Your Tugboat Fishing Cruise follows the fish, anchoring in the hot spots of the north and central coast regions of Prince Rupert, Langara Island and Bella Bella, British Columbia, during peak fishing for trophy BC salmon and halibut.
This is a saltwater and stream fishing paradise featuring abundant wildlife and variety. As we travel the Inside Passage the waters of the Great Bear Rainforest, we cruise through some of the most exotic scenery in the world and enjoy the best salmon & halibut sport fishing.
All-Inclusive Package Rate: 7 Days / 6 Nights $5,895 PP.
Tugboat Fishing Cruise Inclusions
- All weather floater jackets
- Rain gear, boots, hats
- Hair dryers, soaps and shampoos
- Fluffy bath towels and robes
- Extra pillows, socks, water bottles, sunscreen
Dress is casual on board the vessel. The normal daily temperatures range from 65°F to 75°F, evening 55°F to 65°F, so “layering” your clothing is ideal for our coastal climate.
What to Bring
- T-shirts and jeans, shorts optional
- Long sleeved shirt, sweater or fleece jacket
- Deck shoes or runners and warm socks
- Personal toiletries, sunglasses
- Camera or video
Luggage: We will send you Westwind luggage tags. Please attach one tag to the handle of each piece of luggage you are bringing. Due to airline regulations, please limit your baggage to 35 lbs. Soft-sided luggage (duffel bag) is preferred.
Identification: Guests arriving from outside Canada must have proper ID to clear Canada Customs. Current regulations state that you must have a passport to re-enter U.S.A.
On Board Amenities: Comfort is a tradition at Westwind. To ensure our guests feel right at home on board the vessel we provide the following:
- An extensive library of local, cultural and marine reference reading
- DVD movies and extensive music collection
- Complimentary beer and wine
- Ship to shore radio communication
We supply everything for the saltwater angler including a valid fishing license. Our state of the art fishing skiffs are 18 foot welded catamarans, equipped with whisper quiet Honda 4 stroke outboards, radios and fish finders. Our skiffs are designed to comfortably accommodate 2 or 3 anglers safely.
- All fishing tackle, bait and lures, including crab traps
- Light and medium duty salmon fishing rods and reels
- Light and medium spin casting rods and reels and lures suitable for salt and fresh water
- A complete inventory of halibut and bottom fishing rods and tackle
- Professional fishing guides for on-water supervision, local knowledge and personal instruction.
Upon Arrival: Guests will be issued fishing licenses and provided with an informative fishing seminar which will include the most productive fishing methods, tackle tips and an orientation about the operation of our fishing skiffs.
Guests are able to choose between running their own skiff or being accommodated in the guided boat for private instruction.
Caring for your Catch: Your catch is expertly cleaned, frozen and packaged for shipment home in airline approved containers at no extra charge. For guests selecting custom processing, canning or smoking, we provide samples and complete all details, paperwork, and payment for the cannery on board.
We arrange shipment of your catch to the cannery where it will be processed and delivered to your door approximately 10 to 12 weeks later.
One of the main highlights of your will be the sensational food creations from our talented chef. We use only the freshest and highest quality ingredients available so that your trip will be a culinary delight as well as a scenic adventure.
Included on our menu is a varied selection of fine wines from around the World along with fresh baked desserts and homemade breads.
Tantalizing appetizers are prepared daily after fishing and light snacks, coffee and soft drinks are available at any time. We happily acknowledge that you are likely to gain a few pounds on your trip and recommend that you start your diet later.
How to Get There
Westwind’s daily mobility and seasonal relocations add to the questions of where do the Tugboats operate and how to get there. We have chosen three separate regions in the remote northern British Columbia coast, each for their abundance of salmon runs, spectacular scenery, natural wildlife and seclusion.
Prince Rupert/Langara – May/June/July
Prince Rupert is serviced by Canada’s international Airline, Air Canada and can be accessed from all major cities in the USA and abroad. Your Alaska Vacation Specialist can provide you with special adventure rates from the United States to Prince Rupert and we recommend considering these options.
Tugboat Fishing Cruises has also made arrangements with Vancouver Airport and Prince Rupert area hotels that offer you a special Tugboat rate while also shuttling you to and from your connecting flights, storing your frozen and professionally packaged catch and offering you free vehicle parking while gone on your tugboat adventure.
Bella Bella – August /September
To ease your travel plans, Westwind in association with British Columbia’s largest regional airline, Pacific Coastal Airlines has reserved space for all guests on very comfortable land based aircraft for flights from Vancouver B.C. to the Bella Bella airport. A five-minute shuttle follows the flight taking guests to the vessel at dockside where Westwind’s crew is waiting to greet you. Guests need only make arrangements to get to Vancouver B.C. which can be easily accessed from anywhere in North America.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What time of year are you open?
