Which island to visit with fam in August with good beach fishing for salmon?

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by Loren E, Jul 19, 2009.

  1. Loren E

    Loren E Member

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    Hi all, I introduced myself a while back with a thread about how I'll be headed up to Bellingham in the fall to attend WWU (I currently live near San Francisco).

    Anyways, I'm headed up with the fam in mid august for orientation, and since we'll be in the area (AND its salmon time) the plan is to head out to one of the island for 2-4 days. We are looking for somewhere with some great scenery and natural beauty, where my dad and I could have some really good access to beaches for fly fishing for salmon. I know salmon on fly from the beach is a challenging game, and we do not by any means expect too much in the way of results, but we really prefer to explore on our own and will not be hiring a guide.

    So any suggestions for where we could head for a few days, that would have some great natural beauty where my mom could go hiking, and my dad and I could get a shot at some salmon from nearby beaches accessible via rental car and hiking (we're always up for hiking into fishing spots!). We'd be fine with a nice little hotel with decent food around, the wilderness is way more important than expensive lodging/dining that is more than we are hoping to pay during the trip.

    Whidbey Island? One of the San Juan Islands?

    Thanks so much in advance!!

    -Loren Elliott

    PS this is what surf fishing is all about down here....
     
  2. Preston

    Preston Active Member

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    Whidbey Island would probably be your best bet. Most of the salmon headed for the puget Sound rivers head down the east side of Whidbey or round its northern tip, through Deception Pass and down the west side.

    Wilderness may be a bit difficult to find on Whidbey (most of the island is rather bucolic, much of it given over to farming) but there are lots of hiking trails in Deception Pass State Park and the force of the tides sweeping in and out of Skagit Bay via the narrow gap of Deception Pass is awe-inspiring.

    Much of the open terrain offers views to the east of Mount Baker and the North Cascades across Skagit Bay and Saratoga Passage. There are a number of state parks along the western shore and at Posession Point at the southern tip of the island. Many salmon bound for the Skagit and Stillaguamish Rivers choose to travel down the the eastern side of the island and Hoypus Point, Ala Spit and Strawberry Point are worth checking out.
     
  3. Loren E

    Loren E Member

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    Thanks for the tips Preston. So the San Juan islands don't offer much in the way of beach fishing for salmon?
     
  4. johnnyrockfish

    johnnyrockfish Member

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    Sweet striper! After growing up back East and hearing about them I've always wanted to tangle with one. Got the chance, unexpectedly, a couple of weeks ago near Watsonville. Borrowed a spinning rod with a floating plug and hooked several, bringing one for dinner. What a fight! On a flyrod I can only imagine, especially with the wind I experienced.

    Re, the fishing in the San Juans I defer to Preston and others who know that area much better than I. San Juan Island itself is pretty awesome scenery and can be a good place to see Orcas from shore.

    Welcome to Western Washington! Bellingham rocks.

    JR
     
  5. Daryle Holmstrom

    Daryle Holmstrom retiredfishak

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    If you have access to a boat on San Juan then hit lime kiln.
     
  6. Islander

    Islander Steve

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    There are some nice trails in South Whidbey State Park and Deception Pass S. P. also some great hiking with fabulous views up around Mt. Erie on Fidalgo Island (just across the Deception Pass Bridge). You should be able to get into some pinks on Whidbey as well.
     
  7. Loren E

    Loren E Member

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    Hey Thanks for the help all! So whidbey island it is. Looking at the map it is quite the long island...any reccomendations for which part we should stay on to be close to the best hiking and fishing in the state parks? Any lodging reccomendations? I'm getting excited already.

    Hey Johnny I just picked up a 10 pounder on the fly on Saturday in Watsonville, great beaches there.

    -Loren
     
  8. Pez Gallo

    Pez Gallo On the hunt for grandes

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    Loren...good to see ya on the forum. I had been wondering if you decide to head up to Wa. for school. This site will be a wealth of info for you. Saludos from Baja...

    Lance
     
  9. johnnyrockfish

    johnnyrockfish Member

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    Loren,

    Ft Ebey State Park on Whidbey has great Mt Biking trails and good beach access. I'll be camping there Aug 7/8/9. Ft Casey is cool too because the old guns are still in place.

    10 lb Striper on fly, awesome. I saw a flyfisherman down there past the last condo on the dunes near the river mouth on July 2 or 3rd. Maybe you were down there then. Those fish really slug it out. Mine was about 30 inches, guessing 12 lbs or so.

    Cheers and welcome again.

    JR
     

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