Sunday, December 30, 2012

A little better weather today, so a little better story. The bay still has some Dungeness in it although they are still aren't distributed evenly. You need to work the right spot to get them, and the right spots tend to move around. On average, the channel near steel marker #5 is pretty hard to beat if the current isn't ripping. The pier is still producing crab, and it is still producing more crab for some than others. Randy from Carson City is here, so if you do come to crab on the pier in the next few days, at least you can watch someone else catch a few. It was nice enough for at least one boat to run down to Ten Mile and drop some pots. On the way back they saw a white shipping container (Conex box) washed up behind Bird Rock. It could be some of the tsunami debris, but it probably just washed off a local ship.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

There have been some decent crab numbers from the pier in the last week. On a couple of different days some crabbers had a dozen keepers by noonish. The best action is around slack tide, as usual. I don't have any boat reports. No word on the surf fishing, either, but it looks to be kind of brackish with all the runoff lately and probably not too good for catching.

Friday, December 21, 2012

The weather is doing a pretty good job of keeping the boats off the water. Gusts to 35 knots and seas over 20 feet high will do that. The pier is still kicking out a few crabs for those that don't mind standing out in the rain. A couple of fellows this morning caught 9 Dungeness by 10:30 or so, then decided they were wet enough and left. The folks that came after didn't do as well. The last few days have seen a few guys getting half-limits from the pier. Some of the others haven't done as well, but such is fishing.

Monday, December 17, 2012

One fellow on the pier had 4 Dungeness before 11:00 this morning. Everyone else was playing catch-up until the divers showed up. They did well by freediving under the pier for their crab. For future divers, I recommend diving a little further afield. Don't dive where someone may think that you are taking crab from their gear. It doesn't matter if you are or not; appearances are everything. Nothing happened today, mostly because the crabbers on the pier were cool. They aren't always cool. It's probably good that I wasn't crabbing from the pier because I'm kind of a petty and vindictive. In a world in which loitering with your boat near someone else's crab pots can get you thought of as a pirate, diving near someone's net for crab could easily be misinterpreted.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Far more reds than Dungeness caught this weekend on the pier and in the bay. Except for one guy there were only a couple of Dungeness landed. The one guy caught 12 nice ones in three pots from the pier. The one fisherman I spoke with that had pots in the outer bay said that he had mostly female Dungeness in his pots. He declared crabbing "over", but I think that there may be a few keepers left out there.

Friday, December 14, 2012

The crabbing is decent in the bay when the current is moving slow. Unfortunately, with the high tides this week, the currents have been moving pretty fast most of the day. The best times to crab this weekend would be around noon tomorrow and around 1:00 PM on Sunday. By an hour or two after the tide the current is ripping out of the bay. The pier even had some nice Dungeness this week during the slack tides.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

The report for this weekend: Slowish inside the bay for Dungeness with reds making the vast majority of the catch for most. Those in the know with their "secret spots" still did OK. The outer bay did much better than the inner for those that ventured out. I went down to Ten Mile on Saturday for limits of rock fish and half limits of Dungeness. The reefs off of the 38 06 line had lots of fish in 140 feet of water but no lings. We dropped 8 pots off of Ten Mile in 60 feet of water from the Towers to the 08.25 line with these numbers in the pots after 3 hours (from south to north): 1, 1, 2, 0, 1, 3, 0, 7. The commercial gear that I saw was all south of Abbots Lagoon in 90 feet of water or deeper. I saw squid sign at the Keyholes but no catchable squid.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Not too much for me to report. One boat ventured out of the bay for limits of crab in the outer bay. A couple guys filled a 40 quart ice chest with crab in two days off of the pier. Ten of those crabs were Dungeness. There's a decent forecast for the weekend, no rain at least. I'm thinking of heading down to the beach for crab and rockfish and maybe a few squid if they're still around on Sunday. I hope I see a few of you out there. Just a few, though.

