Q: How many fish do you usually catch in one trip?
A: Every day of fishing in Hecate Strait is different, but clients can expect to leave with several halibut and/or salmon, the number and species of salmon depending on the time of year. Each person can catch a maximum of two halibut and 4 salmon per day. A halibut can weigh anywhere from 6 pounds to over 300 pounds, with salmon usually ranging from 5 pounds to 40 pounds, although 50-plus pound Chinook are not uncommon in June and July. Hecate Strait Fishing Charters won’t guarantee a specified number of fish per trip, but we have yet to send any client home unhappy.
Q: What’s the biggest fish you’ve ever caught?
A: One of our clients took home a 41-pound Chinook salmon this summer, and another was able to land a 35-pound halibut. Hecate Strait clients also catch a fair number of ling cod and rock cod, so coming back to the dock with more than just salmon and halibut is always a possibility. We also drop crab traps on our way to the day’s fishing spot which we collect at the end of the day, so clients will typically have a couple fresh Dungeness crab to eat for dinner when we arrive back in Prince Rupert. Since he began fishing the north coast, the biggest fish Brian caught was a 57 pound salmon, and several summers ago he caught a 212 pound halibut while aboard a friend’s boat.
Q: How many people can go out on a fishing charter?
A: Hecate Strait Fishing Charters takes out four people at a time for half and full-day charters, although small children are always welcome to come along. Four clients is the typical number of people most Prince Rupert fishing charters will accommodate, for various reasons. Space at the back of the boat becomes limited when more than five people are on board, and we always want our clients to be within arms reach of their line when a fish hits. As most charter boats only have two lines in the water at a time, operators always want clients to have multiple opportunities to reel in a feisty salmon or frisky halibut.
Q: What should I bring when I travel to Prince Rupert?
A: There are a few important items to make sure you have in your suitcase when you leave and in your backpack when you board the boat:
Rain Coat: As a rule of thumb everyone in Prince Rupert is always prepared for the worst weather the coast can throw at us, so a rain jacket is a must. Luckily summer is our dry season, so we do get plenty of spectacular sunny days. Camera: Being surrounded by snow-capped mountains, exotic wildlife and other breathtaking scenery, many people are thankful they brought their cameras, so don’t forget to pack one! Plus you want to document every minute of world-class fishing while you’re out on the water with us. Lunch: Our full day charters last over 10 hours, so having something to eat for breakfast and/or lunch on the boat is always recommended. Our chefs at Rain Dining Lounge can also prepare a delicious meal in advance to take out if our clients request it ahead of time. Drinks: Everyone should bring out whatever beverages they want to enjoy during their salmon and halibut fishing experience. We can also stock the boat with a great selection of pop, juice, spirits, beer and wine upon request. There’s nothing like popping a nice bottle of champagne after catching that big fish you’ve dreamt about all year!
Q: Are there any fish we can’t catch if we come in August as opposed to June?
A: Several fish are only in the waters of Hecate Strait during certain months, but most can be caught from May until September. Chinook or Spring salmon are only caught in May, June and July, while pink and Coho salmon have not yet arrived in the month of May. However halibut, lingcod, rockfish, snapper and crab are available to catch for the entire season.