The salmon-rich waterways of British Columbia are home to a diverse array of trophy salmon. The more common varieties include the Chinook salmon (also known as King or Spring salmon), Coho salmon (also known as Silver salmon), Chum salmon, Pink salmon, and Sockeye salmon. We’ll detail a few of them below:
This species calls the entire North American coast its home. Found from Alaska all the way to California, the Chinook enjoy a large habitat despite shrinking populations. Chinook salmon are blue, green, and red with silvery sides. The Yukon River enjoys the longest salmon spawning routes in North America.
Also known as “silvers,” Coho have silver colored sides and dark-blue backs. These salmon are found in the northern Pacific ocean from Japan to Alaska. Coho are considered some of the most popular fish for anglers to hook in the Pacific Northwest. They are also prized for their gourmet quality meat and taste.
This species of salmon happens to be the most abundant of the “Pacific salmon.” They are bright silver in color while living in saltwater. When they begin spawning, the fish become pale grey with a yellow belly. The Pink salmon also has a two-year life cycle. More than 100 million of these salmon are harvested annually.
Sporting a canine-like snout, the Chum salmon is often referred to as “dog salmon.” This fish is typically bigger in size to most other species of salmon, and its colors include silvery blue-green with distinct spotting on the underside. It takes about 5 years for the Chum salmon to mature, with some fish living as long as 7 years.
Also called “red salmon,” the Sockeye salmon is mostly bright red in color with lighter colored fins and head. Sockeye salmon feed exclusively on zooplankton and shrimp. Almost 30 million Sockeye salmon are harvested every year at Bristol Bay, AK.
The pristine waterways in which these trophy salmon spawn are tucked back in some of the most captivating wilderness in North America. It’s definitely worth noting that while you might be in British Columbia to fish salmon, you’re certain to witness other captivating marine wildlife as well as majestic land-dwelling wildlife and powerful soaring birds.
Not too long ago, trophy salmon fishing in British Columbia (in the same waterways grizzly bears catch their dinner) was quite rare and highly exclusive. Today, there are several fishing clubs, lodges, resorts, and tourism packages all based on the sport. With a wide diversity in “adventure packages”, lodges and resorts offer almost every adventure imaginable. Some offer basic wilderness amenities in a camp-like setting while others offer all the luxuries of ‘Five Star’ accommodations, all of which are within the same naturally beautiful wilderness setting. Almost all salmon fishing adventures in British Columbia are overseen by an experienced local guide and offer a range of boats and tour prices.
This experience is not at all exclusive. However, salmon fishing in BC is certainly one of the rarest adventure opportunities around.