August 31st - Thanks for a great summer! We're closed now but finished up with a great few days of fishing. See you next summer.
August 14th - Fishing in Nootka is great - it's been a strong season from the start. The average size is not as big as some years, but there's lots of them - both Coho and Chinook. There's a Tyee every day or two on the docks. The last few days we've seen Chinook actually boiling in the middle of the inlet as they chase after bait on the surface. One after another porpoising through the bait ball. Troll through them shallow - and double header - almost too good to be true. A variety of lures are working, so fish with your favorite tackle. Lots of fishermen doing well with spoons (either 3 or 3.5" like the size of the bait, or big, like 6" - they were trained on pilchard). Favorite spoon colors right now are cop car, cookies and cream, gold and watermelon.
Some of us were worried about the gill net opening last night (Aug 13), but luckily there's still lots of fish that were outside the line, so inside fishing is still great. Perhaps the well timed rain this morning helped and brought a whack of fresh fish in. Whatever the reason, many fishermen we talked to this morning were limited out on Chinook. Most fishermen this morning had success on the inside waters (Camel Rock and Hoiss Point were highlights). It was WINDY out front, so those that chose off shore didn't get much fishing in and then they had to run back for cover.
Here's a picture of Mickey from Reely Nauti sent from his recent visit:
July 31st - another fantastic day. We've seen a bit of fog in the mornings, so it's cooler but still pleasant. The up side is it's been flat calm outside so fishermen have been enjoying outside and beyond. There's just lots of fish everywhere - inside and out. Here's a picture below of Hans (red hat), one of our fantastic cooks, who went fishing one evening with our friend Joe. There's also a picture of Mike and the Allen's today who ventured out side and had a great time. Mike's best lure today was a 6" Irish Cream spoon with dots.
The Fisheries officers have been out in full force recently issuing tickets and fines for the use of barbed hooks, fishing in closed areas, not marking chinook on the licence, fishing without a licence, keeping fish that are too small or too big, and improperly processing fish. READ the regs on how to process your fish as they've become more stringent this summer. Tails must be on everything - white fish too. There's never a good reason to cheat - but it's just ridiculous these days because fishing is great. The fisheries officers actually ran out of tickets..........BEWARE and be Legal.
July 27th - fishing is fantastic and so is weather. Lots of fish inside. Popular spots are Hoiss Pt, Tahsis Inlet (don't cross into the closed area!), San Carlos and Camel Rock.
July 21st - fish are in steady now - both inside and out. Here's a few recent photos:
Matt and crew in Permanent Waves arriving back to the dock after a busy day at Bajo Reef.
All gear has been working. Inside if the fish have been eating it's often small bait, so smaller spoons and hoochies have been working, as well as anchovy. Bait fishermen should take an alternative artificial bait as well if heading outside - lots of Coho out there which are lots of fun, but the bait packages don't last long. Outside for lures, hoochies have been working as well as bigger spoons. Spoon color favorites right now are cop car and Irish Cream.
The cleaning station has been busy!
July 12 - Fish are inside and out - great weather and lots of happy fishermen. The biggest so far today was brought in by "the Doghouse" - that's Ed & Ralph, a 38 pounder from Camel Rock.
This is the second 38 that has arrived at the scales at Critter Cove. Here's a picture of Dale and crew a few days ago:
The buzz around the docks this week is the T&A (that's Tomic & Anchovy). Here's a picture of Team Plotts who've been loyal to the T&A for 3 years now. Finally a few other fishermen have followed Gordon's lead and are using the T&A and it's really working.
Catherine rigged Tomic's TNT with an anchovy head a few years ago, so the anchovy rides on top of the TNT. The action is so erratic everyone figured the Coho would gobble it up - but it's the Springs that are getting caught. Gordon's favorite this week is a clear TNT and a red head. Here's one of the fishermen Gordon shared the TNT and red head secret with - and a 33 pounder - the biggest of 5 they caught on it.
Kat (front desk) and Marina (housekeeping) told their Dad Dino about the TNT when he arrived today, so we rigged him up with a clear TNT and a glow green head. 27 pounder in the first 15 minutes. Same with Rob and Keith who arrived today - also a glow green head - and theirs was a 30 pounder. The rotters cleaned it before Catherine got out there with the camera though! She'll be quicker off the mark tomorrow.
