut.
The variety and often the sheer numbers of catch combined with very few competing anglers makes for a big draw. Haida Gwaii is uniquely positioned as the first landfall for many different runs of salmon returning from the Pacific Ocean portion of their life cycle. Fish from the rivers of northern Alaska to as far south as Sacramento can pass by the waters around Haida Gwaii during the summer fishing season. While salmon and halibut are the main target, other species like lingcod and red snapper are plentiful.
Haida Gwaii's wild, rugged and mystical scenery, including world-famous heritage sites in Gwaii Haanas at the southern end of the archipelago, draw visitors from around the world. Share your time on the water with dolphins, orcas, a variety of whales, sea lions, eagles and otters, while black-tailed deer and black bears watch from shore.
While there are periods during the summer that are better for some species than others, Haida Gwaii offers some of the most consistent fishing anywhere on the coast.
May to the end of September is the best time for fishing off Haida Gwaii. Peak time for spring (Tyee or King) salmon is early May to mid-August. For coho salmon, it's early July to end of September. Halibut season runs from end of May to early October, while cod and snapper are usually targeted from early June to the end of September. From October to March, peaking in December and January, serious anglers can also target steelhead. These fish are catch and release only, however.