Monday, December 3, 2012

There was a bit of crabbing going on between the storms. Trevor commented on the previous post that on Saturday he caught 18 crab up to 7" in 7 pots soaking for 90 minutes. That is definitely worthy. There was a limit of crab caught off the pier yesterday morning during the final part of the storm. There were five keepers in one pot pulled after the overnight soak on Friday morning. The catching is surely better on the pier when you aren't competing with 100 other crabbers. If there is ever a good time for fishing for sturgeon in Tomales Bay, this would be it. The water is brown with runoff and should have chased most of the bat rays out of the shallows. Remember, I said most.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Drake's Bay Oyster Company has lost its lease and its battle to stay open. They have 90 days to remove their operation. If I were a rancher in the Park I'd be pretty nervous. As someone that fishes off of the National Seashore I'm still pretty nervous. The people that pushed that agenda don't much like fishermen and hunters and now they have more free time.
    Update: Here's a link to a new petition to sign to maybe help, or maybe just to register your dissatisfaction. It's petitioning the White House, for what it's worth.  

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Looks like a heavy weather weekend. There has been a little crab action on the pier and that is probably as good as it gets for the next few days. The bay and ocean both look bad with up to 45 knot winds and seas up to 18 feet for the forecast.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

The crabbing in the bay is still OK but it's getting harder to catch them. Numbers in the bay ran from 0 to 16, in the outer bay, 3 to 30, and the one guy I spoke with that tried off of Abbot's Lagoon, 0 on an overnight. Due to the number of empty pots, both in and out of the bay, many people are suspecting crab pot pirates. Usually it's not the case, but sometimes you catch a boat with a guy with your gear in his hands and you start to strongly suspect that something is up. People that are thinking about poaching other people's pots should be aware that almost everyone packs a camera now. Is this guy a pirate? I don't know, but if you read this and recognize yourself, please feel free to explain what was really happening anonymously in the comments. I'm sure there's a perfectly reasonable explanation.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Big swell today causing a big break on the bar. More forecast for the rest of the week except for Friday, which looks like the go day for fishing the ocean from Tomales Bay. Otherwise, the crabs are still coming in from the inner bay, just not as quickly as you'd get them outside. Way safer, though. The pier is still slow.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

No fishies the last couple of days but the crabbing has been decent. The outer bay is still providing a lot of crab if you are lucky enough to be the only one running your gear. The bar has been breaking off and on (very on today) so getting there is currently out of the question. Inside the bay the crabbing is OK if you find the right spot. The pier has been pretty slow but a few skilled (and lucky) folks have done alright.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

I tried my luck today with pots at McClure's Beach and below the Keyholes. Keyholes was definitely the spot for me, although there were some Dungeness at McClure's. So far there's not too many commercial pots off of the beach but they're probably coming soon. The radio was full of commercial guys talking about empty strings of pots and moving their gear. Of course, the guys that are filling up the boat with crab probably know better than to blab their location over the radio, so most VHF chatter is usually sad. My rockfishing went well with two limits in a little over two hours while working the Keyholes reefs. Then we spent another hour chasing squid at Elephant Rock for about 80 of the critters. If you want some squid, look for the birds, then meter around the area for big schools on the bottom. The school we found was in 105 feet but would occasionally make the meter read bottom at 55 feet. The little squid will go in next week's bait jars and the big squid will go in me. Unfortunately the weather is turning to rain, wind and big seas for the next few days.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Another November halibut, this one for Tom Carter of Corte Madera. She weighed 22 pounds and bit a live smelt. He had one other bite. The crabbing was as it's been, slow on the pier, decent in places in the bay and slowing in the outer bay. One "inner" bay boater landed 21 Dungeness before noon. The commercial fleet are splashing pots in the water today in advance of their opener tomorrow, so numbers of crab in the ocean will start to reflect the extra pressure.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Who would have guessed that November would be the month to catch halibut? Cray Hall of Hidden Valley Lake caught this 19 pounder today out in front of the Landing on a drifted green label herring. Looks like he's got some good hanging bait for his crab pots. 

