Moutcha Bay, a kayak fishing derby to remember

 

Kayak Fishing Vancouver Island Kayak Derby!

Being land locked in Alberta, opportunities to take my Jackson Coosa FD fishing in saltwater are few and far between.  I along with about 20 other die-hard kayak angling Albertans decided to make the 18-hour journey west this past labour day weekend. It was my chance to get a little salty on the kayak.  

Here's me bringing in a beauty

I had the pleasure of attending the two-day Moutcha bay kayak fishing derby located in Nootka sound on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The facilities and location are top notch with breathtaking views and comfy beds.   But, most importantly, the fishing is off the hook, or should I say on the hook. 

Awesome views

After a long drive, ferry ride, and more driving, Neil and I arrived at the Moutcha Bay resort.  Let me tell you, this is a drastic improvement over the usual truck sleeping I do at most tournaments the night before.  The yurt accommodations were clean, modern, and comfortable.

YEG Shop Regular, all around amazing kayak fisherman Gord with a beauty

The tournament itself is quite unique, with the fish schooling up in the bay, the participants, myself included were vertical jigging out hearts out. Avoiding each other as best we could.  We were vying to land a Monster that would be big enough for the biggest fish, that would let us take home a brand-new Wilderness Systems Radar 135 (thanks again wilderness).  Sadly, I only came home with the kayak I left with.    But I did come home with sore arms, and salmon for my freezer, I was also able to cross 3 new species off my list Chinook salmon, Copper Rockfish, and Quillback rockfish.  But Albertas own David Suave on his Wilderness Systems Radar managed to take first place with his huge 29lb Chinook salmon,

Our Albertan winner David Suave with this monster chinook 

The feeling when hooking into a 20lb salmon, is unreal.  It pulled me and my boat around like nothing, bent my rod in half, and took anywhere from 5-15 minutes to land.    It’s an fantastic experience, rivaled by only a few fish here within Alberta.  These fish can strain all your gear, I’ve never had a net break from the weight of a fish, that is until this weekend. 

I wonder if this is what Will meant when he said "getting jiggy with it"

When my arms were too sore from reeling in massive salmon, I switched it up and peddled my fishing rig across the bay to try and cross some new species off my list.  Jigging anywhere between 25-100 feet for rockfish.  Its not quite the same fight as a salmon, but it’s a huge mystery because you never know what your reeling in until its at the boat. I managed to catch two different species of rockfish, a Copper rockfish and a Quillback rockfish. 

Hello, quillback rockfish

 

The Moutcha Bay Kayak Derby is a great event and a great time with wonderful staff and volunteers Its It was worth the 38 plus hours of driving, boat checkpoints, ferries, crazy elk and road goats in the mountains, and the amazing scenery. Big thanks to all those involved. Huge shout out to my friend Neil for driving in BC, and to our tournament winner David Suave from Alberta!!  Curtis V came in a strong third place, also from Alberta!!  That makes the third year in a row, that an Albertan has won the derby at Moutcha Bay.  This is a derby i'd love to attend again, and for those interested in kayak angling.... I would strongly recommend putting it in your calendar for 2020.

(click here for 2020 information)!

Still plenty of time to get fishing before the water stays solid!

Happy Kayak Angling

Andrew W.

Aquabatics Fishing Team Member, and Asst Manager.

 

 

Heres some more of the catches from fellow Albertans good job everyone!!


Terran from Calgary and this beauty salmon

Joel from Calgary, pulled in a monster and said "this ones for you John"

Curtis from Lethbridge bringing one in to the boat (Our third place finisher) 

Bob from Olds getting it done, with a awesome chinook

Robb from Edmonton, looking like a true fisherman

Sam from Calgary reeling in herself some dinner!!

 

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**Thanks to everyone who submitted pics. to many to name, thanks again**