Surrounded by coastal rainforest & enormous fish, our Port Renfrew, BC Fishing Lodge & Hotel is the perfect setting for a lifelong memory.
Just a two hour drive from Victoria, Trailhead Resort is a full-service fishing lodge and hotel in Port Renfrew, BC. Our guests experience the West Coast lifestyle straight from check-in. Our luxurious fishing lodge is decorated with Vancouver Island fishing paraphernalia and local first nations artwork. Delicious West Coast cuisine with BC seafood and homemade deserts are enjoyed by all of our wonderful Fishing Package guests.
Family owned, built and operated, Trailhead Resort began as an ambitious family dream over 20 years ago. Over the past two decades – through hard work, fantastic service, and with great guests coming back year after year – Trailhead Resort has turned itself into Port Renfrew BC’s most beloved fishing lodge & hotel.
THE TRAILHEAD FISHING EXPERIENCE
Fishing on the West Coast of Vancouver Island is a wild adventure. Surrounded by temperate rainforest and active wildlife, not to mention some of the best trophy salmon and halibut fishing on the planet, Port Renfrew truly is paradise… West Coast style!
As you head off in one of our 3 custom-built boats from Silver Streak, our destination is the Swiftsure Bank: home to the hungriest salmon and halibut in North American waters. If you like active fish, we’ve got ’em, and we’ve got plenty of experience in helping our guests get face-to-face with their catch! Most fishing days, we limit out – catching the maximum number of fish allowed per license.
We’ve got the best gear, all of it in new condition, and the best guides and staff, all with years of experience in Port Renfrew fishing charters and trained to consider the needs of our guests to be top priority. Book your next salmon and halibut fishing trip at Trailhead and you’ll encounter some of the biggest fish you’ll ever see. It’s what keeps our guests coming back, year after year.
EPIC SALMON FISHING
Trailhead Resort is located on Vancouver Island in Port Renfrew, BC – very close to the Swiftsure Bank – and with all these trophy salmon swimming past our front door on route to their spawning streams, nothing beats the sport salmon fishing at Trailhead Resort. The Swiftsure Bank is a heavily visited feeding ground for salmon heading to spawn on the Fraser River, Columbia River, Puget Sound or our Vancouver Island runs at Nitinat, Port San Juan, or Sooke. The prolific schools of baitfish that congregate in the area attract the hungriest trophy salmon and create amazing fishing conditions.
We target mature salmon who are taking on large stores of protein as they prepare for the big river run they are about to make. When the bite comes on watch out! You’re in for an epic battle with long screamer runs with the wily fish turning and running straight at you, jumping and shaking its head as it fights to unhook itself – sometimes successfully (at least you have a story of “the big one that got away”).
Join in at whatever level you are comfortable with; whether you want the guide to set up your fish and hand you the rod, or you want to do it yourself, there is no problem either way. If you want to help out with the rigging or learn how to do it yourself, our expert guides are more than happy to show you the ropes. Talk it over with your guide and he will make it happen.
We usually do the netting just so you don’t end up hating your best friend over a missed fish, but that’s negotiable also. It’s fun, it takes skill, and we catch a lot of beautiful shiny salmon (and you take a lot of delicious fish home with you). There are very few things that equal the heart-in-throat excitement of a big slab battling you with all his strength and the tricks, the fear and the anticipation you experience throughout this fight.
CANADA’S BEST HALIBUT FISHING
Halibut are a migratory fish, traveling great distances each spring to come into shallower waters to feed and spawn. Port Renfrew is surrounded by famous halibut feeding grounds and over the past 20 years, the experienced guides at Trailhead Resort have discovered hundreds of the best halibut fishing spots along the west coast of Vancouver Island and around the legendary Swiftsure Bank, some of the most productive halibut grounds in the world!
On BC’s West Coast we frequently target “Chicken Halibut”, which are nice fish that typically range from 20 to 50lbs. Larger halibut are often found laying on lesser populated humps in nearby waters, with the current Port Renfrew halibut record weighing in at a mammoth 240 pounds!
Big “Barn Door Halibut” are also common in our area. While we do catch barn door halibut, since these fish are all mature females that have made it to the breeding stage, we do not go out of our way to specifically target them (it’s a bit like killing the goose that lays the golden eggs).
Depending on the conditions and the tides, your guide may decide that we should fish for halibut first, or do so after we’ve reeled in a few trophy salmon. If it’s “hali time”, we’re headed to the world renowned halibut fishing paradise – the Swiftsure Banks! Once we get there, we’re fishing Vancouver Island halibut with sturdy six foot rods and level wind reels spooled with 100 lb test thin braided line.
On our pilot house boats, each man takes a corner and drops the gear. Bombs away! You are sport fishing BC halibut – West Coast Vancouver Island style!
For you first timers, it’s a fight man! These fish are tough, true denizens of the deep and top of the food chain. They hit hard and fight like champions. There is no finesse here, halibut have one thing in mind, and one thing only – try to get back to the bottom – and you are going to have to work hard to bring them up.
While halibut can grow to hundreds of pounds and most first-time halibut sport fishermen are hoping to land a giant fish, after battling with a 40 pounder, most say that was plenty enough fight for them!