Spoons have also really been working, in particular cop car, cookies and cream and the pilchard color 545. All sizes of spoons are working - 3 and 3.5" (we suspect because we see many fish full of needlefish), and the big spoons, 6". Not very many fishermen have given big plugs a try - but Mike Egli just arrived, so we'll get a plug report soon.
Here's a few other shots of happy fishermen this past week.
July 4th - off to a great start here. Jack and Jill derby was the best ever. Lots of fish and nice weather. Julie Kelly weighed in the first fish that happened to be the biggest too - 30 1/2 pounds. There was a close second, 30 1/4. There were several nice Chinook brought in as well as lots of Coho.
All systems are "go" now - gas dock open from 9-9 and restaurant grill from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
June 14th, 2013 - we're open for gas customers in June between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. The restaurant will be open during our Jack and Jill derby from lunch June 20th to lunch June 23rd, then open for the season starting July 1st.
June 2nd, 2013:
We're in the thick of clean up and fix up for summer now - our opening day is just a few weeks away, June 20th. Hope you're all doing the same to your boats and gear in preparation for a great summer to come. We expect to have the gas dock open no later than June 15th.
This week Critter Cove lost one of our favorites, Jack Walker, March 24th.
Thanks for spending so many of your summer days with us, Jack.
Your wit and special charm will be missed.
We've held up well through winter weather so far. We had some rain and snow, but no damaging winds. The Forbes family is in Nootka for Easter where the Bunny comes by boat and we're catching some prawns.
Closed for 2012
That's it for summer 2012. This year will be remembered for all the humpback whales. We could often see them performing from our docks, and there were as many as 30 whales inside Nootka Sound at one time.
September 4th - We're closed for 2012 now. More updates and pictures to come soon when the dust settles from our packing up. The Hearts derby was won with a 31 pounder. The caretaker will be serving gas until our tanks are empty. So sad for us the season is already over! We're looking forward to seeing all our favorite fishermen again next year.
August 21st - A few days ago Dillon caught his first fish ever, a 32 pounder, then a few days later he followed it up with a 31! Heck of an addition to the fishing team.
August 16th - there are some nice fish around and the weather is beautiful. Here's a picture of the Fishers from today (it really is their last name) and a Tyee - 30 pounds on the nose.
Cameron covered Bryce's morning waiter shift for the first two hours, so Bryce and Catherine went fishing a couple of mornings, the 13th and 14th. We were thrilled to bring home a 32 pounder the first morning and followed up with a 26 the next day. Both days there were some smaller fish as well we released. Cameron said he expected nothing less! Proud to report both fish were on our Tomic spoon - the Pilchard cream (Mike pilchard colors with glow on the back and UV on the front). Not the biggest fish of the day - but we were thrilled!
Here's the Delnagro crew and Dan Warren last week after a great day of inside fishing.
Here's a picture of Bill and Scott after a day bottom fishing:
August 5th - The Pye family had a heck of a day today:
Calvin Pye landed his first fish ever - a 35 pounder. It was part of a double header - his Dad Mike landed his 25 pounder. Hot and sunny and we're enjoying watching lots of Humpback whales that have been around this week.
Here's a picture of Micky and one of many he caught this week:
August 1st - Cameron predicted we see the bigger fish in August - and so far he's right. The Oystryk's had a heck of a day today. The 41 pounder on the scale was the biggest. The big one was absolutely gorgeous - bright gold, pale green and silver.
It's been as calm as it gets outside so lots of fishermen have been enjoying Bajo reef and beyond. There are lots of big bright fish out there right now. There are some fish inside as well, but they're spread out so it's a bit scratchy.
July 24th - Fish are both inside and out. They were stacked up in Tahsis Inlet, but now they've spread out inside at many favorite spots - the Wall, Camel Rock, San Carlos, Beer Can bay and Hoiss. I'll add some pictures soon.
We've just had a cancellation in a suite for 3 nights starting Sunday July 29th - so this is a great spot if you can come on short notice.
