Port Alice is a small village that is nestled within the picturesque Neroutsos Inlet. Port Alice is known as “The Gateway to the West Coast”. This untouched wilderness offers many adventures for the outdoor enthusiasts. Fishing, hiking, eco- tours, kayaking, scuba-diving are just a few adventures that Port Alice has to offer. The area is rich in history and the locals have plenty of stories to share about this quant vibrant community.
This past fall I had the opportunity to visit this amazing west coast paradise with some of my fellow co-workers. Since Port Alice is very well known for rock fish, crabs and prawns this was our main objective. I never fished for Red Snapper or Ling Cod before so I was very excited to get out on the water and try my luck jigging for these west coast beauties!
We set off on our expedition first thing in the morning to make our forty minute run up the Quatsino Sound inlet to the open Pacific. The morning fog was lifting off the water as if Mother Nature was revealing all the scenic eye candy! The water was flat as glass and the sound of the water lapping underneath the boat created a rhythmic sound. As we made our way through the channels the sea otters and eagles were hanging around for their picturesque opportunities! Just being out on the water with the fresh ocean air felt great for the soul.
As we approached the Pacific Ocean we had our first glimpse at Kains Island and the Quatsino Sounds Light House. The waves were crashing against the island making for a one outstanding view. Once we got out to the open water we made a 10 mile run up the ocean to a hotspot for snappers and ling cod. Our captain stopped the boat and said “Alright boys, lets get a fishin!” Since I was the smallest guy I was awarded the spot on the bow; my heart was pumping as I was excited to hook into my first rock fish.
We grabbed our rods and dropped our Zinger Jigs to the bottom. We were in about 150 feet of water. Once bottom contact was made, I would reel up about 2 feet and start jigging. It only took a minute and BAM! I hooked my first one. I reeled it up to the surface and was thrilled to see my first Red Snapper! My fellow anglers were also hooking into the reds! As the bite started to slow down we decided to move to another spot to track down some Ling.
We relocated the boat just overtop a submerged rock pile in about 175 feet of water. STRUCTURE always brings the fish! As we started to drop our lines one of the guys on the boat hooked into a nice 20 pound spring salmon! What a great bonus! It did not take long until we started to hook into some Ling Cod. Again, dropping our Zinger and Buzz Bomb jigs to the bottom and jigging. Most of our hits came when the lure was fluttering to the bottom on the down stroke of the jig.
The sun was starting to become low in the sky so we decided to start our journey back to Port Alice. On the way back in we set our prawn and crab traps in one of the small inlets to retrieve the next morning. After one exciting day of jigging for these rock fish I couldn’t wait to get back out there the next day to try our luck again!
The next morning we set out for some Pacific Black Bass. I’m an avid freshwater Bass angler so I was very anxious to hook into one of these black beauties! We found large back eddy pools up near Coal Harbour that produced the best. These Black Bass are just like fighting a Small Mouth! They have explosive power and they dive aggressively when you get them near the boat. I wish I brought some of my lighter bass fishing rods with me to take full advantage of the sport of fishing for these bass. The lures we used were small Buzz Bomb jigs. We found that most of the bass were nestled up in the current seems, suspended in about 40 feet of water and about 80 feet of water. I couldn’t believe the action! We were pulling in fish after fish which gave us plenty of catch and release sport!
After a couple hours of playing with the Black Bass we headed out to check our crab and prawn traps. We pulled up our traps to find the traps filled plentiful! We immediately opened up the traps and put the crabs that didn’t meet regulations back into the water.
Port Alice has a well maintained harbour with fish processing tables which we took full advantage of while preparing our catch for the trip home. Our adventure ended with a fantastic feast of fresh crab and prawns while enjoying the million dollar view of Neroutsos Inlet. If anyone is looking for a get away from the everyday hustle of life I highly recommend visiting Port Alice to recharge the soul! Its natural beauty and untamed fishery will get you hooked on the west coast lifestyle of British Columbia!
If you’d like any further information about fishing Port Alice please feel free to contact us at BCFishn.com.
Tight lines & Conserve our Waters!