Sunday, November 11, 2012

With the currents running strong in the bay this weekend, the crabbing has slowed. Actually, the crab catching has slowed in the bay. There's still a lot of crabbing effort, just less crabs in the buckets. The outer bay is still producing well but slower. I heard more reports of reds and females in the pots out there. Elephant Rock had some decent rockfishing today. Yesterday there was a big lump and a steady wind out of the west but today was beautiful. The ocean forecast for the coming week looks good with no swell or wind in the forecast.

Friday, November 9, 2012

The pier had Dungeness for some folks, with at least one lady catching eight yesterday. The bay has had a pretty steady scratch with catches ranging from 0 to limits, depending on your location, gear and bait. The outer bay is still a good bet but there's more red crab and females starting to show up in the pots. No fishies today.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

It was my day off today so I didn't get any pier results. I did get to go to down to Ten Mile and drop four pots. In an hour and a half my pots caught (starting at Abbott's Lagoon and moving north about a quarter mile apart) 2, 5, 10, and 9. All pots in 60 feet of water. I also caught a limit of nice-sized black and vermilion  rockfish in that hour and a half. The squid are still in 90 feet of water at the Keyholes if anyone wants to catch some of them. The water on the beach is brown and 57 degrees but it is clear and jellyfishy out in 100 feet.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Not too much to report, except for the fact that the pier is only mostly slow. Yesterday someone limited out first thing in the morning on the pier. Everyone else was still struggling to catch a few, but this one guy clobbered the Dungeness. So, you probably won't kill them on the pier, but there's a slight chance you will.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Nathan Porter (not pictured) of Dillon Beach landed two albacore today, 26.5 and 27.5 pounds. Gage Vogler modeled them to make them seem larger. The tuna came about 45 miles out, due west of Rittenburg Bank. There were at least three halibut caught in the bay as well. The crabbing was still good outside, OK in the bay and slow on the pier.

Monday, November 5, 2012

How's this for a pair of November halibut? Dmitri and Hayden Fogal caught a 22 pound (Dmitri) and 25 pound (Hayden) halibut just inside the bar on live jacksmelt. The little guy caught the big fish, of course. The water was flatter than yesterday, thankfully, so they were able to fish there.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

This is a picture of a 21 foot boat coming in across the bar today. He stayed in front of the wave and all was good for him, but the swell got bigger later. A 23+ foot boat got flipped on the bar this afternoon. According to some of the group involved, the boat got flipped end over end. Five people got tossed into the water and later were rescued by the Sonoma County Sheriff's helicopter crew. The overturned boat drifted all the way into the bay in front of the Landing before it was in a place where it could be towed in to shore. After almost two hours upside down rescuers were able to cut a hole in the bottom of the boat and free the two trapped children. They were scared and cold but looked like they were going to be fine. Everyone involved was very lucky. No one was wearing life jackets, not even the kids. For the record, if the bar is breaking, don't go there. If there's a possibility of the bar breaking and you are going to go for it anyway, at least put on life jackets and get the heck out of the cabin if at all possible. Usually, if the boat flips, the cabin only makes it easier to locate the bodies. I damn near cried when the kids came out alive. Be safe. Crabs aren't worth your life. 

So far the crabbing outside of Tomales Bay is good. There are places without crab (Keyholes) but there are more with. If you aren't catching, move. Location has as much to do with catching as good bait, and even great bait can't catch crab that aren't there. Tomales Bay had a fair number of Dungeness for the start if you had your gear in the right spot. They're still catching today but the crab are definitely more active on the turn of the tide. The pier, so far, has been pretty slow.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Here's Vern Sasaki with three California barracuda he caught in front of the Keyholes today. Supposedly barracuda have been caught as far north as Kodiak Island, Alaska, but you sure don't see many around here. The way this year is going, maybe we'll have yellowtail around the kelp by this Christmas.

Kevin Fogal of Orangevale caught this beautiful 47 pound white sea bass today, as well as a halibut. That's the largest bony fish landed at Lawson's Landing this year. 

