Monday, August 8, 2022


    Here's a late report (my fault) from Lou Zanardi about Friday's fishing: "Hi Willy,  yesterdays bite was pretty slow but Joe Withers and Wyatt Zanardi didn't mind the wait as they managed to hook and land this double which turned out to be the only legal fish of the day.   Many silvers and shorty's were returned to swim with the whales." After this season, "Silvers and Shorties" would be the name of my cow-punk themed Primus cover band if I were musically inclined. Everybody has had their days of nothing but cohos and next year's keepers. It's especially great when you can't find tray anchovies (I heard Bodega Tackle may have scored a few) and the wrong kind of salmon keep gobbling up the last of your stash. At least you guys had your double.

    Tom Brodsky and John Bresnahan limited on Saturday at approximately 14 by 6. The bite there didn't last through Sunday but it lasted long enough for these guys to get 'em. 
    Here's on on-the-water report from Rokefin from yesterday: "Hey Willy
Started 14/8 had several hits in a flurry and landed this salmon around mid teens. Caught a few shorts.  Made our way north and landed another low teen salmon. Had a double silver hookup and a couple scratched baits so still grinding it out.
2 in box" I'm not sure how he and Herman Rinkel finished but two salmon by mid-day was probably a lot better than what a lot of guys were doing. I believe that Shrimp Boat had limits as well as a few other boats, but a lot of guys had trouble scoring even one. A common feature of the catchers was going deep on the wire, 180' to 220" on the wire or more. You'd better have some Spectra on your reel to keep them hooked at that depth. No stretch.
    On another note, this week's lovely weather let the water warm up to halibut happiness level and a batch of fresh volunteers have entered the bay. From the bar to Pelican Point there are some very nice halibut being caught and even more lost. I heard a long-time halibut fisherman call last weekend "the most frustrating fishing I've done in the last few years," and he's fished for bluefin with me, so he knows frustrated. The trick to sticking them when they bite? I don't know, as I'm having the same problem, but I did seem to keep more connected with smaller baits. Not all of them, but one 15 pounder on the bar last night. 

Thursday, August 4, 2022


    Tom and Jerrie Carter thought that mixed bag report yesterday looked pretty good, so they caught one, too. "Tom had to take Jerri out today so she could show us what kind of halibut we're supposed to be catching this time of year. 2 halibut and 1 striper on the bar, one of each at the sand point. All on smelt. Biggest halibut ran 18.5 and 19 lbs. Tom would like it known that his had the extra half pound." Cameron sent me this report but it sounds like a lie if Tom's was larger. I mean, it's not like it's impossible for Tom to catch a fish larger than Jerrie; it's just super unlikely. Black swan. Cameron should know better than to send me lies.
   Cameron and Kerry sent another report: "John Cooper 28lb striper. Kastmaster at Sand Point by boat." Not sure what else Mr. Cooper caught, but even if there was nothing else, it looks like he had a pretty good day. 

   Speaking of multi-species trips, today we had a 2022 Tomales Slam, too. We caught two stripers first thing (one, bleeding, kept) then ran out to 15 and 7 where the birds and whales were feeding. The salmon were feeding too, for a bit. We caught two and lost a third, then the birds and whales (and seemingly, the salmon) left as well. After almost two hours without a bite, we bailed. In the mouth of the bay we found six more stripers (released) and a halibut. Gage and I doubled at one point. It sounded like the salmon bite died for most guys around the same time. Hopefully this salmon bite shutdown ends tomorrow.

    Before the bite died, Shrimp Boat connected to two salmon at 15 by 7 as well. May they bite for you tomorrow as well, for all our sakes.
   Cameron does more than send me fishing reports. Tonight we went out and tried for stripers and halibut. The Redrums provided, and he and I (Cameron first) caught stripers about 14 pounds each. It turns out that catching fish with your kids is fun. Who knew?

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

    Tony Glaves of Hailey, Idaho caught this 26 pound salmon yesterday at 15 by 5 or so.  He was fishing with Ed Parsons on the Shut Up and Fish. The boat limited, but this was the big one by far.

    Sorry, I didn't get this gentleman's name, but I know that he caught this 12 pound striper on a Kastmaster near the bar yesterday. The boat landed two stripers and a halibut for the day.
     Scott Holzer of De Soto, Missouri caught this 13 pound striper in the surf while shore casting today. It bit a Yo-Zuri surface lure on Sand Point. You may see him standing on the Point again tomorrow.
    Swampy has had kind of a disappointing year on Tomales Bay. Until the last two days. His boat had six halibut yesterday and five today, with this 27 pound hog to top it all off today (child shown for scale only). 
     What we have here is a 2022 Tomales Slam. To break it down:
Jesse Keilman of South Lake Tahoe: 17 pound salmon
Tony Busalacchi of South Lake Tahoe: 21 pound striper
George Fabio Rios Jr. of Santa Barbara: 22 pound halibut
   There were a couple more stripers and one more salmon in the box. Salmon and halibut ate dead anchovies. Stripers bit on the Redrum tubes. Speaking of those tube jigs...
  Gage took Guy Laackman fishing this morning and on the way out they caught this striper. They picked up limits of salmon at 15 by 5 and 15 by 6. They returned to Tomales Bay where, using Redrum tube jigs, they caught 16 more stripers, ultimately keeping their limits. Not a slam, as the Tahoe boys caught, but definitely a numerically superior situation. I thought we'd have a picture for the Gage calendar, but Gage's head was too large to fit in the frame, so no picture. Thanks, Guy, for a photo. 
Actually, it's kind of nice without a Gage photo.


Tuesday, August 2, 2022

   Rokefin sent in a report from yesterday: "Hey Willy

Finally got the boat out on the open waters. Dave Alexander and I ran near the 20/10 yesterday. Was not wide open for us but stayed busy after a couple hours trolling hoochies and wma for nodda so we switched to bait and things picked up. Otw 80-130 we managed 3 in the box with a few coming unbuttoned mixed with silvers and smalls. Was great to get the boat out and get a feel for it, very rewarding to bring fish home." Nice work. There's not much better than catching fish in your own boat. 

      Mike Miller sent me a jealousy picture: "Willy here's picture from sunday.32"  34" 36"
" He didn't tell me where he caught them but I'm assuming it wasn't Marshall. It is possible to catch large halibut at Marshall but your lucky to get one in ten trips. Three in one trip seems like a Hog to the bar thing. Wherever he caught them, damn. Nice fish.


Sunday, July 31, 2022

    Tom Treadway and family caught their limits of salmon (eight fish for four fishermen) just below the Head in ~250' of water. They could see the Bodega Buoy, so I'm thinking that they were near 15 by 5. That's a lot closer than 23 by 10. Nice work Treadways. Andrew's Deplorables had four for three fishermen at 22/23 by 10. We didn't have a lot of boats running out there for salmon today, so reports are scarce, but with the little info we have it seems that the game might be on again. Go salmon! The halibut were a bit slower in Marshall today. Lots of bites for most fishermen but not that many stuck. There's a few halibut entering the bay, it seems, so we may see action around Hog Island pick up (if anybody fishes there). The past few days have seen a few halibut caught from the shore on Sand Point. Only a few, but any seems like a lot. There were a few stripers caught today too, and not by Gage. The horror.