Thursday, December 29, 2011

All things considered..

The fishing hasn't been that bad for late December. Weather has been stable, dry and cool. Lows in the 40s highs in the low 60s. Typical dry weather pattern with high pressure keeping the fronts way north of us. We need rain. We need snow in the Sierras NOW. Anyway, Striper fishing is a cat and mouse game at the present time. They are moving and eating at a fast pace. One day here and gone the next. To find better quality you better be looking at your electronics and comfortable with T14. If not, forget about. You might stumble on a feeding surface school but I wouldn't bet on it.

I watched a huskey Striper take care of an American Shad on his last leg. I was retying and caught a glance of the shad. Focused in to take a photo and noticed a Striper Zero in and take a look. You know what happened next. A 15-16" Shad made a nice winter meal.

American Shad not feeling so good

Striper investigating

one more look

Yesterday we hit the salt. I was a little hesitant bucouse this time of year the inshore fishing really isn't at it's best. Fly fishing is tough, winds are unpredictable and the shallow water fishing just generally sucks in late Dec - January for me. Well,  it was tough and the wind was unpredictable.  Still a good time on the salt in the fresh air. Butt ass cold in the monring but warmed up nice. The "cold" didn't stop the tourists from acting like they were at  Spring Break in Miami with the shorts and tee shirts out beach combing. Not to many fish caught by us. 6 or 8 reef fish and few Croakers and we called it with building seas. Still a fun way to spend the day. On a good note. I left a tackle bag on the wharfe by the boat hoist and someone actually called me and said I found your shit. A ton of flies and terminal tackle free for the taking and he called. Good stuff is going to happen to that guy. Wife ran over and picked up the next day with 50 dollar bill. I hope that dude has a great 2012.

 Canary rockfish

Shot from Capitola wharf

Capitola Beach

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Xmas eve report

Cool crisp morning but warmed up nice into the 60s. Beautiful day out there. Morning was solid with a good number fish. Afternoon bite sucked with only a few small fish. Wild Life was everywhere with Deer, Elk, Bald Eagels, Golden Eagels,  A Road Runner, Scads of Quail, Coyotes trying to sneak up on waterfowl and even a lone badger rooting Ground Squirrels. Lots of life out there today!

Merry Xmas!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Santa Cruz Surf

I wanted to fish the surf today so I headed over with pretty high anticipation. That anticipation started to die after 4 hours of nothing. I can usually catch a few but I just couldn't find anything going at all under really good conditions. Not sure what the deal is. I saw there were some decent waves off the light house and good NW swell so I stopped and checked it out for a few minutes. 

Same rocks as the first for sneaker waves!

Beautiful weather

Awesome day to be on the water. Light wind and jackets off by noon with brilliant sunshine. Fishing was steady intill around noon. Te secodn half of the day was spent jumping around looking for fish. They are starting to move into a late fall early winter pattern and school up tight as is the bait. Thats good and thats bad. Good if you run into, and can stay on top of school of nice fish. Bad if you cant find them. Guys I talked to on the water either did ok or blanked. There isn't much inbetween. I ran into a school early and stuck a good number of fish although these were not the best quality. Good day to be out there none the less.

Average fish

Thursday, December 15, 2011


It seems about this time every year, guys and gals that put a lot of time on the water kind of look back on  there year from a fishing perspective. I fished 120 days to this point. Put up 80+ reports on this blog alone. Some of those reports are trips or include multipule days of fishing. Thats about average for me. Some years more some years a little less. I tried to make a more concerted effort to report on my fishing good or bad and hope to keep that up.  I had a blast this year from Goldens in the Sierra's, Nevada Cutties to the Kelp beds of Monterey Bay. Alaska, San Diego and everything inbetween. Met unique and intersting people and lots of good times.

The year started on San Diego Bay 1/1/2011
Highlight catch wise for me wasn't any particular fish but passing the 100 Carp on fly in a year goal. I don't usually measure success in fishing with a number of fish caught. It was just a personal angling goal I set for myself. 108 since were counting. In my area carp are not easy to fool and gets tons of bait pressure. So I was pretty stoked to see my personal progress in sight fishing for these spooky bastards. I have learned a huge amount about these fish in the last 5 years. They give me much joy and some days is like the first trying to figure them out. They aren't for everybody but they are for me.

I counted it!
Best or most fun trip of the year for me was probably Smallies on fly in Northern California. I grew up and spent 20 years fishing for nothing but Bass and I had one day that was hands down some of the best Smallmouth fishing Ive ever experienced. It was ridiculous. Also got to spend a week with my wife on that trip so it is a memorable one.

Personal Best Smallie on Fly

Northern California

Alaska was fun but more of a learning experience in many ways. I cant wait to return to what is in my opinion some of the most beautiful country on the planet. The people in Alaska were so damn friendly and I just can't say enough good things about the landscape, wildlife, Rivers and of course the fishing. It really is the last frontier.

The downer side to this year is the battle California anglers are currently tackling with our California Dept of Fish & Game. It's sad they cant take better care or put forth more effort in protecting the land and animals we the tax payers have in trusted them with. Topic for another day though.

So I would say all in all a good year. Some ups , some downs but I still have a another couple of weeks to close it out. Everyone have a fantastic Xmas and New year! Here are a few misc 2011 photos.

Monterey Bay Halibut