This is what the pier looked like yesterday at 1:00 PM.

Here's the pier at 1:00 PM today. What a difference a day makes. There have been a few caught on the pier but it is definitely not hot. Some of the boaters trying the bay have done pretty well; a few even limited.

The early crab totals are: slow inside Tomales Bay, OK to good in the outer bay but good luck dodging all the floating crab pot lines and good at Ten Mile. From the radio, I hear that there's a few salmon coming in, some barracuda(!) and at least one big white sea bass. The fish are coming from Elephant/ Keyholes from the sound of it.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Dena Corey of Sacramento caught this 20.5 pound halibut today. She caught it on a white bucktail jig near the red and white (TB) buoy.  It might be tough to catch a halibut tomorrow since the bottom of the ocean will be covered with crab pots by noon. 

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Just a quick one. One of the guys put out a well baited pot off the pier for reds and let it soak for two hours around the slack tide. Result: about 20 crabs, half reds, half Dungenesss, half male, half female, and only 3 over 5.75 inches. The pot was rebaited and allowed to soak a while longer but I haven't heard results yet. Moral of this story: The Dungeness season may not be as good as we have all hoped. Corollary: It will only get worse before it gets better.

Monday, October 29, 2012

It looks like a little bit of Mexico came home with the fishermen. Chris Starbird found this little finescale triggerfish in his oyster racks by Marshall. He brought it back for its photo op, then returned it to the water.

  In other news, Dungeness season opens this Saturday. The forecast for the season is so-so. There are quite a few just under the sport size limit in the bay (5.75") which probably means we will have a good finish on the season, after the spring molt and growth cycle. If you do come out this weekend we have mackerel and good squid but no chicken or fish heads.
  Also, some folks want to close the south end of the bay to duck hunters. For those of you interested in signing a quick petition against closure, here's a link.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Nothing to report on here. Nice water but nobody is fishing. I went out yesterday for a while and the only other boat I saw was the shark taggers. I tried for squid and halibut and caught neither, although there were a few small balls of squid getting driven to the surface in 100 feet of water off of McLure's Beach. I couldn't catch any but the gulls had a feast. So, here's some pictures of people you may know that are actually catching fish:
Here's Mike Garello with a beautiful dorado.

Mike Allen shows off one of his yellowtail.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Dillon Beach Tuna Club is back out on the Shogun and here's some of the pictures from yesterday. Looks like Steve Towne finally caught that wahoo he dreamed of.

Steve Werlin shows off one of the nice dorado they got into.

Ed Parsons with a very nice yellowfin tuna.

Here's Lance Seppi starting an ahi sashimi pile. Now get that line back in the water!

Monday, October 22, 2012

No catching to report for this weekend. No fishing, even. But, I did talk to a fellow that saw something of interest while trolling for albacore a couple of weeks ago. About 10 miles south of Cordell Banks he saw some birds eating something so he trolled over. The birds took off as he got close and he saw that they had been pecking on what looked like a squid head (minus arms and the body) a little larger than his fist. Sounds like Humboldt squid to me. Maybe the New Sea Angler will be running some squid and crab combos this winter.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Divers did well on the bar today with at least 12 halibut speared for 6 or 7 divers. Two boats went out for albacore with totals of 2 and 6. Unfortunately it looks like wind for tomorrow.
The past few days have produced a few halibut for the few boats that have gone out. The bar has been spotty with fish there one day and gone the next. Hog Island has been a bit steadier although still not red hot. Live bait has been taking the halibut that aren't being speared. There are a few sardines in the eel grass beds by Hog but large jacksmelt is the more likely catch. Good luck catching smaller jacksmelt as the large ones outnumber the small ones by ten to one. The rockfishing has been good. Supposedly there's a few salmon out there but nobody has brought one in here in a few weeks. I did hear a report of someone from Bodega Bay mooching up 52 and 60 pound sea bass off of Tomales Point recently. I did not hear how, which seems like the most important piece of information.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Not too much to report until today, when at least a half dozen halibut were taken on the bar. Five of those were speared, not hooked, but still, at least there's some fish out there. I did hear that some boats out of Bodega Bay put the hurt on the albacore yesterday at around 48 and 25. Too bad for all of us that the weather is supposed to change for the worse.

