Winter Harbour halibut fishing can seem difficult at times and very easy at other times. Here are a few tips for making those more of those easier times.
Halibut are like any fish. When they are hungry they are a vicious, aggressive feeders, and when they are not, they are very lazy and docile.
Some people give a spot 10-15 minutes and figure if they haven’t caught a halibut by then you have to move. Don’t do this! You’re not always going to land right on top of the halibut, but if you find a good little rise or the edge of a drop off, drop your gear, sit there and wait.
You need to allow time for your scent to travel so the fish can come to you. Sometimes it may take a tide change or getting caught in a different current, but if you “stick and stay you will make em pay!” The ocean outside Winter Harbour is a vast expanse, and to expect to land on halibut every stop is not going to happen.
It can also help to find gravel. Halibut love gravel. I’m not saying you won’t find them on rocks and sand, but gravel has by far been the most productive for me.
Bait is another very important factor! Fresh, fresh, or fresh are your 3 options. My favorite baits are fresh salmon, octopus, and herring. Sometimes when it is slow, change it up a little bit and put down a Norwegian jig or a rubber worm. This will antagonize those halibut that aren’t that hungry to become more aggressive at times thinking the bait will escape!
We will also troll big spoons or plugs on the bottom looking for halibut in Winter Harbour. You want to go as slow as you can and troll just off of the bottom.
So, in a nutshell, find good halibut habitat, present good bait, and wait!