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Chum salmon fishing sometimes overlooked

Fish often caught at mouth of Sooke River
Hazen Blacklock with a 22-pound chum he landed aboard a local charter on Sept. 4.

As fall salmon fishing continues in Sooke, with many anglers targeting coho and getting ready for an opening for a wild coho on Oct. 1, the chum salmon is sometimes overlooked.

Chum is rarely caught on the troll, but many more are seen and caught at the Sooke river mouth.

The Sooke River has a strong chum salmon run making its way to spawning beds in tributaries low on the river. Many anglers catch chum in decent condition at the river mouth (downstream of the bridge) casting lures from shore.

Chum salmon are excellent for smoking as the flesh quality is not that of the chinook or coho caught in the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

Of coarse, the chum has a much larger role in the eco-system of the Sooke River. To learn more, please contact or visit the Charters River Salmon Interpretive Centre. Call: 250-642-4200.

Please check the fishing regulations posted at the Sooke River, online at, or at your local tackle provider.

On the derby scene: Port Renfrew Marina “Winner take all” Coho Derby on Sept. 30 to Oct.1. Sooke Coho Derby on Oct.7.


Ron Neitsch is the owner of 2 Reel Fishing Adventures, based in Sooke.