Yes it was a little windy in the am, but the fish were huge all day. Sunday is looking like it will be a light load, so if you like an open boat, make a reservation today. Call the Sea Landing at 805-963-3564.
Red hot rockcod & Cuda Bonus
My buddy Witold and I took the 3/4 day today on the Stardust. We drove down from the central coast early AM. There were 24 passengers on the boat, with some great fishing talent on board. Winds were up on the outside so we went to the dome.
I had a little problem in that I only had 300' of braid on my reels and we were fishing in 320 to 340. Doh. Randy lent us some gear and we got to fishing. It was about as stupid as rockcod fishing can get. Drop it down, count to 3, wait for the bite. We made two drifts and put 270 rockfish in the boat!!!
The number of 2lb green stripe and green spotted rock fish was astounding. There were some starry rockfish mixed in and a handful of boccacio and vermillions. 3 nice lings also came on board, with Cliff getting the biggest one on a 6" Big Hammer with a 3oz leadhead (I have no idea how he got that bait to the bottom). Considering the length of our drifts and the number of fish that were biting it was almost unimaginable how many must have been down there.
So we were done at 11:30am and Jason said - let's go look for barracuda down south. We drove down there and there was not much sign. Shearwaters, but not in the right zone and not working right. Out of the blue Jason gets on the PA and says, "I just ran over a huge school of barracuda get ready".
He stopped the boat and Randy hooked up first cast. Sick. They didn't charge the boat but we put the anchor down and started picking. The fish were a little shy, but there were definitely good numbers in the area. I hooked 5, broke off 1 on Big Hammer, and lost 3. Doh. Landed one finally on a Tady 45. The boat did 21 fish with many more lost or missed. It was fun, I dig barracuda fishing.
One tip. Braided line fully sucks for barracuda fishing. I had none of the right gear and we were fishing with 50 and 80 braid with leaders. If I had a 15 fluoro rod for big hammer and my 900L with 40lb mono and a Tady 45 like normal I think things would have been much better in the landing department.
Anyway, awesome trip. Weather was great, fishing was great. It was a blast.
3/4 Day Charter
On Friday I took a charter group of 23 anglers out on the Stardust for a 3/4 day run to the islands for rockfish. We opted for a late departure of 8am since most folks were coming from San Luis Obispo.
The weather was chilly, with a 5-10knt wind in the morning and some lump for the first few miles out of the harbor. The swell calmed down further out, but we had quite a bit of wind during the day.
We scoped some areas on the west end of Santa Cruz and got a great look at the island up close before heading across to carrington (I think) to fish. We fished from 95 to 250' of water and had steady action, with the best flurries coming at the beginning and end of the day.
The majority of folks on the trip had never fished before, so catching could have been a little higher, but we still put together some nice bags of coppers and reds. There were the occasional gopher cod, blue rockfish, undersize ling, and sand dab brought in as well. Big fish was a just legal ling, with several large reds in the 4-5lb class also making a showing.
I had good success with a 4oz jig (copper and orange color). Sardines were also working well. Summer and I came home with limits of nice quality cod. The weather could have been a little smoother, but we had a great group and the fishing was pretty solid. Jason and the crew do such a great job out there, it's hard to have a bad time :) I may have some photos to add later, haven't gotten them yet.
Lings and boscos
Went out on the 3/4 day for the last day of lingcod season. I was hoping for my first legal lingcod but I got no love from the lings. Everyone around me were catching em. I did get some decent boscos. I didnt get my limit this day but I caught enough small rockfish and sand dabs to fill an aquarium. I probably caught 15 fish with only 6 keepers, at 300' that is a workout. Had a great time with Sal and Raffa. The burgers were awesome. Hopefully I'll make it out there one more time before the rockfish season closes.
Oh ya I think there was a record set. I watched the guy next tome pull up 4 rocks throughout the day. The biggest rock took two deckhands to handline from 300' just because he wanted his jig back. Talk about service.
Santa Rosa Rockfish
I took the 3/4 day trip Sunday on the Stardust with 32 passengers. The trip leaves at 7am, and we headed across the channel to the "potato patch" and the front side of Santa Rosa. Weather was beautiful, chilly, but flat seas with just the slightest bump.
We live boated, moving around quite a bit and picking up a nice mix of rockfish on each spot. Over the rails came vermillions, chucklehead, bluebass, gopher cod, treefish, sheepshead, ling cod, sand dabs, and starries. The fish were a nice grade, not huge, but plenty of 2-4lb fish.
I went with two tackle setups for this trip. A CTE300 with 50lb Triple Fish braid and 25lb fluorocarbon leader for bait and Big Hammers and an Induron 400 with 80lb braid and 30 leader for metal jigs. With the light braided line I was able to use 6oz sinkers and stay down no problem in the 150-180' depths.
The fish ate bait well in the morning, and at the end of the day the bite on iron turned on big time. Capt. Jason had recommended a 4oz red/copper colored jig they had for sale in the landing, and that jig worked amazingly well. I don't have the name handy, but it was one of the cheapest jigs they sold. I caught a few on Big Hammers but it was hard to make bottom with a 2oz head. Need some heavier heads for future.
I finished the day with a beautiful bag of reds and chucklehead. Luke and Dane filleted them perfectly like always. No lings or sheeps for me, but there were 4 legal lings to about 8lbs and two big sheepshead about 9lbs apiece. The boat finished up with limits and we were back to the dock at 4:30pm. Just another relaxing trip on the Stardust, catching cod and enjoying the hamburgers :)