Friday, October 12, 2012

I got to go fishing yesterday and had a very good day. After a biteless morning on the bar I tried across the bay from the Landing where I got bit every drift but couldn't seem to stick the halibut. I finally landed a 23 pound halibut and this 40 pound white sea bass and had six more fish on that came unbuttoned. Probably my bait were too big for the other fish to take them properly, but I think I might try foot-long jacksmelt again. One item of note: both this sea bass and the one from Saturday had stomachs plugged with squid. There are no squid in the bay. Are these fish commuting? 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Gage Vogler caught this 20 pound halibut on Sunday night just after sundown while drifting a live jacksmelt across the bay from the Landing. Chris Wall (of Saturday's white sea bass) caught a halibut yesterday while jigging on the bar. He was waiting for Steve Werlin to spear a halibut but Steve saw nothing to shoot until he got back in the boat. Chris discovered the boat didn't have a functional net once he got the halibut to the boat and ended up hooking it through the gills with a hay hook to pull the fish on board. This is how nicknames get started. "Hay Hook" tried again today but didn't get bit.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Shawn Gallagher and his dive buddy shot these three halibut on the bar on Saturday. The warmer water has finally sent in the 'buts.

Jules Douglas caught this nice 20 pound halibut on the bar yesterday while jigging a white scampi. That scampi caught two flatties yesterday. There were a few other halibut taken on the bar yesterday and a few others from Ten Mile. There were a few salmon caught in the Trees/Bird area but no wide open bite.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The highlight yesterday was a 41 pound white sea bass taken on a white bucktail jig on the bar by Chris Wall of Dillon Beach. Also taken on the bar were at least seven halibut by hook and line. The halibut came on live jacksmelt, live squid, and at least two halibut took dead squid. Ten Mile Beach and McLure's had some halibut as well. There's another school of spawning squid off of the north end of McLures's in 90 feet of water. Find the birds, then find the school on the bottom and you will catch as many as you want. Seems like there might be a sea bass there. At the other end of the spectrum was the albacore fishing, or should I say, albacore catching. The one boat that left from here for tuna came back with no fish and said he heard over the radio of one caught. At least the water was flat.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Howard Law of Marysville caught this 28 pound albacore while fishing with Jeff Norton. Not too many albacore came in today, so catching a big one was even better. Boat totals from the Landing ran 0, 0, 1, 2, and high boat, 3. The boat with 2 fished at 42 and 24 in greenish, cooler water. The pictured tuna came from warm, blue water. I didn't hear of any salmon today but there were at least five halibut caught on the bar. Today's rockfishermen came home with limits of nice blacks and blues. They were fishing somewhere below Elephant.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Doug Morrill of Novato and Mike Raley of San Rafael teamed up for this 35 pound trophy salmon today. Doug reeled it in on Mike's rod. It bit a green RSK in 40 feet of water in front of Bird Rock. A group of divers shot 7 halibut to 22 pounds on the bar today. They had 54 degree water and 8 feet of visibility. The fog will return tonight and stay for a while, so we should see the tuna numbers start coming up if the weather stays good. There is a group of boats planning on running out on Friday morning. The warm water is less than 30 miles out. The last numbers I heard with good numbers of fish were 37 53 and 123 35.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The end of the day numbers were pretty grim. High boat was one albacore. Those that stayed inshore brought home nothing. It was a spectacular day on the water. I guess sometimes you can have good fishing or good catching but not both.