July 18th - We've got a web cam working again so you can check out our Nootka view on our "local info" page.
Here's a great picture of Chris Lunt with the spoon still with the fish - this was a 6" color 574 (green and white), and the fish was 34 pounds.
It's been a very busy w
Here's a picture of Team Lundt who had several great days and this fabulous afternoon. The biggest fish was 31.5.
The talk of the dock last week was the Plotts family. Every tide they required a wheelbarrow for another big Spring or two. The fun part is what they were using - a Tomic with bait rig we started playing around experimenting with a few years ago, where we rigged a Tomic TNT with a krippled anchovy head. Here's a couple of pictures:
Here's the Paquin party with a great afternoon last week:
July 7th - it's not the fishing that slow - it's the web site updates!
There are lots of coho around, and some nice Chinook mixed in there too. Most Chinook have been between 18 and 25 pounds, but a few are bigger than that. The sun is out and it's calm - just about perfect here today.
The Jack and Jill was lots of fun and there were lots of fish around. The winning fish kept getting beat by a pound or two every tide. Mike Sell (yup, the same Mike & Jan team that brought in a 34 pounder the day before the derby started) brought in a 29 pounder and then just moments before the end of the Derby Chris McManus brought in another 29 pounder, so they shared first and second prizes and each won $2,000.
Here's Mike below with his 29. I missed the picture of Chris with his 29, but here's Chris (light blue jacket) and friends the day before with some other great fish.
Here's a picture of Tanner July 2nd at Bajo reef. Tanner, Joel, Craig and I unpacked the box of Tomics we brought out for summer, and Tanner liked the look of this new spoon color - so this was the first tide this color spoon was ever fished. It's the Kelly pilchard color (545) but on chrome with no undercoat. It brought in 3 fish and a big ling cod this tide. Tanner's named it the Bajo pilchard. I think we'll have a few more made in this color.
We've had lots of great fish brought in, so we're off to a great start.
When you're not fishing, we have two fantastic cooks this summer, Hans in the morning and Shawn in the evening. Similar menu to last year, but we've added pizza and a few other specials. Shawn makes a beautiful turkey with home made cranberry sauce. Hans brought along his equipment for making sausage and we had home made bratwurst tonight for staff. It was so great we are planning to add it as a special.
Here we go 2012 - we're in full swing now - fishing and weather are great today.
June 21st - we're open for 2012!
Our Jack and Jill Derby starts tomorrow, June 22nd, so contestants have been arriving today. Jan and Mike Sell did a little reconnaissance fishing and started off our season with the first Tyee and more. Jan's 34 pound Chinook is the first Tyee to Critter Cove in 2012, so she wins the Loren Halcom trophy for fist Tyee of the season. The biggest halibut was a quarter pound shy of 50 pounds.
Here's a fun contest for this summer from the Pacific Salmon Foundation. Just send in your picture and story and you could win. PSF Contest
Heads up to guests who stay in the suites - we've refurnished the suites (that's units 41-46 and 51-56) so the futon couch is now a single day bed. There are new bunk beds of the same configuration as last year, and therefore still 3 beds in total in each room - but the couch no longer folds down to a double.
Recognize anybody in this poster?
This is a picture of Catherine and Bryce visiting Luna on the poster that has been outside of movie theaters showing The Whale. The movie has just been released on DVD, so we have copies for sale at Critter Cove.
The movie Saving Luna was a fabulous documentary about Luna the orphan whale who lived in Nootka Sound. We gather that documentary was reworked to be released in the US as The Whale, now with Ryan Reynolds narrating.
Susanne and Mike lived in Nootka for several years while they made the movies and became friends of Luna and Nootka locals. They need all the help they can get promoting the movie as they don't have a Hollywood budget, so if you can send the trailer link to some friends that would be great. Even for those who weren't fans of Luna, the scenery is phenomenal and all sides of the story are told. You can check out the movie trailer here (you'll hear Cameron) and their web site for more info:
The Whale Trailer
If you have been to Critter Cove this summer and have an great fishing pictures (we especially like those pictures taken on the boat) please share them with us and send to Catherine to post.
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