Back in the day, Jack James fished Saanich Inlet from his open wooden boat, The Josephine, which is pictured below with Jack and some finny friends in the 1970s. You will note how many more fish there were then, that have sadly not been maintained through habitat restoration by DFO.
Jack, started fishing with Josephine in the ‘50s. Here is what he had to say about Saanich Inlet fishing in its heyday:
There were 2 major fishing derbies in Saanich Inlet... the Ladder Derby and the Solarium Derby. My brother, Dick and I ran the Solarium Derby which usually brought in $15,000 for the Solarium, which we donated. Most prizes were donated.1st prize that day was a $900, TV combination set, 2nd was a 14-foot clinker built boat, which I won with a 23 lb 8 oz spring salmon.
As we were fishing out of a rotten old clinker which leaked like a sieve and was direct drive, when the starting gun went off, and because of no gears, we were over the line too soon and the officials turned us back over the line. The hot spots were Chesterfield Rock south side and Misery Bay on the north, however we had a depth gauge and there was a deep drop off just over the starting line.
When passing over this deep hole, we both dropped our lines and I immediately hooked the seconded largest fish. I was using a Peetz cane rod and a 6-inch Peetz reel with 900-feet of Monel steel line. A new lure had just been produced called a Herring Magic. While brother Dick was using a strip teaser, I fished a whole herring at 140 feet--which did the trick. The locals renamed this hole Poose's Point as I fished there for 30 + years, mostly with mooched herring. As mooching was a bad word in the Inlet in those days, I always faked what I caught my many trophy winners on!! The fake name I used for many years was a Sidewinder.
The Josephine was donated by Woodward Stores on Douglas Street. They sold them for $400, and they were built by Cedar Boatworks in Vancouver. They are still in business in False Creek and I was told the 14 ft now sells for $2500.
My restored clinker has been given to my son and if he wishes to sell it, the price is $2900. It is advertised on line. No takers yet, but have had several offers. It comes complete with the original trailer and the 6th restored 5 horse power Briggs and Stratton! Good luck. J.J. (nicknamed "Poose ")
PS My son Matthew has the rod and reel and lure that won the boat.
As noted, Jack and family still have the Josephine, and when I was over looking at all his memorabilia, I took a shot of him and her, as well as a whole bunch of other things. The boat is in exceptionally good shape for its age, or even for a new boat.
Fishermen may weather a bit, but not their boats (if kept in the garage, and filled to overflowing regularly with $$ - as we all know).
And an original arm/jacket patch of the Victoria Saanich Inlet Angler’s Association:
Jack's home and garage are filled to overflowing with memorabilia that would take many peoples' lives to collect but have been put together in Jack's one lifetime. I believe these glass containers originally contained aftershave or perfume
And his collection of licence plates must be the biggest in the world.