Yesterday's albacore run came back fishless. A full moon and clear skies likely contributed to the tuna not wanting to eat. The fog is expected to return soon, so perhaps we can expect the fish to bite again as well. Two halibut were speared on the bar today and at least one more was caught by a fisherman. Visibility was about 5 feet. There's a pretty bad red tide from shore to 20 miles out. It looks like bad tomato soup. Let's hope that it doesn't mess with the abalone.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Joseph Mason caught this 24 pound salmon and 24 inch lingcod today in front of Bird Rock. Scott Mason assisted in the capture. Another boat returned with four 10 pound lingcod from "the Point Reyes area." The one boat that went for albacore started at 42 and 26 and caught six fish in twenty minutes at 45 and 31. They said the weather was unpleasant on the tuna grounds to start but improved all day.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

"Hook Set" Mitch caught these two 18 pound salmon today at the Keyholes while fishing with Ron Johnson. He also caught a halibut at McLure's Beach. All fish came on green label herring on cable baiters with no flashers. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Tuna counts today are good, "as many as we wanted." That was 18 for one boat and 25+ for another. There's word of a dorado hooked and "released." The numbers I heard were 42 and 26. Salmon on the beach, at least 5 caught between the three boats I talked to. The salmon were out in 50 to 110 feet, depending on who you spoke with and where the jellyfish were.
Cameron Vogler caught his first albacore yesterday. That was the only fish for our boat, but other boats scored well. Fish numbers I heard of ran from one (me) to close to limits. The other two boats out of the Landing had 11 and 18. Most of the fish were caught at 37 45 by 123 32 and 37 39 by 123 26 and mostly early and late with some scratch fishing midday. There was some midday action at the Gumdrop. There were  a few salmon and halibut caught on Ten Mile yesterday, at least three of which were taken at the old lifesaving station. Rockfishing was a bit slow until you went further south with more schoolies showing up at Elephant. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The water is kind of sloppy outside today but there's talk of a tuna run tomorrow. At least,there's a couple of guys thinking about running out, probably down to 37 40 by 123 21. The nearshore fishing has been on the slow side for most of the fishermen here. A few salmon, decent rockfishing, but no halibut to speak of. I did read an article in the paper today about a new bait to try. I don't think I'm quite desperate enough to use it, but if you want to try it the link is here.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Herman Rinkel caught limits of salmon and rockfish yesterday, the rockfish (mostly blues and blacks) and a salmon from Elephant reef and the other salmon from the Trees. Another boat, one that had caught squid three days in a row, tried for the squid at Buoy 2 but found nothing. Back to looking for them, I guess.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Not too much catching going on with the salmon today. The rockfishing was pretty good for most of the guys that tried it. The Vogler family decided to go catch dinner and went out after work to try for squid. Above is Cameron, showing how to unhook a squid (and himself) from a sabiki rig.
This video shows the boat that is trying to catch all the spawning squid. With luck he leaves us a few. The squid were next to the outer red bell buoy, number 2, under the birds. For the record, it seemed like they liked the pink sabikis way better than the whitish ones. We caught 89 squid in about an hour of fishing. Somebody warm up the fryer.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

A couple of salmon landed today for the four boats that went out. The wind, so far, has remained offshore. Tomorrow is supposed to be nice but Monday's forecast calls for a 9 foot swell. At least there aren't any halibut on the bar to lure fishermen to their doom.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Not too much to report except for windy ocean conditions for the last few days. There's a big school of squid nearby that should have the fish boiling around it, but so far as I can tell the only thing to eat around there is the squid. They are tasty, though.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Here's Gil Mels and Ted Anderson with some more of Thursday's tuna. Yesterday's tuna mission was not as fruitful, with one boat catching five and another, returning at 10PM, with one. The weather was not good offshore 

Scott Alexander of Rocklin caught this 27 pound salmon yesterday while trolling.

Chase Conley of Healdsburg speared this 36 pound halibut on the bar today. There were a few others shot and seen on the bar by the group of divers. Fishermen scored a few more halibut off of Dillon Beach today, at least two of which were caught on jigs. Finally a few halibut to report.