Fishing: May 25 – Sept. 29
Inside Cruises: May and September
2. What are the average temperatures?
Fishing: daytime 60-75° F / night time 50-65° F
Cruising: daytime 60-75° F / night time 50-60° F
3. How many guests can your tugboat accommodate?
The M.V. Parry is a 1941 85ft Heritage wooden tugboat that accommodates 12-14 guests.
4. Do I have to reserve the whole vessel?
NO! Westwind honors reservations for individuals as well as exclusive group bookings.
5. Do we eat fish all week?
The meals aboard your tugboat fishing cruise are legendary, Westwind’s talented chefs provide a diverse and balanced traditional North American menu. Fresh fish and seafood will always be part of the week and this can be increased or decreased as you desire. We ask you to inform us of any dietary needs or desires as we want to make your adventure both personal and comfortable.
6. Where do you operate out of?
Westwind offers both fishing and cruising adventures . The cruises depart out of Vancouver, Victoria, Bella Bella and Prince Rupert while we offer three fishing areas, Langara Island (Queen Charlotte Islands), Prince Rupert and Bella Bella.
7. How do I get to the Tugboat?
All tugboat fishing cruise departure ports are serviced by air from Vancouver. Westwind will recommend and reserve space on the most convenient flight available or guests may choose to travel via car, ferry or train to departure ports( not all options available in all areas).
8. Do we fish from the Tugboat?
You will fish from custom designed 18′ fishing skiffs outfitted with Depth sounder, radio, center console and 50hp, 4- stroke Honda engines. Two anglers per skiff although they comfortably fish three adults. Numerous halibut have been landed from the deck of the tugboats while at anchor and guests are encouraged to try their luck.
9. Do we have a guide?
There are two guides. They shares their time with all guests, taking two guests with him each outing while providing on the water supervision and assistance to all guests. Remember the tugboats anchor on the fishing grounds providing you with added comfort and service.
10. What fishing tackle should I bring?
The tugboats are outfitted with all the tackle required; rods, reels, bait, Jigs, flies as well as all your weather wear including boots. Fly fisherman are asked to supply fly rods/reels and line. A pair of binoculars and a camera can add to the special moments and memories.
11. Can I take my fish home?
Yes! Your catch will be professionally cleaned, frozen and packed for airline travel or you may choose to have us make arrangements for your catch to be processed( smoked,canned, vacuum packed, etc.). This would follow you by up to 6 weeks and is delivered to your home or office..
12. Do the tugboats travel at night?
No! This is a leisurely cruise, the tugs travel only a couple hours per day when Following the Fish and 4-8 hrs. when on a Cruising Adventure. Westwind wants you to enjoy adventure by day and the solitude of the evening, including a restful night’s sleep anchored in a quiet peaceful cove.
13. When is the best time for fishing?
The unique advantage of a tugboat fishing cruise is our mobility. Westwind pioneered the use of mobility to “Follow the Fish” as they migrate from north to south. We choose the best regions and fish only during their prime weeks, moving daily to stay on the run. Our fishing season is from May 25 – Sept. 20th. Chinook(King) Salmon from May 25 – August 25: Coho(Silver) Salmon from July 1- Sept. 20: Halibut & Bottom fish all season. Fly fishing from August 1 -Sept. 20.
14. How far in advance should I reserve?
Westwind tugboat fishing cruises have been in operation since 1974 and enjoys a 70% repeat clientele. With both a limited season and space, we recommend reserving a year in advance, but please call your Alaska’s Inside Passage Resorts representative to check on available space at anytime.
15. What is there for a non fisherman to do?
As your tugboat fishing cruise explores the majestic fiords and picturesque channels, choose to go ashore beachcombing, clam digging or maybe a wilderness hike to a secluded lake. Whales are your companions and often provide close encounters of the magnificent kind as we travel side by side.
Explore the shoreline and river estuaries aboard your tugboat fishing cruise viewing the abundant wildlife studying the fauna or just taking in the serenity of being alone in the remote reaches of the Inside Passage. You will visit ghost towns, historical sights and waterfalls.
If you like to read the tugboats have an extensive library, relax all by yourself with your choice of book in the lounge or on the upper deck as the other guests enjoy some fishing. Westwind’s crew will be happy to go along and provide some local insight or to just guide you towards your pleasure and let you enjoy on your own.