Another exciting week of offshore fishing. Covered a lot of new ground and landed another big salmon shark.
More sharks and Chilli Peppers
On Friday we ran to a completely new area yesterday in 600 feet of water looking for chilli and lings. Ive been wanting to explore this area for a while, but to get there we have to run north against the swell so I wanted decent weather to be able to do so. I didn’t know what to expect fish wise, so I was pretty nervous until we finally found the fish. Once we found the chillis, they bit as fast as we could get the lines down and we limited pretty quickly for 4 clients and crew in one drift with quality chilli and bocaccios. Best Chili bite I’ve experienced yet, the 4lb weights would completely stop by 300 feet down every time. We then spent a while looking for lings and caught and descended several cowcod to 30lbs( biggest rockfish I’ve ever seen, unfortunately illegal to keep) we had to change up baits and locations to try and avoid catching them but were unable to get the lings to bite. Spent some time exploring new areas of the sea mount and learned a lot. Added a completely new area to the arsenal and will hopefully be heading there more to get the lingcod dialed in.
On Sunday we Started out the day some really poor weather with wind chop and made our way west to 800 feet of water to our usual spot. First drift we hooked into a nice redband and for the next 2 drifts pulled up nothing.
I have started learning the chilli tend to be pelagic and will just pick up and move several miles suddenly when somethings changes, in this case the water turned slightly green, so if there’s no fish I need to go on the hunt to track them down. After changing spots to 600 feet of water we had a little luck but still a relatively slow pick of chilli, it wasn’t wide open but we slowly were adding some to the box. We talked about catching salmon shark before the trip so I brought my 130lb bluefin setup on my Makaria 50 reel paired with a UC viper and rigged a 14/0 hook with 2 foot of 1200lb cable leader to a 200lb monofilament wind on leader. After hooking a few nuisance blue sharks on the fly line mackerel throughout the day, I was about to relocate and look for better chilli and the big reel finally starting screaming.
We knew we hooked into a good salmon shark, after an 45 minute long fight at nearly 40lbs of drag we tail roped the 475lb monster and immediately bled and gut it, it was a far smoother process this go around after having some experience from the last one.
After collecting ourselves, I decided to move as shallow as I could and found the chilli to be biting much better in 500 feet, we then got the rest of our 6 limits of chilli with a monster 6lb black cod and a 12lb lingcod in the mix. The ocean backed off for the afternoon and made for a decent ride home. It was a very long day with a lot of work put in but everyone walked with many bags of fish.
Tomales Bay Halibut Fishing Report
Capt Josh fished Saturday for one fish and 4 shaker, and Sunday had one keeper as well. The north wind cooled the water off and turned off the bite, Tomales bay halibut are fickle creatures, and really showed that this weekend.