Friday, September 14, 2012

The two boats that went for albacore today caught "as many as we could hold." The Due Regard reported two six way hookups. The numbers were N38 48 by W123 42. Salmon fishing was OK with fish coming from the Point/Bird area, 40 to 60 feet of water near the north parking lot, and a couple at Elephant. Again, no halibut that I heard of. Rockfishing was slow at Point Reyes.
Here's Rich Chapin, Andy Fisch and Herb Hansen with some of yesterday's tuna. They would look happier except that now they have to go clean 17 albacore.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

The albacore guys caught today. I heard of 15 to 16 fish to a boat and 25 to 35 pound fish. 50 miles or so out, I didn't catch all the numbers but it sounded like 37 45 by 123 42 or so. Salmon numbers were not as good but were OK. The salmon were in the usual spots as well as a few in 30 feet off of the north parking lot on Ten Mile.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Good weather is forecast for the next few days, so if you haven't got your fill of salmon yet, here's your opportunity. They're still biting from buoy "2" down to the Trees in 50 to 70 feet of water, mostly on the bottom but some are coming up high now. It's typical late season action with nothing going on for an hour or two, then you get a little flurry of action, then nothing again. Keeping the hooks in their mouths is also challenging. Getting a halibut to put the hooks in its mouth is even more challenging this year. It should be prime time for halibut now but nobody told the flatfish. Lots of sand sole are on the beach, so maybe they could be tiny replacements. There's a few boats running for albacore tomorrow. Report to follow.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Mara Nursement caught this 20 pound (gutted) salmon on derby day. All Mike got was a cold saltwater bath from a breaker.

Paul Gross also landed a 20 pound salmon for the derby.

Terry Fogal is smiling because his salmon is half a pound bigger than the others on this entry. "Center consoles rule!"

Paul Kotko, Jake Showaker and Adam Kotko pose with the winning fish.

A wet Ron Johnson shows off his 19 pound (gutted) salmon from derby day.

Vic Shada finally found the fish later in the day but put three fish in the boat in 45 minutes just north of Bird Rock in 60 feet of water.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

   The Merle Lawson Memorial Salmon Derby was held yesterday in some pretty rough water. The winners were: Jake Showaker, 1st place, 24 pounds; Roger Remington, 2nd place, 24 pounds; and Rich Chapin, 3rd place, 23.5 pounds. Tied weights went to the first fish weighed in, so Jake's early finish put him on top. About 25 boats fished in unpleasant conditions at best, with some of the boats scooping waves over their bows while trolling. Hooking a fish was difficult and actually putting one in the boat without going in the drink yourself was a major challenge. Due to the skill of the competitors (and a bit of luck) nobody got hurt and quite a few fish made it into the boats. There was a raffle at the dinner afterwards with prizes donated by Diekmann's General Store, Dillon Beach Resort, Outdoor Pro Shop, Roseberry Construction, and the Lawson family. Thanks to everyone that came out, and hopefully we can do it again next year.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Paul Page caught this 22 and this 19 pound salmon today while mooching in an undisclosed location. He caught them both early, then tried for halibut for three hours without a bite. A pair of divers speared two limits of halibut on the bar and saw another 5 fish, so the flat ones may finally be showing back up.

Craig Wilson of Colorado caught this 42 pound white sea bass yesterday while salmon fishing. Lots of salmon were caught yesterday as well, mostly in the Tomales Point to the Trees area in 35 to 70 feet of water, both by trolling and mooching. Mooching may have had an edge with a few more caught. I fished Ten Mile and saw 8 salmon jump (one was 20+ pounds) and caught 4 salmon to 26 pounds. The two "hot spots" were the north parking lot (3 salmon and a halibut) and the Keyholes. Elephant and the Keyholes definitely had more bait than anywhere else on the beach.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Newest local legend Nathan Porter now leads the big fish board with this 36 pound slug. Also pictured is a 26 pounder. The fish came on the troll south of the Trees in 50 feet of water and bit a purple label herring.

Travis Barton nailed this 20 pound salmon on Ten Mile yesterday while trolling 20 feet of water.

Bruce Schneider caught this white sea bass last year while fishing in 40 feet of water off the esteroes. Yes, this is last year's fish, but honestly, how many sea bass do we see around here?

Jeff LaLonde of West Sacramento caught this beautiful 33 pound salmon yesterday.

Mike Nursement caught this 22# salmon on a trolled glow-in-the-dark RSK with a herring.

Mike Pfiefle shot this 31 pound halibut on the bar on Saturday.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Today saw fewer boats on the water and fewer fish brought in. Of those fish, one was a 33 pound salmon (picture tomorrow) and three were halibut caught this side of Hog Island. The halibut were caught by one fisherman and he jigged them up in about a half hour.
Here's what some of those salmon looked like. These were caught Friday in the Tomales Point to the Trees area and ran 23 and 18 pounds. There was an 8 pound fish but that was one too many to hold so it didn't get in the photo. If you have fish pictures (preferably of fish caught near here) send them to with a little info and I'll get them posted.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Some boats did well today, a few caught nothing, but most boats had 1 or 2 salmon. The salmon came from the usual places as well as off of Elephant and Ten Mile. The depths remained the same except that some of the salmon at Elephant were at the top and the beach fish were as shallow as you'd dare. A couple of halibut from Ten Mile.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

There were some nice fish landed today but not as many fish per boat as yesterday. Jellyfish and seaweed moved in to "good spot" today making fishing a lot more complicated. The Keyholes had a few fish without the complications. Divers found a few halibut on the bar today. A boat out rockfishing the shallows near Tomales Point reported slow fishing but saw a few salmon on the surface and a pair of large great white sharks (do they come in any other size?).
No halibut that I heard about yesterday but good salmon counts. The salmon were, again, from the buoy to below the Trees and especially on the reef edges in 50 to 70 feet. If you're not catching and not losing gear then you need to get closer to the bottom. I'm not just saying that because we sell gear (well, maybe a little) but because it works. Greens, glow-in-the-dark and UV seem to be killers on the baitholders. Flashers and dodgers will work but in my opinion are too expensive to leave on the bottom. Luckily, the fish will bite without the shiny stuff.

Friday, August 31, 2012

The catch numbers weren't great for most fishermen yesterday but the salmon are definitely there if you can figure out the combination of things to make them bite. The fish I am aware of came from the outer bell off Tomales Point to just south of the Trees in 50 to 70 feet of water. We got five, lost two and missed several other bites while trolling near the bottom with UV baitheads just north of Bird Rock. We saw several other salmon taken in the same area. If you see a school of bait "blown up" on the fish finder you'd better circle it. The fish aren't everywhere. Halibut was a dissapointment yesterday. The best news from the bar was a diver sighting a white sea bass. There's enough squid around that there's probably more sea bass than you'd think.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Two halibut from Hog Island today for one boat. Of the two boats I checked with that went salmon fishing, one had two limits and the other had nothing. Both salmon boats fished the Bird/Trees area.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A few more were salmon landed today before the chop chased everybody off the water. Catches ranged from 0 to limits. The fish aren't all hugging the bottom. Some guys are catching salmon at 40 feet down in 70 feet and at least one salmon was caught while the angler was dragging the bait on the surface, preparing to attach his drop weight. Anybody know any good topwater plugs for salmon? No halibut landed that I heard about.

Monday, August 27, 2012

The halibut didn't play well with others today but the salmon sure were kind. They're biting light and not sticking real well, but for many fishermen today it wasn't a big problem as there was another fish on soon enough. As a tackle salesman, these are my favorite kind of fish because they are nestled right down in the rocks. Careful with your downrigger weights. If losing gear bothers you, mooching has been working as well. 45 to 70 feet of water, Tomales Point to the Trees.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The salmon are back! Well, maybe not all of them, but definitely enough to make it interesting. Scott Mason, Mara Nursement and Mike Nursement caught these four salmon today, the largest being Mike's 24 pounder. The fish were right out front in about 60 feet of brownish water and they were hugging the bottom. More fish were lost than were caught. There were other boats catching as well. If the weather stays decent the halibut count should start to rise.